Half-Life 2 and Portal for NVIDIA SHIELD now available for $10 each


portal shield

NVIDIA told us Portal would be arriving for their SHIELD gaming handheld today. It’s in the Google Play Store for $10, as promised. What they didn’t tell us is that Half-Life 2 would be jumping on for the ride on the same date and for the same price.

Both games — staples of Valve from earlier this century and in recent years — feature the same full-fledged experience you’d find if you played it on PC. It won’t look nearly as good as it would on a high-end gaming PC obviously, but for an Android-based handheld they’ve achieved something pretty remarkable.

We imagine you could just as easily stream these games in higher quality using NVIDIA’s GameStream feature, though that requires a capable PC and an always-on data connection. A native option could prove to be much more useful for folks who don’t have such flexibility or the required hardware.

half-life 2 shield

Portal is a first-person perspective puzzle shooting platformer. Try saying that 3 times fast. You use a gun that will open portals that you can walk through or send objects through to complete many different levels and challenges. It’s one of the most unique concepts ever brought to gaming, and its insurmountable Metacritic score of 90% is very well deserved.

On the flipside, Half-Life 2 is a bit long in the tooth by today’s standards, but it was one of those genre-defining games when it launched nearly a decade ago. We’re glad to say that the game has aged quite well after all this time, and it’s that level of quality that has us eternally hoping for a Half Life 3 launch to eventually happen. Half-Life 2’s biggest feat were its advanced physics and interesting weapons. None of it is too interesting to the new-age gamer, but what it was capable of was largely unheard of back when it first launched.

Whether these games alone are enough of a reason to buy a SHIELD is up to you to decide for yourself, but if you don’t already have one and you decide you want to play these classics on the go you can grab one for just $200 from Amazon right now. Already hooked up with a SHIELD? Then head to the source links for the Google Play downloads.

[Portal, Half-Life 2]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Awesome.

    Touchscreen version of Half Life 2 would be great, Portal could be a bit tricky though. :D

    1. I don’t think anyone in their right mind would choose to play them with a touchscreen, it needs to come to other devices and support things like the MOGA and Red Samurai controllers.

      1. Don’t see why not, might need some tweaking to difficulty and gameplay but it wouldn’t any more difficult to play than any other FPS an Android.

        Portal on some levels does need the user to be very precise so not sure about that one, not without some re-designed levels.

  2. So could one technically get this running on any phone with some build.prop edits? (and an external controller of course)

    1. Seeing as almost anything can be done on Android one way or another, I wouldn’t put it past a talented developer or two. It all depends on what the APK checks for or needs. You might need a Tegra SoC or some odd framework check. Who knows at this point?

      1. Wait a minute?! Half Life 2 + Portal 1 = 3… HALF LIFE 3 confirmed!! We did it!!

    2. A mofo was thinking the same thing…

  3. Too bad I will probably have to pirate the game to play it on a decent device :/ But then I own multiple copies at this point so..

    1. If you pirate the game, it won’t install on your device unless you root and change the build.prop. But if you do it that way, you can also do that to install it legitimately.

      Some people don’t even try.

      That’s only if you want a reason to not pirate the game, of course.

      1. I won’t buy a game that is locked to a device because I refuse to support that business model.

        1. Try it, it won’t work to access it on Google Play or to install a pirated copy. Neither work

  4. Not entirely sure here, but i think the issue with running on non Sheild devices would simply be the heat while playing for any real duration, the shield gets quite hot while playing even with having a fan on the whole time, i dont even want to imagine holding a phone with no cooling playing this.

  5. Still not enough to get me to switch to a Shield, ill stick with my 3DS and Vita for now.

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