If you were to create a venn diagram with circles representing Sonic fans and those who like controllers with transparent shells, the PDP REALMz Controller range would be perfect for those who sit in the area where they intersect. With models available for both Switch and Xbox, the only real question here is who’s your favourite – Sonic, Tails or Knuckles?
We’ve had our hands on the PDP REALMz Wired LED Pro Controller for Switch – the Sonic model, to be exact. To look at it is to instantly fall in love with it. The clear shell is adorned with a lovely slice of the Green Hill Zone on the right grip. In the left grip – literally – is a small Sonic figurine, ready to spring into action. Between them, further bringing the controller to life, the top of the PCB board is also adorned with an image of the Green Hill Zone. Put it all together, and you have a controller that any Sonic fan is sure to appreciate.
“To look at it is to instantly fall in love with it.”
There are further Sonic-themed touches, too. The buttons, analog sticks and triggers are appropriately coloured in red and blue. The included 8-foot USB-C cable is also blue. Pick up a model themed around Tails or Knuckles and you’ll find figurines of those encased in your controller instead, as well as alternative zone graphics and matching button colours. The Tails controller, for example, has yellow and blue buttons rather than red and blue.
To make these controllers even more eye-catching, LED lights have been implemented to truly bring them to life when in use. Is it necessary? No, but you won’t find us complaining when it makes looking at your controller’s innards so much more exciting.
All this would be pointless if the controllers themselves weren’t up to scratch, but thankfully there’s nothing much to complain about here. The buttons are a little plasticky, sure, but they’ve proven to be reliable and responsive in our testing. The controllers also a nice shape and size, making them comfortable to use.
“For Sonic the Hedgehog fans these controllers are very enticing indeed”
They’re light, too, or at least the wired version we’ve been using is. The more expensive wireless model for Switch is likely to be at least a little heftier due to its built-in battery pack. That’s the price you pay for being able to play untethered. Pick up a wired Switch model and you also get extra features such as a 3.5mm stereo headphone jack, and volume controls built into the controller. The Xbox model has programmable back buttons, too.
There are many third-party controllers to choose from – on both Switch and Xbox – and while the PDP REALMz range doesn’t aim to be the best when it comes to build quality or features, it’s certainly in the running for the most eye-catching. For Sonic the Hedgehog fans these controllers are very enticing indeed, being just as much fun to look at as they are to actually use. So, if you’re a Sonic fan wanting a new controller for Switch or Xbox, be sure to give the REALMz range a look.