With virtual reality products being not very accessible to consumers yet, the chance to try out some applications and hardware demos at the NVIDIA gamescom event was very exciting. They gave journalists the chance to get their hands on 4K-capable laptops, paired with some HTC Vive headsets and upcoming games from Microsoft.
The first application they demoed was NVIDIA VR Funhouse, which is a charming collection of mini games at a fair, ranging from shooting plates with revolver, to whack-a-mole and archery. The game was running great on an MSI GT62 laptop with an NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 1070 graphics card, despite the demanding physics and crisp resolution. Another co-op game I tried had us defend against hordes of Robots with various weapons running on an XMG U717 laptop with an NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 1080. What I liked the most about this VR game is how you apply skills from the real world into the game instinctively, like closing one eye in order to aim more accurately. Moreover, it was my first VR experience involving another player, which added an additional layer of depth and enjoyment. For both games I noticed no kind of lag or FPS drops, while the visuals were still pleasing to the eye.
In addition, players got the chance to try the upcoming Gears of War 4, running in 4K on an ASUS G752 laptop, again with an NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 1070. This was mainly to demonstrate the power of the hardware, which was very impressive. I’d never have expected that a laptop could provide a 80″ 4K TV with a flawlessly performing output of a current game. However, Gears of 4K was pretty obviously not running at 60fps. I personally would have decreased the resolution in order to get much better performance, as I’m sure the game would have looked gorgeous in 2K or even less. Since the textures didn’t really seem to be that ultra highly detailed anyway, you probably won’t even notice the difference unless you sit way to close to a giant TV. Yet, while playing on a regular 4K gaming monitor, I can see huge potential and anticipate what the future of PC gaming will hold.
All in all, you can say the new NVIDIA hardware is worth a closer look, if you plan on upgrading your gaming environment to support VR and 4K gaming, as they offer quality even on the small scale of a laptop.