Brad Wardell has been overly enthusiastic regarding his support for DirectX 12, both about his team's at Stardock Studios project, Ashes of the Singularity but also about the various improvements, the new API enables.
Gamingbolt’s Kurtis Simpson, recently got in touch with Wardell, and discussed a number of topics, one of which was the effect that DX12 could have on the Xbox One, compared to the benefits of the new API for the PC.
“It won’t have the same impact,” Wardell says. “There are a couple of things that are important in DirectX1 2 for Xbox One developers though. First of all Xbox performance is completely the result of the eSRAM feature and there isn’t a true or false thing with regards to one using eSRAM. You could use it well or you could use it poorly or somewhere in-between, and their API which is the current DirectX11 extension for the Xbox is really crappy for dealing with the eSRAM. That has resulted in what’s called Resolution Gate.”
DX12 will bring huge changes
Wardell explained that Microsoft are removing the old API used to fetch data to and from eSRAM and will be replacing it with the one that comes with DX12. Wardell claims that this bring huge changes.
“I’ve never heard Microsoft just come out and, I mean they should just really come out and explain to people why they’re having problems getting games to run at 1080p. But maybe they don’t think their users will understand, basically it has to do with developers aren’t making effective use of the eSRAM API. So in DirectX12 they actually threw it away, they threw away the crappy one in DirectX11 and they’re replacing it with a new one. So that’s pretty huge.”
“They also released a new tool, it’s this optimization tool that will actually algorithmically try to come up with an optimization for the developer. So instead of the developer trying to hand set-up what uses eSRAM, they have their own app to try and do as much of it for them as they can. Third, DirectX11 still serializes stuff from the developer to the GPU. It is low-level but the fact is as low-level as it, it’s still serializing a lot of GPU calls. So it won’t be anywhere near…you won’t get the benefit on Xbox One that you’re getting on the PC.”
DX12 will resolve the resolution issues that plague Xbox One today.
“It’s completely different but you are going to get a substantial benefit. The part I think that users will care about is that it should address the resolution stuff for most people. That’s what I think is the most glaring thing that people are upset about. But it won’t do anything magically. The developers still have to use it, it’s not like your old games will magically be faster.”
“Yeah, it should do that [on resolving the resolution issues due to eSRAM], because in DirectX11 it’s really a pain to make good use of the eSRAM. Where as supposedly in DirectX12 and this is all theory, I haven’t used it myself but the new API is supposed to make it alot easier to optimize your use of the eSRAM memory.
“The API is there for me to use as a tool for the piece of hardware. And the one that was in DirectX11 was not easy, it was a very trial and error process to make use of the eSRAM. In DirectX12 they’ve tried to make it easier to make use with and the easier it is to use, the more likely you’re going to get developers who optimize for it correctly.”
The benefits that DX12 could bring to the Xbox One could be substantial
If Wardell is right, the benefits that DX12 will bring to the Xbox One, could improve performance substantially. It would still rest with the developers to take advantage of the new API though, to overcome any current limitations of the Xbox One hardware. Given a potential cross-platform development with DX12, for both the Xbox One and the PC, developers will have no reason not to take full advantage of the benefits enabled by the new API.
We will bring you any news regarding DX12 and Xbox One, as soon as it becomes available.