As the Wii U game library continues to grow, more and more games are adding support for the Wii U Pro Controller, a more classic take on game controllers than Nintendo has been known for in recent generations. Nyko has always offered quality accessories for gamers and the Pro Commander controller is no different–it’s a cheaper alternative to Nintendo’s official controller without feeling cheaply made. For players who want an alternative control scheme than what the Pro Controller offers, Nyko has you covered with the more familiar layout that the Xbox 360 popularized.
One of the main concerns of buying an unofficial controller has always been build quality. Nearly every gamer who has played at a friend’s house will tell you that being player two only stinks because 90% of the time, the second controller is some unofficial piece of garbarge with broken joysticks or buttons that seem sticky for no reason. Thankfully Nyko has avoided this reputation thus far, as I’ve owned Nyko Wii-motes, an Android bluetooth controller, and even the similarly shaped Nyko Raven, a PS3 controller. Each product has been put through the paces hundreds of times and shines just as well as its official counterpart.
The Pro Commander controller seems to be no different, as I’ve had it for nearly a month now and used it to play both Injustice: Gods Among Us and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate without any problems. In fact, despite MH3U offering some unique control options with the GamePad, I find playing it with the Pro Commander controller to be a superior experience, as many of the monsters in the game require tactical precision that just feels better when you’re not splitting your attention between the screen on the GamePad and your TV.
The analog sticks seem well constructed and retained their rigidity throughout my month long abuse of the controller, which is a good thing. The triggers are the other important part of a controller and while they function well, I didn’t find them comfortable enough to hold like I would my Xbox 360 triggers. There’s no reccessed grip, so keeping anything but the tips of your fingers on the triggers becomes uncomfortable after a length of time.
The rest of the buttons on the controller are responsive and don’t have that sticky feel that some unofficial controllers can, which really makes the experience. The other nice thing about the controller is that it’s covered in a matte finish instead of the typical glossy finish that the official Pro Controller finds itself coated in. This leads to less fingerprints and an overall better feel if your hands tend to sweat while playing games for extended hours.
In playing with the Nyko Pro Commander, I noticed that the size of it is a bit smaller than the Xbox 360 controller, which I’m used to using when playing PC games. It’s not massively smaller than the Xbox 360 controller and it is larger than the PlayStation 3 controller, so there’s a comfortable medium there. If you have a Wii Classic Controller Pro, it’s about the same size as it, though the grips are tapered toward each other.
Though the controller is smaller than what I’m used to, I didn’t have any problems adjusting to it and switching between them between play sessions didn’t feel too out of place. For players who prefer playing games such as Injustice: Gods Among Us with a Pro Controller, you should have no trouble adapting to Nyko’s offering.
The Nyko Pro Commander features a large guide button similar to the Xbox 360 guide button that takes you directly to the Wii U menu when pushed. It also features a player counter similar to the Wii-mote and PlayStation 3 controller, so if you end up with multiple Pro Commanders, you can instantly see the player count on the different controllers. The controller also features a low battery indicator positioned between the D-Pad and the right analogue stick, so you can tell when you’re about to go dead. During my play-testing the controller lasted around 18 hours on a full charge.
That’s several hours over what you’ll get from the GamePad, so for games that are engrossing like Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, I truly recommend it. The Nyko Pro Commander controller can be had for $34.99 and is certainly a great alternative to buying multiple official controllers from Nintendo.
Disclaimer: Nyko provided this review unit to Wii U Daily in order to be reviewed and tested.