This isn’t a game review as such but does impact how future games may play out. A couple of months back i was looking around on the web and come across this article about the Ageia PhysX processor and was fascinated by it. What this thing is , is basicly a processor thats dedicated to handling physics. For a really good example of in game physics the best game i can think of is counter strike source.

When i first played counter strike source the first thing that jumped out and grabbed me was the physics of the game. To see a body slide down and slope or fall from a window ledge was truly amazing. The death sequences when a player died were equally as good and they could be completely random do to the physics in the game.

Now lets fast forward and imagine a game like counter strike and now imagine that game running with this new PhysX processor. I read a article on the net that basicly said if you took a top of the line pentium cpu and ran this demo of these boulders falling down a mountain you would get about 1000 boulders on screen before the frame rate would get bad from the cpu load of the physics. If you added the PhysX processor to that exact same demo you could display 50,000 boulders falling on screen all at once and have a silky smooth frame rates since the Physics load is not being sent to the CPU but instead is being sent to the dedicated PhysX processor.

I was on a forum not long ago where they were dealing with Falcon 4.0 Allied Force flight sim and this topic of this PhysX chip come up on the forum. Right of the bat the users of the forum wanted to know if it would support flight dynamics and if it did how much and where could they buy it lol. I have to agree with them that this chip in terms of what it can do and how much that could effect future games could be staggering. I think we may be in the dawn of a new age for video games with this chip.

Reading another article about the chip i see that future designs of the chip may be able to simulate things like hair movement and cloth. Where that could play a huge role is in character’s for games. For the first time you would have hair and cloth flow like it does in real life and not some animated sequence that plays over and over and gets old fast.

I don’t think this will be a flash in the pan either as in here today gone tomorrow. The fact they are including this chip on the PS3 means there will be millions sold. Whats good about that is when they port a game from the PS3 to the PC they will leave the PhysX code intact and if you have the PhysX card in your machine then you will have full support for the physics in game.

From looking at there web site at you can see they have several big game developers on board willing to support the PhysX chip in future games. Also while on the site check out their content section and then the demo section and download some of the videos of the chip in action. I think video games in whole are about to get a lot better in terms of realism and thats a good thing for all gamers.

The add in PCI card is supposed to be around $250 - $300 dollars U.S when it comes out sometime around Christmas of this year. The chip will have about 3 games at launch that will support it. What may happen and what i have seen talked about on the Internet is they may team up with Nvidia or Ati and have the PhysX chip put right onto future video cards. If that happens we will have to buy the chip on a new video card and that wont be cheap. If however this chip gets super popular then i can see it coming down in price a great deal for the PCI card.