Hori is known for its line of arcade sticks, and here at E3 the company is showing off its stylish new Fighting Edge controller. The first thing that strikes you about the Fighting Edge are its looks: gone are game-related graphics or designs, and what you're left with instead is an all-black slab topped with a sheet of reflective acrylic. Framing the controller are two blue LED strips that flash red when you're taking damage in a game. It's an undeniably attractive package — we particularly liked how the glass picked up the reflections of the game we were playing — but that beauty comes with a price. The surface was quick to pick up fingerprints, to the point that Hori will be shipping the Fighting Edge with its own cleaning cloth.
The stick itself and the eight buttons are all manufactured by Hori, a departure from the Sanwa parts used by many manufacturers. In comparison to some of the other Sanwa sticks we've tried recently, the Fighting Edge's action definitely felt fast and smooth, but this will likely be a matter of taste for different players. In another nice touch, the Fighting Edge also features a row of touch-sensitive buttons on the right side, also backlit by matching blue LEDs. The buttons of the controller can also be remapped directly within the device itself, though if you're hoping for multiple profiles you'll be out of luck. If you're looking for a stylish take on the arcade stick, and you like the feel of Hori's in-house parts, you might want to get your hands on Hori's latest to give it a try. The Fighting Edge is shipping in both Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 variants, and will be available June 25th for $199.99.