The expansion’s the thing.
When it comes to getting a solid Xbox One or Xbox Series S/X controller, a lot of options are available to you – and most of them are wireless for convenience. Still, there are those competitive types that prefer a wired controller. Especially one that works with their headset as it gives them the very best when it comes to their heated sessions of Overwatch and Halo Infinite. These people, folks, are who the Turtle Beach Recon controller was made for.
With Turtle Beach’s newest foray into accessories, the Recon controller isn’t exactly the slickest looking model out there. It’s loaded with buttons and built more around the idea of performance rather than a sleek, flawless look. If you can get past that technical aspect and get into the controller itself, you’ll find it loaded with features that should be to your liking – especially if you’re the competitive type. It’s not for everyone, but for $60, it’s a fitting choice for those that want the most out of their sessions. That is if you don’t mind a wired connection.
Customize, Customize, Customize
First off, there’s a neat customization bar at the top of the Turtle Beach Recon controller that lets you select various options once you get a wired headset plugged into the top of it. This includes configuring game and chat audio however you see fit, with four different equalizer-presets that let you choose however you want to go. You can also adjust the mic however you see fit. What’s more, this works with both Turtle Beach headsets and other types, as we tested out with a few gameplay sessions. It’s an excellent feature for those that want to go in-depth.
You can also adjust sound effects on the controller, including how you hear footsteps and other ambient noises. This is sure to be a big draw for those of you that are heavily into multiplayer. Everyone else, well, you can probably skip this option.
But How’s It Feel?
The controller itself feels like a pretty good Xbox One/Xbox Series S/X accessory, with all the right buttons in the right places. They actually feel good when it comes to presses; and even the triggers are very reactionary, right down to firing and getting something set in place, like aiming. The analog sticks are excellent, and the D-Pad, while hardly award-winning, doesn’t really annoy either. It’s balanced just about right. Plus the rumble is outstanding, with everything reacting the way it should from bullets to body slams.
You can also toggle the macro buttons on the back of the controller grips with extra functionality, and even try out Pro-Aim, a cool setting that lets you adjust the right analog stick dramatically across four different functions. Again, it’s fine-tuned with experts in mind, so if that’s not your thing, you can stick with default settings and you should be just fine.
I also really liked the rubber-coated grips on the controller, so that it’s comfortable to hold compared to other, cheaper models. The shoulder buttons are also nicely adjusted, with little dots that keep them from wearing out quickly – a big problem as you might have seen on other, (and again) cheaper units.
A Lot of Features, But Only If You Need Them
As far as recommending the Turtle Beach Recon controller casually, well, that’s a rough call to make. It’s a terrific controller, but its features may go over the heads of fans that just want to get into the game. Again, its lack of decorativeness is easily noticeable, as it’s just loaded up like a technical unit rather than a savvy, customized controller. That may throw off those that prefer to order a customized model from, say, the Xbox store. (Like my Battletoads one, for instance.)
If you’re more of a top-tier gamer or someone that prefers the most competition from multiplayer, or someone that needs a boost from their current headset, then the Recon controller comes highly recommended. Its features are excellent, right down to the mappable buttons and the cool audio customization features; and it performs admirably, even if it does seem a bit overloaded at times. It’s a good go-to choice if you want to take your game to the next level.
Streamer and Cosplay Enthusiast