Xbox Series X/S just received a treasure chest of graphics effects from AMD

Horizon Zero Dawn's Aloy on a mountain top
(Image credit: Guerrilla Games)

Great news, AMD PC gamers, AMD's open source FidelityFX effects are coming to Xbox Series X and Series S. Why should you care with your keyboard and mouse? Because AMD's RDNA 2 architecture is shared far and wide, from PC GPUs to both Sony and Microsoft's latest consoles, and what's good for one platform is sure to be good for another.

FidelityFX is a collection of graphics effects including Contrast Adaptive Sharpening (CAS), variable rate shading, Single Pass Downsampler, Screen Space Reflections (SSSR), a ray-tracing shadow denoiser, and more. It's a rather fancy toolkit, and the best part is its open source and available cross-platform.

Today, FidelityFX gets a little more platform-friendly as it moves from AMD graphics cards over to Xbox Series X and Series S. The FidelityFX effects will live inside the Game Developer Kit for both consoles, which puts it right in the hands of developers building games for the platform.

FidelityFX currently supports 40 games, including Horizon Zero Dawn, Resident Evil 2 and 3, Far Cry 6, World of Warcraft: Shadowlands, and Cyberpunk 2077. AMD will be looking to grow that list exponentially with the might of Microsoft's console.

The use of FidelityFX on Xbox is no big surprise, however. If anything it was a likely benefit from Radeon's reach across both console and PC—perhaps AMD's most notable one-up on Nvidia in desktop graphics is that two major consoles share its graphics tech, and that makes for a lot of developers creating games with AMD hardware in mind.

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AMD still has a serious fight on its hands going up against Nvidia's feature stack, however, and its FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) feature is still hotly anticipated. While AMD says it's not yet ready to announce anything regarding the upscaling feature, it will need to come out of the gate swinging to stand a chance against Nvidia's Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS).

There are still plenty of hurdles for FSR yet, but if it can live up to its potential here, it will make for a mighty feather in AMD's cap on both PC and console.

We've still no word on PlayStation 5 support for FidelityFX, but you can only imagine AMD's close relationship with Sony after all these years will mean the two have something in the works.

Jacob Ridley
Senior Hardware Editor

Jacob earned his first byline writing for his own tech blog. From there, he graduated to professionally breaking things as hardware writer at PCGamesN, and would go on to run the team as hardware editor. Since then he's joined PC Gamer's top staff as senior hardware editor, where he spends his days reporting on the latest developments in the technology and gaming industries and testing the newest PC components.