Assassin's Creed: DX10 confirmed, faster than DX9
In an interview with Ubisoft's Charles Beauchemin, Technical Lead, Assassin's Creed PC, PCGH got the confirmation that Assassin's Creed will use Direct X 10 features.
Now it's confirmed: Assassin's Creed will support Direct X 10 in the PC variant. But you won't see any visual difference between DX9 and DX10. Assassin's Creed solely uses the shader model 4 so that performance gains are realistic.
Here is a snippet from a lenghty interview with Charles Beauchemin, Technical Lead, Assassin's Creed PC.
PCGH: When porting for the PC have you thought about integrating support for DirectX 10 into the engine? Will there be a version of Assassin's Creed that will utilize the new Vista API?
Charles Beauchemin: Yes, Assassin's Creed supports DX10 as well as DX9.
PCGH: What are the technical advantages of that API?
Charles Beauchemin: DirectX 10 enables us to make fewer calls to the API to perform the same actions. Therefore, it will be possible for the drivers to make optimizations making the game faster without any change to the game engine. Since most of the DX10 drivers are still young, we can expect a lot of gain to come from the optimization of these drivers.
PCGH: Do you use advanced features of Direct X 10/Shader Model 4 like Geometry Shader, Virtual Texture Management etc.? Can you please give examples how they are utilized? In what way do these features improve or simplify the rendering process?
Charles Beauchemin: No. Most of the porting to DX10 involves optimizations of the existing calls, without any new content.
PCGH: Will the DX 10 visualization differ substantially from the graphics that are rendered with DX 9 hardware? What are the visuals that can only be rendered with shader model 4 hardware? Can you supply us with a visual proof via screenshot too?
Charles Beauchemin: No new content has been added to the DX10 version.
PCGH: How much of a performance hit will the improved optics of DX 10 incur? With all details maxed out is a typical first gen DX 10 card already running at its limits?
Charles Beauchemin: No performance hit occurs, since no improved optics are implemented. However, when running on Vista, DirectX 10 version speed will be much faster than its DirectX 9 counterpart (also running on Vista).