It's something that hardware manufacturers, Microsoft and PC gamers have been talking about for the longest time: DirectX 10. With the graphics hardware apparently ready from NVIDIA since last year and Microsoft's Windows Vista released early this year, it seemed that all the pieces were in place for the next great thing in PC gaming, right? Well, it turned out that we had to wait till June before we saw the first inkling with a DirectX 10 patch for an older game, Company of Heroes. This was followed by the release of the first DirectX 10 games, Call of Juarez and a PC port of a Xbox 360 game - Lost Planet: Extreme Condition. Unfortunately, the hyped poster boys of DirectX 10 gaming that we have all been hearing about from the developers, Unreal Tournament 3, Crysis and Hellgate: London have all been pushed back to the latter half of the year.
This scarceness of DirectX 10 games has not prevented vendors from promoting their new hardware heavily. The new graphics cards promise more than just DirectX 10 compatibility after all; the higher end cards especially, give hefty boosts in performance. This is all part of the tech scene, with its never-ending cycle of hardware and software upgrades, even if the hardware may not be fully utilized now. Enthusiasts are used to this, looking ahead for their upgrades but at the same time, they are not averse to holding off their purchases so as to take advantage of an upcoming Intel/AMD price cut for example.
For those who have been holding off their spending, Leadtek hopes to give them a reason to buy sooner rather than later, with its latest GeForce 8600 GT bundled with one of the earliest DirectX 10 games in retail now - Capcom's Lost Planet: Extreme Condition. It's an interesting proposition, since gamers who are wondering about the hype behind DirectX 10 can get a hands-on experience immediately with the GeForce 8600 GT, an affordable enough, mid-range graphics card. This Lost Planet edition is also available for the company's GeForce 8600 GTS but today, we will be looking at the GeForce 8600 GT version. According to its specifications, this Leadtek card appears to be your standard GeForce 8600 GT card and besides the Lost Planet themed decal, it certainly doesn't look any different from the usual models.