Posted on June 20, 2012, CJ Miozzi Mek-Fu: The Craziest Gaming Peripheral Ever
Call it coincidence or call it corporate espionage, but two mech-game peripherals were unveiled at E3 2012: Razer’s Artemis, and the Mek-Fu by the new kid on the block, Ripleigh.
While the Artemis was designed for MechWarrior Online, the Mek-Fu was designed for the upcoming indie mech game Hawken, and features two joysticks, a custom keyboard with all manner of extra buttons, and USB slots to plug in tablets or smartphones.
The toggle switches, the dials, the dual joysticks, the hazard stripes, the army green paint job, the thick cables… This beast looks like a piece of military equipment, and it would make an impressive addition to any hardcore gamer’s desktop. It does take up a ton of real estate and may not be practical for the average gamer, but Ripleigh is clearly targeting a very specific audience.
Speaking with Game Front, Ripleigh CEO Yisheng Chen explained how the Mek-Fu differs from Razer’s Artemis, which includes a built-in screen:
“The Mek Fu Controller is designed to be played with a USB connection to PC, Tablets and more. So we also have a tablet holder to help with that set up. You’ll see a render with and without the tablet. Naturally, the tablet does not come with the controller. Here is where our direction was different from Razer’s in that we felt that most of us have already invested in a smart phone and a tablet, so why not make use of that rather than creating one more screen for this controller.”
Like Razer, Ripleigh is still unsure about pricing, although a figure of $200-$250 was being posited for the Mek-Fu. The model seen in these pictures has not officially been declared the final design, but Yisheng Chen expects the final product to be “pretty damn close to this.”
I’d love to see an alternate model with a more grungy, battle-worn paint job.