Upward Trajectory: Improvements to DirectX 9 Games on Intel® Arc™ Graphics

Intel Arc graphics drivers now have a major update which improves performance in DX9 games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive* and others.

When the Intel Arc A750 and A770 GPUs launched in October, they provided gamers a smooth and immersive experience in games using Vulkan and DirectX 12 APIs. For someone playing modern titles at 1080p or 1440p, the A700-family is a great value and includes the hallmark features of a modern GPU like dedicated hardware ray tracing units and XeSS AI-enhanced super sampling.

We have been transparent about gaming performance for Intel graphics on modern and legacy APIs, and we knew that our DX9 experience needed more attention. Starting with our latest driver release, we are beginning to roll out substantial improvements for these popular and important titles!

I want to jump straight to data. Improving performance is what this is all about anyway! We’ve tested the Intel Arc A770 graphics card in six of the most popular DirectX 9 games, comparing our October release driver (version v3490) with today’s first DX9-overhauling driver (v3959 and later). The new driver gives most games here a significant boost in performance, especially Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and League of Legends*.

Noteworthy is that while average frame rate increases are awesome, the improvement in overall experience and smoothness is even better. If you look at the 99th percentile FPS, you’ll see that our relative improvement is over 2x in CS:GO and I can tell you from first hand playing experience that gamers will notice the difference immediately.

I might not have the skills to headshot TAP, but CS:GO has been a big target for us – not just because it’s the most-played game on Steam, but because so many eSports fans at Intel Extreme Masters ask about Counter-Strike performance on Intel Arc too!

Today’s driver release brings a new DX9 implementation to Intel Arc graphics products, including the A770, A750, A380 and our family of mobile Arc GPUs. We use a hybrid approach, i.e., a combination of API techniques, to take advantage of translation layers when a better experience can be delivered using one of our more modern API implementations. These improvements will be delivered transparently to the end user through our normal driver distribution process. The details of this implementation may change over time as our DX9 driver evolves.

Less than two months since launch, we are providing up to 1.8x better performance in select DX9 titles! As we improve performance, we’re also improving the value you get with Intel Arc graphics. We launched with competitive performance-per-dollar against the RTX 3060 in DX12 and Vulkan, now we’re expanding that storyline.

We won’t be stopping here; we still have more work to do! Further improvements for games based on legacy APIs and general driver enhancements are on their way and future drivers will continue our march to a refined and more performant product.

I’m looking forward to 2023 and seeing what further improvements our engineers can bring to Intel Arc graphics!

Intel Arc Graphics - Ryan Shrout

Ryan Shrout

December 6, 2022

Notices and Disclaimers

Performance varies by use, configuration and other factors. Learn more at www.Intel.com/PerformanceIndex.


No product or component can be absolutely secure.


Your costs and results may vary. Some results may have been estimated or simulated.


Intel technologies may require enabled hardware, software or service activation.


All product plans and roadmaps are subject to change without notice. 


© Intel Corporation.  Intel, the Intel logo, Arc, and other Intel marks are trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries.


*Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.

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