Mobile Graphics Revolution: Unreal Engine 4 Running on Tegra K1

By Published June 26, 2014 at 3:38 pm

Unreal Engine 4 -- one of the premiere engines used for creating games -- has been making quite a splash in the gaming market, primarily due to demonstrations that show off its impressive potential. More recently, Epic unveiled an Unreal Engine demo using nVidia’s Tegra K1 mobile SOC, which hosts a 64-bit ARM CPU and Kepler-based GPU with 192 CUDA cores, 4 ROPs, and 8 texture units.

This demo included a number of notable features, to include high-quality textures, reflections, particle physics, quality lighting, and quality shadows. It also appeared that there was some form of anti-aliasing being done, but due to how YouTube compresses video, it is hard to tell if there really is AA. This is impressive because mobile has been largely ignored by many incumbent AAA developers and because of that, technologies like AA, HDR, tessellation, and particle physics are uncommon in mobile. There is no way that these demo graphics could be played at reasonable FPS in real time, although nVidia does correctly claim that the K1 is more powerful than the Xbox 360 and PS3. This demo does show off that the latest version of nVidia’s Tegra can run DX11, OpenGL 4.4, and the features included in them.

With Tegra K1 powering the next nVidia shield and likely to power more handheld devices in the future (tablets), mobile gaming visuals are improving drastically; devices now allow for an adequate mobile gaming experience from a visual standpoint, which wasn’t too possible in the past. It is promising to see nVidia and Epic collaborating with game companies in order to bring in new technology. I know I’m excited to be able to run games like CS:GO using OpenGL on a tablet, even if controls are almost unusable.

- Michael "The Bear" Kerns.

Michael Kerns

Michael Kerns first found us when GN's Editor-in-Chief was tirelessly answering questions on reddit pertaining to a new product launch, likely after the Editor had stayed up all night writing the news post. Michael offered a tired Editor reprieve, taking over the role of questions-answerer-extraordinaire when it was most needed. These days, Michael can be found pulling his mechanical keyboard collection apart and building Frankenstein's Monster-like monsters of keyboards. Michael wrote the vast majority of our mechanical keyboard dictionary and is an expert in keyboards.

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