The answer just may depend on how your system is set-up. Most people I know complain that they lose all “seat of the pants” feedback when it comes to car racing simulators and video games. With the introduction of Fanatec’s Porsche 911 Turbo Wheel, that objection may just go away.
Fanatec's Porsche 911 Turbo Wheel is an officially Porsche licensed product
Created by the German company Endor AG (That’s right, they are German too), the system artfully emulates a 911 Turbo wheel and much more.
According to a review by gamealmighty:
The wheel is comfortable to use and the perfect size for racing games. Many racing controllers come with wheels that look like they’re from a Fisher-Price toy, but the 911 Turbo Wheel is large enough to make subtle steering adjustments and won’t strain your arms even after hours of playing. If anything is going to make your arms tired, it’s the force with which the wheel will fight you on the default configuration. They weren’t kidding when they set out to make a great force feedback wheel, and the rumble and resistance in the 911 Turbo Wheel are some of the best I’ve ever found in a controller.
Combine the above mentioned advanced force feedback with 6 +1 H patterned gear shift, wireless, realistic clutch pedal with declining resistance and a pressure sensitive brake emulation and you have as close to “seat of the pants” feedback as a racing simulator can give you (unless you have the money and space to put something like this in your game room).
Lastly, for those of you wanna be Porsche owners, the Fanatec wireless USB receiver is built to look like a current Porsche key. I wouldn’t recommend putting it on your key ring as an attempt to pick up the ladies, but overall it’s a nice touch to start your racing experience by “turning your Porsche key” into your USB ignition on your PC or PS3.
The few cons that I am aware of with regard to this package:
- button on steering wheel are a bit flimsy
- shifter mounting solution could be a bit more sturdy
- you will need to reduce the force feed back if you use the wheel on your lap as the wings won’t hold it strongly enough
Cost for the Fanatec isn’t cheap, but neither is the experience. For $350 you get one of the best wireless controllers on the market. If you’re a real-world racer you get the added benefit of a life-like racing experience that may just give you that little extra edge next time your at the track. If it doesn’t, so what, you still have another great Porsche product to add to your collection.
In the coming weeks I’ll be doing a review of the many different driving games and simulators currently available. Let me know if there are any you want included.
List of Features:
• Original Porsche 911 Turbo steering wheel design
• Licensed by Porsche Lizenz- und Handelsgesellschaft mbH
• Compatible with PC and Playstation 3
• 6+1 speed H-pattern gear stick
• Additional sequential gear stick included
• Wireless pedals
• Realistic clutch pedal with declining resistance
• Pressure sensitive brake emulation with soft-stop
• Turning angle can be adjusted in the wheel to 900°, 360° or 180° or in 1° steps
• Table clamps or lap wings to play in the living room
• Illuminated button symbols switch automatically between PC and Playstation
• Mabuchi RS 550 Motor as used in RC cars for force feedback
• Two additional force feedback motors for rumble effects
• Tuning ability with built-in LED display