Whether the Atari 2600, Dreamcast or Xbox was your first video-gaming experience, it’s safe to say you’re familiar with the between-level “hand wipe.” The round ends, you watch the cinematic and lay down the controller to wipe your sweaty palms on a pant leg. Relax, it happens to all of us. However, a company called GlovesPlay has seen those sweaty palms and created a controller tool to help mitigate the embarrassment of walking out of a room with Cheet-O fingerprints on your jeans. And amazingly, it delivers as promised.
The concept behind the Xbox Glove and PlayStation Glove is not that gamers wear an apparatus, but that the controllers themselves are the apparatus. In both instances, the glove slips onto the protrusions at the bottom of each controller, almost like fingers slipping into, well, a glove. The glove is then kept in place using a bungee-like strap that wraps around the elevated section on the back. Simple enough, right? Actually, it is.
Unlike many gaming peripherals, the GlovesPlay controller gloves are incredibly intuitive, and the only time you’ll notice them slipping out of position is if you twist the controller while playing. This is crucial to the devices’ success, because they’re designed to soak up sweat and keep the controller from slipping. If the gloves weren’t snug enough, they’d fail in both areas. But both the Xbox and PS2 gloves fit perfectly, making them the perfect peripheral for intense gamers.
Other companies have tried to solve the sweat problem, most notably Nyko with its AirFlo controller, and the results have been mixed. The GlovesPlay controllers are a great solution, but there’s just one catch: they won’t allow you to double-up your anti-sweat measures. The tight fit of both gloves works because they were designed for the stock controllers, not third-party ones. If you’ve developed an affinity for your wireless or other third-party controller, these gloves won’t fit as well, and in some cases, won’t fit at all. Given that most people still use the stock controllers, this shouldn’t be an issue, but it does deserve mention for those who don’t use the standard controller.
In spite of the awkward look (my wife said the Xbox Glove looked like a testicle warmer), the gloves are actually thin enough that you get used to playing with them on the controller after just a few minutes. Also, whereas some materials shrink or lose their tackiness once you wash them, the glove controllers maintain their usefulness even after being washed. And believe me, if you sweat a lot, you will most definitely want to throw these in the washer.
The controller gloves still can’t do anything about Cheet-O fingers, and they probably won’t make your performance any better in fast-paced firefights, but they certainly reduce the adverse effects of sweaty palms, especially for hardcore or hyperactive gamers. Just make sure to warn your loved ones, because GlovesPlay has created a tool that lets you play videogames for more hours than you already do.
- Ease of Use: 9
- They slip on easily and require only a minimal amount of controller-cord manipulation.
- Durability: 8.5
- With only occasional and minor slippage, even after washing, these hold up very well.
- Practicality: 8
- If you suffer from sweaty gaming hands, these are perfect. If not, you probably won’t need these.
- Overall: 8.5
- For only $10, they’re a great controller add-on, but casual gamers might not find them necessary.
— Jonas Allen