The Green Goblin says from its bog that it is "DirectX 11 done right" as if to say it had been doing a genuinely crap job before. It claims that the 460 can deliver "monster tessellation performance with up to 4x tessellation performance over competing GPUs." It bongs its own death knell by saying that it is the "ultimate"* next-generation DX11 gaming experience.
Still, Nvidia is right to be boasting its cheapo price tag, which will bring high glass graphical capabilities to a far wider audience. It's got full support for Nvidia 3D Vision as well, which means you can make your brain hurt by watching Blu-ray films in stereoscopic 3D.
It will come in two varieties. Both will sport 336 Nvidia CUDA cores and 56 texture units, but the GTX 460 768MB will have a 192-bit memory interface and will go on sale for $199. The GTX 460 1GB has a 256-bit memory interface and you can pick one up for $229. They're available now.
Nvidia has either won over, or given a bung to influential gaming geeks. John Carmack, the man behind Commander Keen, said: "Nvidia platforms continue to be the Gold Standard at Id Software for quality, performance and support." Dan Baker at Firaxis, the geeks behind Civilization [sic] V, said: "The high-end performance at a mainstream price point," along with support for high end DX11 features like tessellation and compute shaders, "allow Civilization [sic] V to run faster while looking better than ever."
* Ultimate, as defined by Merriam-Webster:Main Entry: 1ul·ti·mate Pronunciation: \ˈəl-tə-mət\Function: adjectiveEtymology: Medieval Latin ultimatus last, final, from Late Latin, past participle of ultimare to come to an end, be last, from Latin ultimus farthest, last, final, superl. of Latin *ulter situated beyondDate: 16401 a : most remote in space or time : farthest b : last in a progression or series : final <their ultimate destination was Paris> c : eventual 2 <they hoped for ultimate success> d : the best or most extreme of its kind : utmost <the ultimate sacrifice>2 : arrived at as the last result <the ultimate question>