Ageia PhysX hits the market

Company announces availability of first physics processor, lists upcoming games lined up to use it.

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With the Game Developers Conference (GDC) under way in San Jose, Ageia Technologies has taken the opportunity to trumpet a series of developments regarding its PhysX processor.

First and foremost, as of today, the chip is now available in new systems from Alienware, Falcon Northwest, and Dell. Add-in boards featuring the physics processing unit (PPU) are expected to be widely available starting in May. Ageia has designed the chip to handle complex real-time calculations that will allow games to have more varied and impressive visual effects, from explosions that never blow up the same way twice to environments that react appropriately to the natural physics of force, speed, volume, pressure, and density.

Fancy hardware doesn't mean much without games to play on it, and Ageia also announced a bunch of PhysX-supporting titles across major genres today, including Ubisoft's tactical shooter Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter, Epic Games' multiplayer first-person shooter Unreal Tournament 2007, and Big Huge Games' real-time strategy Rise of Nations: Rise of Legends. Other titles in the works using the PhysX Accelerator include Sigil Games Online's massively multiplayer title Vanguard: Saga of Heroes, Black Element Software's space shooter Alpha Prime, and Metropolis Software's third-person action game Infernal.

Console gamers aren't left out in the cold, as Ageia PhysX technology will also be incorporated into Sony's PlayStation 3. The company today announced that the latest version of its PhysX software development kit will be made available to PS3 development teams at the end of the month.

Discussion

45 comments
rokkuman09
rokkuman09

Hey bigfish_ak.. I find it ironic that you say physX are useless.. Yet you support quad SLi, which is also just as useless. 1 8800GTX is better than quad SLI..

bigfish_ak
bigfish_ak

Who needs physX with dx10 and sli enabled video cards, seems like a waste of money to buy a physx processor, when there are physics already being incorporated into games that seem to be preforming well enough without a ppu. Anyone out there ever heard of HAVOC??? Save your $$$ and get quad sli. PhysX is going the way of the beta max>

f789790
f789790

Ageia's physic card is a failure so far. You can get the same results or better just getting a second graphics card. So far all the card can do is basic physics which add scarcely anything to be worth $266.80 or even $100 for me. To me it just sucks up more power that my computer does not need to be using.

mxpenguin
mxpenguin

WTF is an MMO gonna need a PPU for?

Lordmack
Lordmack

Well maybe that's why Vanguard will be delayed.

importeater22
importeater22

I bought a BFG PPU for $266.80 and free shipping

ChronomasterK
ChronomasterK

Actually, it was suggested (in a Reuters article) that the PPU could handle so many objects and calculations so effortlessly, that the video cards of our current generation can't keep up. That's saying something to it's longevity. Unfortunately, I can't find a cite on this. I'll keep looking and get back to this.

Jur-B90
Jur-B90

So it's gonna be compatible with UT 2K7 aye? Interesting...

makjak
makjak

there is a price for it. it starts at $300

Coillscath
Coillscath

To above poster- Well ****ing said. And to whoever thought this would increase latency... 'Ha.' That's all I have to say.

mach-stem
mach-stem

...This "piece of hardware" will be dedicated to physical attributes within a game. If you can't comprehend what this little marvel can do, just think of this: In present games like Half Life 2, you can shoot a can and it will "imprint" a hole within the can. This hardware will give you the opportunity to actually destroy the can to the point it may actually be true to real physics. It takes alot of computing power to push this concept, and this is what this little "piece of hardware" has the potential of doing. The code will need to be written specifically to use the hardware, essentially taking a very large load off the videocard and CPU. As is, they are your bottlenecks. This will potentially eliminate it. PEACE

decebal
decebal

The only difference is that PS3 puts it in their dev kit, making it more accessible for developers. MS doesn't so any game for 360 that has it, does so because the particular developer went and bought it themselves.

NeoJedi
NeoJedi

This sounds really cool... gonna check out video cards that handle it.

Xrules06
Xrules06

If it's more than $200 they can kiss my ass. What good are dual core CPU's than.

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

I am not very technically savvy when it comes to the internal workings of these cards, but couldn't things like this introduce a higher amount of latency to games ? Oh and to those people that think that it's a video card , it isn't ,all it does is solve math problems so the CPU doesn't have to.

Jerkov
Jerkov

wow, i wonder what new graphics chip will be coming out next week

Bloodforge
Bloodforge

Just so people know, the actual physX chip IS NOT IN THE PS3, the only thing the PS3 will have is the sofware for the physics stuff(like what HAVOK can do), not the chip.

GtheMVP
GtheMVP

I was hoping that the 360 would plop this in as well, should take the PS3 to crazy levels!!

zerokills9118
zerokills9118

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

mrhankeydinks
mrhankeydinks

I wonder if this means all pc gamers will have to buy one now, i mean i'm saving for a new processor and a Dx10 Vid Card when it comes out. Do i really need this?

mcgrawgamer
mcgrawgamer

Uh-Oh M$ this could be the ace up Sony's sleeve to make some extremely killer games. Everything I hav seen so far IMO graphically the 360 and PS3 are neck and neck. This could give sony the edge they were looking for. If developers are willing to take the time to polish games to that point for the already complicated console. Who knows what the future will bring....

Sonicgod
Sonicgod

With less and less PCI slots in motherboards and dual slot video cards who has room for one of these? I don't all my slots are full. And i have a 6 slot mother board. And PCI express is worhtless for all the parts like these so everybody can stop whineing about all these tiny time add on boards not being pci express the bandwith will never be used. PCi express sound cards are the most crazy request i have ever herd sound does not need that high end bandwith.

LOLO_BOND
LOLO_BOND

it din't say that the chip is un the ps3 it the new version of the software not the chip, "The company today announced that the latest version of its PhysX software development kit will be made available to PS3 development teams at the end of the month."

Mackilroy
Mackilroy

As an above poster said, Ageia's technology is used in the 360

BounceDK
BounceDK

It justs shows that PS3 will own the 360. What a surprise.. Not really.

evil_dracula
evil_dracula

I don't know that the gme support is really as bleak as it looks.. for a couple of reasons: - it's built into the Unreal Engine - so every game built on UE 3 will have support for it.. that's huge.. - with the list of devs they've got lined up I would imagine they'll have at least 5 or 6 decent titles by the end of the year (and 10 so-so).. really that's easily as good as new games that take advantage of a new nvidia/ati technology like shader 3.0 - since the PPU is programmable it's likely that it will have at least 2x the lifecycle of a graphics card (they can essentially program additional functionality right in) re: the $300 price tag.. that's *suggested* I'll bet these things sell at $249 online and then drop to $199.. compare that to the cost of an SLI setup. I saw the thing today at E3 and they have a game demo running (cell factor) it's completely insane.. I'm a believer! (I've switched 180 degrees since seeing it work)

madgamer2000
madgamer2000

to the above poster, thats crap. A dedicated processor is so much faster than the cpu, be it offloaded to the gpu like what ati and nividia are pushing for, or via this ppu board. My only gripe is the price. With so few games supporting it, there is no way I would pay 300$ for it. I have a hard time making my self pay much more than that for a videocard, and thats used for every game I play, as well as for video decoding acceleration, and just displaying what you see all the time. If this thing drops down around the 100-200$ range like a high end soundcard, then I can see it being more viable.

FourSwordsx4
FourSwordsx4

It's a gimmick. Any decent CPU is more than enough to do physics.

halopower67
halopower67

ok if u guys went to the website you would notice that this is not for how the graphics are but how the physics are, not how it looks but how it feels and the price for it is $299 and its in a PCI port not PCI-E port. im really looking forward to getting this in some months maybe when the board vendors like BFG and ASUS start selling it. oh and the wbsite for it is:http://physx.ageia.com/index.html

glowingsplint
glowingsplint

It is used on the x360 when you complete GRAW the Ageia physX engine is listed as one of the tools used.

csplayer089
csplayer089

this will reduce the load on the CPU, resulting in higher frames and better looking graphics quality

Orasion_Seiz
Orasion_Seiz

its just another pc upgrade, not much of a surprice.

frankeyser
frankeyser

i am tired of upgrading my pc... cant it just do it itself...

B-N
B-N

The PhysX is such a great piece of hardware for computers, but the estimated price is a bit high now. I think the website is http://www.ageia.com/.

jonnyjd
jonnyjd

Nice step for Sony in getting this chip to the PS3.

buildar
buildar

Horray for better physics. Better physics should be a staple of next gen games. This is good news. optimized physics for the ps3 is always a good thing

american_in_pt
american_in_pt

damn man...another thing to upgrade for my pc! :( I hope its worth it...

decebal
decebal

Old news for PS3. But nevertheless great news

Suffere
Suffere

Now wouldn't it be swell if there was actually a price for it.

Ace_The_Ace
Ace_The_Ace

This is one more thing to make graphics better in games.