Let me preface this review by saying that, first and foremost, I am not the most clued-up when it comes to what makes a gaming chair great. Sure, I know enough about chairs to discern good from bad, but I’d likely look like a deer in headlights if you’d of asked me a week ago about the differences between some of the most popular chairs out there. After all, I am one of those people who sits in the worst ways imaginable, and I don’t think any chair out there can fix me (or my back).
That said, I can safely say that the difference between Secretlab’s Titan EVO 2022 Series and my prior chair, a mid-range piece of kit from Luckracer (I was sold on the footrest) is unmistakable.
I’ll start by mentioning what actually sets the 2022 Series apart from previous products in the company’s range. The Titan EVO 2022 Series blends together the best components of Secretlab’s Titan and Omega chairs, resulting in something that feels like the best of both worlds. There’s no doubt in your mind when you’re taking the chair out of the box that you’ve got something of high-quality, with the smell of Premium Neo Hybrid Leatherette material permeating your nostrils.
This material may be fantastic quality, durable, and easy to clean in a pinch with some leather wipes, but it’s no competition for a cat. The chair, coincidentally, arrived while I was cat-sitting. And of course, he was just as curious about the big box in the hallway as I was about its contents. Sure enough, as soon as he was done with the box, he went for the chair; he had no interest in curling up on it, but instead plucking away at the leatherette of the chair I’d literally just built.
I suppose that’s a cat problem, rather than a chair problem – but this is definitely worth considering if your cats are quick to claw anything you own. Nobody wants to buy a top-tier chair for their furry friend to destroy it a week later.
As for the building process, the Secretlab Titan EVO 2022 Series is also easier to assemble than the other chairs I’ve owned, given that there’s a rather surprising lack of screws. I was able to put it all together during a lunch break, with enough time leftover to actually eat lunch: success! With the VALORANT Edition of the chair, your screws and bolts come packed in a VALORANT-themed crate, and your instructions are adorned on the back of a huge, A2 VALORANT poster, which is a nice plus if you’re a fan of Riot’s competitive shooter.
Additionally, the lack of bolts and screws is easily explained, with many of them swapped-out for magnets instead. Attaching the armrests to your chair takes a matter of seconds, and it’s much easier to replace them now, too, thanks to the magnets. Sure, it might cost a pretty penny to actually order the replacements, but at least you know you won’t have to mess around with them once they arrive.
The chair is also the perfect size for me, with there being more size options to choose from for all. I bagged a regular chair – despite being a relatively small 5’5” person – and while I initially worried I’d struggle to sit cross-legged or like a gargoyle (don’t judge me), the chair provides plenty of space for me to sit however awkwardly I want. And in more comfort. With a 165° recline to boot, I can sit in any sort of ungodly position without feeling constrained by pieces of plastic. Although I do sometimes sit back and feel like I’m about to topple over – that’s perhaps the only downfall of this chair.
My kneecaps no longer bash into armrests and this, weirdly enough, has to be one of my favourite things about the chair. The Secretlab Titan EVO 2022 Series is certainly bigger than your average, low-budget chair, and your entire body feels a hell of a lot more supported while sitting for multiple hours at a time, be it working or playing.
Now, let’s talk about my other favourite thing about this chair; the stitching and embroidery. Sewn into the premium leatherette material is a mixture of navy blue, black, red, and silver stitching. This is all to coincide with the chair’s theme of the Riot Gun Buddy, which is highly sought after in VALORANT. The primarily-navy blue chair has red accents all over, with VALORANT’s “Defy the Limits” etched into the back in various languages, on top of the game's logo, and the corresponding icons for each class of agent in the game.
Not only does everything about the chair feel premium, the design of the chair is unapologetically VALORANT, while still being minimal enough to not be distracting or in your face. Finally, we already know I can sit as awkwardly as I want in this chair, but just how comfy is it? Am I actually supported? Yes.
For context, I’m 23 with a back that’s perhaps 20 years older than me; I’m constantly twisting and cracking, and my back hurts more often than not. It’s definitely my own fault (see: sitting like a gargoyle), but the Secretlab Titan EVO 2022 Series has somewhat got my posture in check. I don’t think my refusal to sit properly will ever be fixed, but the firmness of the 2022 Series has certainly got me sitting straighter than ever before.
The issue with the other chairs I’ve owned is that they don’t feel half as firm or sturdy as this one does, they also all typically came with their own unwelcomed quirk: squeaky leather, wheels that just won’t roll along carpet, or something somewhere wobbling. The Secretlab Titan EVO 2022 Series is unyielding, easy to manoeuvre, doesn’t (as yet) get all warm and sweaty during prolonged periods of sitting. The chair's firmness forcing me to have better posture than ever is no miracle, considering that I have been using subpar chairs previously, but I can say there’s a noticeable difference in how my back feels after a day of work now, compared to the chair I had a few months ago.
All in all, the Secretlab Titan EVO 2022 Series is a solid chair, albeit not cat-proofed and rather pricey. That said, the price of the chair is very much reflected in the quality of it; everything about it feels premium. It’s smart, comfortable, easy to assemble, and while only the test of time will tell, the chair feels durable, too.
The final test was to see if a new chair, specifically a VALORANT Edition of chair, would make me any better at Riot Games’ FPS title. Of course, it didn’t. In fact, I performed significantly worse this time around than beforehand. Maybe sitting like a gargoyle is the key to getting wins, after all.