Cloud Imperium has announced that the studio will only support Vulkan for Star Citizen which is somewhat surprising given that the studio previously announced that both Vulkan and DirectX 12 will be supported for the game.
It seems that Cloud Imperium had a change of heart, according to Director of Graphics Programming, Alistair Brown, Vulkan features same advantages as DirectX 12 but does not force users to upgrade to Windows 10.
Years ago we stated our intention to support DX12, but since the introduction of Vulkan which has the same feature set and performance advantages this seemed a much more logical rendering API to use as it doesn’t force our users to upgrade to Windows 10 and opens the door for a single graphics API that could be used on all Windows 7, 8, 10 & Linux.
He added that the studio will only support Vulkan API and will eventually drop support for DirectX 11. The studio will only support DirectX 12 in case if it provides any beneficial advantage over Vulkan.
As a result our current intention is to only support Vulkan and eventually drop support for DX11 as this shouldn’t effect any of our backers. DX12 would only be considered if we found it gave us a specific and substantial advantage over Vulkan. The API’s really aren’t that different though, 95% of the work for these APIs is to change the paradigm of the rendering pipeline, which is the same for both APIs.
This decision might be because of the change in the game engine as the studio has moved on from Crytek’s CryEngine for Amazon’s Lumberyard.
Star Citizen is a space simulator video game in development at Cloud Imperium Games for Microsoft Windows and Linux and has generated over $140 million in funding.