CES 2015: Mad Catz

2014 was another strong year for Mad Catz and the e-sports community, especially in the fighting game community. During CES we had a firsthand chance to visit the Mad Catz suite and get a firsthand look at some of the new products fans can look forward to this year.

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Stepping into the room you can see tons of different items on display including a sit-down arcade cabinet running Ultra Street Fighter IV. Wanting to get some “hands-on time” with both the Mad Catz Ultra Street Fighter IV Arcade FightStick Tournament Edition 2 and Mad Catz Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN- Tournament Edition 2 Arcade Sticks, I was joined by Global Community & Sponsorship Manager Mark “MarkMan” Julio. As we played we talked about how quickly all three Tournament Edition sticks sold out for the PlayStation 4, since they could also be used on the PlayStation 3. The initial shipment sold out fast and Mad Catz also released a second wave of the T.E.2s which sold out in less than 15 minutes. Mad Catz knows there is a demand for the sticks, so another shipment will be available at a later time.

IMG_2559After a few matches, we moved over to more of the Mad Catz line. Its first big CES announcement was an eye-catcher in many ways. Mad Catz’s L.Y.N.X. 9 Mobile Hybrid Controller is the Frankenstein of accessories, made to be your all-in-one gaming add-on for tablets, smartphones, PCs and smart televisions. Made for the gaming enthusiasts, L.Y.N.X. 9 Mobile Hybrid Controller comes with quite a few extra parts to fit your different needs as well as a companion app, which is designed to give you the option to set your controls and easily save your profiles to make your gaming even easier.

I think I had a little too much fun with the hybrid controller, and spent more time playing around with it like a Transformer, taking it apart and putting it back together on the tablet attachment. It was well designed, very simple to use, and had a good size and weight to it. I had a chance to play a few mobile games on it which included a few action, racing and FPS games. It worked with perfect response and ease. The qwerty controller is a nice addition to avoid going back and forth on your screen, but it does take some getting used to.

The L.Y.N.X. 9 Mobile Hybrid Controller offers 30 hours of nonstop gameplay via a rechargeable battery and retails for $299.99. It includes the detachable controller, built-in microphone, qwerty keyboard, 7″ tablet attachment, smartphone attachment and is available for pre-order now.

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For the PC gamer who likes more flexibility and control, we saw the new R.A.T. Pro X. It’s designed to give gamers more control when it comes to the gaming wheel. Incorporating Modular Sensor Units (MSU), gamers will be given a whole line of options thanks to a flexible and adjustable wheel that gives players the ability to customize their gameplay style. The R.A.T. Pro X will be available this Spring.

IMG_2560Another popular Mad Catz line is the Tritton headphone series. At CES Mad Catz was showcasing the new TRITTON Swarm Wireless Mobile Headset, which comes in four different metallic finishes. Made to work with your Bluetooth devices, the Swarm can pair with up to two different devices. The Swarm will recognize incoming calls if being used by another device and will switch over, allowing for a seamless connection, and switch back over to the connected device after.

Since the Swarm can be used anywhere on the go, it features a rechargeable battery that can last up to 20 hrs. It also uses Advanced aptX technology to eliminate lip sync issues found in other Bluetooth headsets when watching movies. This is great for all your devices, and the TRITTON Swarm Wireless Mobile Headset is already available to purchase.

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Finally before our time was over we had a chance to get some time on the Oculus Rift at the Madcatz suite. They were showing Elite: Dangerous, a AAA PC title that is set in space as you travel the final frontier. Your mission is to explore new worlds….okay a little off but not really since the game allows you to explore, mine, search and even face off against other enemy ships. It was pretty amazing especially with the Oculus. It was a bit tricky getting used to the controls at first, since I was using the Saitek Pro Flight X-55 Rhino H.O.T.A.S. System for the first time.

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It was a pretty exciting experience, and once you get down the controls and get lost in the vastness of space, you can really enjoy it. Personally I can’t wait to have my very own Oculus in the future, and being able to enjoy the complete experience with controls added to the realness of flying.

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