Codemasters racing games is always something special – that being fantastic racing feeling in Race Driver: GRID, brilliant handling in DiRT or ultimate realistic experience with the next year’s F1 2010? The company takes pride at the technological edge, but we won’t forget that these titles also run flawlessly on slower systems.
Just a couple of hours ago, Codemasters announced that they’re delaying the release of Colin McRae DiRT 2 for the PC platform in order to deploy DirectX 11 technology. Originally scheduled for a debut in F1 2010 and Race Driver: GRID 2 games, EGO engine gets a DirectX 11 tune-up with a 2009 release.
This is not a "sticker-stomper" implementation. EGO engine is getting a complete overhaul, implementing all the key features of DirectX 11 such as graphics multi-threading [do NOT confuse with CPU multi-threading], hardware Tessellation and Shader Model 5.0.
The differences should be quite spectacular. Gamers with DirectX 11 hardware will see a significant change in game surfaces, such as water or glass reflection/refraction, crowd animation, ambient occlusion and shadows. Very important part of EGO engine, the motion blur/depth of field is also getting a complete overhaul and should result in spectacular feeling while playing the game.
In order to implement DirectX 11, Codemasters called AMD to help them out. Officially, AMD "provided Codemasters with access to our software engineering expertise in DirectX 11 technologies". To cut the bull from the press release, Codemasters now has ATI Evergreen hardware and a fleet of engineers ready to help them out during this conversion.
This is a first major DirectX 11 win for AMD, and we have no doubt that there are plenty more to come yet. The person that led the The Way It’s Meant To Be Played team recently switched positions, and if there was any chance that AMD’s gaming program steps on nVidia’s currently superior gaming development support program, the time is now.