Technology company TransGaming has announced the release of SwiftShader, a software-based rendering product that enables the use of 3D graphics in PC games and applications without the cost and complexity of dedicated graphics hardware.
Oberon Media, a major publisher of casual games and the leading global provider of casual gaming solutions, has also announced that it has licensed SwiftShader for integration into its future titles.
"A large percentage of casual games players have no interest in spending money on the latest graphics card," said Scott Bilas, Director of Product Development, Oberon Media. "One of Oberon's missions is to expand the overall size of the casual gaming market. By including SwiftShader in our future titles, we will have the freedom to design and sell more appealing graphics-oriented game titles to a much broader market base."
TransGaming's SwiftShader technology provides the world's fastest pure software 3D renderer with DirectX 9.0 class features, according to the company, including support for Pixel and Vertex Shaders. SwiftShader is built to provide the same APIs that developers are already using for their games and applications. This makes it possible to directly integrate SwiftShader into applications without any changes to source code. Direct3D 8 and Direct3D 9 compatible APIs are available immediately, and OpenGL-compatible APIs are also under development. Vertex Shader 1.1 and Pixel Shader 1.4 features are currently supported, along with the majority of features used by most developers when producing 3D games and applications.
According to a Transgaming statement, SwiftShader can perform over 50 times faster than Microsoft's Direct3D Reference Rasterizer in tests with sample applications, and can rival the performance of low end hardware 3D graphics solutions in some cases. SwiftShader achieves this level of performance by dynamically compiling highly optimized code specific to an applications 3D rendering needs.
SwiftShader is currently available for x86 CPUs with Intel's SSE multimedia instruction set extensions. SwiftShader runs on Microsoft Windows 98 and higher, and on Linux through TransGaming's Cedega portability technology.