Microsoft is bringing DirectStorage to PC, massively reduces load times in games

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti (Image credit: Harish Jonnalagadda / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • The Xbox Velocity Architecture is part of what makes the Xbox Series X so formidable as a gaming platform.
  • Today, Microsoft announced they're bringing a part of this revolutionary Architecture to Windows gaming PC's.
  • DirectStorage will massively reduce load times for games, allowing PC games to more effectively use high-speed storage solutions.
  • If you have a speedy SSD and a game supports DirectStorage, load and wait times will be much shorter.

One of the numerous reasons the Xbox Series X is shaping up to be a gaming powerhouse is the addition of Xbox Velocity Architecture, a suite of gaming technologies that helps the Xbox Series X more effectively take advantage of its substantially more powerful hardware over previous generations. A part of this Architecture is the DirectStorage API, which will allow next-gen games to take advantage of the Xbox Series X's lightning fast SSD to greatly reduce how long we sit around waiting for things to load.

In a recent blog post, Microsoft announced that DirectStorage will also come to Windows PC's, teaming up with DirectX 12 Ultimate to bring gaming to incredible new levels, and better take advantage of newer and faster SSD's, and other components like NVIDIA's impressive 30 Series GPU's. In the future, games that take advantage of this new API won't be bottlenecked by older standards, and will truly be able to utilize everything that's offered by modern storage solutions.

To put it into short terms, DirectStorage API avoids the flaws of older storage APIs by being able handle far more simultaneous requests for data and information from games, leading to more efficient use of bandwith and consequently far faster speeds. On the other end of things, this also allows games to become bigger and more detailed using the same hardware that exists right now, solely because they're better able to use what's already there.

To take advantage of DirectStorage on your Windows PC, you'll need one of the best SSD's available, and more specifically an NVMe drive. NVMe drives are the storage of choice for DirectStorage because of the way they work and their blazing fast speeds, so if you haven't upgraded already it may be time to think about it.

What do you think about the DirectStorage API? Are you excited to have this important facet of the Xbox Series X make its way to gaming PC's? Let us know in the comments below!

Xbox Series X/S


Zachary Boddy
Staff Writer

Zachary Boddy (They / Them) is a Staff Writer for Windows Central, primarily focused on covering the latest news in tech and gaming, the best Xbox and PC games, and the most interesting Windows and Xbox hardware. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life starting with the original Xbox, and started out as a freelancer for Windows Central and its sister sites in 2019. Now a full-fledged Staff Writer, Zachary has expanded from only writing about all things Minecraft to covering practically everything on which Windows Central is an expert, especially when it comes to Microsoft. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.