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AMD Knocks DirectX

Farewell to DirectX on hears from Richard Huddy, head of GPU developer relations at AMD, who states that DirectX is holding back game performance. He blames this on consoles, though it seems logical that this would probably be less of an issue for AMD if they manufactured CPUs or GPUs for the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. Though programming more directly for the hardware on two different GPU architectures would be more difficult, he claims the most common request he gets from developers is to "make the API go away." Here's a bit:

'It's funny,' says AMD's worldwide developer relations manager of its GPU division, Richard Huddy. 'We often have at least ten times as much horsepower as an Xbox 360 or a PS3 in a high-end graphics card, yet it's very clear that the games don't look ten times as good. To a significant extent, that's because, one way or another, for good reasons and bad - mostly good, DirectX is getting in the way.' Huddy says that one of the most common requests he gets from game developers is: 'Make the API go away.'

'I certainly hear this in my conversations with games developers,' he says, 'and I guess it was actually the primary appeal of Larrabee to developers not the hardware, which was hot and slow and unimpressive, but the software being able to have total control over the machine, which is what the very best games developers want. By giving you access to the hardware at the very low level, you give games developers a chance to innovate, and that's going to put pressure on Microsoft no doubt at all.'

20. Re: AMD Knocks DirectX Mar 18, 2011, 15:31 Tom
Richard Huddy has been around since the early days of DirectX. ~10 years ago he was working in dev relations for NVIDIA, then somewhere along the line he changed over to ATI. He knows what's what. IMO these statements were either not considered very carefully, or this is part of some agenda.

Developers have plenty of room to innovate within the framework of DirectX. Look at how much innovation happens in frameworks that build on top of DirectX like XNA and various game engines. Between shaders and GPGPU there's plenty of room for innovation.

What's holding back PC games compared to console games when it comes to taking advantage of the more powerful hardware? I really doubt it has much to do with DirectX. It seems much more likely to be simple economics. It's difficult and costly to make a game scale to take full advantage of a range of hardware. It's easier and cheaper to target consoles first and then throw in a few token improvements for the PC port, which we've seen more and more blatant examples of lately (like DA2).
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