Nacon Revolution Pro Controller Review

The Nacon Revolution is one of two new controllers officially licensed by PlayStation, the other being Razer’s similarly-styled Raiju. Built with the pro competitive player in mind, they come at premium – £89.99 in this instance. While pretty much double the price of Sony’s standard DualShock 4, it’s a lot cheaper than the Raiju (priced at around £150) as well as SCUF’s high-tier custom pads.

Moving away from cost, the Revolution comes with a 3m braided USB wire, a small set of weights, and one or two Nacon branded goodies. In an age where wireless pads rule supreme, keeping one constantly plugged in can be a hassle, though quickly became less of a problem the more often I used it. Some will argue that a wired connection cuts down latency, but however big that jump is meant to be, there’s little to suggest to me that there’s a notable difference.

One inclusion that surprised me a bit, however, were the weights. Allowing players to adjust the heft of their controller is a simple yet welcome addition. Accessing the compartment where they slot in can be a bit awkward, though it’s something you’ll only need to do once, maybe twice.

The Revolution comes tagged with several other features, some being more subtle. The D-Pad, for instance, sports eight directional inputs instead of the standard four. It’s a design choice that speaks to the fighting game crowd and one that alleviates the awkward gestures needed when pulling off special moves in Street Fighter. It’s no substitute for a tournament-grade arcade stick, but is certainly easier on the thumbs.

For those accustomed to Sony’s DualShock as opposed to the Xbox controllers, the offset analogue sticks on the Nacon Revolution will feel strange at first. After hundreds of hours of gaming, a certain muscle memory builds up and I definitely found myself reaching above the left stick for directional buttons that weren’t there.

The main reason for picking up one of these pro controllers is the ability to customise layouts, add shortcuts, and add macros. The Revolution has four added rear buttons that wrap around your index fingers. These can be modified to mimic just about any input, from making reloads, to crouching, and making melee attacks that little bit quicker (at least in first person shooters). You can load a total of four profiles onto the controller at once, switching between them at the press of a button.

In order to tweak your layout – as well as stick sensitivity, dead zones, and other advanced refinements – you’ll need to plug your pad into a computer and use Nacon’s software. While fairly slick in its design, it doesn’t do a great job in explaining just how to mod your Revolution or what a macro actually is.

It may sport a quality matte finish but there’s something about Nacon’s latest controller that didn’t feel right to me. During play I found myself continually adjusting my grip, failing to get a comfortable hold on it. The way I usually position my hands didn’t gel with the Revolution’s bulky form, my fingers often stretching too far over the triggers. As someone with fairly mammoth hands, it may not be a common issue. Ultimately it comes down to preference and for me, smaller, more streamlined controllers often allow for better comfort and competitive performance.

Like many premium gamepads on the market, you won’t know if it’s the right one unless you get some hands on time. Considering their limited retail presence, that can be a major issue and probably explains why many are hesitant when shopping for these third party controllers. While definitely a safe choice for anyone looking to tailor their gaming experience further, Nacon’s latest effort isn’t enough to dethrone the DualShock, though I’m sure there’s a hardcore niche that would strongly disagree.

Written by
Senior Editor bursting with lukewarm takes and useless gaming trivia. May as well surgically attach my DualShock at this point.

7 Comments

  1. I don’t get offset sticks. You don’t have offset hands.

    • Take it up with microsoft mate!
      I find the offset sticks much better,but each to their own.

  2. It’s a no deal for me.

    1) overpriced.
    2) asymmetric analogue sticks.
    3) wired controller.

    • At least it’s a lot cheaper than the other ‘Pro’ controllers, but I’ll be sticking with the DS4.

  3. Too much wrong for that price.

    Yes, incorrect placement of the sticks is a problem.

    Wired isn’t quite as big a problem, but it looks like it uses a weird cable. Why not a normal USB cable? Like the one that is constantly hanging out of the front of my PS4 to charge the controllers (and my phone, until someone decided phones should have USB-C instead – great for plugging the cable in on the first rather than third attempt, but an issue if you’ve got older USB cables all over the place and none of them fit)

    And you need to use a PC to configure the controller? An “officially licensed” PS4 controller doesn’t have a PS4 app to configure it??

    • The cable does look a bit bulky and heavy, like it pulls the controller down at the front? And is the normal DS4 wireless input latency so bad that wired makes a noticeable difference? Would you need lightning fast internet and an Ethernet wired console to get the benefit? It’s a lot of faff I’m not interested in, all the same good review and nice to have two about hardware this week, cheers Jim!

  4. Looks pretty bad to me and likely would feel that way, given the odd stick positions. Is probably meant for former XBox fans who finally made it to planet PlayStation after the XBone launch disaster.

Comments are now closed for this post.

Lost Password

Please enter your username or email address. You will receive a link to create a new password via email.

Sign Up