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Vulkan Has Come to DOOM

Category: Gaming
Posted: 09:59AM

DOOM released just a couple months ago and last week received Update 1, but today it has gotten a new update that adds something many people may have been waiting for: Vulkan support. Vulkan is a low-level graphics and compute API, similar to DirectX 12, but is not limited to Windows 10 like its Microsoft-made counterpart. Being a low-level API, means it offers developers more direct access to the hardware, allowing driver overhead to be reduced and thereby performance to increase. It also has advanced features to further increase performance, such as asynchronous compute, but that one in particular is only supported on AMD GPUs, with the DOOM Vulkan driver, at the moment, but id Software is working with NVIDIA to enable it on NVIDIA GPUs. In fact, id Software has been working with both AMD and NVIDIA daily since late March to bring Vulkan support to DOOM. Even with all of this work though, because Vulkan is still a new API and the drivers supporting it are now, there could be "a few bumps" with it, but these will likely be smoothed out with time.

Besides the value of pushing new technologies, this adoption of Vulkan is important for any performance benefits it brings, and I am sure we will be seeing new benchmarks cropping up all over the Internet today. Over at Radeon.com, which is an AMD site, it shows a 27% improvement with the RX 480 at 1920x1080 and a 23% improvement at 2560x1440, compared to the original OpenGL implementation, using the Ultra preset on both resolutions. The site also gives some more information on some Vulkan features DOOM can take advantage of, at least on AMD hardware.

Source: Bethesda and Radeon

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AkakmanH on July 19, 2016 13:51
There are several Youtube vids showing benchmarks between Vulcan and OpenGL. Vulcan is much better and shows significant improvements. Plus you do not need Win 10 to run.
Guest_Jim_* on July 19, 2016 14:34

You also don't need Windows 10 for OpenGL :P

But seriously, it will be interesting to see how some of the Vulkan vs. DirectX 12 stuff pans out over the next year, because it is going to take at least that long. People are still learning best practices for both, and that's not just game devs but also the driver devs. Will also be very interesting to see the first game that supports both APIs and be able to compare them.

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