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Microsoft revealed more about the next generation of its DirectX graphics application-programming interfaces today.

In a presentation during Microsoft’s Windows 10 event in Redmond, Wash., Xbox boss Phil Spencer revealed that DirectX 12 will represent a major upgrade over the previous generation of APIs. This is the backbone graphical fidelity in PC and Xbox One games, and better performance means developers can squeeze more details and better framerates from older hardware.

“Direct X will make your games even better,” said Spencer. “For CPU-bound games, DirectX 12 will increase the performance of those games by up to 50 percent.”

To give an example of the new capabilities in DirectX 12, Spencer rolled a video of a scrolling complex cityscape running on two machines with the same hardware. One of the systems, running DirectX 11, struggled and eventually froze as the scene drew in more details, but the DirectX 12 box continued rendering the scene smoothly.

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But Spencer didn’t just talk about performance.

“With DirectX 12, we also know that people are playing games on phones and other devices powered by battery,” he said. “We wanted to focus on performance but also on battery life. We’ve cut the power consumption required in half for the same scenes on Direct X 11.”

DirectX 12 will roll out with Windows 10, and Spencer revealed that Epic Games’ popular Unreal Engine will support the new standard.

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