This SDK demo shows what we think are some new texture-based shadowing effects like High Definition Ambient Occlusion (HDAO). The aim of HDAO is to deliver a better Ambient Occlusion look and to avoid the need for running filtering pass(es). By doing this it will keep the system performance higher, which is what we all want and desire in a gaming graphics card. With HDAO turned off, this future DirectX 11 graphics card running D3D11 at 2560×1600 got a frame rate 188 frames per second (FPS).
With HDAO turned on, this future DirectX 11 graphics card running D3D11 at 2560×1600 took a major performance hit as the FPS dropped to under 20! Not what you want to see while gaming. The difference between having HDAO enabled and disabled is not really noticeable at these smaller resolution images, but if you click on them for a larger version and look at the shadows, you will see that they have been ‘outlined’ and are darker in color. The best place to look and to see this difference is on the tank’s wheels where the tread is located.
To get around this performance hit, you can enable shader compute and the performance only drops down to 44FPS. The scene being rendered still has High Definition Ambient Occlusion enabled, so this is the better way to run with HDAO enabled.
That’s it for our DirectX 11 sneak peak. It would have been nice to see some DirectX 11 game action, but there aren’t any demos that are available right now.
AMD is showing off this game and SDK demos to a very lucky 100 people at Quakecon 2009 this weekend, which is awesome. You get the chance to grab the mouse and play around with a DirectX 11 graphics card before it even comes out. Once you get done with the demo, you get a numbered t-shirt showing which number you were. Not a bad idea to get a little buzz going in the gamer community. If you happen to be at Quakecon 2009 this weekend and see some AMD employees walking around be sure to tell them that you want to see the future and you might be escorted to a private suite with tons of free food and DirectX 11 graphics cards.