E3 2011: Nyko

E3 2011: Nyko

In addition to all of the crazy games debuted at E3, gaming accessories are a must-see. From the larger, well-known companies to the smaller ones ready to make a big splash, you never know what surprises are in store. I was thrilled when I had to chance to book an appointment with Nyko, as I absolutely love the Charge Station for our 360 controllers, and was excited to see what goodies they had to show off.

Kicking my appointment off was a preview of the Zoom for Kinect. It pops right on to the front of the device and, to sum it up nicely, is a fish-eye lens allowing you to get 40% closer to the Kinect. For gamers who live in apartments or have smaller living rooms, this add-on is a definite must-have. When we picked up a Kinect we had to rearrange our entire living area and move all of our furniture into a larger room. Even then it still wasn’t enough and when we want to play we have to move a few things around. The Zoom even supports local multiplayer that still allows you to be closer than using the default Kinect distance in single player.

A great thing is that using the Zoom will not void the warranty for your Kinect. It’s also light-weight, requires no additional calibration, and comes in the same shiny black as the Kinect so it doesn’t look too obvious. The Zoom will be available on August 16th for a nice, low price of $29.99 and can be found at all major retailers and online.

For the 3DS owners, a few things were shown that hold a lot of promise. Currently available now is the Power Pak +. It extends the battery life, but most consumers are hestitant as it requires the existing 3DS battery cover to be unscrewed. Doing so does not void your 3DS warranty, though.

Coming soon in early September is the Game Boost. It snaps on to the lower right side of the 3DS and will give about 1-2 hours of battery life. The Game Boost is more of a emergency power source if you’re on a road trip or a long flight yet find yourself about to run out of battery and still have a ways to go. It uses the same charger as the 3DS, so no additional cables are included, and is a small, light-weight attachment. I had a chance to hold a 3DS with the Game Boost snapped on and it didn’t interfere with the handling at all and was rather comfortable. For only $13.99 it’s a heck of a deal.

Also coming early September is the Powergrip. This will retail for $29.99 and clicks on the bottom of the 3DS. It gives 3x the battery life, is able to stay attached to the 3DS while charging as the Powergrip and 3Ds battery juice up at the same time, and has the Nyko soft, rubberized finish. Another plus is that there are grooves in it that allow users to hold the entire device comfortably and are large enough for fingers to rest in.

Finally for the 3DS is the Shock n’ Rock. Like the Game Boost and Powergrip, the Shock n’ Rock will be coming in early September but will have the highest price point at $39.99. The Shock n’ Rock covers the entire device, providing excellent protection, and doesn’t add too much bulk or weight to the 3DS which will be great for younger gamers who have fairly small hands. So why is it titled the Shock n’ Rock? Well for starters it adds 4 speakers to the front, allowing you to really blast your game, and it also adds vibration. Another plus is that it has the same battery as the Powergrip, giving gamers a real deal here.

The last accessory shown was for PS3 owners, the Charge Base 3. This too will arrive early September and for only $24.99 this is a must-have. I admit, I was jealous when I saw this because at the time we didn’t own a PS3 but we do now and will proudly be picking this up on its release day. For that price you get the charger base and two dongles that clip on the top of the PS3 controller. When I first looked at the controller they had with the attachment I almost didn’t notice it there resting on the top, so it’s unobtrusive which is great as it’s meant to be left on all the time.

The Charger Base 3 works with the Dual Shock 3 controllers and all first party controllers, so compatibility won’t be an issue for most gamers. The best part of it all? At the top of the dongles are magnets that allow you to clip the controller onto the base and they just stay there, floating. It looks really cool.

It’s obvious Nyko had a strong showing at E3, featuring high quality and innovative products that are not only competitively priced but are sure to be a big hit with consumers. For more information on Nyko and their products, check out their official website!

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