4A details Metro: Last Light tech upgrades


May 4, 2013

Metro: Last Light developer 4A games has shared some of the technological enhancements added to its bespoke engine since the release of Metro 2033 three years ago, going in-depth on its new approaches to DirectX 11, tessellation and anti-aliasing while promising a great gameplay experience across a range of hardware.

"We are extremely proud of the scalability we achieved," Oles Shishkovstov, chief technical officer for 4A Games tells us. "For example, Metro: Last Light is very playable on Intel HD 4000 hardware in DX11 mode (yes, lower quality settings only, but still - it runs) and we run extremely well on the next-gen Intel Haswell GPUs, while still bringing to their knees the high-end cards like GTX 680 and the HD 7970 in high-quality modes with extreme super-sampling."

Super-sampling is the new anti-aliasing technique of choice from 4A - and it's literally the process of rendering the frame at a higher pixel density and then downscaling it to fit your chosen resolution, smoothing away the jaggies. The problem with SSAA is that it's very heavy on the GPU since so many more pixels are being internally rendered. 4A's approach is to combine super-sampling with a post-process technique - FXAA - for optimal results in terms of both performance and image quality. The frame-rate killing 4x MSAA from Metro 2033 is now a thing of the past.

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