Nyko this year had a big focus on Android with a few gaming options. They were pleased to announce an Android centric gamepad that can be used with practically any game. When it came to the area of Nintendo however, they showed off a piece that might be better than what is available from Nintendo themselves.
Power Grip Pro
Version Tried: Nintendo 3DS
Platforms: Nintendo 3DS
Release Date: October
If you’re like me and have one of Nyko’s battery solutions for the Nintendo 3DS, but also own a Circle Pad Pro, you’ve found it’s a pain switching things out. Now Nyko has introduced the Power Grip Pro which is a two in one solution. The idea behind the PGP is to make an extended battery and right analog pad one unit and it seems well executed. Although the unit I had my hands on was only a mockup that wasn’t functional, it represented the final product and felt decent enough. For starters, the circle pad felt closer to the original tension of the Nintendo 3DS’ pad than that of the official Circle Pad Pro. If you’re a fan of the PlayStation 3 Dual Shock L and R triggers, you’ll be happy to note that ZR and ZL resemble them after a fashion. Unlike the Circle Pad Pro where the L button is left exposed on the 3DS, Nyko chose to put their own mechanical L button that physically taps the 3DS for a button press. On the right side, the R button mimics that on the CPP.
While the CPP has contours that are supposed to fit the hand better, Nyko opted to go for a flatter style on bottom. For some this may not be as comfortable, but it enables the unit to sit on flat surfaces better and protects it as a case might. Inside the unit where a 3DS will sit are thin pads to protect the system where it sits flush. These seem to serve to keep a 3DS from escaping, however when I tried to remove the system from the unit, it was quite difficult. On the bright side, inserting a 3DS is fairly simple and goes in with ease. Although the CPP is fairly light, the Power Grip Pro is not, though the trade-off is that an extended battery with power indicator is built-in. No word was given on the weight of the unit or how long the battery will last.
Version Tried: PlayStation 3
Platforms: PlayStation 3 (Xbox 360, Wii U versions later)
Release Date: Holiday
I have no experience playing many fighting games. The most I’ve dabbled in is the Marvel vs Street Fighter franchise. So when Nyko pulled out the Free Fighter, initially I wasn’t too excited. At first glance, the FF looks different from any fight sticks I’ve seen and certainly smaller. Upon further inspection, the unit looks to be well thought out. It’s made with Sanwa Denshi arcade parts and has the ability to have the stick move to the left and right of the buttons. The top also features buttons that serve as customizable macros that are saved, even when unplugged. It also sits on a plastic base for lap use that has plastic wings that extend out from the bottom for stability, though the plastic felt somewhat cheap. This seems like it might be a good alternative to lugging a giant fight stick around to tournaments, however the expected price at $180 makes me wonder how it will perform in the market.