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Nyko UBoost for Wii U GamePad review

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Late last year we told you about the Nyko UBoost, which is a GamePad accessory designed to increase the battery life of your Wii U GamePad without having to be a hassle. If you’ve used Nyko 3DS accessories like their 3DS battery boost, you know you need to remove the back of the 3DS and the stock battery that comes with the device in order to use it. Nyko avoided this by creating a battery pack that functions similarly to the stand that comes with the deluxe version of the Wii U.

Overview

The construction of the battery pack is decent quality. The best thing about it is that it’s optional until you need it, so if you don’t like playing with the power pack on, you don’t have to put it on until your Wii U GamePad is almost out of battery. The power button sits on the front of the device and with a quick tap, you can activate it to use as a backup battery. The device weighs about 6 ounces or so, so there is some noticeable heft to the controller once its put into place. The nice thing is the stand that Nyko has included on the back, which allows you to set the GamePad at the same angle as the deluxe charger stand.

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In the picture above you can see I have the battery pack installed on the GamePad while it’s sitting in the charging cradle. These two are compatible, so if you don’t want to use the stand that Nyko provides on the back of the battery pack, you don’t have to do so. I found it a little hard to pull out and push back in, so I personally wouldn’t use it, but for someone who may not have a deluxe system, the stand could come in really handy.

Operation

Over the weekend I played a lot of Monster Hunter using the UBoost battery pack attachment. The Wii U GamePad usually lasts me about 3 and a half hours before it starts blinking and I have to plug it in, but with the UBoost, I was able to play a lot longer. The UBoost is supposed to add up to 10 hours of battery to the Wii U GamePad and on average, I would say I got that. The first charge of the UBoost lasted 11 hours and the second lasted 10, so Nyko’s claims are pretty accurate here.

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Overall, despite the battery pack only behind held to the GamePad by the thumb screw at the top, I never felt like it was in danger of coming apart. Once the thumb screw is firmly in place, the battery pack is attached to the GamePad until you remove it. Thankfully the thumb screw is a lot more easy to detach than the built-in stand that comes with it. As previously mentioned, this battery pack is compatible with the deluxe charging stand that comes with the black Wii U, so if that’s your main method of charging your GamePad, you don’t have to worry about not being able to use it anymore.

The curious thing that I found is that Nyko’s own replacement charger, called the Nyko Charge Station U is incompatible with the stand. You’d think that Nyko would have made the battery pack to accommodate their own accessory so that you can charge both at the same time, but it doesn’t work well together. You’ll have to charge the UBoost separately if you have a Charge Station U, which allows two Wii-motes to be charged as well.

The design and function that the UBoost provides is pretty great. It comes in both black and white, but the review unit I received was white. The usual retail price for the UBoost is $24.99, but Amazon currently has them both hovering around $20 if this is something you’re interested in. I’d say it’s a worthy investment if you plan on playing the Wii U for any length of time, as it provides great battery life and it doesn’t get in the way like some accessories. If you have any questions about the unit, I’ll be happy to answer them in the comments below.

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  • eli

    POTATOE!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Bingham/100000260255063 Chris Bingham

      Damn it!! I was going to say that ¬^¬

      • bizzy gie

        TOMATOE!

    • Super Buu

      Indeed.

    • beerkin

      Salad?

    • Tim van Broekhoven

      SOLANUM TUBEROSUM!

  • Mark Thom

    cool

  • beerkin

    Have you heard anything about the battery pack. There was supposed to be another NYKO accessory that is just a stronger battery. This looks a bit cumbersome.

    • http://about.me/overlordror Ashley King

      Hey Matt,

      You’re referring to the PowerPak, which is an installable replacement battery pack. I don’t have it yet, but I’ll contact Nyko and see what they say.

      • Agent721

        A poster recently said Nyko is delaying it, until Nintendos own extended battery comes out. Sounds like Nintendo threatened a lawsuit…Nintendo has historically hated Nyko, so it sounds like it could be legit to me.

        • tronic307

          Nintendo should have had the high capacity battery day one. It’s like Nintendo is still assembling the Wii U while we’re PLAYING!!

          • THEMIGHTYDOOVDE

            That would explain alot!

          • http://www.facebook.com/AJ.Fowl Andrew Chambers

            A bigger battery means a heavier gamepad. The only reason to get an extended battery is if you play games for more than 3 hours in a row.

          • Ben Kapferer

            A higher-capacity battery wouldn’t make the GamePad that much heavier, would it?

          • tronic307

            If a controller is going to include everything but the kitchen sink, it might as well have good battery life. Analog triggers couldn’t hurt either.
            Let’s not half-ass this thing. We’ve made it this far; why not make it an even $200?

          • peeer

            I don’t know about you but for me it happens all the time to play more than 3 hours in a row… When I really enjoy a game I can’t stop.

          • http://www.facebook.com/AJ.Fowl Andrew Chambers

            I do that on MH all the time, but I have my cord like 5 feet away…

          • Agent721

            Yep… I’ve had to strip games early due to this.

          • AAAkabob

            True but the downsides of a better batter is extra weight and cost and both are at the tip of equilibrium if you ask me.

          • Sidney Majurie

            They didn’t to keep the price down. The same reason they didn’t go with a sizeable internal HDD. People already think the Wii U is too expensive. Imagine it with a 250GB HDD and a GamePad battery that lasts 8 hours…

          • Cerus98

            A larger battery would have added next to nothing to the cost and even less weight. Batteries have gotten cheaper, waaaay smaller and more powerful. If you ask me, it was solely a marketing thing since the compartment is a lot bigger than the current battery. Common business practice though. They make extra money by offering the battery it should have come with as an addon later on. Probably why Nyko hasn’t released it yet – they’re stepping on Nintendos toes.

          • thedeciderU

            i know, wouldn’t it be amazing?

          • Agent721

            Bingo! I had preordered it on Amazon, but cancelled it as it kept being pushed back.

      • tronic307

        Nyko customer service just told me 2 weeks for the PowerPak, but then they told me February when I called them in January. They also denied any objections raised on Nintendo’s end, but it’s not like they’d tell ME.

      • Giovanni Di Frisco

        nintendo won’t release their extended battery until the end of august, still a long time waiting.

  • Squid

    I’ll think about it. I’m only a few feet from a charger, doesn’t really matter…

  • Nintendofreak

    well sound cool but a gamepad range extender would be a must buy

  • Adrian

    Hmm, maybe I’ll put it on my Christmas list. But I’ll likely wait until Ninetendo realeases one (on the super secret doc).

  • David Dixon

    I’ll wait for the battery that you can put in the GamePad, so it won’t feel like an add-on.

    • Zuxs13

      They have one. But it keeps getting delayed.

      • AAAkabob

        One rumor I heard is Nintendo is forcing them to delay. Maybe cause they want to release their own or maybe something else?

        • Giovanni Di Frisco

          It’s highly possible, I truly believe nintendo has something to do with this particular delay(nyko power pack for wii u)

    • Ben Kapferer

      I assume most replacement rechargeable batteries will work, though they would have to be the squarish kind instead of the kind that are shaped like AA/AAA batteries.

    • thedeciderU

      32x? haha

  • tronic307

    Just when you thought the GamePad couldn’t get any more epic… It’s a kickstand!

  • FlyingBoat

    yea ive only ever had one incident where it went low on battery, and that was when i was having a party. which, ah, doesnt happen very often

  • Giovanni Di Frisco

    we need a 10K mAmp battery for the wii u gamepad, something that guarantee us to have a full 5-10 hours without recharging. Nintendo clearly advertises as a tv remote solution as well. This product from nyko is bulky and impractical. I’ll wait for a solution from nintendo or the nyko power pack for wii u.

    • Cerus98

      That would be a massive battery and way too big for the compartment. Not to mention incredibly heavy and expensive. The Powerpak is a 4000 mAh Li-Po that’s 3x the stock capacity giving up to 10 hours of playtime. So there ya go. When its out you’ll get your playtime.

  • Ducked

    Could you write a review on the Wii U afterglow controller?

  • John Madsen

    actually nyko has been focused on the u.s market not the u.k market right now if your in the u.k its really tough to find if your in the u.s you can get them no problem i have one and love mine to death

  • Kaihaku

    I think that I’ll hold out for Mugen’s version.

  • phaedruss

    This think looks stupid, whatever happened to the simple battery replacement they have on their site?

  • Aaron Barton

    Call me the odd man out, but am I missing something? Does anybody alive on this planet actually need this product?

  • https://soundcloud.com/rauschenmaschine Kristian Kouvo

    Had one NYKO product, an induction charger for Wii. It was total crap. Never gonna buy their short circuiting devices anymore.

    Wait for a Nintendo high capacity replacement battery or plug the power cable directly to the tablet for extended gaming (upper left corner).

  • andré

    i hope its not heavy or in the way from my big hands=)

  • ray anderson

    3 hours is plenty for me usually, and in the case it is not I do something crazy…I plug it in. The cord is in no way short, and it does not affect gameplay at all. Not too long ago all controllers were corded, and we played just fine. Now we have people complaining of “only” 3 hours of game time before they have to plug in to keep playing. Stupid!

    IDK why anyone would rather bulk up their controller just so they don’t have to plug the remote in. Furthermore….If your controller is plugged in when not playing, and your controller dies while playing, it is the Nintendo’s way of saying, “Dude go for a walk a minute, you have been gaming way too long.”

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