|MS SideWinder Force Feedback Wheel - Part 1
By Julian Lit
for Hardware One
When Microsoft announced that it was going to release a
force-feedback wheel, I was overflowing with anticipation. I love driving games and I have
always felt that either the keyboard or the joystick were never good at being controllers
for driving games. I was waiting for the day it appeared in Sim Lim, anxious to find what
the financial damage was going to be.
Since its first announcement sometime in Oct-Nov
1998, it seemed to take forever for MSs FF Wheel to reach the shores of Singapore.
Finally, around the beginning of March 1999 (exact date of availability in SLS is
unknown), the Wheel was finally sighted in one of the SLS shops on the 5th
|An initial reconnaissance trip revealed that the Wheel
was going to set me back by a cool S$359.90. After speaking to the store person, he
revealed that the controlled price of the wheel was S$379.00. However, they were selling
it at S$359.90, which is slightly lower than the recommended retail price. He also
revealed that since the Wheel arrived, he had already sold a few of them.
after much a week of hard thought, I finally decided, 'I should have the Wheel!' and there
was no turning back since."
Looking at a price tag of S$359, the
Wheel seemed pretty unattainable. The box itself was huge, almost the size of a standard
printer box, around 2 by 1.5 by 1.5. I went home pretty disappointed
thinking really hard if I should part with that amount of money or not. What did not help
was that Legos Mindstorm (a robot building system) was also available at around
S$387. This made the decision even more difficult as the Mindstorm Robot Construction Kit
was also one of the "must-buy" items in my acquisition list.
Finally, after much a week of hard thought, I finally decided, "I
should have the Wheel!" and there was no turning back since. I went down to that shop
on Sunday 7th of March. To my surprise, the owner was proclaiming a storewide
discount of 10% on all items. I couldnt believe my ears
I had to clarify if
the 10% applied to hardware as well. When the owner said yes, I made a beeline for the
wheel and whipped out my credit card. The store assistant who was attending to me told me
that the Wheel is really a great buy especially when the store owner just announced a 10%
storewide discount. Eventually I forked out a total of about S$330+ which seemed to me a
pretty good deal.