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Archive for the ‘Interview’ tag

Mafia II: Developers Interview

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With Mafia 2 coming closer to it’s release, hype atmosphere is getting hotter, and apart from other materials you can find on the web, PC Games Hardware has published decent interview with Denby Grace from 2K Czech on several Mafia’s engine features, and PhysX part specifically:

PC Games Hardware: Are there any differences between the Console and the PC Version of Mafia 2 as far as technical as well as visual aspects are concerned, for example GPU accelerated PhysX effects?

Denby Grace: You hit the nail on the head. The biggest difference is the GPU enabled physics effects. While on a system without GPU (consoles and ATI cards), the game will have a great PhysX simulation with particles and cloth, however, if you have the extra hardware we are able to push things to a whole new level which has not yet been seen in open world game before.

Our destructible environments feature thousands of physical particles which in turn can be affected by individual explosion force fields to make them move. It’s all very impressive and it’s these kinds of improvements that high end PC gamers can expect.

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Written by Zogrim

July 23rd, 2010 at 10:00 am

AMD and Nvidia: controversy over physics

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Decent article called “AMD and NVIDIA butt heads over physics” emerges on Atomic MPC website yesterday.

Richard Huddy, AMD’s Worldwide Developer Relations Manager, Ashu Rege, Nvidia’s Senior Director of Content and Technology, and Nadeem Mohammad, Nvidia’s Director of Product Management and PhysX, are speaking out against physics engines support strategies of their rival companies. During discussion, Bullet physics SDK is opposed to PhysX SDK.

Apart from slight pro-AMD tone and some factial mistakes in engines descriptions, it’s interesting read. Conclusion we are complitely agreed with:

Whether or not Bullet takes off remains to be seen, but the next few years will certainly be an interesting challenge for both companies.

However, as we’ve already took a view at AMD and PhysX relationship history, future of that AMD-promoted GPU Bullet and it’s implementation in games (not Bullet SDK itself) isn’t looking so bright and clear for us.

Written by Zogrim

March 30th, 2010 at 10:54 am

Posted in Articles, Reviews

Tagged with , , , ,

Metro 2033: tech-interview by PC Games Hardware

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Recent articles about Metro 2033 have revealed so much technical details (about engine itself, and PhysX components specifically) so, one would think, nothing new can be added. However, recent interview with Chief Technical Officer Oles Shishkovstov by PCGamesHardware.com has something to offer:

PCGH: It could be read that your game offers an advanced physics simulation as well as a support for Nvidia’s PhysX (GPU calculated physics) can you tell us more details here? Does regular by CPU calculated physics affect visuals only or is it used for gameplay terms like enemies getting hit by shattered bits of blown-away walls and the like?

Oles Shishkovstov: Yes, the physics is tightly integrated into game-play. And your example applies as well.

PCGH: Besides PhysX support why did you decide to use Nvidia’s physics middleware instead of other physics libraries like Havok or ODE? What makes Nvidia’s SDK so suitable for your title?

Oles Shishkovstov: We’ve chosen the SDK back when it was Novodex SDK (that’s even before they became AGEIA). It was high performance and feature reach solution. Some of the reasons why we did this – they had a complete and customizable content pipeline back then, and it was important when you are writing a new engine by a relatively small team.

PCGH: What are the visual differences between physics calculated by CPU and GPU (via PhysX, OpenCL or even DX Compute)? Are there any features that players without an Nvidia card will miss? What technical features cannot be realized with the CPU as “physics calculator”?

Oles Shishkovstov: There are no visible differences as they both operate on ordinary IEEE floating point. The GPU only allows more compute heavy stuff to be simulated because they are an order of magnitude faster in data-parallel algorithms.

As for Metro2033 – the game always calculates rigid-body physics on CPU, but cloth physics, soft-body physics, fluid physics and particle physics on whatever the users have (multiple CPU cores or GPU). Users will be able to enable more compute-intensive stuff via in-game option regardless of what hardware they have.

Pay attention to last paragraph – Metro 2033 will feature true multi-core implementation of GPU PhysX content – feature that most PhysX titles are lacking currently ? We are curious to see if this will really work, and since game has already gone gold, we’ll learn that very soon.

Written by Zogrim

March 9th, 2010 at 1:35 pm

Metro 2033: 4A Engine specifications

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Eurogamer.net website has published some very interesting materials, related to upcoming Metro 2033 title.  Firstly, they revealed full specifications of proprietary technology behing Metro 2033, known as 4A Engine, which is called even by its developers “one of the most advanced engines on the planet”.

You can read full specs here, and we’ll quote only part related to engine physics system:

Physics System
Powered by nVidia PhysX technology, can utilise multiple CPU cores, AGEIA PhysX hardware, or nVidia GPU hardware.

* Tightly integrated into the content pipeline and the game itself, including physical materials on all surfaces, physically driven sound, physically driven animations
* Rigid body and multi-jointed constructions. Breakable fences, walls , sheds and other objects. Thousands of different physical entities simulated per frame.
* Cloth simulation, water physics (including cross-interactions)
* Destruction and fracturing, physically based puzzles
* Soft body physics on selected special game entities
* On hardware-accelerated PhysX platforms engine implements full physically correct behaviour of particles such as smoke, debris, etc.

For dessert – Metrospective, interview with 4A Games chief technical officer Oles Shishkovtsov about game engine optimizations and platform specific features.

Metro 2033 is coming out March 16 on PC and Xbox 360, PC version will include 3D Vision, DX 11 and GPU PhysX support.

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Written by Zogrim

February 20th, 2010 at 3:44 pm

Metro 2033: Story, Combat and Tech interview

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Gametrailers.com website has published exclusive video interview with Luis Gigliotti, Metro 2033 executive producer, which also includes new gameplay sequences.

First part give a glimpse on human survival in Moscow after nuclear strikes.

[not available]

In second part Luis describes new proprietary engine used to produce highly detailed post-apocalyptic world plus new innovative weapons.

[not available]

In addition to excellent graphics with DX11 support and intensive storyline, Metro 2033 will include GPU accelerated PhysX content. If you are interested in details about GPU PhysX support, please refer to our  inteview with 4A Games, focused on in-game physics.

Written by Zogrim

February 11th, 2010 at 12:31 pm

Posted in PhysX Games

Tagged with , ,

PhysX From Inside Out: RayFire Tool

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We are proud to announce our new line of articles, called “PhysX From Inside Out” – view on PhysX SDK from developer’s perspective, within the bounds of certain PhysX based applications.

Or first, pilot article, is dedicated to RayFire Tool – awesome destruction plug-in for 3ds Max. Mir Vadim, RayFire Tool sole developer, has answered some of our questions about  RayFire history and PhysX SDK role in plug-in development.

Read The Article - PhysX From Inside Out: RayFire Tool

P.S. I’ve counted on small interview firstly, but Mir Vadim has sended a huge post-mortem like material – must read for every RayFire user and admirer.

Thanks Mir ! :)

Written by Zogrim

February 8th, 2010 at 3:13 am

Metro 2033: Interview with 4A Games on physics.. and PhysX

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Lately, Metro 2033 is more and more often referred as starting title for new GF100 GPUs from Nvidia – due to it’s truly next-gen graphics engine, with DX 11 support and, of course, intensive usage of Physx SDK and hardware accelerated PhysX effects – aspect we are most interested in.

Yuriy Saschuk, 4A Games engine programmer, has joined us today to answer some questions about Metro 2033 in-game physics in general, and PhysX specifically.

PhysXInfo.com: How much physics is involved in gameplay ? Do players have ability to carry physical objects or drag corpses ?

Yuriy: Physics in Metro 2033 has more demonstrative, than gameplay affecting, nature. It’s supposed to enhance game, make it more diverse, realistic and exciting. But actual gameplay isn’t focused on physics.

You can’t carry or throw objects – we’ve decided that there is no need for this, but enemies (and player too) can receive damage as result of certain physical interactions.

PhysXInfo.com: Will Metro 2033 contain destructible objects, and in what quantity ?

Yuriy: Our engine supports destructible environments, and this component is used in the game.

PhysXInfo.com: Tell us a bit about hardware PhysX support in the game. Presence of appropriate Nvidia GPU will simply increase the fps numbers or add some exclusive effects ? Will GPU PhysX content have influence on gameplay ? Which advanced physics effects will be included ?

Yuriy: PhysX hardware acceleration capability of Nvidia GPUs will add performance in the first place. There are two physics modes in Metro 2033 – basic and so-called, “Advanced PhysX”, which will include both enhanced, more detailed effects from basic mode and some additional physics features. Advanced PhysX mode requires appropriate Nvidia GPU to run properly, meanwhile, it will not affect gameplay, just add some immersion.

Or engine support cloth and fluid simulation. By “fluid simulation” we imply various particles system, like lighter- and heavier-than-air gases, smoke, dust, debris from bullet hits, not only liquids.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zogrim

February 4th, 2010 at 11:46 pm

Nvidia in responce to AMD: PhysX is multi-threaded

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Earlier this month, AMD critized Nvidia again, this time on crippling PhysX multi-threaded capabilities.

“When they bought Ageia, they had a fairly respectable multicore implementation of PhysX. If you look at it now it basically runs predominantly on one, or at most, two cores. That’s pretty shabby! I wonder why Nvidia has done that?” said Richard Huddy, AMD worldwide developer relations manager, in an interview with Bit-tech.com

“It’s the same thing as Intel’s old compiler tricks that it used to do; Nvidia simply takes out all the multicore optimisations in PhysX. In fact, if coded well, the CPU can tackle most of the physics situations presented to it.”

Tomshardware asked Nvidia for its responce for such allegations, and here is an answer by Nadeem Mohammad, PhysX director of product management:

I have been a member of the PhysX team, first with AEGIA, and then with NVIDIA, and I can honestly say that since the merger with NVIDIA there have been no changes to the SDK code which purposely reduces the software performance of PhysX or its use of CPU multi-cores.

Our PhysX SDK API is designed such that thread control is done explicitly by the application developer, not by the SDK functions themselves. One of the best examples is 3DMarkVantage which can use 12 threads while running in software-only PhysX. This can easily be tested by anyone with a multi-core CPU system and a PhysX-capable GeForce GPU. This level of multi-core support and programming methodology has not changed since day one. And to anticipate another ridiculous claim, it would be nonsense to say we “tuned” PhysX multi-core support for this case.

PhysX is a cross platform solution. Our SDKs and tools are available for the Wii, PS3, Xbox 360, the PC and even the iPhone through one of our partners. We continue to invest substantial resources into improving PhysX support on ALL platforms–not just for those supporting GPU acceleration.

As is par for the course, this is yet another completely unsubstantiated accusation made by an employee of one of our competitors. I am writing here to address it directly and call it for what it is, completely false. NVIDIA PhysX fully supports multi-core CPUs and multithreaded applications, period. Our developer tools allow developers to design their use of PhysX in PC games to take full advantage of multi-core CPUs and to fully use the multithreaded capabilities.

Source: nTersect Blog

Written by Zogrim

January 21st, 2010 at 12:23 pm

Posted in Other

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Reminder: Nvidia interview at WJPF will start in one hour

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Interview with Nvidia about PhysX at WJPF news radio will start in one hour – at 1 PM CST.

Live stream is available at WJPF website (click “listen live” button at the right)

After the interview, Hi Tech Legion will provide more in-deph view into the PhysX technology.

Written by Zogrim

September 6th, 2009 at 9:01 pm

Posted in Articles, Reviews, Other

Tagged with ,

Interview with Nvidia about PhysX live on WJPF news radio

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According to High Tech Legion, WJPF news radio will be airing interview with Nvidia regarding PhysX technology at September 6, 2009, 1 PM CST (GMT-6).

Live stream will be accessible via WJPF website

Additionally, recorded interview will be available for HTL readers, along with some extra materials.

Source: Hi Tech Legion

Written by Zogrim

September 3rd, 2009 at 12:48 am

Posted in Articles, Reviews, Other

Tagged with ,

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