Actual Gameplay And Our Rating
Once we got past the technical jargon and ergonomics, we wanted to find out how it really fared in first person shooters. What better way than to pack up the equipment and head on out for a 32-hour, non-stop LAN party called Nor'Easter 2005. With a Belkin Nostromo SpeedPad on our left and the PistolMouse FPS on our right, the stage was all set for making a name for ourselves in the gaming world. Originally, the buttons took some getting used to, most notably the secondary trigger. Trying to grip the lower trigger while simultaneously squeezing the upper one was a bit troublesome. It also took some time to adjust to the primary trigger's pull. After being accustomed for years to tap on a mouse button, it took some re-training of the finger muscles to want to pull the trigger and even more training to do so rapidly. This smoothed out quickly, however, and we began to feel right at home in Unreal Tournament 2004 and Doom 3.
Just to see what would happen on the other side of the spectrum, we tried using the PistolMouse with standard Windows applications. Almost everything responded exactly as if we were using a standard mouse, with double-clicking being the sole exception. The speed required to register the double-click was difficult to steadily reproduce. As long as you're not concerned with a few odd stares around the office, the PistolMouse works as a quick substitute or addition to exisiting pointing device.
The PistolMouse FPS from MonsterGecko is that one-of-a-kind controller that finds itself in a place where many have come before and failed for one reason or another. All one needs to do is look back at Microsoft's ill-fated Sidewinder Strategic Commander or Dual Strike devices to find controllers that offered something different, but failed to win over the consumer. Fortunately, the PistolMouse does everything fairly well. The PistolMouse is ergonomically sound and shouldn't end up in the heap of discarded controllers, although the conversion process from standard mouse to PistolMouse may put off all but the hardcore gamer. Those willing to endure a slight learning curve will find it an ergomically sound, precision instrument that not only looks the part, but holds up its end on the virtual battlefields.
We're giving the MonsterGecko PistolMouse FPS a '9' on the HotHardware Heat Meter for it's performance and ergonomics.