World of Warcraft

I really have no idea why Microsoft is promoting this news, yet here we are. A new MSDN blog post was put up today by Jianye Lu, program manager at Microsoft, that talks about how World of Warcraft is a DirectX 12 game running on Windows 7.

There are a lot of things simultaneously incredibly weird and incredibly interesting about this news. It marks the first major title to use DirectX 12 on Windows 7. That's pretty neat. However, DirectX 12 has largely been a Windows 10 exclusive API. It's actually been a pretty big reason behind pushing some people to upgrade to Windows 10 and yet here we are talking about a 15 year old game running on a 10 year old operating system using an API that shipped alongside the latest version of Windows.

The blog does at least make note that while it's running on DirectX 12 in Windows 7, it lacks many of the operating system specific features found in Windows 10 for DirectX 12.

How are DirectX 12 games different between Windows 10 and Windows 7?
Windows 10 has critical OS improvements which make modern low-level graphics APIs (including DirectX 12) run more efficiently. If you enjoy your favorite games running with DirectX 12 on Windows 7, you should check how those games run even better on Windows 10!
The big question is: Why now? Why is Microsoft even promoting this? Windows 7 is reaching its end of support come January 2020. It is at this time that the operating system will stop receiving important updates that handle security issues both major and minor, bug fixes, and new features. It's at that time that the operating system is akin to being unvaccinated if you decide to ever use the Internet.

There are ways to slightly delay this, but they only apply to those that use bulk licenses, like businesses. Even then, those businesses will have to pay additional fees for extended support. These fees start at $50 for one extra year of support, $100 for the second year, and then $200 for the third year totalling a staggering $350 per device for three extra years of support. No, individual license holders cannot partake of this extended support even if you are willing to pay the fee.

So... why is Microsoft promoting this for a dying operating system? Beats the hell out of me. They even suggest that other games are soon going to get DirectX 12 support in Windows 7. You know what would be better for you still on Windows 7? Just upgrade to a newer operating system. Hell, even Linux is a very viable alternative right now thanks to Valve's work on Proton.

Now, with all of this in mind, those still holding on to Windows 7 can now make use of DirectX 12 with today's 8.1.5 update for World of Warcraft.