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Default Gaming Windows Tablets

December 1st, 2013, 21:03
Is that an oxymoron?

Anyway i have been buying lot of games on gog.com and few old/indie games via all the bundle sales. I am wondering if the new windows tablets will be any good at playing them? I am not talking bleeding edge graphics games but say 4+ year old games like jade empire, kult, BG2, divine divinity etc. Maybe some new indi games like Legend of Grimrock, Fallen Enchantress etc.

Most tablets seems to come with Intel atom cpu. How good is it? There are some top end tablets with dual core i5 cpu as well. I guess the i5 should be good enough?

Most of the tablets don't seem to have good graphic chip. I think they come with Intel integrate graphic chip. Not sure if its any good.

Anyway ignoring the shortcomings of touch interface, can the new windows tablets be used for gaming?
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December 2nd, 2013, 01:33
The Intel HD 4000 and HD5000 integrated graphics chips do reasonably well playing games compared to earlier integrated chips. To the point where simply assuming all integrated chips are worse than all discrete chips is no longer valid.

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December 3rd, 2013, 13:45
I'm guessing the Surface Pro 2 should handle those games with relative ease, though I'm not sure.
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December 11th, 2013, 04:18
Yeah the Surface Pro 2 would be my bet as well. It's on my list of things to buy if I ever get enough money.
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December 11th, 2013, 10:57
Surface Pro 2 looks goods but the cheapest in UK is £719 but that's the 64GB version and I would guess windows taking around 32Gb for itself, one would ideally needs 128GB version which is about £800.

It looks like 3rd party vendors are also making windows tablets so hopefully the prices will come down soon.
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December 11th, 2013, 11:00
It's tempting, but I think I'll wait a generation or two before diving in.
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December 11th, 2013, 12:06
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
It's tempting, but I think I'll wait a generation or two before diving in.
For £800 you can get very good gaming laptop with twice the specs of Surface Pro 2 so have to wait for next gen tablets as well.

It will be interesting to see what happens to Apple and Android tablets once "proper" windows tablets comes down in price. Its pretty much a PC with all the software apple and android can dream off. I just wished Microsoft never did the windows rt and subsidised "proper" windows tablets…
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December 11th, 2013, 12:16
Originally Posted by lostforever View Post
For £800 you can get very good gaming laptop with twice the specs of Surface Pro 2 so have to wait for next gen tablets as well.

It will be interesting to see what happens to Apple and Android tablets once "proper" windows tablets comes down in price. Its pretty much a PC with all the software apple and android can dream off. I just wished Microsoft never did the windows rt and subsidised "proper" windows tablets…
True enough, but I'm kinda into the small size of tablets these days.

But they're just toys to me, really.
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December 11th, 2013, 13:02
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
True enough, but I'm kinda into the small size of tablets these days.

But they're just toys to me, really.
But the Surface really isn't 'small'. And to get a decent keyboard you need the thicker one … at which point you have spent as much as a decent ultrabook which will perform better and be thinner & lighter.

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December 11th, 2013, 13:05
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
But the Surface really isn't 'small'. And to get a decent keyboard you need the thicker one … at which point you have spent as much as a decent ultrabook which will perform better and be thinner & lighter.
I've played around with the SP2 in a shop and it was quite small and neat. As for cost, that's one reason I'm not buying one yet. But it's still tempting as a portable gaming device - as it can run cool games that actually exist.

What cheaper, smaller and faster ultrabook would you suggest as an alternative?
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December 11th, 2013, 14:37
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
What cheaper, smaller and faster ultrabook would you suggest as an alternative?
If just as a tablet, then the Surface Pro 2 is pretty small - but at $1000 is not cheap at all.

In terms of size I guess it depends on your usage - if you plan to use a keyboard, realize that the effective footprint of the Surface Pro 2 suddenly becomes the same as a 15" laptop because of how the setup works.

I would suggest the Lenovo Yoga Pro - it is slightly bigger overall, but with better keyboard, screen, cheaper (after adding keyboard to Surface) and people I have talked to who have used both say there is no comparison.

But again - it is all based on what you plan to use it for.

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December 11th, 2013, 16:45
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
If just as a tablet, then the Surface Pro 2 is pretty small - but at $1000 is not cheap at all.

In terms of size I guess it depends on your usage - if you plan to use a keyboard, realize that the effective footprint of the Surface Pro 2 suddenly becomes the same as a 15" laptop because of how the setup works.

I would suggest the Lenovo Yoga Pro - it is slightly bigger overall, but with better keyboard, screen, cheaper (after adding keyboard to Surface) and people I have talked to who have used both say there is no comparison.

But again - it is all based on what you plan to use it for.
Well, it would primarily be a portable gaming machine - and I'd like to use it in bed without the keyboard on occasion as well.

But it's not exactly a high priority right now.

As for the keyboard, I tested a small one at the shop and it seemed quite fine for my needs. I don't intend to type a lot - and I have no idea why I'd want a big keyboard, as I'm not going to use it as a primary gaming machine. Then again, I have several keyboards lying around - and I could always use one of them, if I decided a small keyboard was not comfortable enough, though I don't see any issue. I would never use it for serious "immersive" gaming, but rather for adventures and old-school strategy games and RPGs.

A small keyboard would serve my needs in 99% of the cases - and I wouldn't need to carry around a big one when I'm on the go.

But I'll check out the Yoga pro - but I'm not really seeing the advantage as it's bigger. Then again, I don't intend to buy one right now.
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December 11th, 2013, 17:43
I got a Dell Latitude 10 tablet w/ Pro version of windows 8 last year. I tried lots of old games from GOG and a few newer indie games (Avadon: the Black fortress for one). It runs most of the games fine, but the touch screen is useless to play on. The re-scaling of the older graphics resolution means the hot areas for the buttons are not the same as where they are visible on the screen. I really wanted to play Lands of Lore 1 without a keyboard/mouse while on vacation, but I ended up needing them anyway. Something to consider is the price of the table and need to carry a keyboard around anyway, verses the price and performance of a laptop.
I hope this helps,
LB

PS> I still love the table, and I used it all over Wash. DC to take pictures and post them online while still seeing the sites.
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December 11th, 2013, 19:01
My main aim for getting a tablet is to play games in my bed without using a keyboard and a mouse. Yes I know I am lazy!

I have to think twice then if you actually need mouse and keyboard to play the old games….
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December 11th, 2013, 21:37
I bought a Nexus 7 recently and I was surprised by the number of really good games available for it. Not a whole bunch of CRPG's yet, but across all genres, there are many excellent games available. Tablet gaming, by nature of the touch screen, offers a different type of gaming than the PC. It's not a replacement for a desktop or even a laptop. It just offers a different gaming experience. Like someone else said, it's nice to be able go online, read an ebook or play a game while in bed or on the couch. That's not really all that pleasant with a laptop, no matter how small.

I would question how well a game like Jade Empire or Divine Divinity would play on a tablet even if you could get it to run, unless it was modified specifically for touch screen gameplay. FWIW, the Baldur's Gate remake games are going to be released soon on Android and iOS., so there does seem to be a trend toward making older CRPG's specifically modified for touchscreen devices. I'm currently playing Shadowrun Returns and have also started Call of Cthulhu Wasted Lands as well as Questlord, 9th Dawn, Heroes of Steel and Pocket RPG to name a few good ones.
Last edited by Sir Markus; December 11th, 2013 at 21:46. Reason: Just wanted to add a few examples of good touchscreen rpgs
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December 12th, 2013, 09:35
If you're into tablet gaming, I would consider the Nvidia Shield - because it can supposedly stream most PC games with minimal lag to the handheld. It works more or less like the OnLive tech - and you can use a controller for most modern PC games.

I'm getting one myself when it arrives in Denmark.
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December 12th, 2013, 11:36
Originally Posted by lostforever View Post
Anyway ignoring the shortcomings of touch interface, can the new windows tablets be used for gaming?
The short answer is "No."

The long answer is: you'll be able to get some older games running, sure, but you'll be paying the maximum possible price to do so while receiving zero benefits from having a tablet. I wouldn't even recommend a gaming laptop if you're serious about quality and performance.

They're not gaming devices and were never designed with gamers in mind.

Originally Posted by DArtagnan
I'm guessing the Surface Pro 2 should handle those games with relative ease, though I'm not sure.
Fallen Enchantress is surprisingly tough on your hardware so unless you wanted to run it in "cloth map" only mode with sluggish controls I'd avoid this one. However, It should be able to run Pacman well.
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December 12th, 2013, 11:50
I would ignore SirJames in this case.

SP2 would be more than sufficient for a game like Fallen Enchantress in terms of performance. It's turn based - and I bet it would run reasonably smooth on medium settings. However, I don't know about general compatibility - and I wouldn't be surprised if the default touch-screen/DPI setup could cause issues in certain games. But that should be fixable with some tweaking.

Just be sure to use a mouse and not the touch screen
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December 12th, 2013, 12:37
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
I would ignore SirJames in this case.

SP2 would be more than sufficient for a game like Fallen Enchantress in terms of performance. It's turn based - and I bet it would run reasonably smooth on medium settings. However, I don't know about general compatibility - and I wouldn't be surprised if the default touch-screen/DPI setup could cause issues in certain games. But that should be fixable with some tweaking.

Just be sure to use a mouse and not the touch screen
Well, let us consider if the SP2 would be "more than sufficient" for a game like Fallen Enchantress!

Here are the minimum requirements for Fallen Enchantress:
Originally Posted by Steam store page
Minimum:
OS: Windows 8 / 7 SP1 / Vista SP2 / XP SP3
Processor: 2.2 GHz Dual Core Processor
Memory: 2 GB RAM
Graphics: 512 MB DirectX 9.0c Compliant Video Card w/Pixel Shader 2.0 (Radeon x1600 / GeForce 6800)
http://store.steampowered.com/app/228260/

The Surface Pro 2 features a "1.6 GHz fourth generation Intel Core i5-4200U processor". According to Intel, this is a 2 core CPU with 3mb cashe ~1.6GHz. Right away we see that the awful i5-4200U is under the minimum CPU requirement. http://ark.intel.com/products/75459/

Fun facts!Did you know my 4 year old desktop CPU has 4 cores and 8MB cashe at ~3.5GHz, which makes the 4200u "low tech" even by 4 year old standards?

The Surface Pro 2 features Intels HD graphics 4400 with uses 200MHz from your 1.6GHz dual core as its GPU. In other words, it has no dedicated graphics card at all! Not recommended for gaming in 2013!

So, lets see how the SP2 performs in a few benchmarks!

Here http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?….60GHz&id=1947 we see, while horrible value money: performance wise, the 4200u actually manages to perform around about as well as a first generation core2duo underclocked by 1GHz, making it pretty decent 7 years ago, but still awful today. It might be able to rival a modern mobile phone, but I wouldn't bet on it.

And here http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/gp…D+4400&id=2643 we see the HD 4400 graphics "solution" score absolutely dismally. Let's all take a moment to laugh at this benchmark.

In conclusion, I'd like to say it's been proven that
a) SP2 is not suitable for gaming and shows no sign gaming was even considered for it. You should be able to run your Facebook apps on it just fine, however.
b) SP2 does not meet the minimum requirements for Fallen Enchantress and is therefore not suitable for playing it.
c) DA is in love with me.
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December 12th, 2013, 12:43
As I said, it will be more than sufficient for Fallen Enchantress - barring any weird compatibility issues.

Obviously, you have to care more about reality than irrelevant benchmarks and imprecise sys. requirements.

If we were to care about those - here's an article detailing how the SP2 can run games like Portal 2, LoL, Diablo 3 and SC2 at medium-high settings with good frame rates.

It can even run something like Bioshock Infinite - though you'll have to use low settings:

http://www.penny-arcade.com/report/a…u-have-the-rig

For kicks, here's the D3 requirements:

https://eu.battle.net/support/en/art…m-requirements

As you can see, it has higher demands than FE. Needs higher clocked dual core cards (dual core 2.2 vs 2.8), and better graphics cards (Gefore 6800 vs 7800).

But I don't care about articles - as I rely on my experience for this sort of thing. I've played both Elemental and Fallen Enchantress on inferior hardware - and they're both just fine. Not exactly high performance - but more than adequate. My Mx11 Alienware Laptop, for instance, played FE just recently with reasonable frame rates - and it's VERY close to SP2 in terms of performance if we look at benchmarks.

Meaning, I actually know what I'm talking about.

No, SP2 isn't a gaming machine - but it's fine for a lot of games if you accept the inherent limitations of a tablet platform.

TXA will back that up here, as he's a great fan of the Intel HD 4000 series for gaming.

I guess we know what value we should attribute "proof" provided by SirJames
Last edited by DArtagnan; December 12th, 2013 at 12:53.
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