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AMD Mantle Not Meant for Xbox One and PlayStation 4

By - Source: Microsoft | B 30 comments

AMD clarifies that Mantle is not meant for hardware-level console development.

On Microsoft's Windows App Builder Blog, the company states that the Xbox One will not support AMD's hardware-level Mantle API. Previously, developers were presumably taking advantage of this API given that the console's Radeon GPU core is based on the Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture. Thus, game developers for GCN-based Radeon GPUs would seemingly have the same metal-level access whether it's in the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Windows PC, making it even easier to "port" console games over to the PC platform.

But of course, Microsoft won't have any of that Mantle stuff. "For over 15 years, Direct3D has served as an essential ingredient to deliver cutting-edge 3D graphics in games," the report states. "During this time, Direct3D has dramatically evolved as a result of deep investments we've made in development across our device platforms (Windows, Xbox, and Windows Phone) and continued partnership with industry-leading GPU hardware vendors and game developers."

"We are very excited that with the launch of Xbox One, we can now bring the latest generation of Direct3D 11 to console," the report adds. "The Xbox One graphics API is 'Direct3D 11.x' and the Xbox One hardware provides a superset of Direct3D 11.2 functionality. Other graphics APIs such as OpenGL and AMD's Mantle are not available on Xbox One."

Shortly after the blog went live and reports started to surface, AMD responded by pointing out that Mantle is actually for the PC platform. Mantle creates a development environment that is similar to what consoles already offer: low-level APIs, close-to-metal hardware access, and simplified development procedures versus that of a PC.

"PC gamers and developers deserve the benefits of this model as well, which is why devs like DICE approached us and requested a technology like Mantle," AMD stated. "And the benefit of that technology is clear: improved performance for gamers through more efficient rendering."

"So much of the work game developers are doing to prepare for the next generation of console gaming is already well-suited for the modern graphics architectures in AMD Radeon graphics cards," AMD continued. "Though the door is open for non-PC platforms to support Mantle in the future, today Mantle is a continuum that allows developers to take advantage of that work on the PC."

What may have confused many people was the comment AMD made during the Mantle API reveal last month. "With Mantle, games like DICE’s 'Battlefield 4' will be empowered with the ability to speak the native language of the Graphics Core Next architecture, presenting a deeper level of hardware optimization no other graphics card manufacturer can match," the company said. "Mantle also assists game developers in bringing games to life on multiple platforms by leveraging the commonalities between GCN-powered PCs and consoles for a simple game development process."

The company also indicated that one of the benefits of using Mantle would be leveraging optimization work from next-generation game consoles to PCs, and new rendering techniques. Thus, with direct access to all GPU features, developers can unlock higher graphics performance on consoles and gaming rigs with GCN-based GPUs.

Oh well. With that now clarified, Microsoft talks about DirectX 11.2 on the Windows App Builder Blog, which you can read right here.

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Top Comments
  • 14 Hide
    Shankovich , October 16, 2013 5:37 PM
    Well the whole point of Mantle is to make a PC development environment more console-like.
Other Comments
  • 3 Hide
    masmotors , October 16, 2013 5:29 PM
    good thing i have a hd 7950
  • 14 Hide
    Shankovich , October 16, 2013 5:37 PM
    Well the whole point of Mantle is to make a PC development environment more console-like.
  • -2 Hide
    Verrin , October 16, 2013 5:39 PM
    What about PS4 and Sony? Do they support Mantle?
  • 3 Hide
    chuckydb , October 16, 2013 6:06 PM
    So????
    What's the point then? I'm confused.
    Is it just to port console coding directly to CGN gpus without the need of dx11???
  • 9 Hide
    iknowhowtofixit , October 16, 2013 6:33 PM
    Quote:
    Well the whole point of Mantle is to make a PC development environment more console-like.


    Not sure why people are down-voting since you hit the nail on the head.
  • 2 Hide
    renz496 , October 16, 2013 6:39 PM
    Quote:
    What about PS4 and Sony? Do they support Mantle?


    No official statement yet but they might follow MS move. Remember john carmack statement about how MS and Sony could be hostile towards Mantle?
  • -1 Hide
    battler624 , October 16, 2013 6:52 PM
    I may look to far in the wrong direction, but i believe Microsoft isn't supporting Mantle is for the sole purpose of not having it on the ps4 "Competition".
    Because if the devs made their games using mantle it will be harder for them to port it to xbox and pc's without AMD cards, and actually if devs adopted mantle whats the point of exclusivity for DirectX 11.2 on the X-1 and Win8.1? it will all be destroyed.
  • 1 Hide
    Chaos2Theory , October 16, 2013 6:57 PM
    OR MAYBE, JUST MAYBE mantle is the direct competition of direct X which microsoft does not want to support considering microsoft makes direct X......
  • -6 Hide
    Chaos2Theory , October 16, 2013 7:05 PM
    OR MAYBE, JUST MAYBE mantle is the direct competition of direct X which microsoft does not want to support considering microsoft makes direct X......
  • -5 Hide
    Johnpombrio , October 16, 2013 7:11 PM
    Mantle is just another in the long list of direct to hardware programming APIs that have come and gone. When you were talking about hardware running at 100 MHz and 4K of RAM, this really mattered. Today with GHz processors and GB of RAM, the increase in speed is marginal at best. That is why so many folks are using standard apps to write their code or using a generic engine these days.
  • -3 Hide
    17seconds , October 16, 2013 7:56 PM
    Reading between the lines... you won't see many Mantle games due to the fact that it's basically more work for developers. They still need to code the game for DirectX/OpenGL used by the vast majority of gamers. Coding for Mantle is just more work and more expense in order to benefit only 1/3rd of the PC community and zero console users.
  • 1 Hide
    rokit , October 16, 2013 10:12 PM
    X1 has no support, ok, what about PS4? The huge plus was 1 api to rule them all, now i don't see anything good, it would be the same as with physux - few good examples(that could be done without it) the rest are trash.
    If UE4 will support it, situation might be different though, since its about performance and not new features and thus can be included in every game.
  • 3 Hide
    Serpent of Heaven , October 16, 2013 10:21 PM
    I think Microsoft is just throwing a fit about the AMD Mantle API. One, it's a low level API, so it's basically supplemental to the Major APIs (D3D and OpenGL). Rumor has it, it may or may not be off of OpenGL. This would explain why NVidia users can use it on their Graphic Cards, but it will be more optimized by AMD Users.

    It's suppose to make it easier to port console games to PC, increase draw calls, make coding easier, easier to program...

    It won't work on the XBone because it's strickly D3D up to 11.2, and no other API. PS4 might have it because there's a possibility that it will support D3D and OpenGL.

    Sadly though, MS isn't in direct competition with AMD. Nvidia is in direct competition with AMD on the graphic processing spectrum. Sony is in direct competition with Microsoft (MS) because of the Consoles, Nvidia because of the Cellphone and Tablet Market. AMD direct competition--idono if you can call it competition still, is with INTEL. On the API side, MS's API is in competition with Khronos, or the makers of OpenGL.

    I think Microsoft is just hating on AMD because they got a bum deal with the APU/SoC leftovers on the XBone... PS4 just have the better Jag APUs on them, and MS got the leftovers that didn't come out to be full Jag Cores. Since NVidia couldn't produce low powered APUs or SoC for Sony, they are hating on Sony too. Intel couldn't do it, and ARM couldn't do it because they didn't produce x86 cores...
  • 2 Hide
    ohim , October 16, 2013 11:51 PM
    I think the part that MS fears the most is that till now gamers had only windows as an option due to Direct X ... bring Mantle with huge performance gains to either Windows or Linux and MS will have a problem, but this is just my ideea. And this coming from a guy who likes Windows better than Linux, but i like competition and this is a good thing.
  • -3 Hide
    somebodyspecial , October 17, 2013 12:19 AM
    Quote:
    Reading between the lines... you won't see many Mantle games due to the fact that it's basically more work for developers. They still need to code the game for DirectX/OpenGL used by the vast majority of gamers. Coding for Mantle is just more work and more expense in order to benefit only 1/3rd of the PC community and zero console users.


    Yes, you'll only see MANTLE games when devs are paid by AMD for a specific title. I'm surprised they say DICE approached them for this. If that was the case why did you have to pay them 8mil supposedly to get BF4 optimized for it? If they wanted it, wouldn't they do the coding for free? Either way, even at 2mil per game they can't afford it let alone 8mil. I'd rather see everyone go OpenGL and forget DirectX or crap like Mantle. OpenGL serves everyone. If you're driver sucks that's the gpu makers problem, fix it. With OpenGL/WebGL/HTML5 etc you don't need all this porting crap, it's easily done as everyone supports these even in a browser. It took 4 days and a small team to port Unreal 3 engine to javascript/WebGL. That's a CHEAP port!

    So Mass Effect, INfinity Blade, Gears of War etc etc should be easy to get running in browsers if so desired.
    http://www.extremetech.com/gaming/151900-unreal-engine-3-ported-to-javascript-and-webgl-works-in-any-modern-browser
    I don't see how Mantle helps this type of stuff happen. It optimizes for a very small subset of AMD cards and nothing else. Nobody will do this. That's what I'd call reverse-cross platforming as in, going AWAY form cross-platforming.
  • 0 Hide
    cats_Paw , October 17, 2013 1:06 AM
    Well... there is a lot of talk about all this but lucky for me, even with my limited knowledge about this thing, reviews will eventually surface and Ill find out whats worth it and whats not.
  • 0 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , October 17, 2013 2:53 AM
    Yes because DX 11.x is really going to work well with the Xbox One mediocre graphics hardware. You will never see the full potential of DX 11.x on the Xbox One Console the graphics hardware will become a bottleneck before you will truly start to see the effects of what DX 11.x has to offer. At best you will see a water down version of DX 11.x being implemented.
  • 0 Hide
    renz496 , October 17, 2013 3:38 AM
    Quote:
    Yes because DX 11.x is really going to work well with the Xbox One mediocre graphics hardware. You will never see the full potential of DX 11.x on the Xbox One Console the graphics hardware will become a bottleneck before you will truly start to see the effects of what DX 11.x has to offer. At best you will see a water down version of DX 11.x being implemented.


    Isn't that console already have their own low level API? In a sense they don't need Mantle if they already something similar to it.
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