GameKlip: Turn your Cell Phone into a Game Console - This 8-Bit Life
Mobile gaming, whatever you may think of it, is a pretty big deal right now. There are tons of great games for almost any cell phone imaginable and even some wildly successful franchises but, sadly some genres simply do not translate well to a touch screen experience. Play any FPS on your cell phone and you will see what I mean. It’s not usually a terrible experience, but it’s not really good either. If you’ve ever loaded up an emulator on your phone (ya know, for all those legit rom backups) and tried to play a game using overlayed touch controls then I feel your pain and frustration.
Enter the GameKlip.
This is a very simple product. What you get for your $15 is essentially just a lasercut piece of bent ABS plastic that attaches to a standard PS3 controller, which is actually better than it sounds. The mount is easy enough to install in a matter of seconds though attaching it can take a bit of patience as the plastic will be stiff on your first go. One of the benefits of it being made from ABS is the sturdiness you feel once it’s attached. I was intentionally rough with the GameKlip while testing it and was pleasantly surprised that I never saw my phone so much as loosen.
To connect my phone to the PS3 controller I used a micro USB-to-USB A adapter, otherwise known as a USB OTG adapter. In case you’re wondering you can find thes on Amazon for like $1. If you’ve rooted your particular device then using the PS3 controller via Bluetooth is quite easy, though it will require an app from the Android Market called Sixaxis Controller. Luckily the GameKlip has a well placed port to accommodate most USB cables.
Once connected everything feels quite comfortable. You get the familiarity of a console controller and the portability of an (albeit bulky) handheld.
I really do like this product for what it is; simple and effective. What I don’t like is the price; for $15 I would really have expected something like a locking hinge for adjusting viewing angles. I did find a few instances where glare from a nearby light would interfere with my experience and I would have really preferred to tilt the screen rather than my wrists. This would not have been difficult to implement or costly for that matter.
The only other gripe I have, and it is a minor one, is that when resting on the table the whole unit can tend to be a bit unstable, especially with a heavier phone. I honestly can’t think of a viable design solution for this and to be fair, you would likely not leave your phone docked in the clip when done playing.
I was very pleased with this mobile gaming solution. It made playing through Megaman X2 and Shadowgun quite a bit of fun and much easier on the go. The price could certainly use a bit of a tweak; I can’t see any reason why this product couldn’t sell for $8 and still make a tidy profit. And honestly, $15 dollars for something I could cut out on a laser cutter myself for $5 in material feels a lot like prohibitive cost. That being said, I am not most consumers.
If you’re looking for a comfortable way to play games on your cell phone I would definitely recommend this product.