GDC 14: CRYENGINE To Support Mantle, AMD Gets Another Endorsement

Subject: General Tech, Shows and Expos | March 19, 2014 - 05:00 PM |
Tagged: Mantle, gdc 14, GDC, crytek, CRYENGINE

While I do not have too many details otherwise, Crytek and AMD have announced that mainline CRYENGINE will support the Mantle graphics API. CRYENGINE, by Crytek, now sits alongside Frostbite, by Dice, and Nitrous, by Oxide Games, as engines which support that alternative to DirectX and OpenGL. This comes little more than a week after their announcement of native Linux support with their popular engine.

View Full Size

The tape has separate draw calls!

Crytek has been "evaluating" the API for quite some time now, showing interest back at the AMD Developer Summit. Since then, they have apparently made a clear decision on it. It is also not the first time that CRYENGINE has been publicly introduced to Mantle, with Chris Robert's Star Citizen, also powered by the 4th Generation CRYENGINE, having announced support for the graphics API. Of course, there is a large gap between having a licensee do legwork to include an API and having the engine developer provide you supported builds (that would be like saying UnrealEngine 3 supports the original Wii).

Hopefully we will learn more as GDC continues.

Editor's (Ryan) Take:

As the week at GDC has gone on, AMD continues to push forward with Mantle and calls Crytek's implementation of the low level API "a huge endorsement" of the company's direction and vision for the future. Many, including myself, have considered that the pending announcement of DX12 would be a major set back for Mantle but AMD claims that is "short sited" and as more developers come into the Mantle ecosystem it is proof AMD is doing the "right thing."  

Here at GDC, AMD told us they have expanded the number of beta Mantle members dramatically with plenty more applications (dozens) in waiting.  Obviously this could put a lot of strain on AMD for Mantle support and maintenance but representatives assure us that the major work of building out documentation and development tools is nearly 100% behind them.

View Full Size

If stories like this one over at Semiaccurate are true, and that Microsoft's DirectX 12 will be nearly identical to AMD Mantle, then it makes sense that developers serious about new gaming engines can get a leg up on projects by learning Mantle today. Applying that knowledge to the DX12 API upon its release could speed up development and improve implementation efficiency. From what I am hearing from the few developers willing to even mention DX12, Mantle is much further along in its release (late beta) than DX12 is (early alpha).

AMD indeed was talking with and sharing the development of Mantle with Microsoft "every step of the way" and AMD has stated on several occasions that there were two outcomes with Mantle; it either becomes or inspires a new industry standard in game development. Even if DX12 is more or less a carbon copy of Mantle, forcing NVIDIA to implement that API style with DX12's release, AMD could potentially have the advantage of gaming performance and support between now and Microsoft's DirectX release.  That could be as much as a full calendar year from reports we are getting at GDC.  

March 19, 2014 | 07:03 PM - Posted by Edkiefer (not verified)

There one thing that doesn't run true for me . "IF" Dx12 was just dx11.2+ Mantle and we know that MS would bring this out in say Win9 .

Since Nvidia and Intel would likely code there drivers for it to support it , well why would you even need OS support.

Either could code for mantle now even on Win7, win8 etc , its not OS dependant .

I find it hard to believe it would be a copy , it also might need wider support for Intel and Nvidia hardware since even AMD only supports GNC cards .

March 19, 2014 | 07:10 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

This is great for gaming, to have more choices than just DirectX, especially for Linux gaming, and should keep M$ from using DirectX as a carrot on a mace to force users into its Hated 8 ecosystem. Gamers can just keep windows 7 and run AMD's mantle, or go Linux, a la Steam/other distros. Nvidia will have to come up with a solution for its GPUs to be more usable on Linux as well as Windows 7, and maybe they will all have to keep up support for Linux as well as OpenGL. If Charlie over at S/A is correct, then maybe Khronos will have to get OpenGL closer to the metal also. Having all the eggs in M$'s basket is not good for gaming, and has never been good for gaming.

March 20, 2014 | 03:46 AM - Posted by renz (not verified)

it is great to have more choice but in reality will developer really use it (out of free will without any sponsor from the tech creator) is a different matter. also what do you mean that nvidia have to come up with solution for their gpu to be more useful in linux and windows?

March 20, 2014 | 05:09 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I use windows 8.1 and don't have a problem with it... Don't see why it is hated so much. It's easy and faster then 7.

March 21, 2014 | 12:25 AM - Posted by Scott Michaud

In my case? I don't condone Windows Store's certification requirements, so I'm sticking with 7 despite its quirks. It has been getting... too familiar... though. I'd like to try Linux as a primary OS again, use a more recent OS, but I am still not sure about giving up my native Windows apps.

March 20, 2014 | 06:31 AM - Posted by ea1985 (not verified)

>>AMD indeed was talking with and sharing the development of Mantle with Microsoft "every step of the way"...<<

>>...if DX12 is more or less a carbon copy of Mantle, ...AMD could potentially have the advantage of gaming performance and support...<<

Could this have been their end game all along? Are they [i]that[/i] genius in thinking and formulating strategy?

At this point the complimentary "well played!!" would be immature, but AMD would totally have my respect if this reflects their lines of logic over the past two years.

March 23, 2014 | 11:19 AM - Posted by SwissBeatz (not verified)

Sidetracking a bit here,


WHAT's the EFIN' thang on Phropet's face?.. Is that a mobile
phone?.. Geez maybe Phropet's is in "TALKS" with AMD as well
and saying "In Crysis 4 make it more awesome in 4k res." LOL!