Performance gains are to be expected.
Click image for larger version

Name:	d86f4b1d7f02-1920x1080.jpg
Views:	701
Size:	282.5 KB
ID:	3513328

Guild Wars 2 is making the jump from DirectX 9 to supporting DirectX 11 in a future update. Senior Engine Programmer James Fulop took to the Guild Wars 2 website today to talk about what this means for players.

One of the biggest things that players will notice with this move is a boost to performance. More on that from Fulop in a moment.

It should also be known that the beta for this update will kick off on September 21, 2021. You will be able to opt-in to the beta using the in-game Graphics Options menu. You'll be prompted to restart your game for the changes to take effect.

So why did we decide to upgrade to DirectX11 in the first place? Client performance is a priority for us, and we want everyone to be able to play with the highest possible framerate. We pinpointed that sometimes the game could stall waiting for rendering work to complete. Guild Wars 2 has been live for nine years now and implementing some DirectX11-dependent features can help the game continue to look beautiful over time.

DirectX11 also offers some modern technology options that aren’t available in DirectX9. Upgrading to DirectX11 is the first step toward being able to do more shiny things.
After careful research we decided to integrate the open source rendering library BGFX into Guild Wars 2. BGFX is well-written and supports various graphics backends and is already used in many games industry-wide. You can learn more about it on their official website.

As the graphics ecosystems in the computer industry continue to evolve, BGFX allows us to work together as a community of rendering engineers, rather than all of us having to reinvent the wheel at every studio. ArenaNet has and will continue to contribute to the development of BGFX.
Fulop notes that they chose not to go with DirectX 12 or Vulkan because DirectX 11 was able to provide "enough of a performance boost" and because it is "very stable." This also means that they can keep supporting players still using Windows Vista while Vulkan only goes back to Windows 8 and DirectX 12 starts only with Windows 10.

The rest of the news post from Fulop gets a little technical and talks about improvements to frame times and rendering speeds. It's well worth a look if you're at all interested in that sort of thing.