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The Nintendo Switch Pro Controller Alternatives

by Ace Damon
The Nintendo Switch Pro Controller Alternatives

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Lately, we’ve been seeing a lot of new options for wireless Nintendo Switch controllers and we have an interesting one to talk about today.

There have been a lot of controllers in the past we’ve talked about from 8BitDo, they make a line of different Bluetooth ones that are all styled off of classic, retro Nintendo stuff, and one of their big hits is this one right here, the NES30 Pro.

Well, they’re soon releasing an upgraded version called the NES30 Pro 2.

At first glance, you might not be able to notice that much of a difference between these two outside of the slight change in how they represent the original NES style-wise, but there’s actually a lot that’s going on differently on the inside of this one that makes it, honestly, a major upgrade and a lot of them point to one very specific purpose, being better on the Switch.

Now like the previous NES30 Pro, this is still just a straight up Blu Tooth controller, you can use it across a whole bunch of different devices, Macs, PCs, IOS, Android, but the main purpose here for this one really, design-wise, is to make it just an even better fit for the Switch.

And it actually has some features that make it very competitive against other wireless controllers currently on the market.

As far as the only functional external change you can notice right away, this uses a USB-C port instead of Micro USB.

So it’s bringing it in line with the entire line of Nintendo products.

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If you own a USB, the USB-C adapter, which we might use for certain controllers or charging stations, that’ll work with this.

Or you can even plug your Switch Dock, and use it to charge the controller, as well. So you don’t need to carry around any kind of different cable like you would for the previous model. Also, while I’m currently showing off the main NES design, this one does come in four different colors, this one based on the NES.

Another design based on the N64 with the green and blue button with a couple of yellow buttons, as well.

A GameCube-inspired controller which has that nice little indigo purple finish with yellow sticks which looks really nice.

And then one that took me a little bit of time to figure out is a black design with gray trim and purple start and select buttons.

The Nintendo Switch Pro Controller Alternatives

This is actually going a little against the grain, instead of being a Nintendo-based design, it’s based on the Sega Mega Drive controller.

So that’s what we have going on on the outside, but what’s different on the inside is what really makes this a major upgrade, especially for the Switch.

It offers three new functions that the previous controller could not do.

Motion control, so you can use it for games that make use of those, like, for instance, aiming a bow in Legend of Zelda.

Rumble, which is a really interesting fact because not many wireless controllers for the Switch actually support rumble outside of the official Switch Pro controller, and also a turbo button feature because, come one, you always have to have one for a retro controller.

The only part that feels a little low is the D-pad, and there’s a reason for that. 8BitDo is really obsessed with this idea of retro controllers and recapturing nostalgia and as part of that, the D-pad on this controller is designed to feel a lot like an old-school D-pad, for better or worse.

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It feels great if you grew up playing those controllers, but as time has gone on, options have gotten better. So, it’s not the best D-pad out there, but if you’ve grown up playing on old school controllers, this is gonna feel very much like home.

One aspect of it I think it does fall short compared to the other options, though, is the grips. Because this is, once again, designed to kinda look and feel a little bit like an old-school controller, which is cool, but it’s missing something that’s kinda standard these days, which is, well, actual grips to put your hands on.

I think they did a good job of making this style of controller work comfort-wise because these rounded sides here really made fit to your hands and feels nicer. But, it’s still not quite as good as a more, well, currently traditional grip design.

For the money, this is a great pick-up. It walks a really good balance between being something that offers a very nostalgic look and feels, something that old school fans are going to appreciate.

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