AMD CEO Says Ryzen Gaming Performance Will Improve With Future Patches And Developer Support

Independent testing of Ryzen (including our own in-depth benchmarking and analysis) confirms what AMD has promising all along, that its fancy new CPU architecture is the real deal and it is able to compete with Intel at the high end. The only caveat is that Ryzen's gaming performance is not where many thought it would be, especially considering the architecture's excellent IPC efficiency and performance in other areas, such as Cinebench and POV-Ray. What gives? The short answer is, this is a temporary thing until developers get rolling with optimizations.

During an "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) session at Reddit, AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su was asked point blank if gaming performance was something the chip designer will work towards going forward with Ryzen. Her reply was an emphatic, "Absolutely!," adding that gamers "should expect gaming performance to only get better with time as the developers have more time with 'Zen."

Ryzen Processor

If there is skepticism over AMD's explanation, it's understandable, but we're not so quick to dismiss it as lip service. Just the opposite, there is every reason to believe that AMD is shooting it straight and that gaming performance will in fact improve over time. For one, AMD has been saying all along that Ryzen is a high-performance architecture with a substantial gain in IPC versus Bulldozer, and that turned out to be true. But secondly, the notion that optimizations will make a significant difference is more than plausible.

For the past several years, AMD has been an afterthought in the enthusiast market, and has instead focused on the budget sector. It makes sense that game developers optimized their games to run on Intel hardware while for the most part ignoring AMD's slower technology. That is basically the bush AMD is beating around, but with Ryzen closing the gap, developers have reason to optimize for AMD hardware. To that end, AMD is working closely with game developers and a few have shared their current view of Ryzen optimizations with us, in our recent deep dive review... 

Total War: Warhammer
Creative Assembly's Total War: Warhammer

"Creative Assembly is committed to reviewing and optimizing its games on the all-new Ryzen CPU. While current third-party testing doesn’t reflect this yet, our joint optimization program with AMD means that we are looking at options to deliver performance optimization updates in the future to provide better performance on Ryzen CPUs moving forward," said Creative Assembly, developers of the Total War series”

It's not just one developer, either...

"Oxide games is incredibly excited with what we are seeing from the Ryzen CPU. Using our Nitrous game engine, we are working to scale our existing and future game title performance to take full advantage of Ryzen and its 8-core, 16-thread architecture, and the results thus far are impressive. These optimizations are not yet available for Ryzen benchmarking. However, expect updates soon to enhance the performance of games like Ashes of the Singularity on Ryzen CPUs, as well as our future game releases,” said Brad Wardell, CEO Stardock and Oxide”

In other words, game developers are publicly backing AMD's explanation, putting their own credibility on the line when they really don't have a dog in the fight. According to Dr. Su, over 300 developers are now working on optimizations for Ryzen. In the short-term, Dr. Su says she fully expects to see gains in 1080p performance on Ryzen. And looking a little further down the road, this is something that will continue in future iterations of the zen architecture, which Dr. Su refers to as Zen2 and Zen3.