Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

AMD Mantle Now Adopted by Three More Game Developers

By - Source: AMD | B 45 comments

Star Citizen will utilize AMD's Mantle API.

Just a week ahead of its developer conference in San Jose, California, AMD announced that three developers have signed on to use the company's Mantle "metal-level" API: Cloud Imperium Games (Star Citizen), Eidos-Montréal (THIEF), and Oxide Games (Nitrous). AMD's Mantle API will allow these developers to optimize their games for GPUs and APUs based on the Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture.

"AMD is proud to play an instrumental role in transforming the world of game development with Mantle," said Ritche Corpus, director of ISV gaming and alliances, AMD. "With the support and close collaboration between AMD and industry-leading game developers like Cloud Imperium, Eidos-Montréal and Oxide, Mantle can maximize optimization for highly anticipated PC titles, bringing an unparalleled gaming experience for players."

Chris Roberts, CEO of Cloud Imperium Games, said that Mantle will allow the Star Citizen team to extract more performance from an AMD Radeon GPU than any other graphics API currently available, such as DirectX and OpenGL. Indeed, AMD boasts that Mantle provides PC game developers the same level of hardware access that console developers experience in SDKs for the Xbox and PlayStation machines. That's definitely a good thing.

"Mantle is vitally important for a game like Star Citizen, which is being designed with the need for massive GPU horsepower," Roberts said. "With Mantle, our team can spend more time achieving our perfect artistic vision, and less time worrying about whether or not today's gaming hardware will be ready to deliver it."

AMD first revealed Mantle back at the end of September, and hinted that the API would make it easier for developers to post their console games to PC, that perhaps games would have the same metal-level optimizations and features across the PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 because the consoles pack GCN-based APUs. However, Microsoft nuked any hope of that, and AMD later backtracked by saying the API was simply for PC game development.  

"Mantle lets you use AMD Radeon GPUs the way they are meant to be used, unlocking many new opportunities and increased CPU and GPU performance," said David Anfossi, studio head, Eidos-Montréal. "Because of this, Mantle is one of the most important changes to PC graphics in many years."

Mantle benefits include reducing the CPU overhead to enable nine times more draw calls per second than other APIs. This will provide PC gamers proper multi-tasking scaling on the CPU without the need to handle all the background draw calls required by the older APIs. Other Mantle benefits include 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.

The first company to support Mantle was Electronic Arts (Frostbite 3 engine). Now three other developers are on the Mantle bandwagon. "AMD's Mantle technology lets us get more out of the hardware than any other solution available," said Dan Baker, co-founder, Oxide Games. "Adding Mantle support to our multi-platform, 64-bit Nitrous engine realizes significant gains in performance on Mantle-enabled hardware without adding enormous development overhead."

Complimentary access to all APU 13 keynote sessions is available by registering online in limited numbers while quantities last.

Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.

Display 45 Comments.
This thread is closed for comments
Top Comments
  • 20 Hide
    GoliathPtXs , November 5, 2013 7:03 PM
    is that even a option? r9 290 all the way!
  • 14 Hide
    Shankovich , November 5, 2013 7:10 PM
    ^^You mean a GTX 770 or a 280X right?
  • 12 Hide
    usbgtx550 , November 5, 2013 7:42 PM
    I'm not too sure how I feel about mantle. On one side, I think it's great! Who doesn't want an extra performance boost. On the other hand, I feel this will fragment the industry further. What if Nvidia was to respond with their own version of mantle. Now, we have developers having to worry about coding for two distinct environments on the same platform, which doesn't help the pc's case when developers argue that consoles are much more friendly when it comes to game development.

    We'll just have to wait and see how this plays out.
Other Comments
  • 8 Hide
    blppt , November 5, 2013 6:04 PM
    I'm in the minority on this, but I really miss the days of Glide...where if you had a 3dfx card, things were pretty much guaranteed to work exactly the way the developer intended. It sure sounds like AMD's Mantle is similar in its approach, and it may give me yet another reason to go back to Radeon in the future.
  • 8 Hide
    DelightfulDucklings , November 5, 2013 6:22 PM
    Look forward to Star Citizen using Mantle because I imagine that game is going to be VERY demanding
  • -1 Hide
    xcaninox , November 5, 2013 6:32 PM
    dammmmmn now i don't know if i buy a gtx 770 or a r9 290
  • 20 Hide
    GoliathPtXs , November 5, 2013 7:03 PM
    is that even a option? r9 290 all the way!
  • 14 Hide
    Shankovich , November 5, 2013 7:10 PM
    ^^You mean a GTX 770 or a 280X right?
  • -1 Hide
    expl0itfinder , November 5, 2013 7:36 PM
    So what 7000 series models will GCN support? On AMD's website, they mention it being available for select high performance models. Is it safe to assume they are referring exclusively to the R9 and 79xx series GPU's?
  • 12 Hide
    usbgtx550 , November 5, 2013 7:42 PM
    I'm not too sure how I feel about mantle. On one side, I think it's great! Who doesn't want an extra performance boost. On the other hand, I feel this will fragment the industry further. What if Nvidia was to respond with their own version of mantle. Now, we have developers having to worry about coding for two distinct environments on the same platform, which doesn't help the pc's case when developers argue that consoles are much more friendly when it comes to game development.

    We'll just have to wait and see how this plays out.
  • 3 Hide
    notsleep , November 5, 2013 7:47 PM
    mantle is supported from 7000/8000 and Rx 200 series. :p 
  • 4 Hide
    rolandzhang3 , November 5, 2013 8:11 PM
    Well the future sure looks pretty bright for PC gaming
  • 1 Hide
    lpedraja2002 , November 5, 2013 8:13 PM
    Awesome, keep the support for Mantle going I will probably be switching to AMD based hardware if all the good news keep coming in. Star Citizen looks like a fairy dream come true, I hope it does what Crysis did for graphics all those years ago.
  • -1 Hide
    basroil , November 5, 2013 9:00 PM
    There are two questions left:

    1) How will this play nicely in windowed mode, or if something pops up onscreen (skype, chat window, etc)? To make it any faster than DX11.2 it needs to completely avoid the usermode driver conversion as much as possible, but that also breaks how windows works in the first place.

    2) How does AMD plan to support backwards compatibility without an architecture freeze? After all, the point of OGL and DX was to ignore how low level execution implementation is done as long as the result was valid. Consoles have API and hardware freezes upon launch to ensure backwards compatibility (or include old hardware alongside the new one like PS3 and Wii did), but Mantle won't have that option. Does this mean that AMD is giving up ever scrapping the highly inefficient GCN architecture?
  • -2 Hide
    clonazepam , November 5, 2013 10:20 PM
    I'll keep an eye out, but these 3 companies are so niche, they are barely a blip on the radar screens. Star Citizen is still vaporware with a hangar, a few demo ships, and a ton of crytek placeholders at this point. If one game needs more CPU horsepower, it'll be this one. It'll be like Crysis... one of the most beautiful games ever made that 99% of people won't be able to play in a fraction of its full glory, without a couple xeons and 4 graphics cards. Have fun running all of that 24/7 (worst case scenario provided by yours truly)

    I'll jump all over Star Citizen when (if) it hits retail.

    Maybe if mantle gains enough popularity, we'll see a huge leap in directX. I still prefer the idea of a universal API w/ manufacturer specific extensions versus seperate APIs from seperate companies.
  • -1 Hide
    mariusmotea , November 5, 2013 11:45 PM
    In near future will have the same game in two editions, Nvidia edition and AMD edition. I don't belive this is a bad thing, because in this way consumers will get the best possible experience (like windows x86 ans x64).
  • 0 Hide
    Akizu , November 6, 2013 12:05 AM
    I think for now its best to wait till some games that support Mantle gets released to see some real life benchmarks and then maybe wait some more to see if there really will be more titles supporting it... If Mantle will give just like 5~10% performance boost and there will be just like 5 titles/year supporting it then it wont be that important... Just like PysX was for Nvidia... A nice bonus but not something that anyone would really care about.
  • -1 Hide
    renz496 , November 6, 2013 12:59 AM
    Quote:
    In near future will have the same game in two editions, Nvidia edition and AMD edition. I don't belive this is a bad thing, because in this way consumers will get the best possible experience (like windows x86 ans x64).


    lol can that happen? i mean have we ever see a game that is Gaming Evolve title but at the same time it also TWTMTBP title?
  • 0 Hide
    renz496 , November 6, 2013 1:06 AM
    Quote:
    I'll keep an eye out, but these 3 companies are so niche, they are barely a blip on the radar screens. Star Citizen is still vaporware with a hangar, a few demo ships, and a ton of crytek placeholders at this point. If one game needs more CPU horsepower, it'll be this one. It'll be like Crysis... one of the most beautiful games ever made that 99% of people won't be able to play in a fraction of its full glory, without a couple xeons and 4 graphics cards. Have fun running all of that 24/7 (worst case scenario provided by yours truly)

    I'll jump all over Star Citizen when (if) it hits retail.

    Maybe if mantle gains enough popularity, we'll see a huge leap in directX. I still prefer the idea of a universal API w/ manufacturer specific extensions versus seperate APIs from seperate companies.


    i see a lot of stuff going into the game. hey they even have nvidia gpu physx in them.

    https://forums.robertsspaceindustries.com/discussion/65769/
  • -2 Hide
    qlum , November 6, 2013 2:04 AM
    While I am not a fan of vendor locking I think this type of thing is still defendable, firstly nvidea is free to use it if they want to and second its real world benefits are big enough to warrant it, if nvidea would build a similar thing sure devs had to support both but in the end the games would be better for it, better then when you use directx or opengl with their big overheads.
  • 1 Hide
    realAMDfreak , November 6, 2013 3:56 AM
    Great news. Go AMD.
  • 2 Hide
    Baldarhion , November 6, 2013 4:55 AM
    Time to change my 6950 :D 
  • 0 Hide
    cats_Paw , November 6, 2013 5:12 AM
    Actually nVidia did this already, restricting Physx is in a way fragmenting the industry.
    Same as it is console exclusives, and im guessing you guys can think of many other examples like this.

    That why i bearly buy anything anymore. One, maybe 2 games a year. In the apst, in 2007? 12-15 games each year.
    When the industry starts going wrong, you save some money, they dont earn it. Fair deal.
Display more comments