Back in August 2019, Nvidia and Microsoft teamed up to announce Minecraft RTX, bringing full path tracing to the game. There has been plenty of development work done since then and now this week, we’ll be able to try Minecraft RTX for ourselves as the open beta is launching.
Minecraft Windows 10 Edition owners can opt in to the Xbox Insider Program to test out the RTX beta starting on April 16th. The beta brings direct lighting from the sun, sky and other light sources, realistic hard and soft shadows, emissive lighting from surfaces like lava or glowstone, accurate reflections in water and metallic surfaces, reflection and refraction properties in transparent materials like glass, volumetric fog and finally, light shafts.
As we know from playing Quake RTX, running full path-tracing is very graphically intensive. With that in mind, Minecraft RTX is also going to ship with DLSS 2.0, which began rolling out a couple of weeks ago. The new version of DLSS should provide a 1.7x performance improvement versus native resolution, allowing users to switch on more ray-tracing effects and maintain a playable frame rate.
Nvidia already announced a series of tools for creating texture packs and getting the most out of RTX features. Aside from that, some prominent Minecraft creators have also made six maps for launch, each one showcasing the new path tracing features in action. These maps include:
- Aquatic Adventure RTX by Dr_Bond
- Color, Light and Shadow RTX by PearlescentMoon
- Crystal Palace RTX by GeminiTay
- Imagination Island RTX by BlockWorks
- Neon District RTX by Elysium Fire
- Of Temples and Totems RTX by Razzleberries
Each map is going to be available for free through the marketplace on Minecraft Windows 10 Edition. Be sure to get the Xbox Insider Hub from the Windows Store and enroll in the beta if you want to try it out. It is an open beta, you just need to sign up first.
KitGuru Says: I’ll be looking forward to seeing how well this runs, particularly with DLSS 2.0 in place to take off some of the load. Are any of you planning on trying Minecraft RTX when it enters beta this week?