Recently, there are more reasons to believe that modern mobile devices can match the performance of the previous generation of consoles with. A few weeks ago appeared on the market tablet Xiaomi MiPad with NVIDIA Tegra K1, which theoretically can offer even more powerful GPU, than the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. But does it work in practice? Most recently appeared on the market tablet preloaded with NVIDIA Shield game Trine 2 from Frozenbyte – modern design, which is a portable version looks very attractive and close to the existing versions for consoles and PC. Eurogamer staff decided to check it.
According to them, Android-version of the game is slightly inferior to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, but it is minimal, and in some respects is indistinguishable or even exceeds them. It seems that in front of us – a new stage in the development of mobile games. Developers from Frozenbyte confirm that tablet version has several differences from graphic versions for PS3 and Xbox 360.
According to them, Trine 2: Complete Story for Android/K1 can offer addition Goblin Menace, that never goes out on the Xbox 360 and PS3 because of the complexity of optimization demanding levels under limited capacity of the previous generation of consoles. Android-version of the game is not very different from the version for PC, PS4 and Wii U. For comparison: PS4 takes the game at 1080p at 60 frames / s (1080p/60), Wii U – 720p/30 and Android – 720p/30. Versions for Xbox 360 and PS3 are executed in mode 720p/30, but have some optimizations little lowering with a lack of resolution performance.
If we compare the games detail, compared to the version for PC developers have optimized the lighting a bit here and there to reduce the resolution of textures. In addition, the Android-version and not present on the console screen anti-aliasing FXAA. Nevertheless, Trine 2 for Android is a great qualitative step forward compared to mobile ports Half-Life 2 and Portal. Trine 2 proves that the latest mobile technologies can compete with consoles (at least this is true for some games).
comparison Trine 2 on the tablet NVIDIA Shield , Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3
Frozenbyte notes that previous mobile chips were not powerful enough, but the studio for a couple of years ago knew it was going to happen. NVIDIA contacted the team in the second half of 2013 and talked about plans to release a new Android-platform, so that the developers decided that it was time to try his hand on the market Android. Tegra K1 uses the same architecture as Kepler, as desktop accelerators NVIDIA, and supports all modern graphics API, so the task is somewhat simplified. As a basis for the Android-version options were taken Trine 2 for Mac OS X and Linux.
In general transfer to the chip under Android Tegra K1 took about 12 person-months of programmers Frozenbyte. The task was entrusted to three experts: one is porting a whole other – new means of entry, and the last – graphics optimizations. Just a few person-months spent on work of designers and quality control team.
result is quite good: Trine 2 for Tegra K1 not only meets, and in some places exceeds the console version for the past generation. There are also specific to the tablet NVIDIA Shield optimization. For example, the device can be connected to multiple controllers for local co-op, and when printed on the TV screen and the game does provide almost the same environment as on consoles. In Trine 2 for Xiaomi MiPad, for example, the latest features are missing, and the resolution changes to 1024×768 (quarter available on the tablet).
developers note that due to the demands of the game resources on early prototypes of devices NVIDIA important issue getting heat dissipation, but efficient passive cooling system will output the tablet Shield game in 720p/30 mode without any heating.
Performance Analysis Trine 2 on the tablet NVIDIA Shield compared with Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Android -version provides stable output mode 720p/30 , as well as the console. Fly in the ointment in the periodicity of the output frames: ideal for 30 to / from the game should visualize a new frame every 33 ms, and on Android -version contains the values ??of 16 ms, 33 ms and 50 ms, which is why the picture not so smooth
Frozenbyte believes that mobile chips are developing quickly, so if some of the earlier games consoles to appear on mobile devices after 4-6 years, but now the gap can be reduced to 1 – 2 years. The developers note that while the market is a little device with the ability level of K1, but with the advent of new productive solutions Trine 2 for sure and will move to other stations.
Meanwhile, Trine 2 is the exception to the rule: devices based on Tegra K1 is small, so the commercial sense in porting small. But it is worth noting that the graphics power of Tegra K1 twice as high as the chip A7 (iPhone 5S and the latest iPad), and Apple tends to double every year performance. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processors coming too soon compensates lag. Dissemination of such powerful devices give developers the ability to move their graphically rich games on iOS and Android, spurring consumer demand for new smartphones and tablets.
Although Trine 2 pedestal and does not take the most advanced graphic execution of the game, it is very much uses the power of mobile processors – and if this game feels good on mobile devices, many other modern game theory will also be able to work for them.