The Nvidia Shield falls short of being a game changer
With the Shield, Nvidia aims to deliver a powerful gaming handheld centered around the Android ecosystem and the ability to stream PC games locally onto a mobile device. It’s an ambitious endeavor, but is the Shield able to achieve those lofty goals?
Since the beginning of time, gaming and gamers have driven innovation in the PC realm. Seriously, there's probably a cave somewhere with scribblings from our caveman and cavewoman ancestors giving credit to primitive games for leading up to the invention of the circular wheel. It should come as no surprise, then, that several notebook players are seeing their gaming laptop business grow even though the overall PC market is in a slump.
If you have the money and patience to wait until this holiday shopping season, you can score Sony's upcoming PlayStation 4 (PS4) console and rock some next-generation gaming into 2014 and beyond. Alternately, you could spend half as much on Sony's new flash-based 12GB PlayStation 3 (PS3) Slim system. Sony isn't making a big fuss over its low(er) cost console option, though it's not difficult to find.
The next chapter in Lovecraftian horror arrives this September
Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs, the follow-up to the horrifying Amnesia: The Dark Descent, will be slithering its way to a September 10th release date. The porcine machination, via PC Gamer, will be releasing on both Steam and GOG for interested parties for $20, but if you decide to take the plunge early, you can pick it up for 20% off the price, relishing in some expertly-paced horror for only $15.99.
Pro+ model offers 3D directional audio, removable microphone, and more
Last week Mad Catz introduced the Kunai PC headset, aimed at gamers on a budget. Now, Mad Catz is shipping the Tritton Pro+ headset, a considerably less value-priced model for users who want to give their gaming time a little more oomph.
You don't see a ton of gaming keypad releases, at least not at the same clip of full-size gaming keyboards. If you're a fan of such devices, you'll be delighted to learn that Razer just launched a successor to its Nostromo keypad with improved ergonomics and more features. It's the Razer Tartarus, a membrane gaming keypad heavily focused on comfort and customization options.
System builder CyberPowerPC just announced its new Zeus Hercules gaming laptop with Haswell inside. You might think that such a name would be reserved for a high-powered notebook with dual GPUs, but in this instance, the Zeus Hercules leans on integrated graphics to push pixels around its 14-inch display. Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200, to be exact, which Intel claims offers up to twice the 3D performance of today's fastest mobile Intel HD Graphics solutions.
Give Microsoft credit for recovering from its early bumbles related to its upcoming Xbox One console. In the beginning, Microsoft ticked off quite a few gamers by letting it be known that consoles would need to dial up the mothership every 24 hours, and the whole used games fiasco was a disaster in and of itself. A few policy changes later, Microsoft is back on track winning favor among gamers, and it's pretty cool that the company is offering up things like today's unboxing video.
There's no doubt that tablet PCs and smartphones are taking their toll on the desktop and notebook markets. Your Aunt Mabel doesn't need a tower system to use Facebook, and even little Billy is infatuated with touchscreen devices like the iPad. But there's one group that hasn't been swayed by the handheld mobile movement: PC gamers. Jon Peddie Research (JPR) likens this group to motorcycle and sports car enthusiasts, noting that they're always looking for more speed, power, utility, and handling.
Gaming peripheral maker SteelSeries has teamed up with Valve, developer of Dota 2 and creator of The International Tournament, to announce the "Siberia v2 Illuminated Gaming Headset Dota 2 Special Edition" and two new SteelSeries QcK+ mousepads featuring artwork from the game. Starting with the headset, gamers will receive an exclusive in-game item, Scythe of Vyse for Nature's Prophet.