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Nvidia Releases "Creator Ready" RTX Drivers

Earlier this week, Nvidia rolled out a set of "creator ready" drivers that are compatible with consumer GPUs, but optimized for professional applications. This level of support is typically reserved for drivers that only work with pricey Quadro GPUs, but Nvidia says they've conducted "exhaustive multi-app testing" in programs like Adobe Premiere and After Effects. Support for this driver goes all the way back to Pascal cards, and extends to Nvidia's more affordable offerings like the GTX 1050 and the more recent 1660. Perhaps even more interestingly, Nvidia claims they've worked with a number of software vendors to leverage the raytracing and machine-learning muscle their RTX cards offer. Autodesk Arnold and Unreal Engine 4, for example, now support RTX accelerated rendering, and Redcine-X Pro seemingly uses Turing's updated video processing block to decode 8K video without taxing the CPU. Meanwhile, Lightroom uses "an extensively trained convolutional neural network to provide state-of-the-art image enhancing for RAW photographs." While I haven't tested Lightroom's new features myself, in my experience, neural networks can perform small miracles when processing images. Nvidia also claims the new driver features significant performance improvements in Photoshop, Premiere, Blender Cycles, and Cinema 4D.

"Creators are constantly faced with tight deadlines and depend on having the latest hardware and creative tools to complete their projects on time, without compromising quality," said Eric Bourque, senior software development manager at Autodesk. "We're excited that NVIDIA is introducing a Creator Ready Driver program because it will bring Arnold users an even higher level of support, helping them bring their creative visions to life faster and more efficiently." The first Creator Ready Driver is now available from NVIDIA.com or GeForce Experience. From GeForce Experience, you can switch between Game Ready and Creator Ready Drivers at any time by clicking the menu (three vertical dots in the top right corner). Creator Ready Drivers are supported for Turing-based GeForce RTX, GTX and TITAN GPUs, Volta-based TITAN V, Pascal-based GeForce GTX and TITAN GPUs, and all modern Quadro GPUs.

Discussion
Posted by alphaatlas March 22, 2019 8:57 AM (CDT)

CD Projekt Red Reiterates Plan to Release 2 Games by 2021

In post by an official CD PROJEKT Moderator on their forums, the company re-iterated its promise to "release a second AAA game by 2021." The Polish company started teasing Cyberpunk 2077 way back in 2012, and the game still doesn't have a release window, but just what else the company is working on remains a mystery. Its not clear if the studio has been secretly chipping away at this second project for some time, if its somehow derived from Cyberpunk 2077 or The Witcher (which could reduce development time), or if it's simply smaller-scope AAA release, but the developer hasn't divulged any details about it so far.

"As far as the strategy of the CD PROJEKT Capital Group for 2016-2021 is concerned, its plans to release the second AAA game by 2021 remain unchanged. We are currently focusing on the production and promotion of Cyberpunk, so we do not want to comment on further projects. Donata Poplawska"

Discussion
Posted by alphaatlas March 21, 2019 11:26 AM (CDT)

Epic Games Presents the "Chaos" Physics and Destruction System Demo

Epic Games has released footage of its new "Chaos" high-performance physics and destruction system real-time tech demo. The demo highlights some of the new destruction effects that are coming to Unreal Engine 4.23. This particular demo is set within the Robo Recall world and features a chase scene.

Revealed onstage during the "State of Unreal," Chaos is Unreal Engine's new high-performance physics and destruction system coming in early access to Unreal Engine 4.23. The real-time tech demo is set within the world of Robo Recall. With Chaos, users can achieve cinematic-quality visuals in real time in scenes with massive-scale levels of destruction, with unprecedented artist control over content creation. In addition to the initial feature set, Epic will release demo content for Chaos physics and destruction within the 4.23 window.

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 20, 2019 5:15 PM (CDT)

Epic Games Announces More Exclusives and Features

At its "State of Unreal" session at GDC 2019, Epic Games announced multiple new games coming to the Epic Games store. Some of the new exclusives include The Outer Worlds, Control, Industries of Titan, Beyond: Two Souls, Detroit: Become Human, Heavy Rain and many more titles. Humble Bundle has been chosen as a distribution partner for the Epic Games store which will allow it to sell Epic Games keys which will be redeemable on the Epic Games store. Epic will receive no revenue share from the sale of those games purchased through the Humble Store. Customers can link their Humble Store accounts to the Epic Games store for direct purchasing. Coming soon to early access in Unreal Engine 4.23 is Chaos; Unreal Engine's new high-performance physics and destruction system. Expect developers to create cinematic-quality visuals in real time with massive-scale levels of destruction. Epic Online Services provides a single SDK that works across any platform, game engine and store to help developers give their players a unified, cross-platform social experience. The library of tools include cloud storage, voice communications, matchmaking and more. Epic MegaGrants is a new $100,000,000 assistance fund for those people and companies doing outstanding work with Unreal Engine or enhancing open-source capabilities for the 3D graphics community. Ray tracing, Microsoft Hololens streaming support, Google Stadia support and more were discussed during the opening session.

"Our success is inextricably linked to developer success, and that ethos guides everything we do," said Sweeney. "From our free Online Services and Epic MegaGrants to new Unreal Engine features, our goal is to help developers, and to equip them to give players even better experiences."

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 20, 2019 3:24 PM (CDT)

Epic Games Denies Client Spying Accusations

This week, users on Reddit accused Epic Games of spying on their customers through the Epic Games Store software. Among other things, the thread accuses the Epic client of making a copy of Steam's localconfig.vdf, sending hardware information and a list of running processes to Epic, and generally accessing things it has no business accessing. This being Reddit, it quickly snowballed into a front-page post without much 3rd party verification, and much like he did after the previous scandals, Tim Sweeny has already posted a couple of official responses to the accusations. Before he did, I briefly investigated some of those claims last night, and found that the client does, in fact, dive into Steam's userdata folder for all local Steam accounts as well as periodically generate a list of running processes. Notably, it started doing all this before I touched anything in the client's interface beyond logging into my Epic account. But I didn't find much beyond that, and Sweeny's Reddit responses seem to offer plausible explanations for the suspicious behavior. For example, he claims that Epic scrapes Steam's "localconfig.vdf" file for the purpose of importing Steam friends without relying on their API, and nothing else. It shouldn't be doing this before I use the import feature, but the CEO said that the relatively frequent and premature scraping is a consequence of the feature's quick-and-dirty implementation, which they will soon rectify. Meanwhile, I (and a security expert I talked to) speculated that the list of running processes could be used for anti-cheat purposes, but Epic claims they actually use it for compatibility checking, and don't upload or share it with anyone. Naturally, all this controversy brought up the fact that the Tencent owns a 40% stake in Epic Games, and once again, they had to re-iterate that the Chinese media giant doesn't control the company, nor do they share any user data with them. None of this necessarily absolves Epic Games of any guilt, but I don't think they were caught "red handed" like some posts and news outlets would lead you to believe.

Tencent is a significant, but minority shareholder in Epic. I'm the controlling shareholder of Epic. I reckon that many of you here at /r/pcgaming don't much like me or my decisions, but the decisions Epic makes are ultimately my decisions, made here in North Carolina based on my beliefs as a game developer about what the game industry needs... That info may be stored in the Steam file, however we never parse it, and it's never sent to Epic. The only information that's sent to Epic are hashes of Steam friend ids, and only if you explicitly choose to import your Steam friends. We're working to update the implementation so that the Epic Games launcher only touches the Steam file at all if you choose to import friends.

Discussion
Posted by alphaatlas March 15, 2019 11:24 AM (CDT)

The Latest Battlefield V: Firestorm Reveal Trailer Details Battle Royale Mode

Electronic Arts has released the Battlefield V: Firestorm reveal trailer that details the game's new 64-player Battle Royale mode. It will feature a ring of fire that slowly creeps in to shrink the map, squad revives, artillery strikes, combat vehicles, high-reward objectives that offer the best loot, and the signature Battlefield V weapons and gun mechanics. The Battle Royale mode will be available to all Battlefield V players on March 25. Battlefield V is currently 50% off on Origin.

Firestorm is Battle Royale, Reimagined for Battlefield. Dominate on the largest Battlefield map ever with epic weapons and combat vehicles as a deadly ring of fire closes in. Scavenge, fight and survive to become the last squad standing. The fury of Firestorm will grow after launch, with new features and improvements coming to all Battlefield V players, including an initial introduction of a Duos mode in April as part of Chapter 3: Trial by Fire.

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 14, 2019 11:10 AM (CDT)

Marvel Uploads a New Avengers: Endgame Trailer

Following the big reveal in December last year, Marvel Studios just uploaded a fresh trailer for Avengers: Endgame. Needless to say, if you haven't watched the last Avengers films, you should probably hold off on watching this one, as gives a glimpse into the fallout from Avengers: Infinity War. Thanks to cageymaru for the tip. Check out the trailer below:

Whatever it takes. Watch the brand-new trailer for Marvel Studios' Avengers: Endgame. In theaters April 26.

Discussion
Posted by alphaatlas March 14, 2019 9:32 AM (CDT)

Ubisoft Releases Tom Clancy's The Division 2 Launch Trailers

Ubisoft has released the latest trailers for Tom Clancy's The Division 2 and the first video showcases many of the AMD optimizations in the game. From high resolution shadows to real-time reflections, the game is shaping up to be a graphical masterpiece. The second trailer showcases the developer's vision in recreating a real-life, post-pandemic Washington, DC within The Division 2. Ubisoft researchers explain in great detail why certain wildlife, monuments, locations, camps and more are present in the game. Tom Clancy's The Division 2 launches March 15th but Gold Edition purchasers are already playing as those versions feature 3-day early access privileges.

How do you recreate a city? The Division 2 takes place in a post-pandemic Washington, DC, and bringing it to life required in-depth research and dedication to getting the details right. Learn about how the team tackled iconic monuments, incorporated real-life disaster planning into their designs, and adapted the map to create a believeable post-pandemic city in these interviews with IP Researcher Cloe Hammoud and Lead Environmental Artist Chad Chatterton.

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 13, 2019 6:49 PM (CDT)

Uber Settles Driver Classification Lawsuit for $20 Million

Uber has agreed to pay $20 million to settle a lawsuit that stemmed from its classification of its drivers as independent contractors. By classifying its drivers as independent contractors, the ride-hailing service was able to avoid paying expenses and benefits associated with traditional employment. In 2016, Uber had agreed to pay $100 million to settle the case with 385,000 drivers in California and Massachusetts, but another judge threw that ruling out as the payout wasn't sufficient given the original class size. An appeals court ruled in favor of Uber and reduced the amount of affected drivers to 13,600. It determined that "Uber's mandatory arbitration agreements -- which obligate workers to settle their claims with the company one-on-one -- were largely valid and enforceable." The 13,600 drivers who qualified for the settlement either worked for Uber before the mandatory arbitration agreement was added or had opted to not agree to arbitration. Drivers will receive about $.37 per mile driven.

Uber said it had worked to make "the driver experience even better through improvements like in-app tipping, a redesigned driver app, and new rewards programs," according to an emailed statement from spokesman Matt Kallman. "We'll continue working hard to improve the quality, security and dignity of independent work."

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 13, 2019 1:46 PM (CDT)

Microsoft Reveals Project xCloud: a Vision for Game-Streaming

Microsoft has revealed Project xCloud: its vision of the future of game-streaming. As long as there is a client for the device, the service enables gamers to play the games that they want on the device that they want. Just like music where you have a choice to listen at home, on the commute to work, at work, or at a cafe; Project xCloud seeks to do the same for gaming. The only requirement is a good internet connection and the previously mentioned client, as the Microsoft Azure datacenters will take care of the heavy work of rendering and remotely streaming the exact game experience that the game's creators intended onto the gamer's device. Public trials start this year.

While our vision for the technology is complementary to the ways in which we use consoles today, Project xCloud will also open the world of Xbox to those who may not otherwise own traditional, dedicated gaming hardware. True console-quality gaming will become available on mobile devices, providing the 2 billion-plus gamers around the world a new gateway to previously console- and PC-exclusive content. We can achieve this vision with the global distribution of Microsoft's datacenters in 54 Azure regions and the advanced network technologies developed by the team at Microsoft Research. We're excited about our ability to deliver a best-in-class global streaming technology.

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 13, 2019 10:44 AM (CDT)

Shenmue III: Ryo and Master Trailer

Ys Net released the Shenmue III: Ryo and Master Trailer at MAGIC 2019. Shenmue III launches on August 27th for PlayStation 4 and PC.

The brainchild of award-winning game director, Yu Suzuki, Shenmue is commonly known as one of the most ambitious game projects in history, which captured the imagination of players from around the world. Shenmue established the open-world format for action RPG games. An awe-inspiring world with an immersive story, featuring cinematic sequences, a realistic fighting system, and entertaining mini-games, Shenmue garnered acclaim and adoration all over the world.

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 12, 2019 6:08 PM (CDT)

Classic World of Warcraft Content Progression Revealed

For many of us, World of Warcraft (WoW) was the first MMO that appealed to us. As the MMO aged, the classic content was ignored or altered to make it easier to attract new players to the game. After years of complaints, Blizzard Entertainment is bringing back Classic World of Warcraft and Community Manager Kaivax has detailed the 6 phase content patch release schedule. For example, progression in the MMO is based on newer raids superseding older content because more powerful items drop in the new raid. In the post, Blizzard details which raids will be available at the start of Classic WoW.

Currently, based on both your feedback and our own deliberations, we're now planning to increase it to six phases. Our focus is still primarily on player power-progression, but we're also aiming to capture what it felt like to play in a realm community in original WoW. To do that, we're planning to mirror the approach taken by original WoW, with patches paired together. We haven't yet determined exactly when phases 2-6 will occur, and PvP content is notably missing from the list above. That's because we're still evaluating our options regarding PvP rewards, as they also changed over time (both in power and in terms of which PvP reward items were available).

Discussion
Posted by cageymaru March 12, 2019 8:59 AM (CDT)