I've got the 8086 basic instruction set pretty much figured but now the processor extensions and optimisation rules are looming and I'm wondering whether it's sensible to continue or whether it is leaving the scope of game programming.
I intend to be working in a windows environment and would like to be involved in the 3D graphics side of game development. How much of a future does assembly language have in computer games (I won't be finishing my degree till 2006) My main concern was the need to use the SSE2 extensions but that appears to be provided by C++ constructs with the Intel compiler. And, from what I've read, the Intel compiler can perform many optimisations which would be impractical for an assembly language programmer to imitate. I have also heard that if you feed the correct C code to a compiler it can produce code as good as that written by a good assembly programmer. Is this true?
I am hearing mixed views on the subject and wanted the views of somebody in the games industry. Is there still much call for assembler and will there continue to be in the future or are compilers getting so efficient now that it is becoming obsolete even for getting the high performance requirements of computer games? I am needing to know whether my time would be better spent on the many other areas of study required for game development.