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Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth to Support AMD Mantle

Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth was announced at PAX East. This game expands upon the Civilization series of games, but takes a leap off our (then not so) humble planet and into space.

Not many exact details about the game are known yet; however, a new announcement has shed some light on a non-gameplay related feature of the game: It will have support for AMD's Mantle API.

Being a strategy game, having support for AMD's Mantle API is quite the bonus. Strategy games are known to be particularly CPU intensive, therefore limiting performance on systems with weaker CPUs. AMD's Mantle API significantly reduces the CPU overhead in games. Thus systems with weaker CPUs will experience a notable performance boost over using DirectX. Of course, to make use of this API you must be running a more modern AMD Radeon graphics card.

The game is set to be released sometime throughout fall 2014, and will make its debut on Windows, OS X and Linux. For those of you who haven't seen the official announcement trailer yet, be sure to watch the video embedded above.

Niels Broekhuijsen
Niels Broekhuijsen is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He covers hardware news on all components and peripherals.
  • alxianthelast
    What difference does it make for a game designed to be turn based, and hopefully designed to run only on 64bit systems so it isn't hamstrung by 32bit limitations.

    As a devout CIV hater I don't care one way or the other, but from what we've seen of RTS with Mantle support, the gains are higher number of unit and more processing power available for units and groups etc. Sure it would be easier to control as a turn based game on an interplanetary or interstellar scale with its customary whacky scale. Anyone know if the world map is still flat 2D or finally 3D? I'm doubting the planets will be 3D like Planetary Annihilation so it won't be too much of a shame if the map is flat too.
    Reply
  • PedanticNo1
    Gee, I don't know, what difference would less CPU overhead make for a TBS game- a genre traditionally limited by CPU processing power? Hmm.

    Now you know why you were downrated.
    Reply
  • firefoxx04
    "Gee, I don't know, what difference would less CPU overhead make for a TBS game- a genre traditionally limited by CPU processing power? Hmm."

    Gee I dont know, maybe more FPS? The whole point of mantle is to remove CPU overhead. If the game is already limited by the CPU, Mantle will make a difference.

    Its when games ARE NOT limited by the CPU that mantle makes little to no difference. Mantle is good for AMD users with weak cpus and strong graphics cards.
    Reply
  • oxiide
    Anyone know if the world map is still flat 2D or finally 3D? I'm doubting the planets will be 3D like Planetary Annihilation so it won't be too much of a shame if the map is flat too.

    The map in Civ V isn't 2D, its rendered in 3D (and even includes tesselated geometry) but with a locked camera angle. If you don't like that, that's fine, but its a design choice and part of the style of the franchise. There's plenty of 4X games with a truly adjustable camera.

    I think I heard that Beyond Earth will include a new map layer for planetary orbit. But I definitely wouldn't hold my breath for a Planetary Annihilation-style camera. If you want that game, play that game.
    Reply
  • rdc85
    For strategies/tactical game, Most of CPU power will be dedicated for Enemy AI.. (CPU bound).

    Will mantle helps? time will tells...

    Reply
  • falchard
    Excited for the game.
    Reply
  • Mathos
    I'm more interested in knowing, is it going to be like the mod for Civ4 where you're colonizing planets, and treating them as "cities" or if it's some kind of replacement/long over due remake for Alpha Centauri.

    And on the Mantle support, Civ V is rendered in 3D, terrain, models, etc. But, it also heavily supports OpenCL. Mantle is designed to also improve opencl performance in CPU bound situations, running the game on an APU for example. That would mean better fps on lower end systems. Faster AI turn processing, especially later in the game, when there are hundreds of units, etc. It's not quite as bad, about AI turns in V as it was with IV, due to removing the stacks of doom. But it does still get bogged down later on.
    Reply
  • drethon
    I wouldn't think it would be so much about FPS but about turn times while processing the AI moves.
    Reply
  • abimocorde
    For the trolls that cried a bunch of crap about Mantle being useless: There you go!!
    Reply
  • Wisecracker
    From Tech Report
    That's a 10% improvement in FPS with an i7-4770 running a 290X.

    The Mantle FPS improvement with the A10-7850K APU can only be characterized as :ouch:

    Reply