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Graphics Games

Doom Creator Says Direct3D Is Now Better Than OpenGL 405

arcticstoat writes "First-person shooter godfather and OpenGL stickler John Carmack has revealed that he now prefers Direct3D to OpenGL, saying that 'inertia' is the main reason why id Software has stuck by the cross-platform 3D graphics API for years. In a recent interview, the co-founder of id Software said, 'I actually think that Direct3D is a rather better API today.' He added, 'Microsoft had the courage to continue making significant incompatible changes to improve the API, while OpenGL has been held back by compatibility concerns. Direct3D handles multi-threading better, and newer versions manage state better.'"
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Doom Creator Says Direct3D Is Now Better Than OpenGL

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  • "Doom creator"? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:12PM (#35455650)

    Is Slashdot not for nerds anymore? I never thought I'd see the day when John Carmack was described on Slashdot as "Doom creator".

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Kenja ( 541830 )
      Better then "the jerk who brought us Daikatana".
    • Re:"Doom creator"? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Tanman ( 90298 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:24PM (#35455814)

      I know. He created commander keen, first, so that should have been the game they used.

    • +1 To you Sir. I was just about to comment the same thing.

      I have to say that ever if you're not a passionate gamer it's not that hand to Google it... [] ;)

      Educating oneself about things like these on the Internet is ultimately pretty easy compared to a lot of other settings.

  • by Viol8 ( 599362 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:20PM (#35455758) Homepage

    ... is how old Carmack looks now! I still remember him from the Doom days and I haven't seen a picture since. Came as a bit of a shock.

  • by SplashMyBandit ( 1543257 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:29PM (#35455886)
    Carmack changed his mind some years ago. This report is quite late.

    However, the title of the magazine is "Custom PC". It is worth keeping in mind that if the PC and Xbox are the only platforms you are targeting then DirectX is a valid choice for development technology.

    Otherwise, you are better off developing in OpenGL, where you can target PCs, PS3, iPhone, iPad, Mac OS X, WebGL, industrial Unix (not all 3D apps are games, dontchaknow?). The only thing you can't do much with is the Xbox (technically possible, but deliberately closed by Microsoft).

    Also, the pace of change in OpenGL has picked up tremendously with the stewardship of the Khronos group. So OpenGL is starting to have parity in features again after lagging for some time (plus, you can get those features on Windows XP for those still on it).
  • by Locke2005 ( 849178 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:37PM (#35456006)
    Richard M. Stahlman says vi is now better than emacs.
  • by Graham J - XVI ( 1076671 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:39PM (#35456044) Homepage Journal

    Microsoft had the courage to continue making significant incompatible changes to improve the API, while OpenGL has been held back by compatibility concerns.


    Apple had the courage to continue making significant incompatible changes to improve OSX, while Windows has been held back by compatibility concerns.


  • I don't think OpenGL is going anywhere due to WebGL in the browser, and increasing cross platform development for Apple and console hardware.
  • by nimbius ( 983462 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @03:51PM (#35456168) Homepage
    isnt correct; the article seems to contradict himself. carmack says direct3d is better because of incompatible updates made to the API, where as OP says its multi-platform performance is stellar? let me just load up a copy in my FreeBSD...yeah, that doesnt work.

    his opinion also seems to contradict his own drive toward open source. if the thing you like only works with one vendor, how do you anticipate ever FLoSS'ing your code?
    • by ttyRazor ( 20815 )

      He's talking about OpenGL being good at cross-platform support, not Direct3D. Because Direct3D doesn't have cross platform considerations, that's allowed Microsoft to make more significant changes and pull ahead of OpenGL without worrying about breaking compatibility with other vendors' implementations.

  • by Dr. Spork ( 142693 ) on Friday March 11, 2011 @04:51PM (#35456808)

    Geez, if I were an OpenGL developer and Carmack started talking about things that OpenGL should implement to make his game engines work better, I'd be like "Yes sir, Mr. Carmack!" Seriously, those game engines are what's keeping people using OpenGL in the first place. It's too bad that ID software doesn't have the resources to fork that shit and develop it to suit their needs. I'm sure that it would be better.

    It's pretty obvious that the smartest Microsoft engineers are working on game-related projects, and it's smart. Microsoft might be watching its empire erode, but games are a field where their dominance might actually be growing. DirectX is a big part of that, and the Kinect has also really stirred the pot. Lots of comments here are to the effect that Carmack is stating what has been obvious to everyone else for years. Yes, Carmack was a true believer, and his (late) heresy is a sign that MS alternatives in some fields are just ... quixotic. It's not quite like RMS saying that he really should just start using Windows because it works better, but it's about 10% of the way there.

"In matrimony, to hesitate is sometimes to be saved." -- Butler