Monthly Archives: February 2014

Review of “Direct3D Rendering Cookbook”

Direct3D Rendering Cookbook (by Packt Publishing) is the only book I am aware of that covers the combination of C# programming and the DirectX 11 API. This is the book I would have liked to have when I taught myself how to use the DirectX API.

The book is mainly aimed at those who would like to start learning a 3D graphic library and have already a sound C# programming background. It starts by giving the reader the basic knowledge on how to set up a DirectX application. Each chapter follows a clear structure by focusing on a particular topic. Source code is given and then explained in “How it works” sections. Once learned the basics, the other topics covered are very up to date with the features of modern 3D engines. Indeed, aside from the fundamental core concepts of rendering meshes it also covers advanced topics such as physics, deferred rendering and multithreading.

This book is however not about 3D engine architecture. So those expecting this book to be a guide from start to finish on the development of a 3D application or game, are likely to be disappointed. Faithful to its name, the book reports a set of rendering techniques. Indeed concepts such as input or sound are not covered. The techniques described by the book contain the minimum amount of code necessary for their implementation. However, the reader will find that unless one wants to build standalone demos, it is necessary for a lot more work in order to put everything together in a meaningful application or game. Considering the target audience, I think the book lost an opportunity to introduce the fundamental concepts of 3D engine architecture.

In conclusion, I believe the book is an excellent match for those who wish to learn how to use C# to build 3D applications. SharpDX also has a good community around it, so it is easy to find support once you become ready to work on your own.

Direct3D Rendering Cookbook

I am currently reviewing a new book on Direct3D as used in .net with SharpDX called “Direct3D Rendering Cookbook”. It seems to be the only book that I know of on this specific combination. Here is what the publisher says about it:

Direct3D Rendering Cookbook provides detailed .NET examples covering a wide range of advanced 3D rendering techniques available in Direct3D 11.2. With this book, you will learn how to use the new Visual Studio 2012 graphics content pipeline, how to perform character animation, how to use advanced hardware tessellation techniques, how to implement displacement mapping, perform image post-processing, and how to use compute shaders for general-purpose computing on GPUs. (more…)