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Although MMX techology, introduced in 1997, is long superseded by SSE series of extensions, it's still included in every modern x86 CPU for backwards compatibility.

What are some examples of programs which did use MMX when available, and did gain substantial acceleration from it? Were there maybe some games which were MMX-capable?

closed as too broad by pipe, Tommy, Cody Gray, Mark, JAL Jul 31 '17 at 20:03

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  • Voted as too broad; from experience though: in the review I read of the original Unreal, the author commented that it did such a good job with his MMX CPU that he hadn't initially realised that it hadn't recognised his 3DFX. – Tommy Jul 30 '17 at 13:44
  • This is a list-type question. We've had some good ones, but also some bad ones. I'll pre-emptively protect this question so we don't get as many duplicate answers in the event that the question is deemed narrow enough. – wizzwizz4 Jul 30 '17 at 15:03
  • Answerers: Community Wiki would be a good idea. – wizzwizz4 Jul 30 '17 at 15:03
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    MMX-specific optimizations were added to Direct3D, so yes, I imagine there are a number of games that were optimized for the MMX. There also video decoder libraries that use MMX optimizations—a great number of them, in fact, too many to list here. While MMX never really took the world by storm, it was used by some software. Its limited acceptance was mostly due to the fact that it was a pain in the butt to use from a programmer's perspective and did not interoperate with the x87 FPU. It was fairly quickly superseded by SSE, which was way easier to use and caught on much more quickly. – Cody Gray Jul 30 '17 at 15:35
  • I remember some games proudly advertising support for MMX. Presumably at least some of the games identified by MobyGames as requiring a Pentium MMX actually use the MMX extensions... (This won’t cover everything since some games work with lesser CPUs but make use of MMX if available.) IIRC early versions of 3DMark would use MMX if available too (perhaps newers ones do as well, I don’t know). – Stephen Kitt Jul 31 '17 at 8:31