Godot 4 Will Only Support Vulkan Graphics

The developers behind the upcoming Godot 4 game engine have just announced that Godot 4 will only support the Vulkan graphics API. There was a massive rewrite of the rendering system in Godot 4 to support Vulkan graphics and this has made supporting OpenGL ES more and more difficult. As a result, with the Godot 4 release, only Vulkan rendering will be supported. It is hoped that OpenGL ES 3 support will be restored in the Godot 4.1 release. This isn’t entirely new, as the move to Godot 3 saw OpenGL ES 2 support dropped in favor of OpenGL ES 3, which was then added back in with the release of Godot 3.1.

Details from the Godot Engine blog:

OpenGL will most likely not be supported at the time Godot 4.0 is out. The renderer design and all resulting code had to be re-implemented entirely from scratch in order to support Vulkan and modern rendering techniques. This took an enormous amount of work (more than two years, close to three at the time of release).

Support will definitely be implemented by the time 4.1 is out, hopefully some months later. One of our main goals for the 4.x releases it to provide them in a timely manner, so you will not have to wait a whole year for it. That said, given 4.0 has so much new code (the engine was rewritten significantly), it will also require a large amount of time dedicated to bug-fixing and stabilization even after stable.

The post goes into a great deal more detail on the reasoning behind the move, as well as details the possible future of OpenGL ES 2 support in the Godot ecosystem. At this point in time, Vulkan support has started to become pretty ubiquitous, even in the mobile space. In the desktop space, it’s mostly decade old GPUs and IGPs that will struggle to support Vulkan. If you are interested in checking out what devices support Vulkan, GPU Info is a handy resource.

You can learn more about Godot 4 and Vulkan support in the video below.

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