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Nvidia's VR Funhouse Is A Wacky Physics Showcase


I don’t say this lightly: Nvidia have created what is surely gaming’s most advanced simulation of blasting goo at a clown’s face. They’ve bunged their GameWorks fluid, hair, volumetric fire, and destruction physics simulation doodads into a fairground-themed minigame collection exclusive to HTC Vive to give us what is surely – and I don’t say this lightly – gaming’s greatest concentration of fancy but prohibitively expensive technology. But those blessed few who have both cybergoggles and a top-end Nvidia card, oh my friends you will be blasting clowns tonight all right.

Nvidia VR Funhouse [official site] is all the fun of the fair without the exorbitant prices. It’s free to download on Steam with no tickets, no entrance fee, and no £5 slushies.

With the Vive motion controllers, you get to shoot arrows at targets, blast crockery with guns, whack moles, punch moles, pop confetti-filled balloons with swords, blast goo at clowns’ faces, and so on. All with the fanciest particle sprays and physics PhysX can muster. It looks a bit of a lark, as virtual reality physics playgrounds go. See:

Touching things in VR is still slightly magical, discovering that they react as you’d expect, so having floppy hair and goopy goo that respond to movement seems great. Most of this PhysX stuff is fluff in games – barely used by any – but in VR it does seem more important. It’s not easy on the ole hardware, though.

A GeForce GTX 980Ti is the slowest card Nvidia recommend to run the VR Funhouse at its lowest settings. For the highest settings, they say you’ll want at least a 980Ti for the PhysX alone – backed up by another 980Ti at minimum. Goodness me!

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Alice O'Connor

News Editor

When not writing news, Alice may be found in the sea.

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