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Nvidia's Tegra 3 Optimizations: THD Android Games, Tested

Fruit Ninja And Galaxy On Fire 2

Fruit Ninja

Fruit Ninja is an easy-to-learn and rather addictive touchscreen classic. Fruits are tossed up from the bottom of the screen and the player has to slice them up using swiping gestures. Fruit Ninja is available in both free and paid versions; there are simply fewer modes in the free build. A specially-optimized THD version is offered on Google Play alongside the standard version. Unfortunately, the paid version of Fruit Ninja THD costs $2 more than the standard Android version.

Can a game consisting entirely of fruit really look any better on a device it was optimized for? Yes and no. The modeling is more precise, and details are a little more visible if you look closely at the fruits in the THD version. But, given the type of game this is, those differences aren’t significant to the overall experience. After all, when your task is to slice up fruit that pop up from the bottom of your screen, the level of detail in the pineapple doesn’t change the fun factor all that much. It's a plus on paper, but imperceptible during play.

Download Fruit Ninja from Tom’s Guide

Galaxy On Fire 2

The next game on our list is the great-looking space shooter Galaxy On Fire 2. The game is available for Android on Google Play in two versions: the THD version for Tegra 3-based devices, and another for the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play. The latter operates on the Nexus 4, no doubt because Qualcomm's Adreno GPU is the same one you'd find in the Sony phone The Galaxy S III, however, cannot run the game at all.

While the three versions of Galaxy On Fire 2 don’t have the same exact missions and environments, there’s still no contest: the Tegra 3-optimized version is much better-looking. There’s a higher level of detail in the textures and effects, making the game significantly more attractive. The Xperia Play version on the Nexus 4 is visually identical to the iOS version.