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NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 980 Apollo 11 Lunar Landing Tech DemoNVIDIA has a rich history of developing in house tech demos to showcase each new major GPU they develop. Although they are not the only company to do so, ATI later AMD and MATROX did suit, NVIDIA's demos are the most memorable to enthusiasts and industry insiders.

Over the past decade we have had NALU the mermaid (remember her? years before the whole AMD TressFX/NVIDIA hairworks friendly competition), the elves Dawn and Dusk, a rocket powered sled and others.

For Maxwell, which NVIDIA claims is the most advanced GPU ever made, the firm felt they had to go one better over these previous 'trivial' demos which were mainly aimed at the 'male gamer market'. This time around,NVIDIA simulated and replicated the Apollo 11 moon landing using Unreal Engine 4, complete with authentic star field, textures, lighting and NASA radio chatter.

Lighting is the key term here, as one of the main purposes of the Apollo 11 demo is to showcase the new Voxel based lighting structure that GTX 980 and GTX 970 can use in supported games to support global illumination. For these hardware the VGLI solution is efficient, fast and as proven by the tech demo, accurate to the source material. And what source material is lighting heavy and well suited for a lighting tech demo? the controversial 'faked' moon landings.

Although NVIDIA demonstrated Apollo 11 tech demo at their global GAME24 launch and gamer event as well as regional editors days for the tech media, users and media could not try the demo for themselves, until now as NVIDIA has finally provided the demo for download.

We used Shadowplay to capture the demo, running on a rig powered with a i7-4790K CPU, MSI Z97 Gaming 7 motherboard and single reference NVIDIA GTX 980 graphics card to capture the demo, complete with performance statistics provided by MSI afterburner software. The demo really needs 2 cards to work optimally and is locked at 1080p. 4K users are out of luck, and no it does not work on other GPUs due to a hardware check.

Our 60 FPS video below shows the entire demo, complete with GPU utilization, frame rate and temperature overlay


Apollo 11 Lunar Landing for GTX 980/970 only can be downloaded here, as well as other NVIDIA tech demos.