OS X How soon after Sept 30th will we see Metal releases?

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by ErikGrim, Sep 21, 2015.

  1. ErikGrim macrumors 68040

    ErikGrim

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2003
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    #1
    Any game or engine developers want to chime in on what their experiences developing for Metal have been so far? Will we see updates to existing games or new releases first? Are engine updates ready or are they still a way off?
     
  2. Ferazel macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2010
    #2
    Not a Metal developer, but Blizzard actually just recently posted an update stating that they've completed a majority of the work porting World of Warcraft to Metal and will enable support by the end of the year. (http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/18000263457?page=4#74) They said that they're getting fairly good performance, but they expect the performance to increase with some software updates in the future. They also mention that Starcraft 2 and Heroes of the Storm will receive Metal rendering in the next 6 months.

    If I had to parse their statements, I would expect performance similar to OpenGL. I just hope that Apple is going to actively be supporting performance improvements to Metal in point releases in the 10.11 lifecycle instead of making users have to wait until 10.12.
     
  3. jeanlain macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #3
    Found this quote from Valve :

    Unless you are aggressive enough to be shipping a DX12 game this year, I would argue that there is really not much reason to ever create a DX12 back end for your game. And the reason for that is that Vulkan will cover you on Windows 10 on the same class of hardware and so much more from all these other platforms and IHVs that we’ve heard from. Metal is single platform, single vendor, and Vulkan; we are gonna have support for not only Windows 10 but Windows 7, Windows 8, we’re gonna have it on Android and all of the IHVs are making great progress on drivers, I think we’re going to see super rapid adoption.

    Read more: http://wccftech.com/vulkan-reason-create-dx12-backend-valves-ginsburg/#ixzz3mdKWGpZz

    I guess that says it all about Valve not supporting Metal. :(
    It won't be a problem if OS X supports Vulkan in the future. But that's less than certain. The only positive sign is that Apple is part of the Vulkan working group.

    But see how Apple is not listed in the Vulkan part this slide:
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Janichsan macrumors 65816

    Janichsan

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2006
    #4
    They are also part of the OpenGL working group, and still their OpenGL support is lackluster.
     
  5. jeanlain macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #5
    The difference here is that openGL has been their only low-level 3D API on Mac OS and iOS for years.
    Now they have Metal, and they knew their plans before the Vulkan working group was formed. Why contribute to a competing standard? I see several possibilities:
    - They just want to be part of it, as any major platform vendor (except MS), so as to observed and learn from the competition so it benefits their own API in the long run. It assumes they don't contribute much to the standard and mostly observe.
    - They plan to support Vulkan in the future
    - They just want to help the community (unlikely)
    I'm leaning toward the first possibility.

    Regardless, I see no (technical or legal) reason why GPU vendors could not bring Vulkan themselves to OS X, just like they do on the other platforms. I'd be very surprised if MS helped.
    I find it strange that AMD/nVidia have clearly announced their support of Vulkan on Linux, which still has lower market share and fewer games than the Mac, and haven't done so for OS X.
    Either Apple prevents them from supporting Vulkan (but I'm not sure how it could do that. System Integrity Protection maybe? :eek:) or they are working with Apple on Vulkan, and are thus subject to NDA, or they're just not interested (in part because Metal is already there)...
    Lots of speculation here...
     
  6. Janichsan macrumors 65816

    Janichsan

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2006
    #6
    You know, games aren't the only programs to use hardware-accelerated 3D graphics… :p
     
  7. jeanlain macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #7
    Sure, but so far Vulkan has mostly (only?) been discussed and demoed for gaming. The API has been mostly contributed by Valve and has inherited from Mantle, which was developed to address issues related to game performance.
    And I'm not sure Linux has more creative 3D apps than OS X.
     
  8. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000

    Dirtyharry50

    Joined:
    May 17, 2012
    #8
    I would not draw that conclusion from that info unless they specifically state in the linked article that they will not do it.

    Years ago they decided to support the Mac and OS X with a Steam client version for this single platform and all their games as well and this predates their adoption of linux support by a good number of years too.

    While I get the point that supporting an API that offers multi-platform support is desirable that does not necessarily mean Metal isn't worth supporting. I think if that were true we would not see the other companies who have come out in support of Metal bothering when they could also take this view and ignore it.

    Clearly Valve sees the Mac market as worthwhile or we would not have a Mac version of Steam and we'd not have gotten Mac ports of the Valve games. I can see Metal being a lesser priority, sure but I don't see it not being supported.

    I also do not see Apple supporting Vulkan in OS X anytime soon if at all after the decision to go with Metal as a unified API across iOS and OS X and probably Apple's TVOS too? I forget now if I read that is supported there but I imagine with games development for it that it probably is.
     
  9. Irishman macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2006
    #9
    [QUOTE="jeanlain, post: 21935268, member: 292171
    Either Apple prevents them from supporting Vulkan (but I'm not sure how it could do that. System Integrity Protection maybe? :eek:) or they are working with Apple on Vulkan, and are thus subject to NDA, or they're just not interested (in part because Metal is already there)...
    Lots of speculation here...[/QUOTE]

    Yeah. As usual, the people who know the most can say the least. :)
     

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