Playing with Power: Hands-on with First Nvidia Tegra 4 Games

When Nvidia’s next-gen Tegra 4 processor begins shipping in Q2 2013, it should be one of the baddest chips on the planet. And with twice the firepower of the company’s Tegra 3 chip, the Tegra 4 could help bring mobile gaming to the next level. We spent some hands-on time with four new Android games optimized for the Tegra 4 here at Mobile World Congress 2013, and we were extremely impressed with their graphics quality.

“Blood Sword” is a hack-and-slash title that puts you in control of a warrior as he battles his way through hordes of monsters. There’s no real story beyond that, but then again, that’s not why Nvidia was showing this game off. The real reason it was on display was its impressive graphics. Character textures added details to character models, giving them a sense of depth. This was best illustrated via the large scales covering a group of reptilian monsters. Characters also cast dynamic shadows as they moved around the screen, while particle effects helped bring the game world to life.

In addition to “Blood Sword,” both “Real Boxing THD” and “RU Golf” provided excellent examples of what users can expect to see from the Tegra 4. In “Real Boxing THD” users play the roll of a boxer as he moves through the ranks fighting off opponents. Once again, the Tegra 4’s lighting and textures performances were top notch. As our boxer danced around the ring, ducking and weaving, the reflections from a series of overhead lighting features gleamed off of the character model’s sinewy arms and chest.

For “RU Golf,” the Tegra 4 provides a much needed boost in background detail. Light glistened off of a nearby pond at the game’s start screen and the sun’s rays created a glare in the screen’s upper right corner. “Burn Zombie Burn” gives players a look at the Tegra 4’s ability to handle multiple moving objects on the screen at once. At one point, we had at least 10 to 15 enemies on the screen, each trying to eat the player’s delicious brains.

Overall, the Tegra 4 provided each of the demos on display with the kind of power they need to run smoothly Unfortunately, we’ll still have to wait a bit longer to get our hands on a final production model running the chip.

Daniel P. Howley
Daniel P. Howley
A newspaper man at heart, Dan Howley wrote for Greater Media Newspapers before joining He also served as a news editor with ALM Media’s Law Technology News, and he holds a B.A. in English from The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.
Daniel P. Howley on
Twitter Google+
Email* (will not be published)
*Indicates required field
Submit Comments

All Product Types Accessories Cars Digital Camcorders Digital Cameras eReaders GPS Laptops MP3 & Video Players Projectors Smartphones Software Storage Tablets / MIDs VoIP Wi-Fi
All Subcategories
All Subcategories All-Purpose Budget Business Desktop Replacement Gaming Multimedia Netbook Nettop Rugged Student Tablet PCs Ultraportable
Acer Alienware Apple Archos ASUS Averatec BenQ CTL Corp. Dell Digital Storm eMachines Emtec Everex Fujitsu GammaTech Gateway General Dynamics Getac Gigabyte Hercules HP HTC iBuyPower Intel Lenovo MSI Nokia Nvidia OCZ OLPC OQO Origin Panasonic Sager Samsung Sony Sylvania Systemax TabletKiosk Toshiba Verizon Viewsonic Viliv VooDoo Workhorse PC ZT Systems
Minimum Rating
Any Rating 4.5 Stars 4.0 Stars 3.5 Stars 3.0 Stars
Screen Size
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 4 5 6 7 8 9
1024x576 1024x600 1024x768 1200X800 1280 x 720 1280x1024 1280x768 1280x800 1366x678 1366x768 1440x1050 1440x900 1600x768 1600x900 1680x1050 1680x945 1920x1080 1920x1200 800x400 800x480
Weight Range
10.1 - 12.0 pounds 12.1 - 14.0 pounds 14.1 - 16.0 pounds 2 lbs 2 pounds and under 2+ lbs 2.1 - 4.0 pounds 4.1 - 6.0 pounds 6.1 - 8.0 pounds 8.1 - 10.0 pounds Over 16 pounds Under 2 pounds
more options