There are times when a peripheral’s only purpose is to be a cheaper alternative. Such is the case with Phoenix Xbox controller from Gamester accessories. The controller is a carbon copy of Microsoft’s Controller S, featuring a nearly identical button layout, grip, and joystick/trigger functionality. Of course, being a third-party peripheral, all of this is offered at a slightly smaller price than Microsoft’s Controller S. Is the Phoenix Game pad worth your gaming dough?
Shaping itself like Microsoft’s Controller S, which was specifically made for people with smaller hands, is it any surprise that the Phoenix controller is small? Nevertheless, the controller supplies a solid grip for people with hands of all sizes, although it is more accessible to people with smaller hands, much in the way that the normal Xbox controller is much more accessible to people with larger hands.
The button placement on the controller is superb. Reaching the normal Y, B, A, and X buttons is a breeze, and is actually somewhat of an improvement over the Xbox’s normal, bulky, controller. All of these buttons are well spread out, so you won’t accidentally tap two of them like you sometimes do with the Xbox controller. Of course, you get these same improvements in Microsoft’s controller S.
The other buttons on the Phoenix, the ones you won’t use that much, are the Black, White, Start, and Back buttons. These buttons have been moved from there normal position on the Xbox controller, to in the bottom corners of the controller. This move has not been a great one, as reaching the these buttons feels awkward, much like they did in their original position, way up high on the top of the controller.
If I were to address one complaint with the Phoenix controller, it would be how flimsy the triggers are. Unlike Microsoft’s first-party controller, where the triggers have been criticized for how hard they are to press down on, a simple fly landing on the Phoenix’s triggers would knock it all the way down. This comes off as a bit of a problem, as games that require precise trigger pushes are hard to play. The Phoenix’s joysticks thankfully function much better than the triggers, as they are not flimsy, nor difficult to operate in any way.
Should you buy the Phoenix Xbox controller? That depends. If you are simply seeking a slightly cheaper version of Microsoft’s controller S, and are willing to deal with a pair of flimsy triggers, than by all means go purchase this controller. You won’t be disappointed.