ArenaNet has announced that its still-popular MMORPG, Guild Wars 2, is finally getting support for DirectX 11 in the very near future. The news is amusing in that DirectX 11 isn’t anything new, nor is Guild Wars 2, which has been enjoyed by millions of players since its release on August 28, 2012.
James Fulop, Senior Engine Programmer on the Guild Wars 2 team, has shared a letter explaining why DirectX 11 is finally being added to the MMORPG. Fulops suggests that the update will enable better performance and more visual options, the latter of which should allow for a more beautiful game.
[…] Client performance is a priority for us, and we want everyone to be able to play with the highest possible framerate. We pinpointed that sometimes the game could stall waiting for rendering work to complete. Guild Wars 2 has been live for nine years now and implementing some DirectX11-dependent features can help the game continue to look beautiful over time.
DirectX11 also offers some modern technology options that aren’t available in DirectX9. Upgrading to DirectX11 is the first step toward being able to do more shiny things. After careful research we decided to integrate the open source rendering library BGFX into Guild Wars 2. BGFX is well-written and supports various graphics backends and is already used in many games industry-wide. You can learn more about it on their official website.
As for why the Guild Wars 2 team didn’t jump straight to DirectX 12 or Vulkan, Fulop explained that DirectX 11 already provides enough of a performance boost. He also argued that DirectX 11 should suffice as it’s very stable at this point, having been used by thousands of games for nearly a decade.
The beta for Guild Wars 2 with DirectX 11 support will begin on September 21, 2021. Players can opt in to the beta via the game’s Graphics Options menu.
Source: Guild Wars 2