Expanding the Mobile Gaming Experience at GDC 2014

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We are just performing a dry-run of ARM’s GDC demos and I thought it would be good to let everyone know what can be seen at the Moscone Centre between March 19th and 21st where ARM will be demonstrating how our technology is expanding the mobile gaming experience. 

As usual we will have the extremely popular ARM Wall covered in large screens showing the latest technology available on the market today.  The largest screen in the middle of the wall will be showing how our mid-range GPUs (the ARM® Mali™-450 based in an Amlogic STB) are able to render in-game UIs and complex game content smoothly at 4K resolutions at vsync – the same silicon is used effectively in mobile devices. As resolutions grow, developers will be able to improve the detail and visual experiences of their mobile games if they develop with 4K in mind.

To the right of the wall our engineers will be on hand to explain to developers the details and benefits of the ASTC texture compression standard which is now available in shipping devices.  Here you will be able to see the performance, visual and power benefits that have been achieved with this new Khronos-adopted format.

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Below the large screens we will have a line up of devices highlighting the diverse range of gaming equipment which ships with ARM processors, all of which are able to run high end content.  ARM technology is in over 95% of mobile devices and as smartphone and tablet shipments start to overtake that of PCs and consoles, ARM’s IP will be at the heart of the next generation of gaming.

  • The new Alcatel Idol X+ with a eight core CPU and quad core Mali-450 GPU will be running the latest content from Gameloft.
  • The recently announced Huawei P6S will be demonstrating how low end handsets are able to run the complex content that was previously only possible on last year’s high end phones.
  • The sell-out Hudl tablet will be demonstrating what is now possible on entry level tablets in the mass market.  This is equipped with a Rockchip RK3188 SoC which is built around a Quad Core Cortex A9 CPU and Quad Core ARM Mali 400 GPU.
  • We will also have two ARM Mali powered Android™ games consoles on show: the GameStick and the GamePop.
  • A Google Nexus 10 and Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 will be showing how the ARM-specific feature ‘Transaction Elimination’ is used to reduce bandwidth usage on the SoC thus saving more power.  Note, as resolutions grow we will see greater power savings.
  • There will also be a demonstration of “Compute Shaders”, a new feature that will be available next version of the OpenGL® ES API.

Visit the ARM Tools demo pod to see the latest version of the ARM DS-5™ Streamline™ toolset that gives developers the ability to visualise how both the CPU and GPU cores are loaded.  The Mali Graphics Debugger will also be on show, an invaluable tool that can be used to help optimize game content and find any potential areas that may need extra attention before release.

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Finally, many of our gaming ecosystem partners will be on the ARM Booth showing their latest solutions designed to help developers succeed in mobile gaming:

  • See the latest real-time global illumination products from Geomerics
  • Simplygon will be showing developers how to condition their assets for different platforms
  • Umbra have tools that improve occlusion culling to yield significant performance uplift
  • Ask Goo and PlayCanvas about their new WebGL/HTML5 development tools
  • Samsung Developers will be showing off their Chord multiplayer SDK
  • Havok Anarchy was announced at GDC 2013. See some of the content that has emerged over the last year and how their tools enable stunning 3D Games
  • Cocos 2D  will be demonstrating their new game engine which has been optimised for ARM platforms
  • PerfectWorld will be showing games created with their Echo-es game engine
  • Tencent will be able to show you some of the new features available from their Atomic game engine
  • Take a close look at the Genesis 3D demo available from Sohu

Our multiplayer gaming zone will be running again this year with a wide selection of competitive games from our partners which have been optimized for mobile using the resources on show at the tools demo pod. Discover the quality of graphics that is now achievable on mobile devices, then take part in the Sports Car Challenge to win a brand new ARM Mali-T628 GPU enabled Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition.


Finally, at the Smart Phone Summit (Monday and Tuesday) we will have a selection of demos on show in advance of the main show.  Here you will be able to discuss the tools in great detail with the engineers who created them, see a vast selection of ARM powered products and see how the gap between mobile and console game graphics continues to narrow.

See you at the show.


PS. Did anyone spot I missed what will be on the left of the Mali wall?  You will have to wait and see! Take a guess in the comments box below...

Graphics & Multimedia blog