Let’s be honest, console controllers suck when it comes to shooters. The precision of a mouse and keyboard are irreplaceable, and all the more so when it comes to the hardcore FPS gaming space. Well, that’s where Penguin United’s Eagle Eye PS3 Adapter comes in. It converts any standard USB HID Keyboard into a “replacement” controller for your PS3. And while it isn’t perfect, the Eagle Eye does make good on its advertised “unfair edge” moniker over other PS3 gamers.
Right out of the box, the Eagle Eye is nothing more than the small converter itself, the instructions and a dvd containing all the programs for customization. The Eagle Eye boasts a sleek design while also being extremely small, which makes it extremely simple to store when you aren’t using it. It also has a large USB cable to plug into the PS3 and, on the converter itself, has some turbo buttons to up your game when you need it. If you hate wires, the Eagle Eye probably isn’t for you because you’ll need to plug in a USB cord to the PS3, a USB cord for your keyboard and finally, a USB cord for your mouse as well.
Setup of the device is fairly simple as well, although some improvements could be made. To program which key corresponds to a button on your PS3 controller, you get a small disc to put into your PC. After you’ve gone through the installation process I found that it’s a little unclear just what each file your given does. Along with the “Eagle_edit” program which allows you to edit all of your bindings, there are some fairly well hidden samples of these that you can input into the program which will give you a fairly good idea of what you can do. Unfortunately, the instructions don’t mention how to save or load a file and these options are hidden in the extremely tiny “file” tab which you probably won’t notice right away.
That being said, once you discover all of the features the program itself becomes pretty easy to use. It lays out literally every PS3 button on the controller and lets you choose which keys correspond with that button. Want to make it so that you press the exclamation point to move forward? You’re crazy, but if you’re sure of it then the Eagle Eye will make it happen with the push of a button. The device also allows you to save up to two of your key bind files to the device, which you can alternate between by just moving the switch on the Eagle Eye device even when you’re right in the middle of gaming. It might have been nice to have more than just two but at least they didn’t restrict the users to just one set of binds. One small thing to note, however, is that you should set your commands to smart positions considering that you can’t exactly change the button prompts in-game, so you’ll still see the “press square to pick up weapon”.
When you actually get down to playing with the Eagle Eye on one of the more popular shooters like Modern Warfare 2 or Killzone 2 it works like a charm, offering the same accuracy you would get with a typical mouse and keyboard on a PC. In the couple games I played online I was always at the top of the leaderboards because of how much better my reaction times were. The Eagle Eye absolutely offers the 1:1 motion that’s been advertised, and even with a crappy mouse and keyboard I found that it still operated perfectly which will certainly please many of those PC gamers who want to make the jump to consoles without losing their favored control scheme.
Unfortunately, wireless equipment is a no-no when it comes to the Eagle Eye but, strangely enough, the wireless keyboard and mouse I own work just fine. I’m not sure if it’s a certain model that doesn’t work well with it but it’s apparently “preferable” to use a standard wired keyboard so some gamers might not be able to get their wireless setup to work.
As both a PC and console gamer I find it very easy to recommend the Eagle Eye. When Penguin United said they were giving you an “unfair advantage” they sure as hell meant it. From the ability to bring the crazy precision of your favorite wired mouse, to the great look and small form factor, this little converter is a no-brainer. While I definitely think some work could be done to simplify the setup process, I think that once you understand how to do it it’s a breeze to use. Also, I’d love to see further iterations of the Eagle Eye tackle more than 2 saved keybinds at a time. But other than those two small complaints, at $50 the Eagle Eye is a definite sweet piece of tech and ingenuity.