ATI, graphics business unit of Advanced Micro Devices, said that the adoption rate of the next-generation Microsoft DirectX 11 application programming interface (API) by game developers is rather high and that the company expects to see “a wave” of titles supporting DirectX 11 already this year.
“We now have more startups with DirectX 11 than we saw at this stage with DirectX 10. […] After DirectX 10 was formally released in the very end of November, 2006, there was a lag of something like 5 months before the very first [DX10] title arrived. We expect a wave of [DX11] games to arrive during this calendar year,” said Richard Huddy, senior manager of software developer relations at AMD/ATI, at a conference on Thursday.
Apparently, there are so many game developers working on titles that utilize the DirectX 11 technology that ATI’s developer relations team is working on full throttle to support them.
“Right now my problem is supporting enough game developers, not finding game developers [to adopt a new technology]. A big issue is to give sufficient support to game developers who want to work on DirectX 11 tech right now,” added Mr. Huddy.
The developer relations chief refused to say whether “numerous” game developers have already received their ATI Radeon graphics cards supporting DirectX 11 features, but indicated that the hardware itself is not needed to implement certain benefits of DirectX 11. For example, improved multi-threading support by the new API will boost performance of multi-core microprocessors in future games and some other optimizations will further improve performance of titles on any hardware, provided that it is installed into a system with DirectX 11.
Earlier this week ATI said that the first DirectX 11-supporting titles will emerge on the market from companies like Codemasters, Phenomic/Electronics Arts, Emergent and Rebellion.
The key new innovations of DirectX 11 are Compute Shaders, Tessellation, Multi-Threaded Rendering, HDR Compression, Dynamic Shader Linkage and numerous others. The new capabilities will enable richer graphics experience as well as standardized approach for using GPUs for general-purpose computing (GPGPU), which will allow game developers to use graphics chips for computing of artificial intelligence, physics effects and so on.
ATI/AMD is confident that it will be the first company on the market with the DirectX 11-supporting hardware. To prove its confidence, the developer demonstrated its code-named DX11 Evergreen graphics processing unit at Computex Taipei 2009 trade-show earlier this week.