new portable game system announced

ralp99

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from gamasutra news...

[05.06.03]


Tapwave Announces Portable Video Game System

Tapwave, a new company founded by former Palm executives, revealed a handheld device code-named "Helix" that is largely a portable video game system. The company will target what it terms as more sophisticated gamers, aged 18-34 years old who have "outgrown" the Nintendo Gameboy Advance.

The Helix will have twice the color palette of the Game Boy Advance and nearly 16 times that of the N-Gage. According to Tapwave, it will also offer a screen resolution significantly sharper than either one and a much larger screen size.

Other features include the ability to play full-motion video in a number of formats, MP3 music playback, a photo viewer and all the productivity applications that are part of the Palm OS.

The company has also garnered partnerships with big-name hardware and software companies. Hardware companies involved in developing the Helix include ATI, Sony, Motorola, and Yamaha. Among the software companies licensing games for the device are Activision, Infogrames, and Midway.

Pricing and availability have not yet been announced.
 

Rabel1

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Here's some more info from the TapWave WEB site (www.tapwave.com):

Tapwave provides a next-generation mobile entertainment platform that combines the best features of the Palm OS® with advanced gaming and entertainment features, including:

> High-resolution 480 x 320 pixel screen, with portrait or landscape-mode display
> i.MX1™ Motorola® ARM9 Processor
> Analog controller, integrated triggers and a full complement of action buttons
> Unique ergo-centric design, weighing less than 6 ounces
> All-inclusive gaming environment with the Fathammer X-Forge™ 3D Game Engine
> ATI® Imageon™ graphics accelerator
> Yamaha audio component, stereo speakers and earbud-style headphones
> Dual lithium batteries
> Rumble effects
> Full-featured digital music player
> Built-in Bluetooth™ networking for multiplayer wireless gaming
> High-score conduit for community competition

Also: http://www.godoplay.com/tapwave.html

Rabel1
 

Flack

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ARM9 processor? Maybe people will port the games over to the gp32. ;)
 

Cpt_Kirks

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Slap in a tiny hard drive and something like this might be hard to beat.

How is good is Palm as a gaming OS?
 

Nutzo

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It's not just PalmOS, which is a great fast OS, but it also has that ATI graphics chip, so it'll be much faster and better at graphics than a normal Palm.

I'm afraid this thing could kill GP32. :(

It all depends on how easy it is for folks to develop on. If they're going closed source with no way for emu/homebrew devs to make stuff (without buying anything too expensive etc.) then GP32 will maintain its niche popularity as a USERS system for and by the users.

If they go open source, and you've got good commercial games plus emus and homebrew stuff... It'll be incredible.

Anyway, it sounds much nicer than N-Gage - I hate that system's design.
 

jlebrech

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What might be dangerous for gp32 is that x-forge system, it is a kind of gamemaking sdk based on opengl.

Scary.

Maybe somebody could port mesagl or somthing to gp32. Because maybe that tapthing has a slower arm9 than gp32, so porting an opengl for gp32 could be good.
 

Shrike

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yeh but that'll cost a fortune, just think about how much a normal palm PC costs, now factor in all the extra components and all the extra software! It'll certainly cost a bushel of money more than a gp32
 

RobertG

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Sounds good, alot better than that Ngage crap where you have to take the battery out to change games :lol: :lol: :lol:

If there's a "hobbyist" sdk and it uses smc/cf/whatever then it'll kick ass. The video at their website has clips of Tony Hawk and Spy Hunter... Hmm..


To be honest I think they've got it all spot on so far. The website, the video and the overall vibe it's all giving off.. It's all making me think they're serious and they know what they're doing. If they can get it out at a decent price then a winnar is them.
 

VirtuaLeech

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I think you can forget about a decent price, have you ever seen an affordable bluetooth device ;) .

Another hint is "The company will target what it terms as more sophisticated gamers, aged 18-34 years old". Nothing to do with outgrowing Nintendo but more to do with a higher disposable income.

I expect this one to be somewhere in the $400 price range
 

Intruder

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The hardware + software of the "helix" from TapWave sound promising, I own a PalmOS enable device (Visor Platinum from Handspring) and did some development on it.

A GP32 killer? Could be, but with the specs of it and comparing the prices of the Tungsten series from Palm (which us the ARM9, better graphics, PalmOS5, Bluetooth, etc...) it wont be cheap! And some articles mention about a $300 target price, but the other articles I read on gamasutra today said that they didnt decide on any pricing yet.

Oh and it give a bit more details about it also (from this article it seems that it will be accessible for indy developer).

http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/industry_....php?story=1774

Also they have another little problem, PalmOS5 doesnt support fully native ARM code, you have to do some gymnastic to do it. Though TapWave said in this article that they made some encapsulation to let developer program with ARM instruction.

And dont forget it wont be release before the end of this year, still have chance to make the GP32 better.
 

Devin

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I read two separate articles today and wondered if a possible sequel to the GP32 was in the works for a worldwide release. Follow me for a minute and then tell me your thoughts:

First I read this article on The Mercury News at the following link. In itself fair enough, nothing to do with the GP32, but read carefully then you'll notice the part at the end and I quote:

"The company was formed in May 2001 and has since received funding from an Asian manufacturer that Connell declined to identify."

I'm willing to entertain the idea that this company might....MIGHT just be GamePark. As the company has announced (Insert Credit 4th May News Post) a European launch of the system could it actually be a completely new model that makes an appearance outside of Korea?
 

cazssiew

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hmm, well, I'm rooting for wishful thinking, but damn, maybe that's just a little TOO wishful :rolleyes:
 

Rico

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Two topics have become one.

I usually wouldn't bother announcing it, but this merge topic tool is so damn cool I just had to :p
 

Mofokubik

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Hmmm, looks nice. But cant be all that its cracked up to be. I doubt it will be a "GP32 Killer" but maybe a gba and n-gage killer. I would like to see gameparks new handheld (if there is one) that would kill all.
 
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