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Tuesday, August 8, 2000
Saitek's New Low-Cost Wheel
12:44 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

One genre of gaming that is experiencing a definite resurgence on the Mac platform is the driving game. With 4x4 Evolution,, Cro-Mag Racing and Driver on the way, Mac users are going to want a true wheel to play them with -- the keyboard just doesn't cut it. Peripheral manufacturer Saitek, makers of the Cyborg 3D joystick, have announced the R100 USB Racing Wheel, designed for both casual gamers and racing sim fans. With a low price tag and a small footprint, this wheel is attractive indeed:

Saitek Industries, a leader in PC gaming peripherals announces the R100 USB Racing Wheel. At the price point of just under $50, Saitek's new USB wheel provides superior engineering with a look and feel of most high-end priced racing wheels. The R100 has a USB (Universal Serial Bus) connection and is styled to appeal to the serious PC and Macintosh gamer with a price easy on the pocketbook. Designed with Saitek's advance ball cam mechanism, the new wheel will provide gamers with a stability not usually found in wheels, even expensive ones, built with flimsy rubber bands. The wheel offers two fire buttons and two gear paddles fully equipped with gas and brake pedals. It also has an easy-to-use clamping mechanism with a very small desk footprint, about 1/3 the size of the norm.

One feature of the ergonomically-styled round racing wheel that gamers will appreciate is the hardiness of the gas and brake pedal unit. Many gaming wheels are often plagued with flimsy pedals, but the R100 USB was designed with stability in mind. "Good quality racing wheels are difficult to find with a small budget," said Nicholas Gibbons, chief operating officer of Saitek in the United States. "Once gamers get their hands on the R100 USB, they will be amazed with the styling and the handling."

This wheel is currently available; it is not known whether there are Macintosh-specific drivers, but considering the excellent driver support for the Cyborg joystick this seems likely.

Besides the titles mentioned above, IMG is aware of at least one professional racing simulation which will be coming to the Mac OS; there are also several other possibilities. While it is to early to name these games, those who are pining for a serious sim rather than the console-type driving games we mentioned are in for a treat.

Cro-Mag Racing Screen Shots
Driver Preivew

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