Razer loves to steal the show. Every CES, there's some crazy new project from the gaming hardware company. Apparently their longtime rival Mad Catz was having enough of that, because they pulled out all the freaking stops this year.
See those four gamepads in the picture above? Not quite. You're actually looking at four different configs of a single bonkers tranforming gamepad: the $300 Mad Catz L.Y.N.X. 9.
It folds up nice and small to drop right into your bag...
...with a removable spring-loaded clip for smartphone gaming on the go.
Pull out the two metal arms and rotate out the analog sticks, and they lock right into place. It turns into a pretty sizeable gamepad....
...complete with an optical touchpad and mouse buttons at the top to control your PC, media playback functions, and a microphone at the bottom to send voice commands to your Amazon Fire TV or Android TV devices. The analog sticks feel good, the buttons feel good, the D-pad's okay, and it's got real (if shallow) analog triggers too.
You can also snap in a pair of grip extenders for a little more volume...
...or snap in a full miniature QWERTY keyboard (a rubbery membrane one, sadly) to complete the ultimate controller for your living room gaming PC.
But wait, there's more: press the eject button in the center of that gamepad to remove both arms...
...and connect them to a giant grip for any 7-inch tablet.
All of this in a single $300 kit designed for just about every gaming situation—oh, including an HDMI cable to hook up your mobile device to your TV. Mad Catz says the controller will get up to 30 hours of battery life on a charge.
What's that, you say? Real gamers use mouse and keyboard? Then feast your eyes on a mouse that's nearly as crazy as that gamepad: the R.A.T. Pro X.
If you've never seen a R.A.T. mouse before, the first thing you need to know is that they can be adjusted to fit your hands. You can replace the side panels with larger ones, pull out the palmrest, or swap it with a raised one for a different style of grip.
But this time, you can also swap out the laser sensor. Mad Catz has built modular sensor modules that pop right into the frame. One dual-eye laser, one fan-favorite laser, and a trusty optical sensor if you're old-school like that. Mad Catz plans to release more after launch, to make this mouse futureproof.
And how about swappable mouse feet? Switch out your teflon toes for some ceramic at the drop of a hat.
Okay, now we're getting fancy: the Pro X has a scroll wheel that lifts right out of the mouse with its own independent optical sensor and a mechanism where you can actually ratchet up the torsion to determine how much effort each notch requires to click. And swap out the rubber wheel surface for an included metal one too.
Fancier still: the entire wheel is on an analog rocker so it doesn't just click when you press it to the left and right, it can emulate an analog joystick. Imagine circle-strafing your enemies with your mouse alone.
There's so much more: a pinky hook on the right side so you can lift the mouse up off your mousing surface for more maneuverability. The ability to tilt the palmrest up to 15 degrees left or right for a more ergonomic grip on the mouse. Fancy materials like a superhydrophobic coating on the mouse buttons to reduce sweat buildup, a magnesium alloy frame for lighter weight, and a carbon fiber thumbrest because carbon fiber looks fucking cool.
No price on this sucker, but it should ship in Q2. The gamepad's out in March.