Playing Tegra games on the Novo 8

UPDATE 12/02/12:

This guide now applies to 5.x, 4.1, 4.0se and 3.1se versions of the firmware.

Original post:

Starting from release 4.1 of my firmware it is now possible to download Tegra games from the Google Play Store. This allows you to install and play legit games and not some iffy copy off of one of those sites frequently mentioned in the news these days. It looks a lot to do but it's actually quite quick and painless. I am expanding this guide to also include some other games that benefit from Chainfire3D but the starting principles are the same.

First up download this file Chainfire 3D Plugins, unzip and copy to your tablet's SD Card, I suggest putting them in a new directory for neatness. Then follow these steps:

  • Install the Chainfire3D app from the market. Run it once to let it setup, you might get a SU request to allow in which case do so and wait for the main menu to appear. Don't do anything yet just exit Chainfire for the moment.
  • Purchase and install the Chainfire3D Pro upgrade. Run Chainfire3D again and it should now say Pro at the top of the screen.
  • Select CF3D driver, then check the Beta EGL driver box and then select install (not the CWM method). The unit will now reset.
  • Run Chainfire3D again and select Install plugins / shaders This will scan for the plugins on the SD Card
  • After the card scan select each item one at a time to install the various items. Ignore the Fix Market popup when installing QUALCOMM, POWERVR & NVIDIA files.
  • Once you have installed all the files go back and select the Fix Market settings That's Chainfire3D done for the moment.
  • You will now need to clear the Market data so go into Settings > Applications > Manage Applications > All and look for Google Play Store and select it. Do a Force Stop if the option is not greyed out then Clear Data. You can now head back to the Play Store and try installing a Tegra game.
  • Open the Play Store and try looking for Fruit Ninja THD Free, Tip: if the search is being stubborn type com.halfbrick.fruitninjathdfree to force it to appear
  • If Fruit Ninja refuses to download through the tablet's market for whatever reason (normally with some 9xx error) try using the Play Store website on your PC. You might have to sign out and back in to get the market to refresh. On occasion you may have to leave it a couple of hours for the Play Store to flush out your device, once done it will stay put until you flash another firmware.
  • If everything is behaving as it should Fruit Ninja THD Free will show as compatible with the Novo 8 and you can install it.
  • That's really it, Fruit Ninja won't run at this stage but you now know Chainfire3D is working it's magic.

Now I will say at this stage not every Tegra game will show up or install. The Market site on the Tablet and the PC will behave differently to each other, if you cannot get a game to install from one try the other. Some will just refuse point blank to install and this could be for any number of reasons so check my guides below to see what works, what does not and how to run it at the best overall quality vs speed for the Novo 8.

App settings and notes:

With the Pro version of Chainfire3D we can assign per app settings which allows us to set each game up and leave it be. All the settings mentioned below are found in the Chainfire3D app under Per-app OpenGl settings then picking the app you want to fix. In all cases untick Use Default settings as the first step

Fruit Ninja THD:

Fruit Ninja THD Free: com.halfbrick.fruitninjathdfree &
Fruit Ninja THD: com.halfbrick.fruitninjathd
Annoying openfeint & beintoo screens can make you think game has hung on first run

Unroll Textures (Fixes problems with slicing)
Use Plugin NVIDIA
MSAA 4x (gets rid of jaggy edges)

Samurai II: Vengeance THD:

Samurai II: Vengeance THD: com.madfingergames.SamuraiII

Use Plugin NVIDIA
MSAA 4x (gets rid of jaggy edges)

Zen Pinball THD:

Zen Pinball THD: com.zenstudios.ZenPinball

Not Working, shows on Market but will not install. Installing 1.3.1 apk directly will not make it work simply does not like Chainfire3D

Riptide GP:

Riptide GP:
Make sure you've installed the 'shaders_sgs2_riptide_gp_v2' file

Use Plugin NVIDIA
MSAA 4x (gets rid of jaggy edges)


Sprinkle: com.mediocre.sprinkle &
Sprinkle Free: com.mediocre.sprinklefree&
Sprinkle Junior: com.mediocre.sprinklejunior
This can run without Tegra but seems to have off days, use these settings to make it snazzy and bug free. When setup it will show up a Tegra screen on loading to show it's working

Use Plugin NVIDIA
MSAA 4x (gets rid of jaggy edges)

Big Top THD:

Big Top THD: com.PitbullStudio.BigTopTHD
Playable but not has problems with graphics

Use Plugin NVIDIA
Reduce Texture Size

Demolition Inc:

Demolition Inc: com.Zeroscale.DemolitionInc
Plays great, set 'Anti-Aliasing - 2x' and 'Texture Quality - Low' in the video options then restart the app

Use Plugin NVIDIA


  1. Very impressive improvements. I'll have it loaded in a week when my daughter comes back from California.


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