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Part of the reason I’ve never really gotten into mobile gaming is the controller, or lack of it. Having grown up with a physical controller in my hand in the NES era, I find that most mobile games simply feel awkward or out of place on something like a tablet due to the user interface.
The solution, of course, is to simply add a third-party gamepad. But I’m a racing and driving game fan and without a wheel to grip, the experience is still lacking for me. When I recently came across the KOLOS iPad racing wheel, my attention was immediately grabbed.
Just launched on Kickstarter, KOLOS’ wheel can accept nearly every model iPad (except the very first). The tablet clips into the center of the accessory which can be mounted to the edge of a table or desk like a traditional gaming wheel or handheld when you’re lounging around on the couch or on the go.
Detaching the wheel from its base kind of defeats the purpose but I digress.
With the slate in place, one can easily reach the edges of the screen for gas, brake and other functions using your thumbs while keeping both hands on the wheel. And while there’s not true force-feedback, you do get a self-centering mechanism which brings the wheel back to the center position when you let go which adds a bit of resistance.
When not gaming, the wheel can be used as a stand to take in movies or television shows. Detach and reinsert the wheel into the base vertically to play portrait swipe-to-move games.
KOLOS is seeking $100,000 in funding to bring its iPad racing wheel accessory to market. The company tried the crowdfunding route once before (Indiegogo in 2012) but failed to reach its goal. I’ve been told that this time around, the team has taken all of the necessary steps to give the campaign the absolute best shot at getting funded.
Early birds can secure a KOLOS racing wheel with a pledge of just $45. It’s still early so there are plenty of slots left at this price point. Assuming all goes well, the company plans to ship products worldwide this December.