Pitchford gushes on “crazy awesome physics simulations” in Borderlands 2 PC

Tuesday, 17th July 2012 14:36 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

During Develop, RPS sat down with Gearbox frontman Randy Pitchford to discuss Borderlands 2, where it was noted the physics of the moon where rather noticeable when running on PC, and when using the NVIDIA GTX 680, the world of Pandora pops, sparkles and buzzes electric.

According to Pitchford, Gearbox has a “custom version,” of the game it’s developed with NVIDIA so if you have one of the newer cards, “you can get crazy awesome physics simulations, cloth simulation, fluid dynamics, really cool stuff.”

“Mostly cosmetic but still rad to look at nonetheless,” said Pitchford. “And [playing the demo] I started looking at other things. I hadn’t looked at the full day/night cycle shading in that corner of that environment yet, so I was watching the moon turn.

“I actually created the physics for the way the planet works, and the planet has this elliptical orbit around its star. The habitable side of the planet actually faces against the star, so you don’t actually see the sun, ever. Meanwhile the moon has this sort of geo-synchronous position in the sky, so it’s always in the same spot in the sky. The moon has a crazy fast rotation, it takes about 20 minutes for it to spin. One side of the moon is a furnace, like a nuclear furnace, where it’s reacting and it’s super-hot, and it splashes a lot of extra light onto the planet. On the other side it’s very cold and dark, and so when the moon spins, when the hot reactive side warms up the atmosphere and it gets hot, it feels lighter outside.

“When you get the cold side it’s not dark, because you’re getting the ambient light from the nearby star, but it gets dim, with a sort of cold feeling, and you can also see these beautiful auroras in the sky. From that particular position I hadn’t actually looked at the light cycle from the moon spinning, and I was checking that out, so that’s what I was doing down there.”

However, those who can’t afford to drop $500 for the card need not worry: “everyone gets different value out of things,” in the game, said Pitchford.

“It doesn’t matter, the core loop is so good,” he said. “I like running and looking at rocks for twenty minutes because everything’s hand painted and I like looking at the brushwork, and the little details of thing.”

There’s a horribly shot video of the Borderlands 2 demo running with the NVIDIA GTX 680 through here. Sorry we can’t find one without the crowd running it’s mouth the entire time.

Game’s out in September.



  1. Dragonborn

    do these ( awesome physics ) work only on the gtx 680 ?
    or do they work on every Nvidia card but they run better on the gtx 680 ?

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Phoenixblight


    Better card means faster computations which means better physics. Its not going to make your game better but if you have the card it will make the subtle things better.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. OrbitMonkey

    Ah, so this is geek porn… Technisexual.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. roadkill

    @2 I think that what Dragonborn wants to know is the minimum requirements for these “awesome physics”. I also want to know them. I mean, I have 560Ti and even though it’s not a high-end videocard it’s not too bad either. It should work on my card as well. Right?

    #4 2 years ago
  5. mad1723

    I’m one of the lucky guys who owns a GTX680 and it’s nice little touch to have PhysX to add a few bells and whistles. If it kills the performance too much though, I’ll just disable as it is mostly visual. :)

    #5 2 years ago
  6. silkvg247

    Hopefully my 580 will handle this. :p

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Phoenixblight

    I assume it will be like most games with PHysX that the game will scale based on your card which you will still get just not to the same level as the 680.

    #7 2 years ago

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