We've known for a while that DirectX 12 is on its way along with Windows 10, and today's demo of the new API at Microsoft's Build 2015 showed more of it. But with some help from Square Enix and Nvidia, today's demo showed DirectX 12 at its best.
The demo from Square Enix was called "WITCH CHAPTER 0 [cry]." To show off the full power of DirectX 12, Microsoft spared no expense with a PC from Digital Storm sporting four of Nvidia's GeForce GTX Titan X GPUs in a quad-SLI setup.
The demo, shown by Steve Guggenheimer, Microsoft's corporate vice president in the Developer and Platform Evangelism group, featured a crumbling landscape and a woman crying amongst the ruins of the building. Then the details about the demo, which was running in real-time and in-engine, were revealed: Each scene consisted of 63 million polygons per scene, which Guggenheimer said was 6-12 times the capacity of polygons in DirectX 11. The textures were displayed in an 8K x 8K resolution, and each strand of hair on the main character is an individually rendered polygon that was processed through 50 shaders for better detail and clarity.
Unless you have a few thousand dollars lying around, a quad-SLI setup with four Titan Xs is nothing but a dream. However, this demo shows that the quality of games on a PC, compared to today's consoles, will be vastly superior with DirectX 12. The era of 4K gaming is just beginning, and this demo is a clear indication that DirectX 12 will give developers more tools to create some of the most beautiful and realistic games to date.