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Print 50 comment(s) - last by OKMIJN4455.. on Jan 24 at 6:38 AM

Game developers should target DirectX 11

Steam is a digital gaming delivery platform developed by Valve, makers of the Half-Life series of games. The system was developed not only to reduce losses caused by piracy, but also to reduce costs of shipping physical media and to reduce reliance on retailers. Gamers download the Steam platform from their website and are able to purchase not only the latest games for download, but also a growing list of classic games as well.

The Steam platform collects data about the type of computer hardware customers are using, which is then used to make programming decisions. For example, over 80% of Steam gamers are using multi-core systems, with almost 24% using quad-cores. This means that there is a large user base who would be able to take advantage of multi-threaded gaming. Since most games take 2-3 years to develop, spotting a trend early on can set developers on the right path early on, rather than having to patch it later.

One of the biggest questions surrounding the Windows 7 launch would be whether gamers would adopt the new operating system, or stick with the tried and true Windows XP. The latest Steam hardware survey for December shows that almost a quarter of Steam's user base has already adopted Microsoft's latest OS, and has been abandoning the 32-bit Windows XP for 64-bit versions of Windows 7.

The success of DirectX 11 has been tied into the Windows 7 OS, but DX11 can also be installed on computers running Windows Vista. Over 50% of Steam users are capable of supporting DX11 on the software side through Windows 7 or Vista, but unfortunately Steam isn't keeping track of DX11 video cards yet. Over two million DX11 GPUs have been sold by ATI so far, and game developers have been taking note. There are currently over three dozen DX11 titles that are in development or have been announced.



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Fuzzy math
By mfenn on 1/21/2010 12:19:41 PM , Rating: 5
Lets be honest about the math Jason.

You state that "roughly 60%" of Steam users can run DX11. Let's take a gander at the Steam data, shall we?

Windows XP 32 bit 44.77%
Windows Vista 32 bit 20.71%
Windows 7 64 bit 15.61%
Windows Vista 64 bit 10.00%
Windows 7 7.45%
Windows XP 64 bit 0.64%
Windows 2003 64 bit 0.64%
Windows 2000 0.10%
Other 0.08%

I've bolded the DX11 capable systems. Adding up the usage shares, we get 53.77% . This is a great number in an of itself, and suggests that game developers should target DX11 or at least DX10, but is hardly "roughly 60%".

Jason, while I agree with your sentiments, I do not agree with your methods.




RE: Fuzzy math
By mfenn on 1/21/2010 12:22:18 PM , Rating: 2
My apologies Jansen for misspelling your name. I should really not trust my auto-correct. My points still stand, however.


RE: Fuzzy math
By Jansen (blog) on 1/21/2010 12:50:34 PM , Rating: 4
I was using a hand-held calculator and probably misread a 3 for an 8. My apologies.


RE: Fuzzy math
By jonmcc33 on 1/21/10, Rating: -1
RE: Fuzzy math
By Jansen (blog) on 1/21/2010 1:24:59 PM , Rating: 3
53.77 -> 58.77


RE: Fuzzy math
By Mitch101 on 1/21/2010 1:28:07 PM , Rating: 2
0.9% Physical DX11 GPU Hardware.

ATI Radeon HD 5700 Series (+0.14%) 0.30%
ATI Radeon HD 5800 Series (+0.14%) 0.52%
ATI Mobility FireGL V5725 (+0.02%) 0.06%
ATI Radeon HD 5900 Series (+0.02%) 0.02%

Couldn't find the 56xx series but that will probably show up next month.


RE: Fuzzy math
By Mitch101 on 1/21/2010 1:41:15 PM , Rating: 2
Corrected the V5725 is based on the Radeon HD 3670 my bad.

ATI Radeon HD 5700 Series (+0.14%) 0.30%
ATI Radeon HD 5800 Series (+0.14%) 0.52%
ATI Radeon HD 5900 Series (+0.02%) 0.02%
ATI Radeon HD 5600 Series NOT REPORTED YET
0.84% Physical DX11 GPU Hardware.

Technically 0.84% that report their hardware information to steam are running DX11 able hardware.


RE: Fuzzy math
By Egglick on 1/21/2010 2:56:57 PM , Rating: 2
You can't come up with DX11 numbers by adding up each specific card. Take a look at the videocard numbers again. Over 20% are listed as "Unknown".


RE: Fuzzy math
By Mitch101 on 1/21/2010 3:21:18 PM , Rating: 2
We actually cant come up with any real numbers because most people dont use steam. I'm one in about 30 gamers I know who has adopted steam. I actually only know one other person using it.


RE: Fuzzy math
By mfenn on 1/21/2010 3:33:10 PM , Rating: 1
Wow, really?

My friends and I use Steam pretty much exclusively for PC games. It's a great source for low-budget/indie titles that are hard to find otherwise. The weekend deals are nice too.


RE: Fuzzy math
By brandonicus on 1/21/2010 6:49:43 PM , Rating: 2
Same here, I have close to 50 friends (School/Lan Parties) who play PC games and everyone of them uses steam for all new releases(lots of classics too). Yeah the weekend deals are great, and their holiday deal was just outrageous. However, as my steam account continues to grow, I find myself asking, "What happens if/when Steam/Valve gets bought out, or goes out of business?" Those who say offline mode have clearly never tried offline mode. Oh well, I'll just shut up and play my new cheap games for now.


RE: Fuzzy math
By poohbear on 1/22/2010 9:27:34 PM , Rating: 1
1 in 30 gamers???? what are u talking about??? are they all console users? that would explain it then. *rolls eyes* i and everyone i know that games on pc has installed steam at some point, and that's all it needs to collect the data. it doesnt need u to use it regularly.


RE: Fuzzy math
By geddarkstorm on 1/21/2010 1:05:29 PM , Rating: 2
Well, how "roughly" is "roughly"?


RE: Fuzzy math
By Ammohunt on 1/21/2010 1:53:03 PM , Rating: 1
I like it roughly...


RE: Fuzzy math
By OKMIJN4455 on 1/24/10, Rating: -1
"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay




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