John Carmack, co-founder of id Software and creator of some of gamings most revolutionary titles, has given a lot more credence to AMD’s Mantle API and DirectX workaround, by suggesting that big performance gains should be viable. It’s on his Twitter, but that’s about as official as you get now outside of a press release.
The tweet that should be putting a big smile on AMD’s face today, is the one that reads: “If you just port code that is efficient on GL or DX to a nativeish api, the per gain will be small. The win would be in allowing archs …,” which continues with: “… that aren’t possible at all now, like continuous simultaneous use of buffers by both CPUs and GPUs. In some situations, this can be big.”
While we have yet to see this Mantle code running in the wild, EA games has added support to the Frostbite 3 engine behind games like Battlefield 4 and the upcoming Need for Speed sequel, so it might not be long before we see if Carmack’s claims can be put to the test. However, he won’t be the one testing them, as even with the potential gains from an API like this, Carmack feels that OpenGL already offers them.
“I won’t be writing any Mantle code in the near future, since I’m not working on consoles now. OpenGL for PC, mac, linux, and mobile.”
Still with AMD hardware in both consoles, it’ll be interesting if either Microsoft or Sony decide to push for this sort of API on their repective hardware, or see the potential for Steam Box graphical improvements as too much of a threat and trash it.
KitGuru Says: What do you guys think of Mantle? Is it too much marketing spin for you, or do you think we’re really looking at big performance gains in the near future?