Gamers are always looking to enhance the way they play games, whether it be on their PC with multiple screens or on their consoles, using state-of-the-art wireless gaming headsets. If you’re an avid gamer like me then you’ve probably at somepoint during your gaming life considered buying a gaming chair.
I have now had the pleasure of playing with the latest gaming chair on the retail market – the 4Gamers Interactive Gaming Chair.
I first had the opportunity to test out a prototype of the 4Gamers Interactive Gaming Chair during my visit to their offices back in January 2012. Needless to say, I was impressed. A few months down the line, back in July, I was offered another opportunity to play with the Interactive Gaming Chair, I just couldn’t turn an opportunity like this down. After spending some quality time with this newly launched product, I have collected my thoughts below on whether it really is something special.
The chair itself is packed full of technological goodness. Before we look into detailed specifications, here’s the lowdown on what you’re expecting from the gaming worlds newest arrival:
- Quad Motor Vibration System (QMVS)
- Built in 2.1 stereo speaker and sub-woofer system
- 30% larger than conventional gaming chairs
- Easy access control panel
- Black fine soft velour cloth, smooth leatherette fabric finished off with a flash of red piping
- Padded comfort with a raised head rest
- Accessory pockets
- Fold away design to store when you’re not using it
- 4Gamers COMM-PLAY Stereo Gaming Headset compatibility
- PlayStation®Vita compatible
The Quad Motor Vibration System (QMVS)
Vibration or Rumble as it’s known on gaming pads, make games feel extra special. When the PS3® was first launched, we had to make do with Sixaxis controllers. We moaned and complained about how we missed our Dualshock gaming pads and then a few years down the line we were given the Dualshock 3 controllers. Everyone was happy. However, let me pose a question – Why just limit yourself with vibration/rumble on your gaming pad?
4Gamers have thought long and hard about how to give you, the gamer, a completely different and unique gaming experience, to move away from just the pad, and this has definitely been reflected in their latest product – the Interactive Gaming Chair.
Imagine you’re currently sat in a chair, relaxed whilst your copy of Battlefield 3, MotorStorm Apocalypse (or which ever game you’re currently into) is booting up. You’re on the menu choosing your preferred choice of gaming mode and then you’re in the game. You’re thrown onto the battlefield/waiting at the starting line on the race track, the game starts and from the first second on the QMVS kicks in. All of a sudden you’re feeling intense vibration from under your legs then slowly moving throughout your body.
The tank is near and moving across you; you feel it’s presence all over your body. You’re speeding down the track with your opponents trying to overtake you; you feel the road and your opponents presence next to you.
You can define the sensitivity of the QMVS using the dial located in the control panel. If you wish to pick up every little bit of movement then crank it up to max, or if you’re only looking to pick up certain movement set the dial to a lower setting. You’re still likely to experience high quality vibration at a lower setting. There will be rare occasions when you would notch up that vibration dial to max unless you’re looking to make a saving on your local masseuse, opting for an intense back massage using the chair.
2.1 Stereo Speaker & Sub-Woofer System
A gaming experience isn’t complete unless you’ve got a surround sound system in place with that sub-woofer cranked up to maximum, making your neighbours china teaset shake off its shelf.
The Interactive Gaming Chair’s 2.1 Speaker System and Sub-Woofer not only cranks up the gaming experience by 10 fold, it helps immerse you into your gaming world by knocking out those little sounds you normally wouldn’t hear through your TV. To test an alternative game, I booted up a copy of Buzz! and decided to see how this game felt compared to your normal FPS/Racing games and let me tell you – I actually felt like I was in a television studio taking part in a gameshow. This was certainly different when compared to playing the game with a gaming headset on. My room was suddenly transformed due to the crisp sounds coming out from each speaker, located nicely around each shoulder.
If you don’t have a surround sound system in your house then the Interactive Gaming Chair more than satisfyingly fill that void.
I certainly cannot complain about the build quality of the chair. It looks and feels solid. The soft velour cloth with a smooth leatherette fabric finish feels very comfortable, and it still feels comfortable after a few hours worth of gaming. The finish makes the chair look very sleek and the red piping just tops it all off. 4Gamers have definitely given plenty of thought into the design of this product by considering how the chair’s aesthetics would appeal to gamers and what it has to offer.
Storage can also be a concern when looking to purchase a product such as this, and 4Gamers have already thought this through by making the chair foldable, allowing you to easily push it into the cupboard under the stairs, or into a corner of the room where it is out of the way.
Easy Access Control Panel
The controls are superbly placed on the right hand side of the chair so you don’t have to reach far if you want to adjust the vibration, volume and bass levels while you’re mowing down your enemy. If your pad is running out of power, you don’t need to plug it into the PS3® or the mains in order to recharge – simply plug your pad into the USB ports supplied on your chair and carry on gaming!
You’re also provided with an audio out port, which works great if you’d like to put on some non-gaming headphones (or the COMM-PLAY Stereo Gaming Headset if you have one) to give everyone around you some peace and quiet, although the headphones are plugged in, the chair still provides you with QMVS feedback.
Last but not least, you have the audio in which obviously used to connect your chair to your PS3® using cables similar to ones you would normally get with a gaming headset and a power-in socket for mains power.
With this being a SONY Licensed product, it would have been a major let down if the chair was not compatible with the PlayStation®Vita. 4Gamers certainly didn’t miss a trick there at all! The chair works flawlessly with SONY’s prized portable.
Regardless of the game you’re playing, the QMVS reacts as and when it needs to in order to give you a fantastic gaming experience.
Overall Thoughts About The Product
The 4Gamers Interactive Gaming Chair is most certainly a premium product hence it comes with a serious pricetag. Although the pricetag may be offputting for some, most gamers may look at making the jump and I can assure you they certainly won’t be disappointed.
Solidly built, the Interactive Gaming Chair enhances the gaming experience as promised.
4Gamers deserve all the plaudits for designing a superb product, one that has been sorely missed on the PS3® since launch. You can see more photos of the 4Gamers Interactive Gaming Chair below, taken by yours truly.
Where To Buy An Interactive Gaming Chair
Currently retailing in the UK for £199, the 4Gamers Interactive Gaming Chair is exclusively available at Argos, with more UK retailers to be announced at a later date. If you’re in the EU or Australia, the 4Gamers Interactive Gaming Chair is also available in your region, with the Australian retailers EBGames currently taking pre-orders priced at $398 AUD.
If you’re based in the US, Canada or Latin America, worry not, 4Gamers will also be bringing this chair to a store near you very soon! Keep an eye on their website (www.4gamers.net), or follow @4GamersElite on twitter for future announcements.
Games Tested On The Interactive Gaming Chair
Battlefield 3 (PS3®)
MotorStorm Apocalypse (PS3®)
FIFA Football (PlayStation®Vita)
Uncharted: Golden Abyss (PlayStation®Vita)
Please note: The 2 speaker mesh on either side of the shoulder were silver on the prototype model. The final retail release model comes with black mesh over the speakers.
|QMVS - It does exactly what it says on the tin.|
2.1 Surround Sound and Sub-Woofer System.
Foldable - for those who wish to put it away safely until next use.
|Overall cost of the product.|
This review is based on a prototype product provided by 4Gamers (A4T).
Written by: Madagasca
- News Contributor