Nvidia Partially Open Sources GameWorks Library
Samuel Wan / 2 years ago
One of the biggest complaints about GameWorks is the closed source nature of the toolkit. Because of this black box like nature, developers and competitors have had a hard time optimizing games and hardware for it. With the release of GameWorks 3.1 though, Nvidia will be open sourcing parts of GameWorks which will be available on GitHub.
Right now PhysX, PhysX Clothing and PhysX destruction are already available on GitHub. Of the new additions to GameWorks, Volumetric Lighting will be added at GDC while the previously FaceWorks will join it as well. In the near future, HairWorks, WaveWorks and HBAO+ will also join the open source depository.
Even with these open source additions, there still remains parts of GameWorks that will remain closed source. These are VAXO, VXGI, Turf Effects, FlameWorks and PCSS among others. This means that developers are still limited somewhat unless they agree to Nvidia’s EULA and gain some private source access.
The biggest question about GameWorks though is its implementation. Developers have been lazy in optimizing GameWorks and leaving too much at default or maxed out settings. Open sourcing might not help if developers don’t take the time to tweak things. This should help AMD though who have been on of the most vocal critics. The biggest question is how quickly the open source will track new GameWorks releases, especially given how version 3.2 has no mention of GitHub releases on the roadmap.