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Archive for the ‘PhysX’ tag

GDC 2012: PhysX and APEX will make it to Unreal Engine 4

with 2 comments

Ever since the existence of Unreal Engine 4, next-generation game development platfrom from Epic Games, was revealed, one question was bothering us – will it still rely on PhysX SDK integration for physics sumulation, like UE3 and UDK?

And it seems the answer is “Yes”.

During presentation of PhysX and APEX features, that NVIDIA employee was giving to Gametrailers at GDC 2012, following words were said:

So here we are showing some of our technologies that are already incorporated in the games and game engines.

In this case all three of these demos are in Unreal Engine.. we are integrated in both Unreal 3 and upcoming Unreal 4.

Written by Zogrim

March 9th, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Posted in Engines and Wrappers

Tagged with , , , ,

NVIDIA APEX 1.1 is available, GPU Rigid Bodies feature included

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NVIDIA has released APEX SDK 1.1 (Build 112), next version of NVIDIA APEX – scalable dynamics framework, oriented on complex physical simulations.

Update: APEX 1.2 is available

In comparison to APEX 1.0 Beta, new version includes many bugfixes, several additions to underlying framework and various new features, like ability to calculate rigid body physics on GPU.

APEX 1.1 contains only Destruction and Clothing modules, and is still based on PhysX SDK 2.8.4.6 – first version with PhysX 3 support is going to be APEX 1.2 (that is supposed to be released in a few months).

We must also note that APEX 1.1 requires corresponding authoring tools – PhysXLab 1.1 and 2.71 DCC plug-ins.

NVIDIA APEX SDK 1.1 is available for download at Developer Support Center.

If you are experiencing trouble with registration of PhysX Developer account, please refer to our registration guide.

Release Notes:

APEX DESTRUCTION 1.1

New Features

  • GPU Rigid Bodies: the NxModuleDestructible has settings to enable calculation of Rigid Body physics on GPU.

Highly anticipated feature. While using same assets and same settings, GPU Rigid Bodies are showing significantly higher performance – 70 fps for 5000+ rigid body chunks on single GTX 580 vs 10 fps on Core i7 2600K.

One-way interaction with dynamic CPU actors is also supported (via transfer of momentum). GPU accelerated rigid body physics requires NVIDIA driver 270.81 or later, PhysX 2.8.4 RC6 or later and a CUDA capable GPU.

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Written by Zogrim

February 15th, 2012 at 1:24 am

Posted in PhysX SDK, PhysX Tools

Tagged with , , , ,

Getting GPU PhysX effects into games: interview with NVIDIA Content Team

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Certainly, many of you will agree that the addition of GPU PhysX effects to PC games has a positive influence on overall gaming experience and immersion in such titles. But how difficult is to attach hardware accelerated physics effects to a game?

Today, with the help of David Schoemehl, Manager of GPU PhysX Content in NVIDIA, and Johnny Costello, Technical Artist, we will try to give you a brief “behind the scenes” view on the process of enhancing games with extra PhysX content.

PhysXInfo.com: Hi, Johnny and David. Can you please introduce yourself?

Johnny Costello: My name is Johnny Costello, I’m 29 years old and am a native to the Midwestern United States. I went to college at Savannah College of Art and Design and received my B.F.A. in game development. I have been a technical artist at NVIDIA for about two and a half years. During that time I have worked on several GPU PhysX titles such as Batman: Arkham Asylum, Batman: Arkham City, Mafia II, Dark Void, and Alice: Madness Returns.

David Schoemehl: My name is David Schoemehl, I joined AGEIA in 2006 as an applications engineer and was the project manager on Warmonger. Since the purchase of AGEIA by NVIDIA in 2008 I have led or supported several shipping GPU PhysX titles and demos including Batman: Arkham Asylum, The Samaritan Demo, Sacred 2, The Great Kulu Demo, and Alice: Madness Returns.

My current title is Manager of GPU PhysX Content and I am responsible for aligning NVIDIA’s engineers and artists to support developers on GPU PhysX engagements. I also work closely with Epic Games to ensure a solid integration of GPU PhysX/APEX features in UE3.

PhysXInfo.com: Johnny, what is your task as a PhysX technical artist?

Johnny Costello: My tasks can change a lot from day to day, but usually I’m working on a game title in some capacity. Our goal at NVIDIA is to provide the tools that developers need in order to add great GPU features to their games. So I spend much of my time working with developers to help guide them as they use our technology to create exciting content.

Depending on the structure of a particular engagement I may also work alongside the developer to create GPU PhysX content. Then there are other days where I help design and review our tools and production workflows.

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Written by Zogrim

February 10th, 2012 at 12:02 pm

PhysX 2011: Year in Review

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It is time to summarize what PhysX Technology has achieved in year 2011, recall the most memorable events and releases.

. GAMES

GPU physics acceleration still can not gain enough momentum – only two games with support for GPU PhysX effects were released this year, this is the lowest result since Ageia was aquired.

One may call this an agony, but NVIDIA has told us that it was “conscious decision” – time was taken to develop and improve underlaying technology (PhysX SDK, APEX, DCC tools), thus sacrificing ability to create content and  integrate it into many games.

It was promised that we will see “more GPU PhysX games next year than you did this year” and even “a lot more in 2013″.

Meanwhile, both GPU PhysX titles released this year were pretty interesting by themselves:

PhysX SDK as physics engine is still widely adopted by developers – over 45 PC console and games were released this year, according to our database.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zogrim

December 30th, 2011 at 10:10 pm

Posted in Articles, Reviews

Tagged with ,

Comparison PhysX screenshots for Batman: Arkham City

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We have added a set of comparison PhysX screenshots for Batman: Arkham City, which in pair with previously released comparison video are completing our GPU PhysX Profile for this title.

You can view comparison screenshots, video and additional info at Batman: Arkham City – GPU PhysX Profile page.

Written by Zogrim

December 18th, 2011 at 7:32 pm

Posted in PhysX Games

Tagged with , , ,

GPU PhysX in Batman: Arkham City

with 16 comments

Batman: Arkham City, sequel to award winning Arkham Asylum title and second GPU PhysX game this year, has finally hit the shelves worldwide.

Update: Batman: Arkham City – GPU PhysX Profile

As usually, we are proud to present you our PhysX review and comparison video, showcasing extra physical effects that can be found in PC version of the game.

Can't view the video ? Watch alternative variant on Vimeo

Some technical details, like difference between PhysX settings, were already revealed in our preview article, so let’s give a score to different aspects of GPU PhysX implementation and compare them to previous Batman: Arkham Asulum title:

QUALITY 8/10

All effects are done accurately, with diligence – you will not see jerky or buggy behaviour (within physics engine limitations, of course), art is fine, almost everything is configured correctly. However, some particle effects could be done better – for example, it is not appealing to see when glass shards are jumping all over the place like they were made out of rubber.

QUANTITY 9/10

PhysX effects are scattered all over the game and accumulated in a places you will visit during main storyline (for example, you won’t see dynamic paper sheets on a random street).

Overall amount of extra physics content is similar to Arkham Asylum, but the components differ: you won’t see many “environmental” cloth objects, like all those banners and flags that can be teared appart with batarang, but in return APEX Clothing module is used extensively to simulate dynamic clothing on characters, including hoodies and coats on thugs, pants on russian twin-clowns, costume of Bruce Wayne, etc.

SPH smoke, steam and fog are rare in this game, but other particles (physical debris, shards, splinters, sparks) can be encountered much more frequently. All boss battles are enhanced with unique particle effects, for example.

As a good tradition, there is psychedelic level with lots of GPU Rigid Bodies. Looks gorgeous, actually, without PhysX effects this scene feels not nearly as vivid and spectacular.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zogrim

November 28th, 2011 at 4:36 pm

What to expect from GPU PhysX in Batman: Arkham City ?

without comments

Batman: Arkham City tests the patience of PC gamers with several release delays, but will try to wheedle them with DX 11 Graphics and PhysX Technology.

Update: GPU PhysX in Batman: Arkham City - review and comparison video.

Recent comparison trailer gave us a glimpse of extra physics effects, and now we want to provide you with some additional details on what to expect from GPU PhysX content. In addition, new comparison PhysX video was released as well.

As usually, it will be possible to adjust level of in-game physics via “Hardware Accelerated PhysX” option in game’s launcher. There will be three settings:

PhysX Off: all GPU accelerated effects are disabled, only standart CPU physics (like ragdolls) is used.

PhysX Normal: enables additional particles effects (debris, volumetric smoke and steam, etc) and destructible environments.

PhysX High: includes all effects enabled withing “Normal” settings as well as realtime cloth and clothing simulation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zogrim

November 18th, 2011 at 6:33 pm

Exclusive: NVIDIA talks present and future of PhysX Technology

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Almost four years has passed since NVIDIA aquired Ageia and presented their version of hardware accelerated PhysX Technology. However, anyone who is watching GPU PhysX progress closely can say, that so far it has not shown any significant advancement – but is the fight already lost or is it just taking time to harness up, but will ride fast?

We got a chance to chat with Tony Tamasi, Senior Vice President of Content & Technology in NVIDIA, Ashu Rege, Vice President of Content & Technology, and Rev Lebaredian, Director of Engineering, to clear up these questions, and recieve some insider information on future development plans for PhysX SDK and NVIDIA APEX toolset.

PhysXInfo.com: Over last years, amount of GPU PhysX games is actually decreasing. There were five games in 2009, three in 2010 and so far only one in 2011. How can you explain that?

Tony Tamasi: It was a choice on our part. We had a large amount of resources we could otherwise dedicate to content, but we needed to advance the core technology. We needed to get PhysX 3 done, and we needed to get APEX done to the degree where it is usable by game developers. We had to put a lot of resources there, which meant that some of those resources weren’t directly working on games.

But in the long term, game developers can actually use PhysX and APEX, and make use of the GPU without significant amounts of effort, so that a year or two years from now more games will come out using GPU physics.

Alice: Madness Returns - most recent GPU PhysX title

Rev Lebaredian: When we initially acquired Ageia, we made a big effort to move many games over to GPU PhysX. We learned a lot in that period of time: getting GPU physics into games, what are the problems, what works and what doesn’t. That gave us the opportunity to regroup, refocus, and figure out how to do it correctly.

We made a conscious decision. After we did a bunch of PhysX and APEX games in 2009 and early 2010, we said “Ok, we have learned enough, we need to sit down and focus on finishing APEX and changing it based on what we just learned, as well as PhysX 3”. Doing as many titles as we were doing before was just going to slow us down.

It made more sense to slow down the content pipeline but get the tools right, but that puts us in the position when once those are complete, it is actually less work for us to get PhysX in games.

This slowdown has not been because of any problems. It is something that we have decided to do.

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Written by Zogrim

October 20th, 2011 at 6:43 pm

Posted in Articles, Reviews, Other

Tagged with , ,

PhysX Comparison Trailer for Batman: Arkham City

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First trailer, showcasing supplementary GPU PhysX content for upcoming Batman: Arkham City title in comparison to normal “console” physics layer, was revealed today.

Update: PhysX in Batman: Arkham City article at GeForce.com

Some effects, like SPH smoke, cloth banners and “dynamic” paper, are familiar for us from previous Batman game, others, like intense particle effects, are promising new experience and immersion.

Slightly delayed PC version of Batman: Arkham City is set to be released at November 18, 2011.

Written by Zogrim

October 18th, 2011 at 11:33 pm

Posted in PhysX Games

Tagged with , ,

More details about PhysX support in Batman: Arkham City

with 3 comments

In a recent interview to PCGamesHardware.de, Ben Wyatt, technical director at Rocksteady Studios, has revealed some technical details about PhysX implementation and GPU PhysX support in upcoming Batman: Arkham City title.

Let’s overview disclosed facts briefly:

  • Batman Arkham City won’t use PhysX 3, but PhysX SDK 2.8.4 instead.
  • GPU PhysX content will be able to run on CPU, but with significant performance drop (typical GPU exclusive content type, we presume).
  • APEX Destruction (destructible objects and walls) and APEX Clothing (clothing simulation on characters, dynamic paper and leaves) modules will be utilized.

Since APEX Particles module was not mentioned, it seems that GPU accelerated particles (smoke, debris) will be based on default PhysXParticleSystem implementation (like in Alice: Madness Returns).

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zogrim

September 27th, 2011 at 12:43 am

Posted in PhysX Games

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