January 14th, 2009
T-Squared gives the pro perspective on the Mission Bag
‘At first glance, I was extremely impressed and my teammates were extremely jealous.’ — 9.5/10
Well first off, knowing that this bag was coming from ASTRO I already assumed that it was going to be kick ass. Right from the packaging, just like the A40s, you know that you’re getting a high quality product. The interior caught my eye; it had an urban style and coloring, which kind of reminded me of a shirt from Rogue Status. The zippers didn’t get stuck and the straps seemed to be solid enough to hold anything you put in the bag. At first glance, I was extremely impressed and my teammates were extremely jealous.
MISSION BAG ON THE GO: Airports and Traveling
At first I thought to myself, “WTF am I going to put in this bag?”…I threw away my old “personal item” and adopted the Mission Bag as my new carry on. The bag went with me to MLG Vegas where I used it to carry all of my gaming accessories from the LAN, my laptop, and random junk that I didn’t want to have in my checked baggage. I used the side pouches above the zipper to hold my boarding pass and any beverages, which was really convenient. I’m not sure if that’s what it was designed for but after flying 4-5 times with the bag I’ve used that pouch every time. The size of the bag allows you to use it for much more than a gaming accessory, which is nice. I’ve easily fit clothes/liquids in a Ziploc bag/gaming materials/etc. during my Christmas trip to see family in Florida. When I wore the bag around my shoulder using the strap, it was super comfortable on both my shoulders and my leg. The smooth but firm backside of the bag makes it extremely comfortable so you can avoid getting poked by your Xbox in your leg over and over again. For one trip I took, I had a roll-away bag as my carry-on and the Mission Bag as my personal item. The straps were strong enough to put over the handle and the bag was the perfect size for me to just throw it on top of my roll-away. That made it a lot easier for me to get around the airport.
Complaints about using the Mission Bag for travel:
*The bag doesn’t really have a place to set my laptop comfortably. I feel like the random loop (the wireless 360 controller holder) in the backside could have been turned into a place to slide your laptop in, sort of like an accordion folder.
*Going back to the wireless controller loop, I don’t use a wireless controller. I know that they stopped manufacturing wired ones, but I’m really picky about where my controller is placed. Sometimes I even take it out of the bag and carry it so it doesn’t get smooshed. The loop serves me no use and I have yet to use it since I’ve had the bag.
*The bag doesn’t fit under the seat in front of me (length wise), so if I did want to get my laptop, I would end up having to get everyone off their butts to reach into my bag.
These are all obviously minor complaints but I feel the laptop idea is something that the ASTRO guys should look into. It very well may be the only thing holding this back from being the perfect bag for me.
My overall grade on the Mission Bag for traveling: 8 out of 10
Mission Bag goes pro: MLG Tournaments
At tournaments, I always need a bag that is big enough to carry my controller, A-40s, sweater (since its so damn cold in the venue), and some Germ-X…without looking like a dork of course. There was no doubt about it, the Mission Bag carried all that…PLUS my 3 teammates stuff. I could see this becoming extremely useful in certain tournaments where the venue is a longgggg walk from the hotel (Meadowlands for example). I only got a chance to use the bag during MLG Vegas, but when I was there I put it to good use. It was jammed pack with controllers, A-40s, sweaters, Vegas trading cards, and a couple of poker chips from the roulette table. I’m not going to get into the pros or cons here of the Mission Bag at tournaments because there isn’t really any cons. The bag is perfect for holding everything you need at competitions and more importantly, looking good while doing it. The only potential problem I see is a “Mission Bag MIXUP.” If a decent amount of people purchase this bag and walk around with it at the tournament…we’re going to have a lot of Mission Bag MIXUPS going down. Maybe there will be a way to customize your Mission Bag with embroidery, stickers, or a little tag on the inside to write your name/gamertag. Either that or don’t be a dumbass and leave your bag on the ground (which I do all the time).
My overall grade on the Mission Bag for MLG Tournaments: 10 out of 10
My overall grade on the Mission Bas as a whole: 9 out of 10
–Tom T-Squared Taylor