I do love a bit of PhysX support. Nvidia's proprietary technomagic is great for flappy tarpaulin, windswept cloaks and... other stuff, I guess. As demonstrated by a new effect-laden video, Assassin's Creed IV: Let's Pirate Like It's 1599 has been updated with PhysX support, ensuring the game will be filled with lovely, pointless, view-obscuring smoke effects.
If this was a movie, the end of this video would pull back to reveal a round-table of world leaders staring dumbfounded. Then, Nvidia's PhysX SDK Research Lead Matthias Müller-Fischer, would appear on their screen (possibly with a cat), point his omnipotent crosshair of ultimate destruction at Big Ben and start reading out the transfer details for his Swiss bank account.
Instead, it's a clever GDC tech demo experimenting with real-time dynamic fracturing. As yet, it's not a perfect physics simulation - those structures aren't collapsing under their own weight. That's something Müller-Fischer says should be working soon.
Digital Extremes isn't just working on naked space dinos. It's also busy with bringing us armored space cyborg ninjas in Warframe, its co-op third-person shooter showing up later this year. It hit open beta earlier this week, and Nvidia has shared a tech trailer showing off the slick PhysX effects owners of its cards can glimpse while cartwheeling off walls and stabbing things with nano-swords.
PhysX, Nvidia's fancy-pants physics engine, is due to be added into Planetside 2 at some point in the future. The middleware - often used to add pretty, if largely pointless, physics-based visual flourishes - was previously available in the MMO shooter's beta, but has since been greyed out in the options menu. Players using GeForce's latest 313.96 beta driver can, however, enable the effects right now with some light .ini file tweaking.