project shield -

Forget about the next Xbox and PlayStation, the next generation of gaming devices will be here in Q2 2013 from Nvidia.

Project SHIELD is a TEGRA 4-powered handheld gaming device with a high definition touch screen and game controller capable of playing Android titles accessed on Google Play and streaming PC titles.

Android launch titles for Project SHIELD will include Arma Tactics, Blood Sword, Burn Zombie Burn, Dead Trigger 2, Real Boxing, Rochard, and more.

"Project SHIELD was created by Nvidia engineers who love to game and imagined a new way to play," said Jen-Hsun Huang, co-founder and chief executive officer at Nvidia. "We were inspired by a vision that the rise of mobile and cloud technologies will free us from our boxes, letting us game anywhere, on any screen. We imagined a device that would do for games what the iPod and Kindle have done for music and books, letting us play in a cool new way. We hope other gamers love SHIELD as much as we do."

Tegra 4 at its Heart
At the core of Project SHIELD is the new Nvidia Tegra 4, which features a custom 72-core GeForce GPU and the first quad-core application of ARM's most advanced CPU core, the Cortex-A15. We're promised six times the GPU horsepower of Tegra 3. These, combined with its battery-saver core and energy-saving PRISM 2 technology, promise to deliver hours of gameplay on a single charge.

Windows and Android Games
Windows and Android are the world's most successful computing platforms, with massive ecosystems of system and software developers. While not specifically designed for gaming, both open platforms have drawn gamers by the millions. Project SHIELD is designed to allow them to enjoy Android and Windows games in a new, exciting way.

Project SHIELD can instantly download Android games, including Android-optimized titles available on Nvidia's TegraZone game store, which has already delivered more than 6 million downloads to gamers. It can also be used as a wireless game receiver to a nearby PC equipped with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 GPU or higher.

Console-Grade Controller
Project SHIELD's ergonomic controller was built for the gamer who wants ultimate control and precision.

Retinal Gaming Display
Integrated 5-inch, 1280x720 HD retinal multitouch display, with 294 dpi. Plus, Tegra 4 with Direct Touch technology gives it touch responsiveness that is a more consistent, accurate and smooth-flowing touch input experience than a standard touch device.

Tuned Port, Bass Reflex Portable Speaker System
Deep, rich audio is critical for a great gaming experience. And Project SHIELD provides fidelity and dynamic range never before available on a portable device, through its custom, bass reflex, tuned port audio system - with twice the low-frequency output of high-end laptops.

Mark Rein, vice president and co-founder of Epic Games, said: "With Project SHIELD, Nvidia brings an uncompromising, high-performance console experience to mobile devices. Amazing games including Real Boxing and Hawken, which utilize the latest Unreal Engine technology, look fantastic on Project SHIELD. This is just the beginning, and we're truly excited to see what more Unreal Engine developers will do with so much horsepower in such a compact gaming device."

VideoGamer.com Analysis

We weren't expecting this, and it's certainly exciting to see new hardware on the horizon, but Android gaming devices have tried and failed before. A tempting launch price and developer support will be vital if Nvidia is to have any chance of succeeding with the device.

Tegra 4, however, sounds like a beefy upgrade of the already popular third iteration of the chipset and should make its way into many a phone and tablet in the coming months.

Source: Press release

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pblive's Avatar

pblive@ Endless

It has to be an Nvidia card and, not only that, but a specific GPU as well. It's the only GPU to handle the video compression on the fly which is needed for the device.
Posted 17:35 on 08 January 2013
p0rtalthinker's Avatar

p0rtalthinker

It looks unconformable to play, but I like the idea of it. Especially the Steam Streaming part. Intrigued.
Posted 11:25 on 08 January 2013
Endless's Avatar

Endless@ FantasyMeister

It can do that, it also streams from Steam.

I'm actually more interested in this than anything Sony or Nintendo have to offer. Playing my Steam library on a handheld and easily and conveniently play those games on a big tv. Yes please.

I'd be interested to see if they allow streaming from AMD-powered PC's or if their ploy is to force people to by nVidia to utilise this device. Which if you ask me is a mistake, the software that streams ought to be GPU independent.

And it is quite possible, achievable and easy for a modern PC to have a game running in the background while browsing the web. My mid-range PC manages it no problems. And if it also combines the GPU and CPU of the Shield then it'll be even easier.
Posted 21:18 on 07 January 2013
FantasyMeister's Avatar

FantasyMeister

Try imagining playing one of these, you're going to be wanting to keep your hands still so you can view the screen, so your wrists could start locking up quite quickly.

So: Fail.

On the other hand if this was an actual handheld console that you could stream to from PC and stream back to TV, then it might have its uses if you ripped the little screen off.
Posted 13:26 on 07 January 2013
Wido's Avatar

Wido

I don't see the point of this. Millions of people across the globe have iOS or Android phones anyway, and it's already been proven that mobile gaming is on the rise each year. I see this flopping right on its face.

Like BC said we have dedicated handheld devices such as the 3DS and Vita. Android is ok software, but it isn't ground breaking!
Posted 10:41 on 07 January 2013
BC_Animus's Avatar

BC_Animus

Not too impressed with the design of it, and to be honest I don't see the point. Gamers wanting a dedicated handheld would have a 3DS or Vita already, while others would already have a smartphone, or hell, a portable puppy and a deck or cards or something.

I really can't see how a dedicated handhelds running Android can do well in this market, even if it will play Windows games.

If they want to have even half a chance, what they need is to design a system aimed not at hardcore gamers, and not even at mainstream consumers, but rather one aimed towards homebrewers and tinkerers.

Throw in words like Linux and you will have the nerds eating out of your hands.
Posted 10:37 on 07 January 2013
Thel-Win-Man's Avatar

Thel-Win-Man

72-cores!? That's going to be a fair bit then, but if I think if they put it any higher than £2500, it'll scare quite a few people off.
Posted 10:30 on 07 January 2013
MJTH's Avatar

MJTH

That looks quite impractical. If anything the clam shell design will make the touch screen awkward to use. The streaming from a computer feature sounds interesting, but I don't see the practical use for the feature. It's not like the Wii U where you could just change the channel to watch something else whilst doing this. The computer itself would still be running the game even though it is streaming it to the shield controller, so it's not exactly freeing up use for others. And people can already play android Tegra games on Android phones with Tegra chips.
Posted 10:09 on 07 January 2013