Gamevice allows you to enjoy console-style gaming, in the palms of your hands.
I have been a fan of video games since the original NES, progressing through the consoles to the Xbox One and the Switch. With three children, a full-time job, and numerous hobbies, sitting at home and playing console games has become more of a delicacy than a regular occurrence. Unfortunately, even the Nintendo Switch has become a little harder to lug around with all of the other family gear. There are two devices, however, that are nearly always with me, my iPhone X and my IPad Air 2 or my iPad Pro 10.5″. These devices often provide my gaming fix in between activities.
While touring the Las Vegas Convention Center, at CES 2018, I had the pleasure of talking with Areana with Gamevice. This year at the convention, Gamevice showcased their latest versions of the portable gaming controller for the iPhone X, iPad Pro 10.5″ and Samsung S8/S8+/Note 8 devices. The idea behind the technology appears to be based on two main factors. Firstly, our smartphones are always with us and secondly, the newer devices are powerful enough to rival gaming consoles. If you have ever experienced thumb or wrist pain after a session of virtual joystick iOS gaming, you immediately understand the need for a Gamevice. I know that I am not alone in preferring a functional D-Pad and the tactile sensation of an actual thumbstick. Retailing at $79.95, the smartphone version of Gamevice is available for purchase from their website gamevice.com, Apple Stores, Amazon, BestBuy, TMobile and a few other retail establishments. If you have an older lightning charging iPhone or even an Android phone, the $79.95 price point is the standard price for their phone sized controllers (except for the Galaxy S7/S7 Edge at $49.95).
For those of us who prefer tablet gaming to smartphone gaming, Gamevice has a device for you as well. The iOS tablet version of Gamevice is the bigger brother to the smartphone controller. It provides a similar experience to the smartphone version but is designed specifically for the larger devices. There is not a universal feel to this setup as each of the devices is designed to enhance your tablet/phone. There are currently Gamevice models for the iPad Mini 1-4, iPad 9.7 inch, iPad 10.5 inch and 12.5-inch tablets for $99.95. If you navigate to the Gamevice website, you can also purchase game bundles for the Gamevice system (Streetfighter version, Walking Dead version) which includes the game, customizable skins and a $5 iTunes gift card to download a game. The system is not Bluetooth and therefore does not suffer from latency or lag. Each Gamevice controller plugs into the charging port of the smart device and then wraps around your phone for stability.
The controller is only half of the Gamevice experience, however. Downloading the Gamevice Live app, you will see a list of multiple supported games: Minecraft: story Mode-Season One or Two, Street Fighter IV champion Edition, The Walking Dead: A New Frontier, War Wings, Minecraft PE, Marvel Contest of Champions, Final Fantasy IX, Riptide Renegade, Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, GTA: Liberty City Stories, a variety of Lego games, and Sonic the Hedgehog and Modern Combat Versus. There are multiple free options to download/play but many of the games may require a fee to download from the App stores. As noted above, the popular device truly enhances the mobile gaming experience. With the release of multiple retro Sega Genesis games, Gamevice has struck nostalgia gold. I look forward to testing and reviewing the iPhone and iPad versions of Gamevice.