Product Review: The Claw

The Claw
Manufacturer: Ferraro Design

PC games, on a whole, still kick the shit out of console games. As impressive as the Xbox looks, it can’t hold up to a P4 – 1.7 with a G4 graphics card for true detail. So while the world watches the GameBoxStation wars, I’ll stick to my PC’s superior experience and higher level of gaming. The ONLY thing I do miss about my button squashing days of my last console (regular Nintendo, I’m old-shool boyee) is the simplicity of control. Joysticks are offered for PC’s, but tend to be fragile and limited as PC games usually offer triple the keyboard strokes needed for game input than easily configured handheld peripherals. Most PC gamers will know all too well the ‘fine tuning’ of binds to your keyboard to make your game play more efficient and improving your performance. That fine tuning usually consists of multiple trips from the game to the options configuration to assign game actions to various keyboard keys.

Enter The Claw.

A brilliant melding of concept and design execution, this addition to your PC gaming should pretty much eliminate the need for a keyboard.
With an easy to follow interface, one can program The Claw’s buttons to correspond to your games keyboard settings, letting you smoothly control most any game with your left hand on The Claw and your right hand on your mouse. Your keyboard isn’t usually needed. Shaped nicely into a relaxed hand mode, your fingers naturally fall into a position to easily access The Claw’s 10 buttons. And with up to any 4 buttons being allowed to act as a ‘shift’ button, that equals up to 30 button assignments. And for the advanced gamer, The Claw even allows multiple keystrokes to be programmed and bound to execute with a single button push.

RPG games (role playing games) seem to be the best match for the claw. These games normally have a large number of keyboard commands to manage inventory, maps, primary and secondary weapon/actions, spells, character movement, etc and can have a player endlessly scanning his keyboard to manipulate the game. The Claw easily takes all those commands and puts them at your fingertips.

One complaint, I couldn’t get it to accept Counter-Strike binds. Not sure if it’s due the large amount of anti-cheat programming that has gone into recent upgrades, or the games highly customizable binds on the programming level that don’t allow The Claw to work on this particular game, but it worked flawlessly with all the other games I tried with it. (Dungeon Siege, Operation Flashpoint, Castle Wolfenstein, Hostile Waters: Anteaus Rising, Vampire-The Masquerade and Duke Nukem (old school)) and am looking forward to running it on Soldier of Fortune II.

Personally, I still use my keyboard for some of the FPS (First Person Shooters, like Counter-Strike and Castle Wolfenstein) as a) I’ve spent godless amount of hours ‘honing’ my cat-like skills with precision on a keyboard, and to use anything else, feels awkward and slows down my skillz (although I’m sure one would adjust soon enough if they only utilized The Claw) and b) FPS games just don’t use that many keyboard binds to really get THAT much of an advantage. Although for more command intensive FPS games like Operation Flashpoint, The Claw is the only way to go.
Overall, for the PC game, I highly recommend and exclusively use The Claw.

“ Deadly moves have never been this easy.”