It surely took longer than expected, but in the end Android gamers should be ecstatic to hear the Nvidia Shield is officially available for sale. Sadly, the stocks seem to be severely limited, so for now you can only hope to score one of these bad boys if you’ve put an early pre-order in. Otherwise, chances are you’ll be left waiting for 2 to 4 weeks.
Initially scheduled to cost $350, the handheld game console goes for just 300 bucks in a bundle that also contains a silver tag and two full games – Expendable: Rearmed and Sonic 4 Episode II THD. Enough to make it a smart buy? To be frank (and blunt), not really.
It’s not that the Shield is pricey. After all, it does pack a spanking new quad-core Tegra 4 CPU, 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of on-board storage, plus it runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and sports a decent 720p 5-inch screen.
The problem is the game support is, well, pretty terrible. There are only 127 so-called optimized titles, out of which I’m having a real hard time of picking a dozen that don’t look like your typical minimalistic, clunky Android games. And then there’s the issue of overheating. Plus, modest battery life.
Oh, and did I mention you should technically be able to stream PC games on the mobile console, but for now the feature is in Beta, so it’s not really fully functional? I rest my case.