Editors' Note: This article was updated at 11:55 a.m. ET with hands-on impressions from IFA in Berlin.
BERLIN — Motorized cockpit with control arch, support for three monitors, and rumble action built-in. Those are the main three features of this absolutely insane new gaming chair by Acer: The Predator Thronos.
Presented at IFA 2018 – the largest consumer electronics show in the world, now underway in Berlin, Germany – the Predator Thronos is a monument to serious gaming. Made with aluminum and steel, this thing weights a whopping 485 pounds. There’s no price yet, but we're sure it will be as nuts as this glorious contraption. An Acer executive at IFA told us that the company intends to bring its gaming throne to the market "very quickly."
The main feature of the Predator Thronos an overhead arc that spans over your head to suspend up to three 27-inch panoramic monitors right in front of your face. It also has a motor that allows you to incline the chair up to 140 degrees, a foot rest, space to integrate a gaming PC, and rumbling motors that are synchronized with the games you play so you can feel the action.
When we strapped ourselves into the Predator Thronos for a demo in Berlin today (Aug. 29), it was certainly a thrill to press a button and have the tray carrying a gaming keyboard and mouse swing in on us. Pressing another button made the chair slowly and steadily recline, with a footrest popping out like the world's most tricked out La-Z-Boy recliner. Our demo was fairly brief, but the Thronos seemed comfortable enough for gamers to enjoy extended play sessions.
The three-display setup is really the crowning feature of the Predator Thronos. Playing Rise of Tomb Raider, we watched a mountain scene unfold before us, as we led Lara Croft up a steep, snowy mountain path. The light from her flare on one panel cast a glow that could be seen in the next display, really immersing us in the game completely — so much so that when a cut scene played out on just one of the displays it jerked us back to reality.
But, and there’s always a big hairy but lurking around the corner, the Predator Thronos is not perfect.
For perfection, this thing should have been completely motorized so you could play racing and flight simulators with full motion – like the old After Burner arcades. That would have been the holy grail of gaming thrones.
Our demo at IFA wasn't a complete experience. The promised haptic feedback feature wasn't in effect on the chair we tested, so there was no vibration or impact when we sent poor Lara to an untimely demise at the bottom of an icy ravine. Acer promises that deep impact vibration feature should be every bit as immersive as those multiple displays.
While we don't know exactly what the Thronos will cost when it ships, based on both the specs we've seen and the experience we had, this gaming chair wiill certainly command a premium if not a king's ransom.
Senior Editor Philip Michaels contributed to this story from Berlin.