Ageia PhysX PPU GDC 2006
By: Kurt Knudsen

Ageia showed off their PPU to selected members of the press on Tuesday with a hands-on preview of CellFactor. CellFactor shows off just how powerful the PPU is and what we can expect in games. We’ve seen basic demos of how the PPU works but nothing was as impressive as CellFactor. Anyone with any doubts about Ageia and their processor will be blown away by what it accomplishes.

CellFactor was developed in a little over two months and according to Ageia it only took the developers, Artificial Studios, about a week to implement the physics system. CellFactor looks very promising and definitely puts on a brilliant show. It offers some new and interesting concepts to FPS games and should be a blast when it’s out in May.

When asked about their thoughts of Havok or nVidia’s new physics announcement, the Ageia folks had no comment. For the nVidia physics to truly work you would need an SLI system. In other words, you would need to spend another $500 on a video card to get a watered down version of Ageia’s PPU.

Ageia also partnered with Alienware, Dell, and Falcon Northwest to sell the PPU’s before they hit the retail shelves. Right at this moment you can purchase a system with a PPU and enjoy the power before the rest of the market. BFG will also be developing the boards, which is what their ‘Future of Gaming’ was all about.

Ageia has done the impossible; they have released the next Voodoo 1. Since Epic has picked up on this technology it’s only a matter of time before we see a ton of games available that use the PPU to its fullest. Ageia plans on releasing the card in mid May from BFG and Asus; thankfully we’ll have Ghost Recon Advanced War Fighter around the same time.