Leading game developer id Software has revealed that its next major PC game, Rage, will not support the DirectX 10 graphics platform. The move won't be popular with Microsoft; id Software is responsible for some of the most popular PC gaming franchises in history, including the Doom and Quake series. id's 3D engines are also licenced by several third party developers for use is a wide range of PC and console games.
Speaking at the recent QuakeCon gaming jamboree, id co-founder and coder extraordinaire John Carmack said, "There's no DX10 feature that's going to be driven in Rage...There's nothing there that I'm dying to get my hands on."
As the lead programmer for the Doom and Quake franchises, Carmack has earned a reputation for producing some of the most polished and advanced game engines for the PC. Arguably, he's the most influential single game developer on the planet.
Poor DirectX10 support
DirectX 10 is the latest graphics API from Microsoft and comes as standard with every installation of the Windows Vista operating system.
Microsoft claims DirectX 10 offers several advantages over previous versions of DirectX including better performance and more advanced graphics. To date, however, DirectX 10 has been a disappointment. Only a handful of games offering DirectX10 support have been launched. And most if not all appear to offer poor performance and little by way of graphical superiority over existing DirectX 9 software.
As for Rage, the brief demonstration at QuakeCon revealed a brighter, more expansive gaming world than id's traditionally dark, brooding and claustrophobic gaming titles.
New Tech 5 3D engine
The game offers vast landscapes made possible by the "megatexture" feature in id's new Tech 5 3D engine. Rage also shifts the focus from pure shoot-'em-up action in favour of more varied gaming.
Elements from both role playing and racing games are central to the Rage experience. Players will attempt to build up funds to purchase vehicle upgrades. However, trigger-happy fans of id's existing shooters needn't worry; Rage still offers plenty of foot-bound fragging and high tech weaponry.