Valve’s 2007 masterpiece Portal is officially arriving for the Nvidia Shield handheld gaming device, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang announced at the GPU Technology Conference that’s currently taking place in San Jose. The port comes with the blessing of Valve, with Valve’s Doug Lombardi stating that “Our companies have a strong history working together and we’re looking forward to Portal‘s arrival on Shield." I mention that this port comes with Valve’s blessing because longtime TA readers might recall that an unofficial port of Portal that was built in Unity was blowing our minds way back in July of 2009. That initial demo video left a lot of people skeptical that the whole thing wasn’t just some elaborate hoax, but just a few days later we actually received a build of the unofficial Portal port which proved it wasn’t just smoke and mirrors. Here’s some video of us playing through an early version of that port.
Sadly Valve put the kibosh on that unofficial port, but at the very least it showed that something like Portal was possible on a mobile device like the iPhone, even back in 2009. Mobile hardware has improved dramatically since then, but herein lies the problem for us iOS gamers: Nvidia themselves are doing the Portal port, targeting the Shield first and other devices which use Nvidia’s own Tegra chipset. According to a report from The Verge, the mobile port of Portal isn’t locked down to the Tegra chip in a technical sense, and it’s possible they’ll be expanding the game to a wider assortment of Android devices in the future. But, I really doubt Nvidia is anxious to bring their port over to iOS, despite the fact that it would sell like crazy. Stranger things have happened though, so we’ll have to wait and see if an official iOS Portal is in the cards someday. For Nvidia Shield and other Android device owners, look for Portal to be “coming soon."