Up For Debate - Are the new next-gen console controllers worth it for PC players?

Written by Chad Norton on Sun, Nov 8, 2020 3:00 PM
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Controllers are a man’s best friend when it comes to gaming on consoles, I mean there’s literally no other way to play the games on there without one (or, at least used to be, as some games are now offering keyboard and mouse support). 

But controllers are also great on PC too when you want to play something that isn’t an action shooter and you don’t need those quick reflexes for those amazing flicks in games like Call of Duty or Rainbow Six: Siege. Racing games for instance benefit much more from using a controller over a mouse and keyboard setup like the recently released Dirt 5.

But there has been one reigning champion on the PC gamepad market: and that’s Xbox.

For the longest time I’ve been using an Xbox 360 controller as my go-to gamepad on PC, and then when the Xbox One released I got the newer Xbox One controller. I didn’t even bother looking up reviews for the PlayStation 4’s DualShock 4 controller as I just wanted to stick with what I knew, and what I knew worked for me.

But now the next-gen consoles are almost upon us, and Sony has brought out quite possibly one of the most interesting controllers to date, and that’s saying something since controllers aren’t usually advertised as immersion enhancing, or as a gaming peripheral that will act as an extension to your game. It’s just a small plastic thing that lets you press buttons and do the job.

The DualSense controller is shaking things up in the PC gamepad market, as now both options are equally viable: go with the classic Xbox controller that feels comfy and has dominated the market since forever, or the new snazzy PlayStation controller that does a cool rumble thing and has adaptive triggers and can even make noises on its own.

Of course, maybe that’s just a gimmick that won’t pay off… or maybe, just maybe, it could be the next big thing, and 20 years from now scholars will look back and say “wow, Sony was really ahead of the time…”

Or maybe not.

Maybe it’s not worth getting a next-gen controller just yet, and we should just stick to using our Xbox One controllers or DualShock 4’s since they’re doing just fine.

So what do you think? Is it time for Xbox’s reign over gamepad controllers on PC to end? Is the DualSense a legitimate evolution of the controller space by enhancing immersion? Or is it just a gimmick that won’t go very far and not worth the money? Let us know!

P.S: Vote in the polls below and let's see how many user controllers on PC and which ones they use! As a side note: the Xbox Series X controller is not yet out as a separate purchase before the console's launch, which is why it's missing in the polls below.

Do you use a gamepad controller on PC?

Which controller do you use?

Are the next-gen controllers worth it for PC?

Login or Register to join the debate

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09:34 Nov-11-2020

I actually got myself a DS4 from china. It works pretty good, but the triggers are inaccurate (because of the membrane workings) and the dpad is a bit like the xbox 360 dpad. It does work very well with DS4Windows. Maybe that I'll get the PS5 controller, the haptic feedback seems like a really nice feature, but damn, why are controllers always so expensive and never dop in price? I mean, the DS4 controller doesn't look that advanced to have a 60 euro price tag nowadays.

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00:40 Nov-11-2020

My Razer Wolverine tournament ed. from 2017 still going strong & not so competitive now (plus started with KBM in the 80's with Shooters etc. can go back to sitting at desk if need)

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00:41 Nov-11-2020

oops it's wired to

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09:59 Nov-10-2020

I still have a 360 wired controller I bought new dirt cheap like in 2014 i think,besides the D-pad buttons being crap(which is really a design issue)and the rubber on the joysticks a bit worn off,the controller works perfectly and I've used it quite a lot(I play a lot of FIFA/NBA 2k,racing games,Assassin's Creed etc).

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14:17 Nov-09-2020

Bought myself an Xbox One controller but I've used it only a couple times. Nioh, Dark Souls, etc. I have always preferred kb+m

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09:36 Nov-11-2020

For some reason, I feel like it's difficult to map all the controls on a controller. Some games just have more inputs, forcing me to hybrid between the keyboard and the controller

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09:54 Nov-09-2020

Nowdays I only use controllers on PC as fps/competitive games are not really my genre. At the moment I'm fine with the DS4 but I also have an xbox one controller. I used to play with m+k but since I bought a 55" 4k panel I get reaaally lazy, playing only in the living room lol

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09:47 Nov-09-2020

PC games probably won't use the new features of the PS5 controller so what's the point?

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09:38 Nov-11-2020

Haptic feedback and maybe the feel of the controller. I'm not sure if it finally has tactical buttons instead of the membrane, but that also is upgrade worthy.
Oh, the triggers as well, not the tension feature, but the fact that it's not membrane like the DS4 controller.

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21:07 Nov-08-2020

the time i use controllers were arcade and driving and its the 3rd-party controllers w/ xbox one design and PS4 analogs in the middle

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20:50 Nov-08-2020

I either use Keyboard and mouse or my SN30 pro+ from 8BitDo. The new PS5 controller looks amazing and if I can get my hands on one I think I'll like it.

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17:14 Nov-08-2020

Kbm here

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19:04 Nov-08-2020

KBM 4 LYFE xD

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22:30 Nov-08-2020

Same, in fact i feel like with controller im less accurate, maybe is because lack of practice idk

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09:41 Nov-09-2020

Yeah even in games that are supposedly better on controller I prefer a keyboard. Fighting games like Mortal Kombat might be the only exception for me and that's just because I have no idea what I'm doing and I'm just spamming all the buttons the controller has. Even in racing games I'm waaay better on a keyboard.

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16:34 Nov-08-2020

The only reason to change from a XBox 360 or Xbox One controller, if you already have one, is if you want to play games on the Playstation Now game streaming service. There are some games on there that require the built-in gyroscope of the PS Controllers. Multi-platform games won't use the PS5's extras if the XBSX controller doesn't have them as well which means the PC ports won't either.

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16:21 Nov-08-2020

My first 1 was xbox 360 with some fans cooling my hands to not sweat. Then i went with 1 more controller i dont remember which one and it wasn't working right after a couple of months or years? And i changed it to ps3. I've now ps3 controller, but i havent used it in years. Oh, probably I bought it for games like fifa,assassin's creed since playing with a controller was easy

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16:21 Nov-08-2020

i dont mind which controller i use.

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16:09 Nov-08-2020

I use an OG wired Xbox 360 controller on PC for certian games, till that dies I don't see myself upgrading

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15:53 Nov-08-2020

Atm i still have few new xbox one controllers to use but when they crap out (prob stick drift as usual) then i will look at the new xbox controllers

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16:22 Nov-08-2020

Whenever you get stick drift do you try changing the deadzone settings for the sticks? If a particular game doesn't have the option to change them and you use Steam you can alter it through Steam's controller options and re-calibrate the controller. Just an idea if you want to save a few ££/$$ and haven't tried it.

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16:59 Nov-08-2020

Yeah i often mess with that settings to make it last longer but then comes a point where deadzone feels to high for me that im forced to buy new

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15:09 Nov-08-2020

I don't think ps5 will have a lot going for it on pc unless don't released proper drivers and sdk for it.
Ps4 was niche as was ps3.
If song didn't step up, ps5 controllers will become niche, at best.

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