The Xbox 360 and the Playstation 3 have been
lacking in terms of peripherals for die-hard fighting game fans to emulate the
arcade experience. To commemorate the release of Soul Calibur IV for both PS3
and 360, Namco Bandai and Hori, a well-known and respected Japanese video game
accessory company, teamed up to bring fighting enthusiasts the Fighting Stick
EX 2 Soul Calibur IV Limited
Licensed by Namco Bandai and both Microsoft and
Sony for their respective releases, the Fighting Stick EX 2 sports two separate
looks for each consoles port; the Xbox
360 model featuring a more angelic tone with Siegfried, Hilde and Ivy gracing
the cover; and the PS3 rocking a darker tone with Hilde, Mitsurugi and
The only true difference between the two console
incarnations besides artwork is the PS3 version having three turbo buttons
while the 360 version does not.
With Hori being a Japanese company, the stick has
a more contemporary arcade look with the rounded lollipop-styled control stick
and the buttons lined in a downward arc. While this may be a turn-off to some
gamers because of the more American-styled arcade cabinets, the stick still
does fighting games justice.
The FS EX2 is very durable. Accuracy and response
time for the stick is spot on; no delays were experienced during testing. One
interesting perk with this arcade stick is the fact that it clicks with every
input; while it may sound like an annoyance, this isnt as much of a nuisance
as it is a plus.
Any fighter striving for perfection when trying to
pull of complicated combos or chain moves will love the fact that they can
audibly track their directional movements as they go along. The sound isnt
loud enough to actually interfere with the gameplay, but it is loud enough to
let the gamers know what they are doing.
The controller is wired, and this may be a
downside to those of us who have been spoiled with the recent wireless
innovations of the current generation systems. The stick comes with an ample
amount of cord, so it shouldnt be too much of a problem. At least purchasing
batteries wont be a worry.
For those fighting game fans that long for the day
of the arcade, this is probably the closest youll get for a reasonable price. In
this case you get quite a bit more bang for your buck. With the natural
advantage of utilizing multiple inputs and a price tag of $60, no fighting game
fan should pass this up. This stick is exactly like what you would find in an
The only two possible cons noted with this release
from Hori is the fact that its a wired controller and you cant use it for
much else past fighting games. Its a stick made specifically for Soul Calibur IV and
other fighting game releases, so this really shouldnt be much of an issue.
With so many new fighting games on the way in
upcoming months – Tekken 5, Street Fighter IV, King of Fighters XII, and Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, just to name a few – this stick is a must have, especially if you enjoy high-end products at a low-end price.Here is a user “unboxing” video we found – check it out for yourself: