Eagle Eye Delivers Mouselook for PS3, or Does It?

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There have been many attempts to fake mouse and keyboard for consoles, but Penguin United’s Eagle Eye is the first of its kind for PS3. While the PS3 supports keyboard and mouse controls for certain games, the vast majority of first-person shooters (besides Unreal Tournament 3) opt for a controller-only, even playing field. This is where the Eagle Eye comes in, mapping the movements of the right analogue stick to the movements of a mouse. Does it work? Read on to find out.

Before you get started with the Eagle Eye, there’s a bit of set-up. This set-up could already be the deal breaker for a lot of people, as it requires a Windows PC. In order to map the differing control schemes of PS3 games to the Eagle Eye, you need to plug it into your PC and run a program off of the included disc. The program is easy to use, but only allows you to map two control schemes to the Eagle Eye. If you juggle multiple games, you may find yourself coming back to this program often.

One of the more interesting features of the Eagle Eye and the included control mapping program is the ability to set up combos. While the kinds of the games that Eagle Eye is intended for don’t really rely on complex inputs, the interface for mapping combos is simple and intuitive. You can map an input, say a fireball motion, down to the millisecond. We’d honestly be more concerned for the ways you could exploit Street Fighter IV with the Eagle Eye than we would Modern Warfare 2.

Which brings us to the real question. How well does the Eagle Eye work with your favourite first-person shooters? The answer is that it depends. A good test is to ask yourself how well the game controls to begin with. We tested games like Killzone 2 and Battlefield Bad Company, games that already have herky-jerky aiming, and found that the Eagle Eye only made matters worse. With a game like Uncharted 2, which has buttery-smooth, but deliberately slow aiming, the Eagle Eye didn’t help much either. It felt like wading the mouse through tar.

It seems like there’s one game series the Eagle Eye was designed for, and that’s Call of Duty. The series has two things going for it, the best first-person shooter controls on the PS3, and the ability to jack up the sensitivity of those controls to unreasonable levels. This makes the Eagle Eye and say, Modern Warfare 2, an apparent match made in heaven.

Could the Eagle Eye give you the edge?

You’ll still have to play around with the controls a bit to get something ideal but compared to most of the games we tested, the Eagle Eye with Modern Warfare 2 was the most impressive. That said, this is still a device that takes data from analogue stick controls, so there’s still a small degree of floatiness. You can make quick turns and aim more precisely at higher sensitivity levels, but we wouldn’t go as far as saying you can aim more precisely overall.

Even in the most ideal circumstances, the Eagle Eye doesn’t hold a candle to the precision of proper mouse-look controls. In PC shooters, the experience of aiming in FPS games is pitch-perfect, precise, and intuitive across the board. Using the Eagle Eye is, ironically, closer to using an analogue stick, in that the subtle drift you’ll feel gives the experience of using the Eagle Eye a tricky learning curve.

While the Eagle Eye works pretty well with the most popular online shooter out there, it’s still not necessarily worth it. You’ll have to ask yourself if the device is for you. If you’re weaned on PC shooters, the Eagle Eye is sure to frustrate almost as much as a controller will. If you’re already used to a controller, you should probably just stick with what you know. If you’re not a Call of Duty player, your game of choice isn’t guaranteed to work well at all.

In all honesty, the only player we can imagine getting enjoyment out of the Eagle Eye is someone looking for an edge over the online competition. We can see a dedicated person putting the time in to learn the quirks of the Eagle Eye in order to play the game at a high sensitivity, but we also don’t envy the hours of practice it’d require.

For the games it’s meant for, the Eagle Eye doesn’t work as you’d expect – and maybe that’s a good thing; the idea of needing a mouse and keyboard to stay competitive in a console game is a bit unsettling. But it’s still the kind of peripheral we can see being useful for someone, even if they aren’t exactly using it as intended.

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Written by Joe D

Inspired by a love for obscure Sega Saturn games in the 90s, Joe is pretty much open to anything gaming has to offer. What he looks for in a game: creativity and strong design, or sometimes just an overwhelming sense of style.

2 comments

  1. KrazyFace /

    Hrmm, now all I need them to make is a PS3-pad-to-PC adapter!!!

  2. chris /

    cant get the aiming to work for black ops. the gun wont go into and aim. it starts to glitch.

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