N-Gage: First hands-on thoughts about Nokia's new games

Noah Kravitz
 from  Oakland, CA
| April 15, 2008

I've spent a little time mobile gaming on Nokia's re-launched N-Gage platform by way of my new N82 handset.  So far I've played the demo versions of FIFA '08 and Creatures of the Deep, the former being EA Mobile's latest soccer game and the latter being some kind of fishing sim that, frankly, I wasn't so into.

The N82 isn't Nokia's premiere gaming device, but it does have plenty of graphics and processor power under the hood to make scrolling 3D graphics look good on the small screen.  FIFA looks great and plays great, even with the N82's somewhat small and awkward D-pad, and I haven't even delved into the full version of the title, let alone N-Gage's online community features.  I'd like to try the game out on an N81, whose display and front-panel buttons were built with gaming in mind.  Still, the allure of mobile gaming is huge on a device capable of good looking graphics and smooth game play, and the little taste of N-Gage I've had so far has definitely left me wanting for more.

So far so good as far as N-Gage is concerned, and kudos to Nokia for having learned from the mistakes they made the first time around and - seemingly - relaunched their mobile gaming platform the right way this time.  There are only a few titles currently available, but several more are featured on the N-Gage site as Coming Soon ... meantime, I've still got the full version of FIFA '08 to check out before I move on to any new titles.

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