Tools for digital hair, water, light shafts, and shadows
Most of us think of Nvidia as a hardware company. Video cards, tablets, and now a game console. But they've been doing a lot on the software side, working directly with developers in a program called GameWorks. This is a set of graphical tools that a developer can select from like a buffet, to fill in gaps in the game-creation process, or to accelerate it. Today, Ubisoft Kiev, the guys who worked on the PC ports of Far Cry 4 and Assassin's Creed Unity, gave some real-world examples of different GameWorks elements that they used to improve their visuals. Also along for the ride was free-to-play online shooter Warthunder, who makes liberal use of some interesting water effects.
And you thought the Halloween costumes you saw were good
October in the UK brings the cold and the rain, but thankfully this past weekend at the London MCM Comic Con expo, the cosplayers powered through the weather and showed up in full force, sporting some amazing costumes, ranging from the completely terrifying to the remarkably sweet and adorable. Outfits covered the gamut of everything in between games and comics.
Well now, this is unfortunate. After Ubisoft's despicable “always on” DRM made its not-so-triumphant return in Driver: San Francisco, the world's entire supply of vaguely sensible people was forced to ask: “Why?” Why keep forcing such an obviously reviled substance down PC gamers' throats? Why turn a deaf ear when gamers are having children for the sole purpose of teaching them to curse your name? Well, because it works, apparently.
This week, the five dollar frenzy continues with an influx of MMOs, RPGs, and – for some reason – Assassin’s Creed and GTA: Vice City. But whatever – we’re not complaining. The full list of additions is as follows:
Neverwinter Nights 2
Neverwinter Nights 2: Storm of Zehir
Assassin's Creed Director's Cut
Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures
Titan Quest Bundle
Drakensang: The Dark Eye
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
See anything you like? Of course you do. So, what’re ya boiyin’?
So is PC gaming hosed? That seems to be the case for games that a) are not massively multiplayer, b) don’t have “Sims” in the title, or c) aren’t played by your mom.
But it’s not really as dire as all that. Mass Effect actually made it to number 2, and Sins of a Solar Empire to number 9, on the current NPD PC sales charts.
Those numbers, however, don’t reflect where PC owners are really gettin’ their game on: with casual games. Remember when you would say you were a PC gamer and people would say, “Yeah, me too,” and you’d ask what they played, and they’d say, “Minesweeper and Solitaire.” And you’d chuckle. Good times!
The death-defying urban acrobatics of free running—seen recently on the
big screen in the Casino Royale remake, The Bourne Ultimatum, and Live
Free or Die Hard—are replicated to great effect in Assassin’s Creed, an
action-adventure console port that puts you in the nimble shoes of a
12th-century assassin. Light feet and tremendous upper-body strength,
rather than overwhelming firepower, are your greatest assets as you
scale walls and barrel across rooftops in one of the most refreshing
games we’ve played.