I honestly really dislike the Nintendo Switch JoyCons. While I don’t mind using them when the game itself is designed around motion controls, I honestly find myself not even wanting to play Switch games that are more traditionally controlled. I feel the JoyCons just aren’t meant to be used like that.
Obviously Nintendo provided a more ‘classic’ option with the Pro controllers, and those work just fine. I’m still a DualShock 4 man myself, but they get the job done more or less. But what about the endless third-party options? Well in my experience, most third-party controllers, regardless of the system, are almost never better than the official controllers. That’s until PDP sent over their new ‘Afterglow‘ wireless controller.
Sharing a lot in terms of shape and design with the official Pro controllers, the Afterglow is visually very different. This appears to be the main draw to consumers, as even the box is clear, see-through plastic, designed to show off the controller’s unique look.
Coming with all the usual buttons you’d expect on a ‘pro’ controller, PDP has opted for a few changes. Repositioning of the +, -, Home and Screen Capture buttons a bit, but nothing that isn’t easy to become used to. Other than that, it feels very familiar, albeit a bit ‘slippery’. Sadly the crystal clear plastic material used for the shell of the controller lacks any real grip textures, which can lead to a bit of a sliding problem, especially to those who get a bad case of sweaty hands while gaming.
While the wireless range, response, and even gyro sensors work brilliantly, it is sadly missing any rumble features. While this is to be somewhat expected, it still would have been a nice addition. I can only imagine that they removed the rumble to make room for the main focus of lighting, and of course, to keep the price down.
Luckily, the customizable RGB lighting is extremely vibrant and well-handled, allowing the user to change colors, and even display modes such as fade or strobe, if you’re into that sort of thing. Me, I’m more of a gentle glow sort of guy. But whatever you may like, you can achieve the effect with the Afterglow controller.
Overall the PDP Afterglow Wireless Controller is a very well-made, and very stylish choice for use with your Nintendo Switch. While it still lacks the rumble, it more than makes up for it with its disco of vibrancy. The biggest downside would have to be the lack of any real grip to the controller. If it had some sort of added texture, the controller would feel nearly flawless in my opinion.