Love playing games on your Android Phone/Tablet? Want a better way to play them? Android Game Controllers are here to make your life easy! Heres our list of Top 5 Game controllers for Android
Before we start there are certain things you have to keep in mind about game controllers:
- There is no ‘one’ universal game controller in the market for now
- One controller won’t play all android games on all devices
- Check the peripheral’s site for a ‘supported devices’ list
- Some controllers will require batteries
- The controllers in this review are not ranked in any particular order
Having said that, let’s BEGIN!
Red Samurai Wireless Game Controller V2
It has two connections modes that it can operate in. The Red Samurai is comfortable to hold and nicer to look at than the others. Although it is still pretty light, it doesn’t feel cheaply made with a price tag of $24.99. You will find the Android controller, USB charging cable and User Instructions inside the box. List of Games supported as on the box are Cordy, Monster Madness, RipTide GP, Sonic CD, Shadow Gun, Sleepy Jack, GTA 3 and MaxPayne. Its also good for racing games like Buggy Blitz
- Simple set up
- Bluetooth wireless technology
- Rechargeable unit with built in batteries and charging cable included
- Designed to work with select Android tablets
The directional pad and analog sticks are responsive and the placement of the buttons and general feel of the controller is very nice. The price wont exactly burn a hole in your pocket at $24.99 either. The grip on the handlers is awesome.
When you swap to another application that utilizes your keyboard, you are only able to see suggested words, not the full keypad. Being unresponsive for games without key-mapping option is also a bit of a worry.
The Nyko PlayPad comes up in a good package with a Case to hold your Tablet/Phone stand, Controller, USB charger and User Manual. This one has four different controller modes – HID (Standard game controls), mouse mode, iCade(iOS devices) and App Mode to use it with the Nyko Playground App(to customize the keys for keyboard mouse and apps). It controls your favorite tablet games with console like precision.
- Optimized HID protocol for Tegra®3 based devices and games
- Includes Nyko’s free Playground app with the ability to customize controller layout and download game profiles for older titles
- Works with any Bluetooth® enabled device running Android 3.0 or higher
- Compact design fits in included case for easy travel and packing
- Included tablet stand holds tablet in horizontal or vertical orientation
No Rooting Required. Tablet stand support is added advantage. Its easy to use and quite smooth.
You have to disconnect the controller whenever you need to type.
SteelSeries Free Mobile Gaming Controller
This one is the costliest in the list. It is a wireless controller with Bluetooth to hook up to your device. It’s analog sticks are subtly textured to prevent slippage. It has Cross-platform compatibility with PC, Mac®, Android smartphones and tablets, and iDevices including iPhone®, iPad®, and iPod Touch®
- Classic controller layout with two joysticks, Dpad, two trigger buttons, four-button layout, and select/start buttons
- You can Remap all 12 buttons via SteelSeries Engine
- Light indicators for pairing and switching between multiple device platforms
- Rechargeable battery with an estimated 10 hrs of continuous, wireless play time
- Auto power save will turn off the controller after more than 3 mins of being idle
The company boasts of a recharge time of just 2 hrs, which is amazing! SteelSeries FREE App for mobile devices will provide users with the quick start guide, and direct access to SteelSeries Engine support.
Now for the Good and the Bad bit -
Good compatibility with Windows Mac, Android games. : Grand Theft Auto 3, RipTide GP and also popular titles like Temple Run, Pac-Man, Warblade HD are supported along with a tonne of games listed on their site. Controller will work up to 20 feet away from your computer or device.
The Price is too damn high! This one is for hardcore game controller lovers only!
Moga Mobile Gaming System
It connects via Bluetooth to devices running Android 2.3 or higher, and it has its own app that guides you through the setup process and directs you to supported games. Obviously u cant attach Tablets its flip out tray, but you can experience how the Nvidia project shield would look in your hands!
- Dual analog sticks, shoulder triggers and four action buttons offer the control you need for the games you want
- Your phone snaps right in – up to 3.2 in./82mm, the largest phones in the market – or kick back and game on your tablet. Works with Bluetooth enabled Android 2.3+ smartphones and tablets
- Counterbalanced design and rubberized grips minimize wrist fatigue during mobile gaming sessions
- 18 hours of gameplay with 2 (1.5v) AAA batteries (not included)
The Good :
Controller and phone can be combined into one unit. No of games supported is high. Better for playing while travelling, you can play in public transport is an advantage over the other controllers.
Will require rechargeable batteries if used daily. The controller can at times block access to your phone’s volume controls. No support for classic game emulators.
Sony PlayStation DualShock or SixAxis controller
This one wasn’t exactly meant for playing on Android devices or Android games, but that’s what the specialty of a Sony product is. The technology will help you to play with it on Android devices, although one thing is to be considered here - Root access is required, and an app to pair the device is necessary. I would suggest this only if you’re already rooted then it’s worth it or otherwise it just adds many steps to play your favourite game with a controller. So if ur device is rooted enjoy the fruit!
The Good :
No need to buy one if u already have a PlayStation. So you can tecnically have it for free!
The Bad :
Requires Rooting your device, which isn’t really bad. But quite a lot of tinkering is required, to find compatible games and mapping functions.
The most no of games supported are in the Steelseries Free, which isn’t much if you see the number of games in the Play Store which run without controller support or aren’t designed to. That means that mobile gaming is not really ready yet to support a return to the days where you would sit in front of a screen with a controller in your hand!
Android gaming is certainly a big market and I would have loved Google getting in and providing some support to all these app devs and manufacturers. But at least we have a good platform and Android gaming isn’t boring and painstaking thanks to these controllers!
So long Gamers! Game Over!