AMD FidelityFX is our open-source collection of optimized visual technologies that make it easier for developers to implement high-quality effects and optimizations that help make games look amazing while offering the best balance of visual fidelity and performance.
After releasing the first effect in 2019 and adding more effects earlier this year, for this week’s launch of the AMD Radeon RX 6800 Series graphics cards we’re announcing three new FidelityFX effects.
We’re also excited to announce that FidelityFX is now available in 35 games, with more to come, including the upcoming addition of FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening (CAS) to Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition for PC.
To showcase how FidelityFX intelligently combines with the next-generation visual technologies enabled by DirectX 12 Ultimate to deliver maximum fidelity games, we created the AMD RDNA 2 architecture-powered “Hangar 21” Technology Demo which you can learn more about below.
New AMD FidelityFX Effects Optimized for AMD RDNA 2
AMD FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening (CAS) was the first effect we launched in 2019 and it was joined in May by four new effects optimized for AMD RDNA and AMD RDNA 2 architectures: FidelityFX Ambient Occlusion, FidelityFX Screen Space Reflections, FidelityFX HDR Mapper, and FidelityFX Downsampler.
Now for the launch of Radeon RX 6800 Series graphics cards, three new FidelityFX effects are being announced, all optimized for the AMD RDNA 2 architecture.
The first new effect is AMD FidelityFX Variable Shading, which uses Variable Rate Shading (VRS) to analyze the luminance and motion of frames to help optimize rendering for optimal performance.
(*Developer View Only)
The second is AMD FidelityFX Denoiser, which helps improve the visual quality of real-time raytracing and other in-game effects.
The third, and final new effect is AMD FidelityFX Parallel Sort. Like FidelityFX Downsampler (SPD), FidelityFX Parallel Sort is not directly visible to gamers, but it does allow developers to sort data in their frame on the GPU, really fast.
Some of these new effects are already integrated into some of the newly released and upcoming games we are showcasing for the launch of our latest graphics cards, such as DIRT 5, Godfall, and the upcoming The Riftbreaker. For other game developers, FidelityFX Variable Shading, Denoiser, and Parallel Sort will be made freely available on GPUOpen.com soon, like all our other effects.
Now Available in More Games
Along with the three new effects, we’re also excited to announce that the adoption of AMD FidelityFX is accelerating at a rapid pace and our effects are now available in 35 games today. These include some of the latest titles such as Little Hope, Flight Simulator, Second Extinction, Serious Sam 4, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2, and F1 2020. There are also updates to long-available stalwarts like EVE Online for further boosts to their visual fidelity.
AMD FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening (CAS), which enables visual sharpness with optional upscaling to restore detail lost after Temporal Anti-Aliasing (TAA) is applied is currently our most widely adopted effect. However, our new effects are now also being integrated into some of the hottest games available now and coming soon.
All five of our AMD Radeon RX 6000 Partner Showcase games have implemented at least one FidelityFX technology with many of them using multiple effects. DIRT 5 uses AMD FidelityFX Ambient Occlusion (CACAO), Variable Shading, and Downsampler (SPD). Godfall takes advantage of AMD FidelityFX CAS, Denoiser, and HDR Mapper (LPM), and World of Warcraft: Shadowlands has implemented AMD FidelityFX Ambient Occlusion (CACAO). You can see the complete list of games that support FidelityFX on our AMD FidelityFX Supported Games web page.
AMD FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening Coming Soon to Horizon Zero Dawn
Along with all of the new games above that support AMD FidelityFX, we’re very excited to announce that in addition to the already available FidelityFX Downsampler (SPD) support, Guerrilla Games is adding AMD FidelityFX CAS in an upcoming update to Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition for PC.
With FidelityFX CAS, you’ll be able to experience Aloy’s legendary quest at even higher visual fidelity when using temporal anti-aliasing (TAA) – with CAS bringing out every last detail in the characters, machines, and environments of the game’s majestic open world.
Found in the game’s graphics settings menu, FidelityFX CAS will be available when “TAA” is selected in the “Anti-aliasing” settings and the sharpness level can be adjusted from 0 – 100%, depending on your preference.
AMD Radeon Image Sharpening vs. FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening
AMD FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening isn’t the only image sharpening technology we have available. Based on the same algorithm as FidelityFX CAS, AMD Radeon Image Sharpening (RIS) is built into Radeon Software and can be applied to any game, restoring detail lost after Temporal Anti-Aliasing (TAA) is applied.
Unlike CAS, which developers natively integrate and optimize their game to use, as RIS is a post-process effect applied by Radeon Software, there is a small but minimal performance impact(1). Of course, this is far outweighed by the ability to apply it to any game in your library that uses TAA.
However, there is one important caveat when playing a game that also has FidelityFX CAS – it is highly recommended that you turn off Radeon Image Sharpening in Radeon Software to avoid over-sharpening the game’s visuals. Radeon Software lets you set this on a per-game basis, as can be seen in the image above, so you don’t have to keep remembering to turn it on or off every time you play.
Putting it all Together: “Hangar 21” Technology Demo
The combination of our existing and new AMD FidelityFX effects and DirectX 12 Ultimate effects like DirectX Raytracing (DXR) will enable developers to include realistic lighting, shadows, and reflections along with new levels of detail in their games for truly next-generation visuals. And to showcase how our AMD RDNA 2 architecture Radeon RX 6000 Series graphics cards will power the next level of gaming experiences, we created the “Hangar 21” Technology Demo which you can see in the video below.
This demo shows off how developers will need to use multiple methods to achieve the perfect balance of visual fidelity to performance – rasterization, compute effects, and raytracing will all need to be used to create the mind-blowing visuals of tomorrow’s games. The intelligent combination of different effects, like FidelityFX Ambient Occlusion and Screen Space Reflections with DXR shadows and reflections, allowed us to create a high-fidelity demo at a level of performance that wouldn’t be achievable if using costly raytracing effects alone.
What's Next for AMD FidelityFX?
The broad industry adoption of AMD FidelityFX reinforces AMD’s commitment to gaming with technologies for all – one of our core values is support for open standards and technologies that benefit both developers and gamers. That value is the foundation on which GPUOpen, our website for developers, is built upon.
Gamers can look forward to seeing more games implementing AMD FidelityFX effects, with the upcoming addition of CAS to Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition for PC being next in line. Developers should stay tuned to GPUOpen for more information about the exciting updates to AMD FidelityFX mentioned above.
Alexander Blake-Davies is a Software Product Marketing Specialist for AMD. His postings are his own opinions and may not represent AMD’s positions, strategies, or opinions. Links to third-party sites are provided for convenience and unless explicitly stated, AMD is not responsible for the contents of such linked sites and no endorsement is implied. GD-5
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