Coco Heads to Kickstarter as Mobile Controller Race Heats Up

Mon, Aug 13, 2012

Android, iPad, iPhone, Mobile, Windows Phone

Gamers must be hungry for more tactile experience with their smartphone. At least, that’s what the folks at Milkshake Labs are betting on. Just like the GameKlip that Frisky Mongoose reported on a few days ago, the Coco controller from Milkshake Labs aims to address to main concern of enthusiast gamers on the go: phone controls suck for traditional games.

The Coco isn’t the first smartphone controller to make waves on the Web, but it does bring some new things to the table. For starters, it’s the first controller – ever, incredibly — to be comapatible with iPhones, Windows Phones and a selection of Android devices. The controller itself includes a multi-axis directional pad, one analog stick, four action buttons, two triggers, and one button that presumably correlates to “Start.” The d-pad looks a bit imprecise with its round edge, and the analog stick looks like more of a nub, but it’s hard to judge the feel of a controller before it’s in your hands — just consider the awkward-looking but great-feeling PlayStation Vita. The Coco supports dual-screen play with an iPad or other compatible devices, which in theory could make for some vaguely Wii U-like experiences (savvy readers might point out that the Vita and PlayStation 3 can technically achieve the some thing.) That sort of functionality, along with the rest of the controller, might not be very relevant if Milkshake can’t get developers on board with the device. But according to the Coco’s rather inspirational Kickstarter page, the development team is adding more partners all the time.

Considering that iOS gamers have access to more software than can be found in the combined catalogs of every console in history, its important to make them all as playable as possible. Along with dozens of hardware designers big and small, the folks behind the Coco seem to understand that. Their Kickstarter, which launched today,  currently has 143 backers donating $6,885 out of a requested goal of $175,000.

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