AMD introduces TressFX with new Lara Croft
While NVIDIA's PhysX technology adds a unique visual flair to environments in games, Borderlands 2 being a very key recent example, sometimes just looking at water and explosions isn't enough. For most third person games we look at the character all the time, and while body movement has improved significantly thanks to motion capture, hair is something that always feels static.
So AMD introduced TressFX which is literally their hair physics system, and what better game to introduce this feature with than the new Tomb Raider. Lara Croft will be on screen for the entire length of the campaign, and as much as voice and body movements are realistic, having proper hair physics will add a further layer of immersion.
"Through painstaking collaboration between software developers at AMD and Crystal Dynamics, Tomb Raider proudly features the world’s first real-time hair rendering technology in a playable game: TressFX Hair," wrote AMD in their blog. "This physics system treats each strand of hair as a chain with dozens of links, permitting for forces like gravity, wind and movement of the head to move and curl Lara’s hair in a realistic fashion."
Obviously the TressFX system was possible due to the DirectCompute power afforded by AMD's Graphics Core Next (GCN) powered architecture, which means that all AMD HD 7000 series cards will be able to use TressFX on the new Tomb Raider. And for those who're plannig to buy a new AMD card, now would be a great time as AMD's Never Settle Reloaded promo gives a code for both Bioshock: Infinite and Tomb Raider with the purchase of every Radeon HD 7800 series card.