Peripherals specialist Roccat has offered a sneak preview of what it will be unveiling at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this year - including its first mechanical keyboard, the Roccat Ryos.
Based around a pair of 32-bit ARM Cortex-class processors - yes, we're looking at a dual-processor keyboard here - the Roccat Ryos is claimed to be the first gaming keyboard with full per-key lighting. Unlike most backlit keyboards, which either use a single control for the entire backlight or at best split the keyboard into two or three separately-controllable zones, the Ryos allows the colour and brightness of each key to be controlled thanks to a network of independent RGB LEDs.
As well as making for a customised typing experience, Roccat claims the system can be used to provide at-a-glance information: the top row of keys could light up red as a health indicator, for example, with the number of keys lit decreasing as your character takes hit. The lighting can also be used to display key functions or macro settings, with a software development kit (SDK) allowing users to add their own features for storage in the keyboard's 2MB NAND flash chip.
The Ryos, Roccat claims, will be made available with a choice of four Cherry MX switches - Black, Brown, Red and Blue - with a combination of switches available for those who like a truly customised experience. Due for release some time in the first quarter of this year, pricing has yet to be confirmed with more information expected to follow Roccat's CES 2013 showing.
As well as its first mechanical gaming keyboard, Roccat has announced that it will be showing off the Power-Grid app at the show. Designed for use with selected games, Power-Grid turns a smartphone into a remote control - duplicating, in an interesting manner, the secondary display screen of Nintendo's WiiU console. Control grids can be created to provide one-tap access to key in-game functions or macros, while the game is able to provide information to the app in the form of live maps, inventory contents or high-score tables. An example of the integration available for developers learning to use the Power-Grid SDK comes in the form of Born Ready Games' Strike Suite Zero, which uses the Power-Grid software to provide at-a-glance statistics on accuracy - providing key information unavailable anywhere else in-game that can help players boost their scores.
Finally, Roccat has stated that it will be formally launching several of its existing products, including the Roccat Kone XTD and Kone Pure gaming mice and the Roccat Isku FX gaming keyboard, into the US market at CES.
If you're still curious about how the Roccat Ryos works, however, here's a little teaser the company has provided ahead of its CES unveiling: