When one thinks of 3D, one usually thinks about graphics, but this is not the case with Saitek. Using licensed technology from Sandio Technologies that was developed by NASA, Saitek will soon be releasing the first 3D mouse. I know what you are thinking, ?hardware is already 3-Dimentional.? This is true; however, Saitek takes this to the extreme creating a mouse with a Z axis.
Gamers will soon be able to play their favorite first person shooters, flight simulators, and racing games with only a mouse. The 3D mouse prototype we saw has three multi-directional buttons allowing for mapable movement of the in-game camera and character or vehicle motion simultaneously. Sandio calls this technology ?6 degrees of freedom.? The mouse, of course, also has forward and back buttons, a scroll wheel and the normal left and right buttons and a laser capable of 2000 dpi resolution to detect cursor movement. There is a lot going on with this mouse.
We tested out this new technology at Sandio Technologies? booth, which had a working demo of the mouse with Unreal Tournament 2006. Much of the mouse is the same as a normal gaming mouse, and we still took advantage of the keyboard/mouse combo for play as using just a mouse for play was much too innovative for our minds to wrap around. We were told the mouse has about a ten minute learning curve to master, and once you do, there is no going back. While no street date is set for the 3D mouse, gamers will want to keep their eyes open for this device from Saitek that may give them that extra edge on the competition. Sandio will offer a non-branded version of the mouse under the name Game O? for an MSRP of $79.99 this summer, available through Amazon.com and eBay.
Saitek is not stopping with the 3D mouse, though. They want to give gamers an edge, so coming this summer is their 3200 dpi resolution laser mouse called the GM 3200. This mouse is much like the G5 gamer mouse series from Logitech, but is capable of slightly higher resolutions, which is only able to reach 2000 dpi. The GM 3200 is capable of changing resolutions on the fly and can go as low as 800 dpi, which is the norm for office mice. The company is also releasing its Eclipse II keyboard and Pro Gamer Command Pad this summer.
This upcoming year looks like it will be full of new innovations for gamers on the mouse front. From mice capable of insane resolutions to the world?s first 3D gaming mouse, Saitek and Sandio technologies are making waves. If you are a hardcore gamer who desires an edge on the competition, it is time you were in the market for a new mouse.
» By Stephan Mack, Plain Games. Published 6/10/2006.