Feb 01 AT 5:17 PM Taylor Wimberly 24 Comments

Gaming with the LG Optimus 2X

The LG Optimus 2X is the first smartphone to feature NVIDIA’s Tegra 2 processor, which includes an ultra low power GeForce GPU. Not everyone considers themselves a gamer, but there comes certain times in the day when you want to kill a few minutes while waiting in line at the bank or being stranded at the airport for a couple hours (don’t get me started).

NVIDIA already showed us with their benchmarks that they have the fastest GPU available, but how do the actual games perform? I’ve spent the weekend playing around with the Optimus 2X and I’m glad to report that it meets the high expectations we set and it delivers the best gaming experience of any Android phone I have tested.

Most of the joy of playing games on the Optimus 2X comes from LG’s superb touch sensor. I’m not sure whose sensor they are using (could be the Atmel Maxtouch), but it recognizes unlimited touch points and provides the most responsive touch screen I have ever used.

The GeForce GPU absolutely shreds any Android game out there, but the fact is that most titles are not yet optimized to take full advantage of its advanced capabilities. Many developers (see below) are collaborating with NVIDIA to optimize their titles for the best visual experience and performance, but most of those games are still being worked on.

The good thing is that when these Tegra HD (THD) games are finished, we will be able to easily find them in NVIDIA’s showcase application called Tegra Zone. This spotlight app will help you discover the best games designed for Tegra devices by providing “professional game reviews, high-res screenshots, HD video trailers, gameplay videos, and behind-the-scenes footage.” The Optimus 2X shippped with a preview version of Tegra Zone (which you can see in our video), and the full version is expected to be available when Tegra phones launch on U.S. carriers over the coming months.

Overall, the Optimus 2X delivered exactly what we expected – the best gaming experience available on any Android smartphone. Current Android games play great and they will only continue to get better once the optimized titles come out. Android games have been really lacking when compared to Apple’s iOS library, but that is going to change this year thanks to Tegra. NVIDIA has the industry’s largest content development team that works closely with developers and we will see the fruits of their labor in the coming months.

If you want an Android smartphone that delivers the fastest GPU and has the most console-quality titles to choose from, make sure you look for the NVIDIA logo on the box.

Developers already confirmed to be working on Tegra games include:

  • Cooliris
  • Electronic Arts
  • Epic Games
  • Factor 5
  • Gameloft
  • Guild Software
  • Ideaworks Game Studio
  • Natural Motion
  • Ogre
  • Psyonix
  • Silver Creek Entertainment
  • Stonetrip
  • Trendy Entertainment
  • Unity
  • War Drum Studios
Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • http://Website Mark

    Maybe I missed it in the article but did you try any Tegra 2 suggested games in the market on this device? How did it fare?

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      They are not available yet. I have preview copies of Galaxy on Fire 2 and Dungeon Defenders, but those are not available in the Market right now.

      • http://www.phandroid.com Quentyn

        Dungeon Defenders has been available for quite a while, bud. Version 1.7 is coming soon, in fact. :)

        • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

          Yeah the version in the Android Market is not yet optimized for Tegra 2. It will play just fine (as seen in the video), but the Tegra version has more enhanced graphics and added levels. Look for a 2nd video to compare the two versions of the game.

          • http://www.phandroid.com Quentyn

            Ah OK, I didn’t catch that detail. I hope it doesn’t become a theme, then. Some developers tend to abandon their games after they optimize it for currently-available hardware. It would suck to get a quad core Tegra 3 phone that can’t play older titles, haha.

  • http://Website sansenoy

    Just great, all we can expect are crappy, contrived, recycled 3D games; where are all those amazing little games from the apple store that don’t even touch the gpu, working perfectly on my old ipod touch? There’s new ones coming out all the time, and the only game on my phone is still angry birds…

    • http://Website Jonathan

      If the only game on your phone is Angry Birds you need to check out the cool stuff like Jet Car Stunts, Squibble, Spectral Souls, Zenonia 2, Beats, TurboFly 3D and so many more. Android gaming has begun to change for the better and as a former iOS gamer I’m now finding plenty of stuff that impresses me and I’m happy to throw my money at. If you’re not finding Android games you’re simply not looking.

  • http://Website ChaosKiller

    I wonder if they locked the bootloader like Motorola does, if they locked it I am not going to buy this phone.

  • http://Website Kev

    Duel core processor + playstation suite = super happy win!!! Tegra2 should technically allow ps2 games to run on android devices

    • http://Website Eric

      Sadly, not even close. Heck, 2Ghz desktop grade dual cores struggle with some titles. This might make that Nintendo DS emulator useful though.

  • http://Website AM123

    Taylor, many of us are eager to know how well the battery life is holding up on day to day use. Can you please tell us what we can expect? :D

  • http://Website Ben Johnson, GA

    Android games are really dull and much worse/simple than the iPhone games. There is really no reason to have a dual-core for these shoddy games!

    cheers, Ben

    sent from my iPhone 4

    • http://Website John McCain

      Ben Johnson is a iPhag.

      Cheers, Ben Johnsons mom

      Sent from her whore mouth.

    • http://Website Eric

      Darn, good one. Sigh, if only there were great games like rocket bunnies on android…

      Wait, it is on android, and not on iPhone (something my friend with an iPhone is not happy with, lol). There are plenty of great games on android. Of course, you knew that, or it’s even sadder than I thought.

  • http://Website Miguel

    All’s quite on the battery-life front it seems…

  • http://Website Rayyan

    Taylor, you mentioned the unlimited touch points, and I noticed you had the multi-touch app installed on the Optimus 2X, but you didn’t launch it. Are you keeping that for another article?

  • http://www.androidwall.info/ Android Wall

    if this new tech from nividia really satisfies gaming experience without sacraficing much battery life well its great.

  • http://Website Kyle

    Could you post some benchmarks, like multiple tests of each to get a good average fo rhtis epic phone?

  • http://optimus2x.net Vin

    Found many reviews of Lg Optimus 2x including two in-depth reviews and Tegra 2 performance review

    You can check it out here


  • http://Website Kamil

    Could you show us web browser in compare to Nexus S?

  • OnIn2

    I only have 3 Questions

    1) What carrier ? If not tmo Stop…Do not pass Go
    2) When does it hit USA
    3) 4G ?

  • http://Website Beem

    Can you compare the screen of this device with Super Amoled? I would love to see them side to side. Thank you.

  • http://Website UniqueNate

    Make sure you show this to in your in-depth video.

    tilt the screen @ 6:20

    tap the phone to move the cursor @ 7:40


    The gestures are sweet for the 2X. I wish it came like that native for future dual core phones. These are real small features that people would overlook and not see right away. Maybe never know unless someone showed them.