Why Open GL and Not DirectX should be the API of Choice for AAA Games

Usman Pirzada
Posted Oct 11, 2013
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OpenGL Vs DirectX is Perhaps One of the most underrated debates of all time. Many people dont even completely understand the difference between the two,  i am sure some of you will be surprised to learn that you can get Games, with just as good graphics as DX on Open GL.

rage openglRage, a completely OpenGL Based Game – Photo Credits Only: IGN

Open Gl Vs. Direct X – Why the Future Lie with Open Gl.

First of all let me say this: Open GL is basically an API called Open Graphics Library.  You can think of an API as the basic pipeline through which your games are run. OpenGL and DirectX are basically the same thing except the fact that the latter is proprietary (Microsoft). Linux based systems and Mac OS based systems currently utilize Open GL while nearly all Windows Based systems utilize Direct X.

Thing is the world is moving towards an Open Source future, where literally everything is non-proprietary.

A common example is Android which is insanely popular since it is open source. Another very important fact is that Open GL is basically thought to be a more stable API than Direct X. Consider the following benchmarks of a GTX Titan Running Grid 2 (Direct X) and Rage (Open GL).

AMD R9 290X Benchmarks 4c

Notice how the GTX Titan has an absolutely rocksolid-stable FPS in Rage? You can thank Open GL (The AMD Bumps are because of Drivers) for that.
And you know what i am not the only one who thinks so:

Valve: OpenGL is faster than DirectX — even on Windows

Open GL Direct X Valve Steam

 “As for why OpenGL is faster than DirectX/Direct3D, the simple answer is that OpenGL seems to have a smoother, more efficient pipeline. At 303.4 fps, OpenGL is rendering a frame every 3.29 milliseconds; at 270.6 fps, DirectX is rendering a frame in 3.69 milliseconds. That 0.4 millisecond difference is down to how fast the DirectX pipeline can process and draw 3D data.” – ExtremeTech

The sad part is however that currently OpenGL is being utilized more by the Video Industry than Game Makers, Rage is one of the ONLY completely Open GL games around. Blizzard is another example, their games always are both Open GL AND Direct X based and tests revealed that they run FASTER on Open GL. Why? Because Open GL as a pipeline is simply better, that’s why.

 

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