Few genres of video gaming command as wide or as dedicated a following as first-person shooters. With their high-adrenaline gameplay and immersive environments, these games are perennially popular among casual and hardcore gamers alike.
Whatever category you would place yourself in, having the right accessories is a surefire way to improve both your experience and your performance. FPS games rely heavily on the dynamism and immersion of their environments, and gaming accessories can help boost these features dramatically. At the same time as they make the experience more aesthetically pleasing, they can also heighten your in-game abilities.
“Video games are works of art as well as entertainment, but the ‘art’ aspects of FPS games are often underemphasized,” says Brad Lunt, CEO of GoatGuns, a premium collectible toy model firearm brand that provides shooter fans with intricate, non-firing, build-it-yourself 1:3 scale models of their favorite in-game weapons. “However, first-person shooters are uniquely able to transport players to significant times in places in military history, as well as fantastical environments. Accessories are a great way to deepen this engagement.”
Below are five essential accessories no FPS fan should go without.
A proper gaming headset can be a major game-changer. In addition to enhancing the music and atmospheric sounds of the game, they can also put you at a tactical advantage. In many FPS games, the ability to hear other players’ footsteps or judge the direction of their bullets can be the difference between winning and losing. At the same time, this increased awareness heightens the tension and adrenaline of the experience, making it easier to feel truly transported into the game.
While skill is obviously important for achieving success in FPS games, having the right tools is just as crucial. This is because having ergonomic controllers not only makes it easier to execute in-game combos, but also increases your comfort level while playing, which is beneficial to the gaming experience as well as to your health more generally. For PC gamers, investing in a specially-designed gaming mouse gives access to council extra buttons while also nicely conforming to the shape of your hand.
For console users, getting special thumbsticks can help increase your accuracy and responsiveness, while silicone covers prevent controllers from slipping and minimize wear-and-tear. There are also attachments, such as paddles, that can help you customize and optimize your button layout.
Beloved by many prominent Twitch streamers, smart lighting is a great complement to any gaming space. PC users enjoy an especially broad range of options in this regard, as many keyboards and gaming mouse brands allow for customizable, reactive lighting. On the other hand, however, console gamers are typically playing on a larger screen, so having smart lighting installed around your TV can help create cinematic, larger-than-life experiences.
“Smart lighting is a great way to mark a room out as a distinctive gaming space,” says Lunt. “It helps a game’s atmosphere pop out of the screen and become truly three-dimensional. Beyond that, lighting that reacts to in-game action can enhance your sensitivity and response time.”
Another piece of gear that is coveted by streamers, a quality microphone has a variety of benefits for gamers of all kinds. In more competitive first-person shooters, as in the battles they simulate, communication and coordination are essential to victory. A mic with high audio quality ensures that your teammates can hear you loud and clear at all times, giving you that extra edge over the competition.
A quality mic is also helpful for the more casual gamer, as the social aspects of online gaming can be one of the most rewarding parts. Whether you’re communicating with friends or other players from across the world, ensuring that your voice is audible and understandable makes for a more enjoyable experience for all.
As with any hobby, collectibles are a great way to demonstrate and deepen your interest in FPS games. However, FPS fans face some special difficulties when searching for collectibles, as collecting real-life versions of in-game guns comes with a variety of hurdles. Fortunately, there are non-shooting scale model guns on the market that match their real-life counterparts down to the smallest detail, allowing players to amass a collection of their favorite in-game weapons, whether modern or historical. What’s more, some of these models can be outfitted with additional accessories, mirroring the fun of in-game customization.
“For many people, video gaming is their first exposure to the deeply fascinating world of military history and military technology,” says Lunt. “While you can learn a lot from the in-game models of these weapons, there is truly no replacement for being able to hold one in your hand and appreciate the intricacy of its construction. It’s something that doesn’t just complement the look and feel of your gaming room, but that invites you to really appreciate the reality of what is depicted in FPS games.”
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