NVIDIA Project Shield: Portable Android/PC games

This week is the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and so far, the focus seems to be on new gaming platforms, even though they’re not necessarily from the places you might expect. First cab off the rank is – surprise! – NVIDIA, with the world’s first gaming portable for open platforms, Project SHIELD.

Project SHIELD

Project SHIELD

Jen-Hsun Huang, co-founder and chief executive officer at NVIDIA explains:

Project SHIELD was created by NVIDIA engineers who love to game and imagined a new way to play. 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.

On display at CES we have NVIDIA darling Hawken, which makes Meteor Entertainment very proud. Chief production officer Bill Wagner explains:

Coming from the openness of a PC platform, we love how accessible Project SHIELD is, and the flexibility it gives gamers everywhere. Project SHIELD gives us the cutting-edge ability to bring a huge free-to-play PC game like ‘Hawken’ to the handheld gaming audience.

Of course, Hawken uses the Unreal Engine, which makes Mark Rein at Epic Games rather pleased as well:

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.

ProjectSHIELD-top-open-controls ProjectSHIELD-top-closed_v2
Open, shut them.

What you’re looking at there is a pure Android device that “flawlessly” plays both Android and PC titles, designed to play any game on Google Play as well as streaming games from your PC (powered by GeForce GTX GPUs, of course), meaning your entire Steam library can also be accessed from the device via wireless.

Under the hood we have NVIDIA Tegra 4 doing the heavy lifting, the world’s fastest mobile processor. It’s using a custom 72-core GeForce GPU and ARM’s Cortex-A15 in its first quad-core application. There’s also battery-saving and energy-saving technology wrapped up as well, meaning you’ll get hours of gameplay from a single charge.

Early days for Project SHIELD, but we’re expecting to hear plenty more about this project in the coming months. No price or release date mentioned at this stage, so if you want to know the latest, head to http://shield.nvidia.com/ and sign up – or stay tuned to Player Attack.

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