While we have had multi-core processors in our PCs and game consoles for years we have never really had development tools that allow games to take full advantage of them until recently. The purpose of DirectX 12 and similar APIs is to make it easy for developers to utilize all of those cores on our systems to achieve results that are very difficult or even in earlier efforts. We know that the Xbox One will benefit to some degree from DirectX 12 but Microsoft has not specified exactly how much the new API will improve the console’s performance. One reason for this is probably due to the lack of any clear example. After all, the games that will be released in the near future such as Forza Motorsport 6 and Rise of the Tomb Raider began development with the previous version of DirectX. It will likely be another year or two before a game fully developed with DirectX12 reaches a state where performance can be fully analyzed.
Incandescent Imaging, the developers of the upcoming Si-Fi horror game, Caffeine, has some thoughts about DirectX 12 and its benefits for both the PC and Xbox One. One of Caffeine’s developers, Dylan Browne, recently spoke with the fine folks at GameZone and gave a very direct answer about how DirectX 12 helps to imrpove the frame rates on PC. “Usually you’re seeing a 20-ish% performance increase in most cases. So it definitely boosts the FPS which would allow to increase, especially on Xbox, which is a little more underpowered obviously than you’re PS4,” he said. When asked if he was referring to PC, Browne confirmed that he was and added, “”On Xbox, it might allow me to do things like have the soft chatters that I have on PC which I didn’t originally enable when I started to port to Xbox mainly because it was cut out due to performance, but it performs pretty well. I could actually probably enable them on the current build but when I get a Direct X12 build I’ll be looking into more ways to up the resolution and things like that”.
The quote above shows that the new API can not only increase the frame rates in our Xbox One games but apparently the resolution can be improved as well. The TiC team is reaching out to the developer and we will bring you ore news about their upcoming game and DirectX 12 in general as it develops. This writer in particular is eagerly anticipating the environments in a future Forza game written entirely with DirectX 12.