Bottom line: With its fun designs mixed with colorful LED lighting, these controllers not only work well but look cool too. They offer rumble, motion controls, and ergonomic grips that work with any Switch.
Rumble & motion controls
Can turn lights off
Great battery life
No amiibo scanning
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As most Nintendo Switch players know, the Joy-Con isn't the most comfortable thing to hold and it's prone to drift. This has many people, including myself, looking for other options. Of course, there's the Pro Controller with its traditional gamepad design, but this pinnacle Switch equipment is expensive. Fortunately, with five years under Nintendo Switch's belt, there are countless third-party controllers to choose from that work great and cost much less.
For the past week, I've used two NexiGo Wireless Switch Controllers for dozens of hours and I have to say that they are not only beautiful but work incredibly well too. There are a number of different designs to choose from, including RBG lighting options, and they offer the most important functions needed to play the best Switch games.
NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller: Price and availability
The NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller has an MSRP of $39.99 and comes in a number of different designs including two different RGB lighting options. You can purchase these gamepads from the official NexiGo website or on Amazon.
This specific controller style, where the lighting only comes through circles around the joysticks, offers five main designs including the Cosmic Nebula design I tested. Meanwhile, the cracked design of the other controller is available in either Atmosphere White or Lightstorm Black.
NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller: What's good
I was impressed when I saw just how nice the print quality was on the NexiGo controllers. Many third-party Switch controllers don't look this good, with some being cheaply made. The Cosmic Nebula design in particular though, features a deep contrast between light and dark hues and while it isn't as vibrant as the product image, it still looks spectacular. Additionally, the printed area on both controllers feels soft and smooth to the touch for a very professional feel overall.
|Category||NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller|
|Compatible devices||Switch, Switch OLED, Switch Lite|
|Battery||Up to 10 hours|
|Charging Port||USB-C on top|
|RGB Lighting||Yes, change colors, brightness, and modes|
Both controllers feature RGB lighting. For the Cosmic Nebula design, this is limited to circles around the joysticks. Meanwhile, the Atmosphere features a cracked design that allows LED lighting to come through various places around the controller's front side. Both controllers offer eight colors: orange, yellow, green, blue, light blue, purple, red, and rainbow. Best of all, you can adjust the brightness and even choose between four lighting modes: a fade that flits from one color to the next, pulsing on one color, steady on one color, or lights off.
NexiGo states that these controllers can last for up to 10 hours, so I played a few different multiplayer Switch games like Kirby and the Forgotten Land with either controller steadily displaying lights until they both died to see if this claim was true. Turns out the battery life was much better than I initially expected, lasting far over 10 hours. The Cosmic Nebula controller lasted for nearly 24 hours while the Atmosphere controller, which features more LEDs ran out of juice a little faster at around 22.5 hours. Either way, you'll be able to get a lot of playtime in before these controllers need a recharge.
As you'd expect, the brightness settings and mode chosen for either controller will determine just how long the controller lasts. However, as long as you recharge either controller between play sessions you shouldn't ever run out of battery while using them. To help the battery life last longer, the controllers automatically turn off if they don't detect input after about five minutes. When the battery does get low, the Player LEDs on the bottom start blinking rapidly, giving you a little over 20 minutes to get the controller charging before it stops working.
I was happy to find that these controllers include rumble, motion controls, and have the ability to wake the Switch up if I press the Home button, which are all things that some third-party controllers don't do. I tested the motion controls by playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild while using the Shiekah Slate to lift metal boxes or solve puzzles in shrines. The gyro responded beautifully and didn't give me any problems. Additionally, by pressing the Turbo button and either the up or down button on the D-pad I can adjust vibration intensity between four options to find what works best for me in any given game.
NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller: What's not good
Neither controller features an NFC reader for scanning amiibo. This is usually the feature that gets left out of third-party controllers and won't affect your ability to play most Switch games. However, if you've got a game that really benefits from scanning some rare amiibo or have a collection of the Nintendo figurines and amiibo cards that you plan on using whenever possible, then you'll want to find a different gamepad.
On another topic, due to the cracked see-through look of the Atmosphere design, the bright blue LED player indicator at the bottom of the controller comes through regardless of what other color you choose or if you opt to turn the rest of the lights off. This makes the different color tones look a little weird in all of the color options except for rainbow and blue.
NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller: Competition
Perhaps the most trusted Switch gamepad is the PowerA Enhanced Wireless Controller. It's officially licensed by Nintendo and offers dozens of different designs that feature characters from Zelda, Mario, Pokemon, Animal Crossing, and more. However, while it offers gyro and rumble, it doesn't have NFC scanning for amiibo either.
If you love the idea of a gamepad that offers RGB lighting, then you should check out the PDP Afterglow Deluxe Controller. The shell is completely clear so you can see the components inside as they are lit up with different colors, which is a super pleasing effect.
Lastly, if you're looking for a more heavy-duty option, the PowerA Fusion Pro Wireless Controller is the choice for you. It comes with a carrying case and offers mappable buttons on the backside. Plus, you can swap out the front shell for either a black or white design.
NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller: Should you buy one?
You should buy this if ...
- You want a wireless controller for Switch
- You want something with adjustable RGB lighting
- You'd like something that offers motion controls and rumble
You shouldn't buy this if...
- You only ever play in handheld mode
- You want something with a Nintendo character on it
- You need a controller that can scan amiibo
If you're looking for some unique-looking controllers that offer comfortable grip and work well, you can't go wrong with the NexiGo Wireless Nintendo Switch Controller. There are multiple designs to choose from so you can find the look you like best. Plus, they offer motion controls and rumble, which some third-party Switch controllers don't have. The ability to easily adjust LED settings also makes these an appealing option.
Just be aware that the Atmosphere version will always have the blue light from the player indicator shining in your face regardless of what other colors you choose or if you opt to turn the rest of the lights off entirely. Additionally, if you frequently use amiibo while playing your games then you might want to get a different controller since these don't offer NFC scanning.
Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.
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