The iControlPad2 is a followup to the iControlPad, which provides physical buttons to specially designed iPhone and Android games. In addition the iControlPad2 is also billed as the word’s first ‘open source controller.’ What this means is you will be able to use the iControlPad2 with your iPhone, Android device, a Raspberry Pi computer, or with a remote control robot of your own design. The iControlPad was built by Product 3 LLC, which is a team of Craig Rothwell, Michael Weston, Michael Mrozek, Mark Linkhorst, Dave Cancilier, Jacquelyn and Debs.
Craig Rothwell (aka Craigix) and his team are by no means new to the emulation and homebrew gaming community. I’ve actually followed Dave C’s work on controller modifications back when the GP2X was the handheld emulation platform of choice. (Great console, terrible stock thumbstick.) I remember whispers of the OpenPandora console, and I was pleasantly surprised when I first found out that Craig and company were behind the original iControlPad.
The iControlPad2 integrates a keyboard to the controller, which also features a d-pad, the classic SNES-style button layout, two analog nubs, and a slew of function buttons. There’s also a rotatable clip for holding phones as large as the Galaxy Note 2, which allows gamers to comfortably take calls with the iControlPad2 solidly clamped to your phone. The design reminds me strongly of the button layout of the OpenPandora, which was my dream handheld before the launch of the iPhone.
Speaking of the iPhone, there are a number of iOS games that should support the iControlPad2 out of the box, either designed to support the iControlPad for with the benefit of the iControlPad’s iCade emulation. (Super Mega Worm, iMAME4ALL, SNES9 EX, the official Commodore 64 app, to name a few examples.) For games which don’t support iControlPad’s keymap, there is a bluetooth app called BluTrol which assigns button presses to screen taps, allowing for physical control of on-screen buttons. Naturally, the iControlPad2 will also work as a bluetooth keyboard.
Some of the best backer rewards are limited in supply, but you have a chance to catch the iControlPad2 early in its Kickstarter lifecycle. If you act fast and pledge $49 (plus shipping), you can have the original iControlPad on your doorstep by October. If you pledge $69 or more, you can reserve the raw edition of the iControlPad2 without the packaging or USB cable by November. An extra $6 will lend you those extras, so it’s up to you to decide if you want the complete packaging. Beyond that level comes special edition kits. More information is on the Kickstarter page.
What do you think of the iControlPad2? More importantly, did you catch all ten concealed classic video game consoles in the video? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.