Top 5 Apps, Games and Devices of January 6th – 13th 2013: CES 2013, Asphalt 8, Tegra 4
CES 2013 came and went so fast that we couldn’t even feel that it was taking place… It was an event focused more on electronic devices, not necessarily tablets and phones and not necessarily Android devices. We did however get a decent share of gaming-related stuff and luckily Android was involved. We also heard info about a new game or two, plus new controllers and consoles. Let’s see what the goodies were in the first real working week of 2013.
ShaqDown is the kind of game you’re amazed exists and yet it does. You play as Shaquile O’Neal, the famous basketball player, who is now part of a post apocalyptic platformer with cool 2D graphics. The game goes for just 99 cents and it’s packed with action and mutant zombies. You can pull a free throw and there’s an anime vibe to this title, apparently. 3 stages are available to play and 3 bosses and you will earn Shaqra as you progress and unlock new game modes. All animations and graphics are created by Street Fighter artist Long Vo, so they’re top notch. All graphics are HD and the title has that feeling of loving to play that the 1990s games brought you through titles like Megaman, for example.
You can download ShaqDown from here.
While we were still arguing with people which is better, Asphalt 7 or NFS Most Wanted, here comes Gameloft, raising the bar again with Asphalt 8. The game was recently detailed through a developer diary. Such developer diaries kept us up to speed with the evolution of Modern Combat 4, so they’re very welcome. The game was previously leaked in a Gameloft 2013 lineup that hit the web by mistake. It’s actually called Asphalt 8 infinity and it brings more reflections and lighting effects, plus more detailed cars and better polygon count. Car physics are better and the overall feeling is realistic. New tracks and new cars are included and there’s even a special sewage tunnel level for acrobatic stunts. Two new campaign modes will also be added, plus something that devs call “console quality experience”. We’re rubbing our hands in anticipation!
A week ago we got word that the MOGA game controller for Android is finally available. The original MOGA game controller for Android was a hit when it was offered for free with the game Modern Combat 4, in a package that only involved a shipping fee. On the other hand, the MOGA Pro has more precise control and better accuracy and it’s a more professional version, as the name shows. It can integrate a tablet stand, USB charging cord and use rechargeable batteries. MOGA Pro has dual analog sticks, 4 action buttons, the famous D Pad, two shoulder buttons and shoulder triggers. It’s compatible with smartphones that have a width of up to 3.2 inches and comes with special software adapted for button mapping. The product goes on sale this Spring.
As if Android consoles weren’t already a big trend, Nvidia went ahead and announced its own pet project of this kind: Project Shield. The announcement came at CES 2013 and it involves a gaming console, that’s Nvidia’s latest progress in mobile gaming. It features 4K video streaming via HDMI, a Tegra 4 processor, plus a 5 inch 720p display with 294 ppi density. The console runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, supports Google Play Store and incorporates a 33 Wh battery, that should provide 5 to 10 hours of exquisite gaming. 24 hours of video playback in HD are also promised here. The console is able to stream games from a Windows PC with a GeForce GTX 650 or higher graphics card to a device over a WiFi network. The design reminds me strongly of an Xbox controller and the launch is supposed to go down in the second quarter of the year. Promising console, don’t you think?
The unveiling of the week goes to… Nvidia Tegra 4, the latest quad core CPU for mobile coming from Nvidia and shown at CES 2013. This next gen chip’s opportunities have recently been showcased through the demo of Dead Trigger 2, the follow-up to the very acclaimed and free for the most part FPS. Dead Triger 2 will have stunning graphics and unique Tegra 4 exclusives, like detailed lighting effects, plus a crazy polygon count and spectacular gameplay. The idea of a huge zombie hasn’t been exploited from back in the days when Resident Evil was cool. MadFinger Games are doing a hell of a job, as usual and we cross our fingers for Shadowgun 2 as well. Nvidia Tegra 4 offers a very appealing GPU with 72 cores, plus it relies on Cortex A15 architecture, so it’s the new wave of technology we’ve witnessing here.
It’s been a crazy week with CES 2013 and all, but what follows are weeks of leaks surrounding MWC 2013 and its cool gadgets. We’ll see HTC and Samsung making moves, Sony may have some stuff left to show us and the gaming surely doesn’t stop here. We’ve got to see more of Asphalt 8, we NEED a very good FPS to start the year with, maybe a new NOVA title? And how about yet another PC port, maybe a new Rockstar title or maybe NFS Porsche will make a comeback? All of that and more in the following weeks!