Awooga, awooga, gaming keyboard alert. Which usually means look out for a weird and whacky design meant to make your gaming life easier coupled to a very silly name. The Wolf King Timber Wolf certainly does not disappoint on either front.
Apparently the big disc with keyboard hanging off to the right design is based upon the ancient fighting discipline concept of a circle of death. Martial arts fans amongst you may know that this is where you centre an energy which can then be used to gain victory during conflict. By arranging all the keys that you might use within the battle arena of a first person shooter game to encircle your left hand, the Timber King hopes to focus your fighting energy.
The keys within this circle of death are also silent in operation, so if being stealthy is important to you then it’s a bonus. Truth be told, the silent operation thing is a bit of a gimmick only and we would be surprised if there were many occasions where the majority of gamers would find this advantageous.
Unlike the rather cool vertical space bar which we found really does help with the gaming flow as it falls quite naturally underneath the left thumb. The K-Lock key is neat as well, as this allows you to toggle any in-game talk functionality rather than keep doing the press to talk dance.
Where most gaming keyboards come a cropper is in size, after all the addition of a huge gamepad on to a standard sized keyboard makes for something of a monster. Wolf King has tried to counter thus by removing the number pad from the right hand side, balancing the addition of the circle of death gamepad.
This does, indeed, reduce the overall size of the device and makes it just about compact enough to be touted from LAN party to LAN party. However, it remains pretty much the same size as a standard PC keyboard which sounds OK until you realise that you only get a notebook sized keyboard for normal typing duty.
Fair play it is meant to be a gaming peripheral and not something you’d find on an office desk. That said, if you are thinking of replacing your PC keyboard with just this one, then it certainly is usable as long as you are not a professional writer because believe us, you would soon get very tired with the cramped key layout. You would also, sad to say, get more than a tad peeved with the somewhat spongy key response. We typed this review using the Timber Wolf, and believe us our fingers were starting to hurt by the end of it as we had to hit them keys as hard as Ricky Hatton with a bee in his bonnet.
As a dedicated gaming peripheral the Timber Wolf scores highly with a relatively compact size and that great circle of death gamepad. But don’t throw away your standard keyboard if you want to do any proper work at some point.