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DICE talks Radeon and Battlefield V and lack of ray tracing

DICE is tuning ray tracing in Battlefield V for NVIDIA hardware, is waiting to see next-gen Radeon

By: Anthony Garreffa from Sep 5, 2018 @ 21:30 CDT

Battlefield V is shaping up to be not just one of the best-looking games of 2018, but one of the best-looking games of all time, and that's all without real-time ray tracing enabled.

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With ray tracing turned on, Battlefield V is utterly, beyond gorgeous... but it's locked away for GeForce RTX 20 series graphics card owners, with Radeon gamers missing out... for now. DICE is now talking about ray tracing technology for Battlefield V and Radeon gamers, but they'll be left out in the dark for now.

During an interview with Tom's 'Just Buy It' Hardware, DICE's Technical Director Christian Holmquist talked about Battlefield V and various technical abilities inside of the refreshed Frostbite engine. Holmquist talked about DX12 performance in Battlefield V, where he said:

"We did optimize some paths of DX12, but since most of this work is in the DXR API, what we did was that we made sure none of that was bottlenecking our throughput. So, playing DX12 performance will be similar to what we had in Battlefield 1".

The most interesting part of the interview was the discussion about real-time ray tracing on Radeon GPUs since AMD have no GPU architeture with real-time ray tracing abilities, let alone something that could actually run it, even if there were ray tracing abilities.

Holmquist said: "We only talk with DXR. Because we have been running only NVIDIA hardware, we know that we have optimized for that hardware. We're also using certain features in the compiler with intrinsics, so there is a dependency. That can be resolved as we get hardware from another potential manufacturer. But as we tune for a specific piece of hardware, dependencies do start to go in, and we'd need another piece of hardware in order to re-tune".

What about CPU performance while real-time ray tracing is on with your new GeForce RTX graphics card? Well, the system requirements for CPU threads will increase, which is a good thing. Games are not utilizing the huge amounts of threads available in 4/6/8-core CPUs, and now thanks to RTX they will.

He continued, adding: "So, what we have done with our DXR implementation is we go very wide with a lot of cores to offload that work. So we're likely going to require a higher minimum spec and recommended spec for using RT, and that was the idea from the start. It won't affect the gameplay performance, but we might need to increase the hardware requirements a little bit. And going wide is the best way for the consumer in this regard because you can have a four-core or six-core machine. It's a little bit easier these days for the consumer to go wide with more threads than have higher clocks".

Read the full interview over at Tom's Hardware.

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