Razer's 360 fight stick getting closer to reality

by: John -
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Razer's been trying to develop an Xbox 360 arcade fightstick with the help of the community. Well, they have announced that the stick is in the extended beta testing phase right now and it looks pretty interesting..

The stick was announced at last year's Tokyo Game Show and since then, 13 designs have been developed. With 10 buttons that are interchangeable along with a changeable 8 way joystick, the arcade stick is made to let real hardcore fighting game players customize it to suit their playing styles. You can even change the top panel and I hope you can submit a design to be produced for you when the stick eventually ships.

Because fighting sticks can take a beating, Razer's going to include extra parts and the stick itself has a compartment to let you store these items as well. 

Finally, a 2.5mm audio jack will be included so that you can use the headset to chat with your friends while playing.

Still no word on when they are going to release it or any pricing, but it's starting to take final shape and I know a few fighting fans are excited about this one.

200 Gamers and Modders from the Fighting Game Community to Validate v13 Prototype of Razer’s Arcade Stick for the Xbox 360
TOKYO (Tokyo Game Show 2012) - Sept. 20, 2012 – RazerTM, the world leader in high-performance gaming hardware, today announced that its highly anticipated Razer Arcade Stick for Xbox 360 is now in the extended stages of beta testing.
First announced at Tokyo Game Show in 2011, the beta program now enters its second year and has spawned 13 iterations of the arcade stick. 200 gamers and modders from the fighting game community have been handpicked and equipped with the latest prototype unit, and with their feedback, will help develop the ultimate arcade stick.
This diverse pool of beta testers includes decorated pro-gamers such as Keita “Fuudo” Ai and Hiromiki “Itazan” Kumada – both Super Battle Opera, EVO and World Cyber Games veterans. Prominent modders the likes of Mike “PurpleArms” Cheng and Matthew “Gummowned” Gummo have also signed up with the beta to provide feedback to improve the arcade stick’s moddability.
The Razer Arcade Stick is a tournament-grade fighting machine built to enhance gaming performance. Premium quality Sanwa hardware—10  highly-responsive buttons and a precision eight-way joystick—allows instant and near-flawless strikes, game after game, with utmost responsiveness and reliability.
The Razer Arcade Stick was built for modders and tested by gamers - ranging from beginners to experts, with full platform accessibility for further modification of gamer preferences inside the unit. Users may also interchange the top panel with new designs showcasing favorite games, as well as switch the joystick and buttons to suit specific playing styles. An optional bat top joystick, two extra buttons, and a Phillips/flat-head screwdriver will be included to aid with compulsions to customize the Razer Arcade Stick.
The internal compartment of the Razer Arcade Stick has slots to store the detachable cable, as well as the extra components, so gamers are able bring everything they need for the controller on-the-go.
“Years of collective experience from pro-gamers and the Razer community are about to culminate in the development of the Razer Arcade Stick, the ultimate arcade stick for the Xbox 360,” said Robert “RazerGuy” Krakoff, president of Razer USA. “Engineered and refined to perfection with the help of the Razer community, the arcade stick stands out above the competition; it’s truly for gamers by gamers. We are now in the extended stages of beta testing, and I am extremely excited about the feedback and what will become the final product.”
Find out more and leave feedback about the Razer Arcade Stick over at http://www.razerzone.com/bredtofight.
Product Features
·       10 tournament-grade Sanwa buttons
·       Authentic Sanwa joystick with ball and bat tops
·       Interchangeable top plate allows for custom artwork finishes
·       Fully-accessible internals and storage compartments for easy modding
·       Honeycomb structure on the inside for easy screw mounting
·       Storage compartment for alternative bat top joystick
·       13 ft. /4 m detachable type-B USB cable
·       Phillips/flat-head screwdriver included for modding
·       2.5mm audio jack for headset use (Xbox 360)
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