PhysX effects highlighted in Batman: Arkham Origins tech demo

By on September 16, 2013, 2:00 PM

Last month it was revealed that Nvidia would offer Batman: Arkham Origins free with select GeForce graphics card purchases. We were told at the time the game would take advantage of a number of technologies including PhsyX effects and now we have some visuals to show off what gamers can expect come October 25.

In the tech demo embedded below, we can see Batman has an all-new cape that uses PhysX technology. The narrator notes how it makes him look much more realistic. Elsewhere we are shown how the environment is affected by PhysX-powered fog that reacts realistically to the motions of the characters in the scene.

As The Tech Report points out, however, the video isn’t a great representation of what we will see when rendering the game on our own machines. Even with the YouTube video running at 720p, the footage looks a bit washed out and the textures appear to be lacking. Video compression may or may not be the culprit here.

I’ll go out on a limb here and say that, while the fog and particle effects do look really neat, they often only serve as distractions when I’m playing a game. I prefer to have a clearer view of the world around me rather than have it masked by smoke or fog or some other environmental effect that takes away from me having the upper hand.

What says you? Do you like to play games with all of these environmental effects enabled or would you rather have those bits of eye candy disabled for higher overall FPS / a clearer view?




User Comments: 18

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cmbjive said:

I'll stare at environments for a few minutes, but after that I'm more concerned about gameplay. I really don't admire particle or other environmental effects.

JC713 JC713 said:

I think that fog will be more annoying than it is nice.

Guest said:

Either my eyes are not what they used to be, or I'm just getting old, but I don't see a difference between on and off. I think there was some extra fog in the "on" version? Doesn't seem like a big deal to me, I thought they brought some realistic physics, like Half Life 2 did. Frankly, for me gameplay is the big thing. Eye candy is great for trailers and the "wow" effect, but it's a bit... You know, who cares what chess figures are made of? Wood, marble, crystal, plutonium... Yeah they might look pretty, but once you start to play - it's absolutely no difference, unless the figures look too much alike and you can't tell one from another. Because the important thing of any game is... well, gameplay. Who cares how pretty your cards are, poker is poker. In adventure or exploration games, graphics to play a great role in creating atmosphere, drawing landscapes for you to discover, making an emotional impact that helps the story to unfold, just like in films. But in arcade games, I think, gameplay is more important.

1 person liked this | Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

I would prefer all the effects on. The more realistic it can be the more I am able to get sucked into the game. There's nothing worse than being really involved in a game when suddenly a really bad texture or lighting scheme hits you up side the head and steals the moment.

How much of this is new though? I know the cape physics were in arkham city and probably asylum as well.

Lionvibez said:

I play Batman AC and borderlands 2 and I do prefer it with Physx.

The changes are small but noticable. Granted there are alot of Physx titles where you don't notice much.

But the Batman title and Borderlands 2 currently are the best implemation of physx out.

Looking forward to play playing this also on my Hybrid system

Msi 7970 Ghz + EVGA 650 Superclocked

Puiu Puiu said:

Way too much smoke. only the cape is ok. nothing impressive.

Eddo22 said:

I usually disable screen effects and always disable motion blur. Batman look like a mixed bag with Physx on.

Geforcepat Geforcepat said:

Whoops! they got rid of games for windows but they forgot and left in physx.ah well long as there is a hack for amd+nvidia

Adhmuz Adhmuz, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Remember 10 years ago when the idea of fog was impressive? Well that was 10 years ago, and these days it take more than a free flowing cape (Barely) and fog that kinda bounces off of things? Looked more like it was just flowing through everything without resistance... like it has been for a long while. Nothing to be impressed about here. Too bad the idea of a unified physx engine isn't a bigger priority than a little fog and big sponsorships.

LNCPapa LNCPapa said:

I usually play my games with all effects up - and as far as I've seen Mirror's Edge has the best PhysX presentation. Like Ranger said I want as much immersion as I can get - even if it can make it more difficult to see. For instance, the headlights on Crysis 2... the stage would be different if you could just see through it.

1 person liked this | IAMTHESTIG said:

So... it makes it harder to see?

dennis777 dennis777 said:

When watching effects are good. when playing too much effects are a distraction.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

How much of this is new though? I know the cape physics were in arkham city and probably asylum as well.

Cape physics were in Asylum and it definitely helped me to become immersed in the game. I spent at least an extra hour just twirling Batman around the place, watching his cape flap around. The bonus? If his cape got damaged, the damage stuck with him the rest of the game. At the end I had a shredded and cut up cape.

Just Cause 2 water graphics with PhysX are also beyond compare.

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

I love the Rocksteady Batman series. I think I might go to the darkside for this. Let's see what the 9000 series can do first...

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

I play Batman AC and borderlands 2 and I do prefer it with Physx.

The changes are small but noticable. Granted there are alot of Physx titles where you don't notice much.

But the Batman title and Borderlands 2 currently are the best implemation of physx out.

Looking forward to play playing this also on my Hybrid system

Msi 7970 Ghz + EVGA 650 Superclocked

No doubt. And it's not like PhysX is all nVIDIA has to offer. It's just one of many that can choose to take advantage of or not. No one has a gun to your head. It would be nice if nVIDIA licensed it out though.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

It would be nice if nVIDIA licensed it out though.

It's been offered- at least to ATI- and turned down. Both ATI/AMD and Intel (I presume you didn't mean enabling PhysX on an Intel IGP *gulp*) planned wondrous things for HavokFX and OpenCL gaming instead.

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

While the environmental effects, particle effects etc. do indeed make a difference to gameplay, they can be a pain in the keester when overdone. Motion blur being my pet hate, I disable it whenever possible.

1 person liked this | St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

While the environmental effects, particle effects etc. do indeed make a difference to gameplay, they can be a pain in the keester when overdone. Motion blur being my pet hate, I disable it whenever possible.

Motion blur is in no way a PhysX feature nor exclusive. It comes from console games - they run at barely 30fps, so full-screen motion blur is added to hide the jittery motion. This then got added to PC games so the master race didn't miss out on any groundbreaking features....

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