A particle-based distinct element method and its grain-based method are used to generate and simulate a synthetic specimen calibrated to the rupture characteristics of an intact (non-jointed) low-porosity brittle rock deformed in direct shear. The simulations are compared to the laboratory-generated ruptures and used to investigate rupture at various normal stress magnitudes. The fracturing processes leading to shear rupture zone creation and the rupture mechanism are found to be normal stress dependent (progressing from tensile splitting to shear rupture) and show partial confirmation of rupture zone creation in nature and in experiments from other materials. The normal stress dependent change is found to be due to the orientation of the major principal stress and local stress concentrations internal to the synthetic specimens being deformed. The normal stress dependent rupture creation process results in a change to the rupture zone's geometry, shear stress versus horizontal displacement response, and thus ultimate strength.