I've been around awhile, since the first days of 3D hardware. Back in '96 or so, our engine supported multiple vendor-specific APIs in addition to D3D IM - GLide (3dfx), CIF (ATI), Speedy (Rendition), even S3 had one, can't recall the name. It was tedious for our small company to support separate render backends for every vendor. I fear that a to-the-metal approach to the GPU interface will result in spotty support for new hardware, and possibly drive developers to the big engine houses as they give up on their own in-house engines. And this is supposed to make each game look unique?