Posted by Chuck Corbin on May 15, 2013

NVIDIA’s Shield To Be Released In June

It’s pretty easy to say that 2013 could be considered the year for new consoles. From the PS4, to Microsoft’s next console, to the OUYA and the Steam Box, this year is absolutely jam-packed with new hardware releases, and that can lead to some hard choices. Should I get the cheap, $100 OUYA that got its start on Kickstarter? Or maybe I ought to go with Sony’s PS4, chock full of power? What if you’re looking for something that’s got a little bit of both, an open-source OS that allows for anybody to develop for it, while at the same time it still has the power to make any game look good? And for kicks, what if it was all in a mobile gaming device?

Enter NVIDIA and their handheld console, the Shield. The Shield contains a 5-inch 720p retinal multi-touch display, the Tegra 4 mobile processor, and 16 GB’s of internal flash storage with 2 GB’s worth of RAM. And what’s more, it comes with a variety of ports and other features, including a mini-HDMI port, Bluetooth 3.0, Micro-USB 2.0, GPS, as well as a 3.5 mm stereo headphone jack (for when you don’t want to disturb people on the train). Most importantly, however, it comes with 802.11n 2X2 MIMO Wi-Fi. Why is that important? That’s because the Shield has a special ability: it can use the GeForce GTX card in your computer to run games from your PC, and stream it directly to the Shield. To me, that’s probably the coolest feature, because quite honestly no matter how good a handheld console it, you can usually tell that it’s a step behind the current home consoles, and not only that, it’ll increase the size of the library by leaps and bounds as new Shield owners will be able to access their library of games!

It’s been announced by NVIDIA that the Shield will be released sometime next month, in June, which means it’ll be out just in time for the OUYA. The price is a bit steep, at $349, but I’ve got a feeling that if there are enough games for the Shield to stand alone from the PC, it might just be worth it. Right now the Shield has 5 exclusive games that will be available for it upon release: Broken Age, Costume Quest, Flyhunter: Origins, Skiing Fred, and Chuck’s Challenge. While admittedly the last 4 games seems kind of “meh” to me, Broken Age looks pretty damn interesting. It’s about a young boy and girl who happen to be leading parallel lives, where the girl is to be sacrificed to a terrible monster, only to rebel against her fate, while the boy is living on a spaceship and is being cared for by a “motherly” computer, and yet he wants to break free himself. All in all, it looks to be a pretty badass little system. You can pre-order from Newegg, GameStop, Micro Center, and Canada Computers starting on May 20th, though if you sign up here you can pre-order from NVIDIA today.

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