Earlier today during Microsoft’s E3 presentation, the company revealed a new controller for the Xbox One gaming console and Windows 10 devices aimed at the competitive gamer called the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller.
The new controller, which is meant as an alternative to and not a replacement for the current Xbox One controller, was designed in collaboration with pro-level players and offers a ridiculous amount of customization to suit a variety of play styles and also boast a few improvements both visually and under the hood.
Xbox Elite Wireless Controller features stainless steel thumbstick shafts, D-pads, and paddles as well as low-friction, reinforced rings around each thumbstick to minimize wear and makes it a much stronger device compared to the normal Xbox One controller which has a plastic case and buttons that can be easily damaged with overuse. The new controller also has rubberized grip on its sides to improve comfort and handling during those sweaty all-night gaming sessions.
The main appeal for hardcore gamers though is the hair trigger locks which restrict the movement of the triggers, the variety of thumbsticks and D-pads that can now be swapped out to match the user’s play style and the four completely new slots on the rear for interchangeable paddles whose functions can be completely customized in a new app that’s due to launch on Xbox One and Windows 10.
This app will give gamers the option to adjust the triggers’ min/max values, thumbstick sensitivities and completely change the button assignments. Up to 14 inputs can be assigned to the ABXY buttons, paddles, D-pad, triggers, and thumbstick clicks and an unlimited number of controller profiles can be saved to the app and automatically backed up in the cloud while two can be stored locally on the controller itself. The two local profiles can be manually changed on the fly via a new profile switch on the controller.
The Xbox Elite Wireless Controller has been officially confirmed for release in October of this year and can be pre-ordered now on Amazon.com with other retailers expected to offer it soon (if not already). The Xbox Elite Wireless Controller comes with a carry case, a set of four paddles, six thumbsticks (two standard, two tall and two domed), one faceted and one standard D-pad, a USB cable and a manual. AA batteries will also come with the controller which confirms that it won’t have a built-in rechargeable battery and is particularly strange due to it being a feature Xbox One owners have been requesting since the system’s launch. Currently owners have to invest in a separate Xbox One Play and Charge Kit which contains a rechargeable battery and USB cable if they want that functionality. Current owners of an Xbox One Play and Charge Kit will be able to use that with this new controller however.
The Xbox Elite Wireless Controller will work either wirelessly or with a USB cable on the Xbox One and via USB or wirelessly using an official PC wireless adapter (due for release later in 2015) on PC. Despite being advertised as for the Xbox One and Windows 10, the device specifications do reveal that the new controller will work with any PC running Windows 7 onwards.
What do you think of this new iteration of the Xbox One controller? Are there any features (like a rechargeable battery) that you think are missing? Share your thoughts in the comments below.Further reading: E3 2015, Microsoft, Xbox Elite Wireless Controller, Xbox One