A recent interview with the Nitrous Engine team, who’s development engine is being used by Stardock’s Ashes of Singularity revealed some interesting tidbits on how much the Xbox One really could benefit with the DirectX 12 upgrade in the future.
In the past, Oxide Games claimed that DirectX 12 will improve efficiency and visuals on PC, but GamingBolt specifically focussed on the Xbox One as it is one of the most polarising subjects in gaming to date.
“We’re not experts on the Xbox One, but I can tell you what my understanding is. There are two benefits with DirectX 12 that are performance related. It’s a lot lower CPU overhead. That’s important because the CPUs on the consoles are not powerful. You have many of them but each one is not powerful. You’ll get a huge CPU benefit if you were having trouble with that by using DirectX 12. The other thing that DirectX 12 really does is that it offers more support for advanced GPU features. And there’s not a great way of doing that at all on DX11. By enabling that on Xbox One you can get pretty big performance improvements on consoles. There should be tangible benefits. It will take people a few years to acclimatize to how to program and get those benefits,”
GamingBolt also asked the devs if the new API upgrade could result in tangible resolution or framerate increases on titles which land on Xbox One. It’s widely known that in some rare cases the Xbox One simply cannot reach the pixel count that some other alternatives could reach.
“Sure. If you use synchronous compute feature, if you optimize your research transition barriers that you have direct control over for DirectX, there are things you can do that you have no way to analog in DX11. There’s potential for substantial performance improvements which could manifest in increased resolution and frame rate. There’s also additional benefit for developers to invest in trying to really pull the most that they can out. So they can bring that directly back to the PC. Because if you have to build two different paths you have to optimize one over the other. That’s as much a budget and a resource issue as anything else. It certainly is going to encourage people to invest more in that technology.”
It remains to be seen how games will turn out that uses this revolutionary API. With developers torn on the benefits and some demanding it become the defacto minimum requirement, we could see some DirectX 12 games come next year. But until then it’s anyone’s guess what developers will be able to do with this new API.