Nvidia Shield Portable – PS1 Emulation
Remember the recent PS1 bubble method from TheFlow? Despite this being a huge accomplishment we are leagues away from functional PS1 emulation. Using the default PS1 emulator hidden inside the Ps Vita, one would assume the compatibility would be exactly the same as TN-X. With that said, every PSN branded Eboot should work fine, but what about the games that aren’t on the PSN? How about the games that load to a black screens, or games that crash frequently?
The original PSP had better compatibility. You might ask “why”.
Popsloader, no matter how hard you try to run from it, or claim “it’s not needed”, it will be required for most self converted games. Four disk games are often combined to avoid crashes, but once you hit disk two, disk one is just wasting space, and disk four could be days away. This has always been my biggest problem with PS1 Eboots, I am sure you know each disk is around 700MB and you could do allot with that free space.
Instead of waiting for TN to resurface, or TheFlow to figure something out. I would like to take this opportunity to showcase what the Nvidia Shield Portable does best, Emulation. I am going to focus mainly on PS1 Emulation, via ePSXe.
If you weren’t aware, the Nvidia Shield Portable is a Android Gaming device with integrated controller support. This Tegra 4 device is sure to outperform any smart phone including the Xperia.
Why choose the Nvidia Shield Portable as your mobile PS1? Well the controls are amazing if you value full analog sticks (Triggers Too!), and games do not need to be converted into Eboots. However there is one major advantage the Nvidia Shield has over ANY Sony product…
OpenGL! OpenGL is a GPU plugin designed to “smooth” out original PS1 textures for HD displays. It gives a “PS2-Like” clarity on player models. Before you say OpenGL is working on Xperia devices, notice how it’s running at 15FPS unless you overclock and skip frames (Then it STILL lags). OpenGL however doesn’t do much for pre-rendered backgrounds. This is the same reason the Final Fantasy IX Android remake still had pixelated backgrounds. They where down scaled so the PS1 wouldn’t die, anyway let’s compare some screen shots!
So what can be said about these screen shots? The images without OpenGL are still at a higher resolution than the Ps Vita displays, meaning it probably looks worse on your Vita. OpenGL in general is a beautiful thing via PC, it’s even better when you shrink your display down to 5 inches!
Performance – I only notice lag (40-50fps) for about one second during battle transitions and slightly when summoning Ifrit (Final Fantasy VIII). For the most part the slight hit in performance (if you can even call it that) is definitely worth the improved visuals.
I would love to hear feedback, do you own the Nvidia Shield Portable? How do you think OpenGL looks? Would you like more articles about the Nvidia Shield Portable?