We are excited to let you know that the D3D11 (DX11) update has been completed. The long-awaited graphics update will bring significant improvement to all the technical aspects of the HeroEngine platform. Currently in final testing, the next step will be to move it to our public test server.
Because of the impact and numerous changes made to the engine and client, we will open up the test server to you - our HeroEngine developers - to experience the changes. Once the update passes your approval, we will make the push to all live servers.
The updated HeroEngine client will automatically set D3D11 graphics processors support, while older graphics processors will continue to use DirectX9. Once the update is pushed to live, there is nothing you have to do other than update HeroBlade as normal.
Other major updates included:
- NVIDIA PhysX
We will be posting an update and the Patch notes once we are ready to open the new public test server to our HeroCloud Developers.
When is this work expected to begin?
We are planning to start the new public test server build the week of September 15th, 2017.
What is the time frame for this update to go to the HeroBlade and HeroEngine client?
We have a lot to do and prepare and depending on results and what both our engineers find and you all help us to find, we are looking at about 10 weeks from the new Test server build to the push to live. We decided to go through the testing phases and allow you to view the work and report any new bugs, instead of pushing to live right away then dealing with a number of avoidable bugs, we want to do this correctly and this means the following work:
Internal Testing on new public test server (~1-2 weeks)
- Build test cluster
- Fix issues revealed during internal testing may add ~3 weeks
Active HeroCloud developers access to public test server (minimum of 4 weeks)
Push to Live
- Prep work for deployment (~4 weeks)
- Push to production HeroCloud clusters (4, 20, 21, 22)
- Roll world updates to shaders and other repository files (~4 days)
- Push to production game clusters
What is coming after this update?
We will be focusing on any bugs that you find dealing with the new physics, math libraries and D3D11. Once we have tackled the ones that you all find in a live environment we will begin the work for the following updates. Please note the list of upcoming features is not in any particular order. These updates will be our focus towards HE3.
Future updates after community gives the all clear for the initial update:
- New Alpha Draw order
- New/updated Occlusion Culling system
- Art Pipeline Upgrade supporting latest Granny3d and Max/Maya 2017/2018
- SpeedTree 8
- Other features to be determined
Why is the Alpha Draw Order not done in this update?
Owing to the large amount of work that went into the update of the engine and all systems, we want to make sure that everything is working as it should. Alpha draw order effects many aspects from weather, clouds, atmosphere to (as we all know) particle effects. Once we know that the core is solid, the work on the alpha draw order will be finished. Again, we would rather do things the right way and save time in the future instead of chasing bugs and fixing with band-aids. That said, we consider Alpha Draw Order to be very important, and will be the very next thing to address.
How will the new D3D11 benefit the games on HeroEngine?
D3D11 will boost all-around games' performance, however the advancements will depend on each player's computer configuration, where higher-end computers will see the best improvements. D3D11 support will allow HeroEngine to take advantage of many advanced features of newer graphics cards and deliver enhanced graphics to our developer community. The D3D11 work also lays the important foundation for the later DX12 support and new graphical features.
► Special Note: For older projects, it is worth noting that in order to get full benefit from the D3D11 updates there may need to be some adjustments made, but there will be slight upgrades naturally overall.
View the forum announcement HERE