|Some sort of art nouveau?|
I mucked about with things for several days, all the while complaining to my tolerant guildies whenever I got in game. I upgraded my drivers, rolled back my drivers, tried beta drivers, did clean installs and reinstalls, defragged and registry cleaned, scoured the forums, Googled till I could Google no more, verbally insulted and threatened my computer, and generally spent a lot of time NOT in game. I would tweak one item, go into the game, then wait for a crash and resulting error message to go back out and retweak and try again.
Here's a screen of me and Majyst in LA. At this point, I had not crashed in about an hour, so I thought I'd test some stuff. Switched my shaders to high and BAM, there goes the screen! Ouch.
After several long days of this mess, I broke down and asked for help from my guildie, Warmad, who is quite knowledgeable about computers and all things digital. He asked some very insightful questions, was patient and helpful, and even got me to open up my case to peer inside and read him some numbers.
His diagnosis: my power supply is too small for my new video card.
Solution: buy a new power supply.
Bandage fix until then: lower all my settings and cross my toes. :D
So my lovely smooth gameplay has gone away for a bit until I can get the cash and motivation to make another trip to the computer store and buy a new power supply. Sigh.