Will OpenGL be supported in Legion?

Mac Technical Support
I'm running WoW in WINE on Debian Linux, and I get a 30-40 FPS increase when I render WoW with OpenGL in lieu of DirectX. It runs beautifully, and I'm quite pleased. However, now I'm getting a warning message telling me that my graphics card will not be supported (nVidia GeForce 9800 GTX+ - supported). Is this a bug? Is Blizzard discontinuing development for OpenGL?

I realize that Linux is not officially supported by Blizzard, but I'm a loyal customer, and this seems like the best place to ask. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
dropping a really out of date card is not same as dropping opengl. They are changing from opengl 2 to opengl 3 in legion for mac client.

Not sure what they are doing with windows client, which I suspect is what you run in wine?
Thank you. Yes, I run the Windows client in 32bit mode.
Yes that card will be deprecated for Legion.

Minimum PC requirements:

NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 440 or AMD™ Radeon™ HD 5670 or Intel® HD Graphics 5000

The 9800 GTX is (according to wikipedia) "a GTS 8800 with two SLI connectors, higher clock speeds, and support for Nvidia Hybrid Power".
I'm running Ubuntu 15.10 (Gnome Shell mainly) & I've got an AMD Radeon 6770 and it's been telling me that my video card will no longer be supported in future versions of WoW which require Shader Model 3. This card supports OpenGL 4.1. That is using v1.6.2 from the default Ubuntu repository.
It was also telling me that my video drivers were out of date when I had it set to use Win7 x86. That dialog box stopped appearing when I set it to use Win8 (still 32bit).

Just went to www.winehq.org, added those repos and it updated to 1.9.3. Same issue. Had a few libraries changed via PlayOnLinux at one point I think. Added a few extra listed on https://appdb.winehq.org/objectManager.php?sClass=version&iId=32314 and it didn't change.

I switched back to D3D11 and the error went away and more graphics options are available but the FPS is lower. With OpenGL I can stay at the 25 cap running around the garrison but now in Orgrimmar (largely empty) It's more around 23 and drops to ~16 when I turn while standing in place.

Edit:
It defaulted back to Directx9. Don't think Wine supports DX11.
02/13/2016 02:21 PMPosted by Gothjin
I'm running Ubuntu 15.10 (Gnome Shell mainly) & I've got an AMD Radeon 6770 and it's been telling me that my video card will no longer be supported in future versions of WoW which require Shader Model 3. This card supports OpenGL 4.1.


The ATI driver included with Ubuntu, RadeonDriver, (still) has shaky OpenGL 4.x support with certain cards. You should use fglrx from ATI directly.
02/13/2016 03:40 PMPosted by Incaely
The ATI driver included with Ubuntu, RadeonDriver, (still) has shaky OpenGL 4.x support with certain cards. You should use fglrx from ATI directly.


If it's good with OpenGL 2 and 3 (Core Profile for 3) then he'll be "OK", though yes he should get the driver from AMD if possible. WoW doesn't use any OpenGL 4 in Legion sadly. It's OpenGL 3 and a lot slower than OpenGL 2 currently is in WoW.
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Sorry if I am inappropriately necroing an old thread... but I have some pertinent comments for people who, like me, may have found this thread searching the forum.

I am also running WOW under Wine, in my case Linux Mint 17.3 x64, with WINE 1.9.14 (currently; just updated from 1.9.13 a day or two ago) with a Nvidia GTX 760 using the 367 proprietary driver. I was also getting warnings that my video card would not be supported in future versions of WoW when running WoD under OpenGL. Apparently, it was detecting feature support via the gx API and making assumptions about the capability of the card based on what it found-- and you know what happens to programs that assume.

Right after getting that message, I went into Legion Beta under WINE (also using OpenGL) and it ran just fine without any warnings. Well, MOSTLY it ran fine; there are occasional visual glitches and artifacts that happen in some areas. I presume that WoD had been running on OpenGL 2 and Legion is on OpenGL 3, from what I read in the thread above.

I have not noticed any performance issues with Legion under WINE using OpenGL compared to Windows 7 x64 using DX11. I get a solid 60 fps (vsync on) with both when using the same graphics settings. I did have to reduce them from where they were in WoD to get the same frame rate in Windows, but once I had it tuned to maintain 60 fps nearly all the time, the same settings worked just as well in Legion/ WINE/ OpenGL in terms of maintaining 60 fps.

As for the visual glitches... at first I thought it was WINE that was at fault, but I decided to try setting the API to OpenGL in Windows, and what do you know-- the visual glitches and artifacts are there too.

Since OpenGL is not an official API for Windows, I am not sure if I should report those glitches... I gather that OpenGL 3 is used on the Mac client (which would be why the OP chose to post this in the Mac forum, I guess)? I don't know if the OpenGL glitching in Windows means anything regarding how it works on the Mac client.
Let me shed some light on OpenGL in WoW.

Originally the OpenGL backend was shared between Windows and Mac. The Mac OGL backend (GLL) was eventually forked during WotLK as it became hard for the mac team not break windows OpenGL and didn't want to maintain the largely unused windows OGL backend. The windows OGL backend remained largely untouched all they way though WoD in an OpenGL 2 state. The mac GLL backend meanwhile saw continuous development and WoD added experimental OpenGL 3.2 (which you had to enable from the console).

For legion, it was decided to drop DirectX shader model 2 support (almost impossible to maintain an extreme legacy path on a modern game). From DX's perspective, this only drops some very very old and long unsupported cards, but both OpenGL backends relied on the shader model 2 style path in the engine (ARB assembly shaders) and had to be updated. For the mac side, the OGL 2.1 path was removed and the 3.2 was enabled for the GLL backend and runs through the shader model 4 style path. Meanwhile, the windows OpenGL backend was completely rewritten, targeting OpenGL 4.2 (though I don't think it uses any major OGL 4.2 features, it's likely close to a OGL 3.3 backend). That being said, the windows OGL backend has had exactly 0 testing from quality assurance since it was rewritten and is very likely to have bugs. It is basically an unmaintained, modern backend.

While we're talking history of backends, I'll throw in metal. Metal was added as an experimental backend (not available to the public) in 6.2. Metal will be the default mac backend in legion for cards able to support it. It currently runs a shader model 4/5 hybrid path with development efforts to get more shader model 5 features working (esp with new features added in 10.12).
<3

One question I did kind of wonder. Why not target opengl 4.1 path on OS X instead of 3.2? No real gain to it really? GL 3.2 core profile performance has generally not been up to the 2.1 profile hack you guys came up with in GLL, at least for wow.
Maybe 4 would have been better? Or was it just that it'd drop even more hardware classes? can't really be software sine it was 10.9 that added the 4.1version and that's now the minimum OS anyways.
07/12/2016 09:08 PMPosted by Rommax
Let me shed some light on OpenGL in WoW.

Originally the OpenGL backend was shared between Windows and Mac. The Mac OGL backend (GLL) was eventually forked during WotLK as it became hard for the mac team not break windows OpenGL and didn't want to maintain the largely unused windows OGL backend. The windows OGL backend remained largely untouched all they way though WoD in an OpenGL 2 state. The mac GLL backend meanwhile saw continuous development and WoD added experimental OpenGL 3.2 (which you had to enable from the console).

For legion, it was decided to drop DirectX shader model 2 support (almost impossible to maintain an extreme legacy path on a modern game). From DX's perspective, this only drops some very very old and long unsupported cards, but both OpenGL backends relied on the shader model 2 style path in the engine (ARB assembly shaders) and had to be updated. For the mac side, the OGL 2.1 path was removed and the 3.2 was enabled for the GLL backend and runs through the shader model 4 style path. Meanwhile, the windows OpenGL backend was completely rewritten, targeting OpenGL 4.2 (though I don't think it uses any major OGL 4.2 features, it's likely close to a OGL 3.3 backend). That being said, the windows OGL backend has had exactly 0 testing from quality assurance since it was rewritten and is very likely to have bugs. It is basically an unmaintained, modern backend.

While we're talking history of backends, I'll throw in metal. Metal was added as an experimental backend (not available to the public) in 6.2. Metal will be the default mac backend in legion for cards able to support it. It currently runs a shader model 4/5 hybrid path with development efforts to get more shader model 5 features working (esp with new features added in 10.12).


What was the reason behind rewriting instead of dropping the OGL path for Windows vs investing in something else like DX12? Do enough people use OGL on Windows to justify the dev effort?
We tried a 4.1 core and performance and bugs were worse than 3.2. There also aren't really any features we needed for wow that 4.1 gave us over 3.2. The features we'd really like for OpenGL on mac are in 4.2+.

As for Windows OGL 4.2, the guy that did it did it over a weekend for fun. It took very little to zero dev time. Making an initial backend for a properly abstracted game for someone that knows the code base extremely well doesn't take much time. The cost comes from finding and fixing all of the crashes, correctness issues and performance issues.
sadly we'll never see GL 4.2+ on mac. SO lets hope they keep metal competitive with vulkan and directx12, after they finish catching it up to even directx9 that is. 10.12 helps a little with that, including tessellation finally.
Thanks for the reply; some good info there!

Edit: I'm earning my blonde hair. My statement about Legion with OpenGL artifacting in Windows as badly as it does in WINE was accurate after all; my previous (now deleted) statement to the contrary was in error.

My character is standing outside "Simply Enchanting" in the new Dalaran in Legion. I started WoW x64 for Windows using the -OpenGL command line option, and the artifacting is exactly the same as it is in WINE using OpenGL. It is related to certain lighting effects, like whatever is used on the the crystals in the crates right in front of "Simply Enchanting."

I've been using OpenGL in Legion (under WINE) for several hours (probably a bit more than ten hours) of game play in Legion beta now, and it has never crashed or glitched out in a really horrible way, but there are often flashes and spikes or planes of colors that are always the same as some nearby transparency or lighting effect, like those (transparent but colorful) crystals. All of the glitching is related to transparency; instance portals don't look quite right, and neither does the v-shaped rippling in the water when I ride through on a water strider. It flashes between being opaque and fully transparent rather than being somewhere in the middle.

For being unmaintained, OpenGL 3 under Windows is actually pretty decent. The frame rate is good; I see about the same performance as I do in DirectX, and if that transparency glitch was fixed, it would be very usable for those of us who want to play WoW on Linux. It's so close, Blizzard! If it was not for that artifacting as described, I'd say WoW for Windows works as well under WINE as it does natively-- and that is really pretty amazing. WINE has come a long way since I first tried it about a decade ago!
I know Apple doesn't make it easy, but between Apple pulling out of Vulkan, Blizzard opting not to develop Overwatch for Mac (first time ever? certainly since Diablo 2, when the release was delayed on Mac but eventually happened), OpenGL being something of a dead end, and Metal being, well, seen mostly as an iOS thing, I can't help but be sad.
I'm sure blizzard didn't want to pull out of overwatch. they just needed OpenGL or metal to be more developed. my hope is that if 10.12 or maybe something after has metal developed enough they can revisit it. You can be assured we'll never see newer OpenGL or Vulcan though. Apple is too invested in pushing metal. As you say though it's ported from iOS so it's playing catchup with other DESKTOP apis. it's only now getting tessellation in 10.12
I run all blizzard games stably using VFIO pass-through on Fedora 23. Actual performance is almost identical to bare metal too which is awesome.

Took 3-4 days to get everything stable, but at this point I can run ANY game on that setup easily.
Whats the chance of a Vulkan backend in the far future?

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