If you've found yourself thinking that it's been a long time since there was a meaningful update to Microsoft's DirectX API, you wouldn't be wrong. DX11 was released back in 2009 and since then there's only been a couple of small scale updates, but with continued development of openGL and AMD's Mantle nipping at its heels, the software giant is finally pushing out DirectX12 and it's set to unveil it at the Games Developer Conference on March 20th.
We heard a bit about this a couple of weeks ago, when a brief for the event appeared on the GDC website, but now it's completely official. Really, just look at that thumbnail image.
It'll be interesting to see what new features the next generation will bring, beyond the presumed lower level hardware access for developers. With DirectX11 we got better multithreading support and Tessellation, which saw all sorts of 3D shapes appear from previously flat surfaces.
However something we can guess from the big green image up there on the left, is that with Qualcomm's name appearing at the bottom alongside traditional graphics partners AMD, Intel and Nvidia, we should be seeing DirectX making its way to tablets and Windows smartphones. That could mean we're looking at a real mobile graphics war, since OpenGL has already seen a lot of usage for high-fidelity mobile gaming.
The question is, can a new DX compete?