One of the things that has really been holding back iOS devices from being legitimate gaming platforms is the lack of a comfortable control interface. Sure, touchscreens have worked for gaming in the past, most memorably in the Nintendo DS, but you also have to remember that was in a context were there were also tactile buttons. Plenty of iOS games emulate joysticks on screen, but that takes up visual space and provides no feedback. This is a pretty serious problem, but it looks like 60beat is striving for a solution.
60beat has introduced a GamePad for iOS devices, something iOS for what gamers have been clamoring for ages. Now, the controller isn’t wireless, like you might expect a controller to be in this day and age, but instead attaches via the headphone jack in a weird, but convenient twist. The GamePad has all the bells and whistles your average controller does: 2 analog sticks, shoulder buttons, a D-pad. Also, by virtue of not being wireless, it doesn’t need any batteries and instead draws power from the device it’s plugged into. No telling how many games will actually start supporting this thing, but it’s in the platform’s best interest to embrace this sort of peripheral if it wants to be taken seriously for games. You can pick up one of these bad boys at 60beat for a cool $49.99.
Too late for the holidays, but a fun way to enjoy those new Grand Theft Auto ports they have coming to iPhones and iPads.