Auto HDR is automatically bundled with Windows 11, but you need to turn it on to take advantage of it. But that’s not all. You also need an HDR-supported monitor, and you need HDR-capable games. We’ve dug through a mountain of gaming titles to find out which games support Windows 11 auto HDR so you don’t have to.
Don’t sweat it if you haven’t heard of auto HDR; it’s not the most obvious of Windows 11 features. Just know this is a way to automatically turn standard dynamic range (SDR) game titles into high-dynamic range (HDR) games for HDR monitors. Windows 11 does this automatically, and you don’t have to play with settings or modifications.
HDR expands the range of contrast between the darkest and brightest areas of an image. This improves the color and gives the image depth and more detail. HDR makes details look more lifelike and immersive than SDR.
Xbox has supported auto HDR for years, yet the experience on Windows 10 was dodgy at best. Even games built with HDR-capable monitors in mind sometimes wouldn’t display in HDR quality without first tweaking the game’s settings. And some HDR-ready games would actually crash when played with HDR turned on in Windows 10. Microsoft fixed these issues with Windows 11.
With auto HDR turned on, Windows 11 can calculate SDR images and automatically display them in HDR-like quality, although it’s important to note this is not the same as true HDR. Games with native HDR support will always look better.
Another thing to note is this will only work on DirectX 11 and DirectX 12 SDR-only games, and it needs to be turned on.
Microsoft really went for Mac-like simplicity with this version of Windows, and for once, that’s helpful. Auto HDR is simple to turn on in Windows 11.
Step 1: Open the Start menu.
Step 2: Click Settings.
Step 3: Select System.
Step 4: Select Display.
Step 5: Toggle Use HDR to the On setting.
That’s it. Now you’re ready to dive into some HDR-capable games.
Microsoft announced that 1,000 titles would support auto HDR during the original Windows 11 launch event, but it didn’t say which games. However, most major titles are included and the list continues to grow.
While we can’t list all 1,000 games here, we can let you know which major titles are supported. Let’s dive right in.
Final Fantasy XIV
Final Fantasy XIV was released in 2013 and is still a wildly popular MMORPG. HDR wasn’t a thing back then, so the game was built with SDR.
Thankfully, the game has been updated for the Xbox to support auto HDR, and this means it will work on your Windows 11 PC as well.
Age of Empires: Definitive Edition and more
Age of Empires has been around forever, and while the latest Age of Empires IV may be designed with HDR screens in mind, the previous editions are old enough to be SDR-only. Windows 11 auto HDR changes that.
You can play AoE:DE, AoE II, and AoE III on your Windows 11 PC using auto HDR, and the images will look fantastic.
HALO: Master Chief Collection
The HALO: Master Chief Collection brings the first six HALO games to your console and PC. However, these older titles don’t support HDR.
No worries, because they do support Windows 11 auto HDR. All six HALO games look like brand new releases with auto HDR, so you can enjoy them all over again.
Both Minecraft: Dungeons and Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition support auto HDR, so you can make one of the most popular games look great.
The Yakuza series
Become a crime lord on the mean streets of Tokyo or take town rival daimyos in scenic Kyoto in the wildly popular Yakuza series. Although some of the earlier titles didn’t release with HDR, they do support Microsoft’s auto HDR.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Skyrim is one of the most popular role-playing games in the Xbox universe, and now with auto HDR, you can enjoy it on your Windows 11 PC as well.
So far, the other Elder Scrolls releases do not support auto HDR, although Elder Scrolls Online released a patch to support the technology on the PlayStation 4 and PS5 consoles. We can only assume it will land on Windows 11 PC sometime soon.
Call of Duty series
So far, several Call of Duty games support auto HDR on Windows 11. This includes Black Ops II, Ghosts, Modern Warfare, and Infinite Warfare. Streamers rejoice.
Assassins Creed: Chronicles
This hit three-game series takes you to China, Russia, and India where you can assassinate local warlords and corrupt mandarins. However, it didn’t support HDR when it was released back in 2016. Windows 11 auto HDR changes that, and now you can play these games in full HDR glory.
Dark Souls I, II, and III
All three Dark Souls games support Windows 11 auto HDR. Considering this series features some of the most intense boss fights in the world of gaming, you’ll want to be fully immersed in the action.
The world’s most popular competitive FPS needs to fit on a lot of different screens, which is why Epic Games released it in SDR.
You can build, shoot, craft, and loot your way to victory while enjoying the brilliant colors and graphics of this insanely addictive game.
This arena shooter quickly became one of the world’s favorite games over the course of years since it was released and is one of the top five most-streamed games on Twitch. However, you’ll need to turn on auto HDR on your Windows 11 PC if you want to enjoy the game to its full potential.
Subnautica & Subnautica: Below Zero
Both Subnautica games are runaway indie successes with a loyal fan base. Build your underwater base, scrounge for supplies while diving to deep depths, and avoid being eaten by sea monsters.
Windows 11 auto HDR lets you immerse yourself in the stunning underwater worlds of these awesome games.
Need for Speed
Several of the Need for Speed games support Windows 11 auto HDR, including Need for Speed: Most Wanted, Need for Speed: Rivals, and the 2016 remake, simply titled Need for Speed.
EA’s controversial and chaotic war games in the Battlefield series are built in HDR, but for some reason, Battlefield 4 was not. Thankfully, it supports auto HDR so you can try to make sense of what’s going on.
Crysis 2 and 3
Forget Crysis. Crysis 2 is where the game matured and became an action-packed alien invasion epic set in a world destroyed by environmental collapse. Crysis 3 continues the carnage. So why not enjoy the end times in stunning detail with auto HDR?
Total War: Rome 2
The Total War series has some of the most addictive military strategy games around. Total War: Rome 2 supports auto HDR on Windows 11 so you can command Roman legions as they battle barbarians and conquer new lands for the Empire. Roma Victor!
This isn’t an exhaustive list of the games that support Windows 11 auto HDR. However, it includes all the big names. Most games made for PC or console after 2020 are built with HDR in mind. It’s the older games you need to worry about.
- Age of Empires: Definitive Edition
- Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition
- Among Us
- Assassin’s Creed II
- Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
- Assassin’s Creed Unity
- Assassin’s Creed Syndicate
- Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: China
- Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: India
- Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: Russia
- Ashes of the Singularity
- Akiba’s Trip: Undead & Undressed
- Alien: Isolation
- Aliens vs. Predator 2010
- American Truck Simulator
- Battlefield 4
- Battlefield: Bad Company 2
- Batman: Arkham Knight
- Batman: Arkham Origins
- Bendy and the Ink Machine
- Bioshock Remastered
- BioShock 2 Remastered
- Bridge Constructor Portal
- Bloons TD 6
- Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition
- Borderlands: Game of the Year Enhanced
- Burnout Paradise Remastered
- Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy
- Call of Duty: Black Ops II
- Call of Duty: Ghosts
- Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
- Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered
- Crysis 2
- Crysis 2 Remastered
- Children of Morta
- Conan Exiles
- Darksiders III
- Dreamfall Chapters
- Doom 64
- Dead or Alive 6
- Donut County
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
- Disgaea 4 Complete Plus
- Dark Souls Remastered
- Dark Souls II; Scholar of the First Sin
- Dark Souls III
- DiRT 2
- DiRT 3 Complete Edition
- Dota Underlords
- Duke Nukem 3D: 20th Anniversary World Tour
- Empire of Sin
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition
- Enter the Gungeon
- Fall Guys
- Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age
- Ghostbusters: The Video Game Remastered
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Hollow Knight
- House Party
- Hitman: Sniper Challenge
- Hitman: Absolution
- Hard Reset Redux
- Halo: The Master Chief Collection
- Halo Wars: Definitive Edition
- Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak
- Heroes of the Storm
- Hardspace: Shipbreaker
- Iron Harvest
- I Love You, Colonel Sanders!
- Just Cause 4
- Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning
- Katamari Damacy Reroll
- Layers of Fear
- Lego City Undercover
- Legends of Runeterra
- Lethal League Blaze
- Lumines Remastered
- Little Nightmares II
- Moonglow Bay
- Muse Dash
- Marlow Briggs and the Mask of Death
- Mark of the Ninja: Remastered
- Mafia III: Definitive Edition
- Mirror’s Edge Catalyst
- Mad Max
- Max Payne 3
- Mega Man Legacy Collection
- Metal Gear Survive
- Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes
- Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition
- Minecraft Dungeons
- My time at Portia
- Ninja Gaiden
- Ninja Gaiden 2
- Need for Speed: Most Wanted
- Need for Speed 2016
- Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4
- Nioh: Complete Edition
- Old Man’s Journey
- Oddworld: Soulstorm
- Oxygen Not Included
- Outlast 2
- Octopath Traveler
- Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition
- Plague Inc: Evolved
- Phantom Doctrine
- Persona 5 Strikers
- Pinball FX3
- Red Faction: Armageddon
- Raji: An Ancient Epic
- Ryse: Son of Rome
- Star Trek Online
- Rocket League
- Slain: Back From Hell
- Sea of Solitude
- Strike Zero: Director’s Cut
- Sonic Forces
- Sunset Overdrive
- Soulcalibur VI
- Street Fighter V
- Stranded Deep
- Shenmue I
- Shenmue II
- Slime Rancher
- Subnautica: Below Zero
- Shadow Warrior
- Spyro Reignited Trilogy
- Superhot: Mind Control Delete
- Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince
- Tom Clancy’s The Division
- Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier
- The Council
- The Witness
- The Adventure Pals
- The Walking Dead: A New Frontier
- The Bureau: XCOM Declassified
- The Evil Within
- The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
- Tomb Raider 2013
- Titanfall 2
- Total War: Rome 2
- Tekken 7
- Yakuza 0
- Yakuza: Like a Dragon
- Yakuza 3 Remastered
- Yakuza 4 Remastered
- Yakuza 5 Remastered
- Yakuza 6: The Song of Life
- Yakuza Kiwami
- Yakuza Kiwami 2
Microsoft has pushed Windows 11 forward with auto HDR. Gamers everywhere should rejoice.
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