Just as expected, AMD and Havok teamed up to show GPU-accelerated gaming physics at the Game Developers Conference this week. The two firms have posted a press release to that effect, saying their demonstrations included “the first OpenCL supported execution of Havok Cloth™.”
What’s Havok Cloth? Pretty much what you’d expect: a runtime and toolset that lets developers add physically simulated cloth to their games. The official videos on this page show the technology applied to a dress, close-fitting pants and a shirt, a ponytail, a cape, and a variety of other cloth-like materials.
Of course, since Havok is using OpenCL, it doesn’t seem to be strictly targeting AMD graphics processors. The announcement states plainly, “Havok will enable game developers to offer improved performance and interactivity across a broad range of OpenCL capable PCs.” In case you missed the memo, both AMD and Nvidia plan to offer early OpenCL driver support in the first half of this year. That means Havok could also run on GeForce GPUs and compete head-to-head with Nvidia’s PhysX.