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(GDC 2018) Futuremark DirectX Raytracing tech demo

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DirectX Raytracing (DXR) is a new feature in DirectX 12 that opens the door to a new class of real-time graphics techniques for games.

We were thrilled to join Microsoft onstage for the announcement, which we followed with a presentation of our own work in developing practical real-time applications for this exciting new tech.

Rendering accurate reflections in real-time is difficult. There are many challenges and limitations when using the existing methods.
For the past few months, we've been exploring ways of combining DirectX Raytracing with existing methods to solve some of these challenges.
While much of our presentation went deep into the math for our solution, I would like to show you some examples of our new technique in action.

Practical real-time raytracing for games
Raytracing is not a new technique, but until recently it has been too computationally demanding to use in real-time games.
With modern GPUs, it's now possible to use rasterization for most of the rendering and a smaller amount of raytracing to enhance shadows, reflections, and other effects that are difficult to achieve with traditional techniques.
Our DXR tech demo runs in real-time on current GPU hardware and, because it builds on existing methods, it was relatively easy to implement into our DirectX 12 game engine.
We are proud to be one of the first developers chosen to work with DirectX Raytracing, and we are excited about the opportunities for this new API.
I am happy to announce that we will be using DirectX Raytracing in a new 3DMark benchmark test that we hope to release towards the end of the year.

- DirectX Raytracing tech demo @ youtube

Fact Sheet and FAQ

What is DirectX Raytracing?
DirectX Raytracing is a new feature in DirectX 12 that bridges the gap between today’s rasterization techniques and the full 3D effects of tomorrow. It opens the door to a new class of real-time graphics techniques for games. Find out more from Microsoft’s DirectX Developer Blog. 

What did Futuremark present at GDC?
Futuremark and Microsoft presented a joint session at GDC called, "New Techniques for Accurate Real-Time Reflections.” It was the first in a series of advanced graphics tutorials for graphics engineers, technical leads, and advanced technical artists.
In our talk, we presented the first practical real-time applications for DirectX Raytracing. We showed and explained a new technique that combines DirectX Raytracing (DXR) with existing methods to improve the quality and accuracy of real-time reflections in games.

What are the advantages of this new technique for reflections?
Our reflection technique uses DXR to enhance commonly used reflection techniques and to solve cases that couldn’t be handled previously, such as reflections of dynamic objects outside the main camera view, reflections on non-planar surfaces, and producing perspective correct reflections for non-trivial-shaped spaces. 

What about performance?
Our demo runs in real-time on current GPU hardware. Raytracing is used selectively to enhance reflections that are difficult to achieve with traditional techniques. 

Which game engine are you using?
As with all our products, we use our own engine. Our DXR demo uses a modified version of the DirectX 12 engine we used for 3DMark Time Spy. 
Can your technique be implemented in other game engines?
Yes. Our technique builds on existing techniques which are well known to game developers. It would be relatively straightforward to implement in modern game engines.

Does your demo use NVIDIA RTX or AMD’s raytracing solution?
No. Our raytracing demo uses Microsoft’s DirectX Raytracing (DXR) API.