Playing videogames is the top activity that consumers do on tablets. So Archos is releasing this awesome thin, light and very well prices $149 Archos Gamepad. It’s got a 7″ 1024×600 capacitive touch screen but more importantly for gaming, it’s got game controller buttons on each side of the screen. This device runs on the Rockchip RK3066 dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor with the quad-core Mali-400MP4 GPU. Thus gameplay support is quite decent, especially considering the $149 retail price of this device. Archos software engineers implement a very innovative mapping software layer solution on top of Android, to map the hardware controls to touch-screen input. Thus a large portion of existing touch-screen optimized games are thus very well playable like this. As a transition until all Android games become fully optimized for normal gamepad input. Not only as portable Android gameplayers come with buttons, but for the Android home consoles, HDMI sticks, Set-top-boxes, Google TV and more, all suggesting that Android is about to become by far the biggest video games platform in the world. In this video, I showcase one N64 emulator that I could find on the Google Play Store, though N64 and Dreamcast emulation is still a work in progress, as many more consumers start getting access to these types of Android gaming devices, hopefully it’ll encourage more game developers to improve emulators and new games support on the platform. There isn’t specifically need for game developers to specifically target the RK3066 and this device, since as I understand a lot of the hardware acceleration happens through standards based Open GL ES 2.0, but for sure as more gamers and developers start using these devices, the optimization level of gaming can reach perfection, or at least a very satisfactory and impressive level at that price.
Posted by– October 14, 2012