Months Before Release, Microsoft’s DirectX 12 Kills AMD’s Mantle API

The short life of AMD’s Mantle graphics API is nearly over, thanks to Windows 10 and DirectX 12. AMD announced that developers should begin concentrating on DirectX 12 while promising full support for games that are already heavily invested in Mantle, like EA and Visceral Games’ Battlefield Hardline. The announcement comes as AMD attends the Game Developers Conference (GDC 15) in San Francisco, California.

“Proud moments also call for reflection, and today we are especially thoughtful about Mantle’s future,” AMD’s vice president of visual and perceptual computing, Raja Koduri, said in a statement. “In the approaching era of DirectX 12 and the Next-Generation OpenGL Initiative, AMD is helping to develop two incredibly powerful APIs that leverage many capabilities of the award-winning Graphics Core Next (GCN) Architecture.”

Battlefield Hardline (Source: EA)

Koduri explains that AMD will begin shifting its focus this year to DirectX 12 and OpenGL, and it expects that developers will do the same. AMD will provide support for games in development that use Mantle and the company just released a 450-page API reference and guide that is open to the public.

Why bother with all the support? AMD owes it to the game developers who are relying on Mantle, for one thing, and it seems to be living up to that responsibility just fine. But, as AMD points out, Mantle will live on, if only for certain situations. “Mantle must take on new capabilities and evolve beyond mastery of the draw call. It will continue to serve AMD as a graphics innovation platform available to select partners with custom needs,” states Koduri.

Prerelease versions of Windows 10 already include DirectX 12, and given how well the operating system has been received so far, it’s not surprising that the winds are blowing towards its graphics API.