Recently, AMD has done a press release about their new application programming interface or API for short. This API supposedly brings developers closer to the hardware in the heart of our computers, bypassing the overhead of programs like DirectX or OpenGL. But what does this mean to gamers?
In short, it means games looking better and running smoother, with a small catch. It is only available on AMD supported rigs. Luckily, I bought a XFX Radeon 7950 earlier this year, which will support Mantle, and my first chance to experience it firsthand will be this December, when DICE will have Mantle support on Battlefield 4.
What does Mantle mean in the long run? Well, looking back at this past console generation, I’d say a lot. Games around the 360 and PS3’s releases are very dated compared to the games coming out now. Take Perfect Dark: Zero for example.
Compared to Halo 4.
This is the same hardware, but better use of the 360 API, among other tweaks (game engine, lighting system, anti-aliasing, etc.). This is the potential leap that Mantle could provide to PC gamers, allowing players to squeeze every drop of performance possible out of their graphics cards and CPUs. This also allows for developers and gamers alike to rid themselves of Microsoft’s DirectX, which is tied to the version of Windows being run.
As gamers and developers, we should be excited for the new possibilities this opens up, and I eagerly await my chance to try it firsthand this December.