Since there are hundreds of different types of iOS-compatible accessories, it’s hard to imagine that there’s no accessory that someone might need. As it turns out, there is. Game controllers are one of those accessories which are being showed off to the press and public, but never really reached their final production phase. There are a lot of reasons for this, and many obstacles to overcome. The good news is that the newest iPhone generation as well as the newest iOS version are making it possible for this hardware to exist, and this is why several very interesting game controllers are going to be introduced to the market in the following months.
The first one that already appeared comes from a company called MOGA, and it’s named Ace Power. In case you like following Apple-related tech news, than you’ve probably already heard about this accessory, which made some hype amongst iOS gamers. Continue reading this article to see if Ace Power lives up to its high expectations and promises.
Just like you would expect, Ace Power is designed to move on-screen controls away from the screen and onto plastic buttons. While creating this game controller, MOGA needed to work with Apple in order to make a device which complies with the official design guidelines. This is why you’ll be able to see one analog joypad on the left end, and the one on right end along with four colored buttons. As you can see from the pictures, there are also several small buttons located on both ends. These buttons offer functions like pause, sleep/wake, battery life check and similar. There are also several “shoulder buttons”, where you’ll be able to find lock system which keeps the phone in its place inside this controller. What I also need to say that even though this hardware piece is nicely designed, I wonder about its build quality since it doesn’t seem too strong. In fact, it feels hollow inside.
What’s interesting to note is that even though this controller is priced at $100, which is more expensive than wireless Xbox and Playstation controllers, this one isn’t wireless. In fact, it uses the Lightning plug to connect to your phone. In order to properly place a phone inside this plastic body, you’re going to need a proper plastic insert. You’ll find two black plastic inserts which support the iPhone 5/5S, and there’s thicker orange pair made for the iPod Touch (4th generation). If you leave out all the inserts you’ll be able to place your iPhone 5C. These are all the iOS devices that are supported.
When it comes to performance, this is a very problematic area. I’ve tested MOGA Ace Power with multiple high-end games which really need a game controller to get the most out of them. In over 80% of tested games I’ve had serious connection problems. It seems that the Lightning plug doesn’t perfectly fit the port on the phone. This causes some problems while playing the game, even though I not really sure that this is the root of this problem. Most of the games did have connectivity issues, and there a lot of those who failed even to recognize this device. Just a few worked perfectly right.
Even though I really liked the idea of Ace Power in the beginning, its performance made me very unsatisfied. This is why I would recommend waiting until other controllers arrive, since this one will cause many problems and worries. It’s also highly priced, which is another thing to concern.