AGEIA PhysX Launch - GDC Event Coverage
One of the most convincing arguments for using a discrete physics processor is the ability for developers to create new physics effects in the game which add both to the realism of the game, as well as improve overall gameplay. Here, characters find themselves in totally new scenarios with a vast array of new weapons and movement options that give the game much more depth and replay value.
The screenshots above reflect key physics features and functionality found in the upcoming title "Bet on Soldier". In these shots, we see some extremely detailed particle effects which involve fluids and flames. Smart particle calculations are applied to density, volume, and pressure to create new visual effects and also offer some unique gameplay options. For instance, fluid-based weapons can be used to attack an opponent hiding around corners as the stream can conform and make its way around the corner and damage those who are in the fluid's proximity.
Arguably the most visually impressive effect afforded by the discrete PPU is the ability for games to have fully destructible and interactive environments. Looking at the screenshots above for the upcoming games "Cellfactor" and "Hangar of Doom", we see cases where dozens of items can be manipulated all at once to create some stunning effects. Whether it be a tall rack falling over in the center of a warehouse which sends lethal debris towards your opponent or a breathtaking explosion complete with realistic smoke effects, the results of using a discrete PPU have the potential to be extremely impressive.
Industry Support -
With such dramatic effects and the visuals made possible by AGEIA's new PPU, it's no surprise to see that the company has captured the attention of some major players in the industry. Beyond the lengthy list of developers and game engine designers which have pledged support for AGEIA's platform, there is an impressive list of tool and middleware vendors which are aligning their efforts with the PPU. Overall, the combined efforts of these vendors have helped bring twenty new gaming titles to AGEIA's 2006 roadmap of PhysX-enriched games.