The Nintendo Switch is a phenomenal gaming console; the ability to play in both docked and handheld modes, the screenshot function, miniature game cartridges, and more all prove that the Switch is a modern marvel in technological advancement.
However, one major issue with the system is its controllers. Joy-Con drift has been ruining gamers’ experiences for years and has tainted the console’s reputation. Fortunately, Nintendo released the Pro Controller… but, due to its steep price tag of seventy to eighty dollars, a plethora of cheaper third-party options have emerged, and here are 10 options that’ll offer more bang-for-your-buck than Nintendo’s pricey alternative offering.
10 Beboncool Wireless Controller
The Beboncool wireless controller has a different design from most other Switch controllers; the handles are placed at a more diagonal angle, making them easier to hold for anyone with larger hands. Plus, the sides of the handles are cased with an awesome skid-proof electric blue grip.
It also has 360-degree tilt controls, dual rumble, and a 400 mAh battery that offers up to 15 hrs. of play out of just 2 hrs. of charge time. The Beboncool controller also has a 4.5 out of 5 rating on Amazon based on over 5,300 reviews.
Price: Around $29
9 8Bitdo Sn30 Pro Bluetooth Controller
For gamers who miss the days of 16-bit consoles like the SNES and SEGA Genesis, the highly-respected brand 8Bitdo has created an awesome new controller. Using the shell of a SNES controller and the colors of the original Game Boy, the Sn30 controller is a true throwback to early-90s gaming.
One new addition, however, are the double joysticks, which are essential for modern first-person-shooters and open-world 3D adventures like Zelda. Better yet, the wireless controller can hold a whopping 18 hours of battery life per charge.
Price: Around $45
8 Funlab Wireless Pro Controller
For any gamer who loves precision and controller, the Funlab wireless pro controller is a best bet. The controller is a decent size, so your hands won’t be accidentally hitting other buttons while trying to play.
The sides of the joysticks are also ridged, providing an enhanced grip while gaming. It also has a six-axis gyro for tilt controls, dual rumble motors, and a programmable turbo button. It’s the ultimate controller for fans of arena shooters and survival horror games like Resident Evil that requires absolute precision to survive.
Price: Around $28
7 Power A Wired Controller (Officially Licensed)
For the casual gamer, all the excessive bells and whistles that high-performance controllers offer are probably unneeded, and that’s why the wired controller by Power A is perfect. Oversized joysticks make for excellent handling, the large buttons are easy to hit, and the controller’s design makes it comfortable to hold.
While the controller may not have tilt controllers or dual shock capabilities, it is a solid piece of machinery that’s leaps and bounds better than playing with the Joy-Cons. Plus, it’s a considerably cheaper option.
Price: Around $20
6 PDP Little Wireless Controller (Officially Licensed)
PDP loosely modeled their mini controller based on the classic SNES controller and even incorporated the SNES’ famous powder purple coloring. However, the PDP controller is even smaller than old Nintendo controllers. It’s designed for playing on the go and is small enough to fit inside a pocket.
But, despite the controller’s tiny size, it has a 30 ft. wireless range, motion controls, and an almost-unbelievable 40 hours of battery life per charge. For any gamer who loves playing couch co-op with friends, this is the perfect controller.
Price: Around $50
5 HORI Split Pad Pro (Officially Licensed)
For the full controller experience while on the go, the Hori Split Pad Pro is an awesome option. Grippy joysticks, larger buttons, and wide handles create a much better handheld gaming experience, giving players a level of grip and comfort that the Joy-Cons can’t offer.
On top of that, assignable rear triggers and turbo functionality make it an excellent choice for fighting games and arena shooters. For the constant traveler, using the Split Pad Pro is way more convenient than hauling around a separate control to use in tablet mode.
Price: Around $50
4 TGJOR Wireless Gamepad
One of the most noticeable differences in the TGJOR controller is the handles, which are covered with a rubber grip, providing a superior sense of control and handling—this will also help to prevent the controller from slipping out of the player’s hands. The controller’s ergonomic design is also extremely helpful, ensuring a comfortable playing experience, even during long game nights.
Beyond that, the controller looks really awesome. The combo of the red and blue colors incorporated in the joysticks makes for a stylish addition to anyone’s Switch collection. The controller also has a gyro function, making it perfect for Mario Kart, as well as dual vibration.
Price: Around $20
3 MAYFLASH Magic Adapter
For any players who don’t want to go out and buy a third-party controller, there’s always the option of the MAYFLASH Magic Adapter, which allows gamers to plug in a variety of controllers to their Switch.
From PlayStation to Xbox, older Nintendo controllers, and even the NEOGEO mini controller… there are very few devices that aren’t compatible with the Magic Adapter. The device currently holds a 4.5 out of 5 rating on Amazon based on over 3,400 reviews, and, for an added bonus, it also works for PC. For anyone out there who just can’t let go of their Xbox 360 controller, this is an excellent option.
Price: Around $20
2 HORI Real Arcade Pro V (Officially Licensed)
The Switch has, perhaps unsurprisingly given Nintendo’s collection of legacy titles, become a joy for retro gamers. With tons of classic games from NES, SNES, Genesis, Master System, and even the NAMCO Museum Collection, the console is brimming with old-school fun. On top of that, many of the independent games being released for the console, such as Shovel Knight, are modeled after retro 2D sidescrollers. What better way to play these classic games than with a classic arcade cabinet?
HORI combines their trademark Hayabusa joystick with a professional-quality arcade controller base to offer retro gamers an experience like no other. Of course, the arcade stick pairs perfectly with fighting games, such as Mortal Combat and Street Fighter.
Price: Around $150
1 Power A Wireless GameCube Style Controller (Officially Licensed)
Power A is one of the most reputable third-party companies for Switch controllers. In fact, Power A can be found in many stores, including GameStop. Their GameCube style controller has become one of the bestselling third-party Switch controllers. There are a few reasons for this, but it mostly comes down to the longstanding appreciation for the sixth-gen gamepad, along with a hearty dose of nostalgia.
Also, the design of the GameCube controller is consistently hailed as the best for playing Super Smash Bros. The giant A button, the unique octagon-rimmed C stick, and the all-around layout of the controller makes it the optimal choice. The wireless GameCube controller is a must-buy for any fans of duking it out.
Price: Around $50
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