RiotPWR Xbox Edition review: A dated Game Pass companion | Digital Trends

    RiotPWR Xbox Edition
    MSRP $69.99

    “RiorPWR Xbox Edition is a well-made cloud gaming controller, but one that’s outclassed by the competition.”


    Great Game Pass companion

    Solid construct high quality

    Flexible mount

    Handy share button


    Dated design

    Awkward menu buttons

    Strange cable dynamic

    The RiotPWR Xbox Edition controller is a superb cloud gaming answer that you just in all probability shouldn’t purchase. On paper, it’s an ideal companion for Xbox Game Pass subscribers who need to flip their telephones into a conveyable cloud console. It’s an all-around sturdy cellular gaming system anchored by a sturdy, aesthetically pleasing controller. If it have been nonetheless 2020, it will be the perfect cloud gaming system in the marketplace.
    However, it’s 2022 and that market has modified quickly in simply two years. After a number of years of corporations experimenting with flimsy controller clips and overly difficult telephone contraptions, attachable gamepads just like the Backbone and Razer Kishi have discovered the proper formulation for turning your telephone right into a handheld console. It’s laborious to return to the previous methods, even when RiotPWR makes an extremely sturdy case for its admittedly dated method.
    If you need to use a well-recognized controller to your cloud gaming expertise, the RiotPWR Xbox Edition is a well-thought-out choice that completely pairs with the Xbox Game Pass app. Its design quirks and price ticket make it a tricky promote, although, contemplating how stiff the competitors at the moment is.
    Game Pass prepared
    Rather than creating telephone clips or controller attachments, RiotPWR creates all-in-one merchandise that flip a telephone into a conveyable console. Their merchandise include a customized controller and a built-in clip that totally different gadgets — from telephones to tablets (kind of) — can simply snap into. The Xbox Edition is essentially the most interesting product within the line but although, because it duplicates the design of a conventional Xbox Wireless Controller.
    It’s laborious to shake the sensation that the corporate’s core design philosophy is just a little dated by right this moment’s requirements.

    In a vacuum, it’s a slam dunk. If you utilize the Game Pass cellular app for cloud streaming, it’s about the perfect piece of transportable tech you possibly can hope for. The devoted Xbox button format means which you can simply play video games from the platform with out having to remap a extra generic gamepad format. Something so simple as having an Xbox-branded house button negates the “workaround” really feel of numerous cloud gaming gadgets, together with a few of RiotPWR’s personal controllers (the tradeoff is that you just may find yourself feeling just a little confused if you happen to attempt to use it with, say, PS Plus).
    As a part of my testing, I went forwards and backwards with taking part in some video games on my Xbox Series X after which switching to transportable play with the RiotPWR. The transition was seamless. I used to be capable of load up my save recordsdata and adapt to on-the-go play with no friction since I used to be utilizing nearly the identical format. I’d simply should account for the additional weight {that a} system like this brings when it’s weighed down by a telephone, however that’s anticipated.

    The worth of the system will get cloudier the extra you set it in context. At $70, the RiotPWR is pricier than an everyday Xbox controller. If you already personal an Xbox, you possibly can simply as simply purchase a $20 or $30 clip (just like the Xbox-ready one Otterbox presents) and construct the identical product for much less cash. It’s extra of a worth if you happen to don’t personal an Xbox controller in any respect, however not by a lot.
    The largest problem, nonetheless, is that the RiotPWR is competing towards the Backbone and Razer Kishi V2. Both attachments are positively swish, turning your telephone right into a Nintendo Switch by simply strapping on some light-weight aspect grips. I don’t actually know why you’d need to go for a heavier, full controller setup when each choices can be found. RiotPWR is $30 cheaper and its Xbox gamepad makes it extra acquainted (although Backbone is moving into console-specific variants), but it surely’s laborious to shake the sensation that the corporate’s core design philosophy is just a little dated by right this moment’s requirements.
    Controller high quality
    With that key caveat out of the way in which, let’s concentrate on what the system really is. RiotPWR is excellent at what it does, even when it feels one step behind the curve at the moment. The controller itself feels pretty much as good as a typical Xbox controller, with some minor nitpicks. It’s light-weight with responsive buttons that just about click on like a mouse change. This isn’t an affordable copy; it nearly looks like Microsoft made this, not a third-party firm.

    I’m particularly keen on the general aesthetic right here. Rather than utilizing the Xbox’s commonplace black shade scheme, the RiotPWR is white with some bright-green accents beneath the thumbsticks and on the highest. It’s nearly a Nickelodeon slime look, but it surely’s one which looks like a pleasant match with the Xbox model.
    The solely factor that throws me off is its menu buttons that are laid into the controller flat reasonably than jutting out. It generally is a little laborious to hit them, particularly when a telephone is clipped in. It tends to hold over these buttons at nearly any angle, which means you must wedge your fingers beneath it and really feel round for the groove. On the plus aspect, it does comprise a devoted share button on the left aspect, which is a pleasant contact that goes past what a correct Xbox controller presents.
    I’m impressed by the general high quality of the RiotPWR, which nearly looks like a first-party system.

    The cellular clip itself is especially effectively designed. It’s a separate piece that may be firmly slotted into the entrance of the controller (the slot has a rubber capper when it’s not in use), so it’s simple to disassemble it and pack it up for a visit. The mount feels reasonably sturdy, clamping down on my telephone with a stress that makes it really feel safe. It will get a very good angle vary too, as I can bend it to have my telephone practically perpendicular to the gamepad or snapped to this point again that I can’t see the display.
    I’m impressed by the general high quality of the RiotPWR, which nearly looks like a first-party system. I do suppose it’s one thing I’ll doubtless find yourself utilizing occasionally, however doubtless extra as a go-to workplace cloud controller than one thing I tackle the run.
    Design quirks
    The RiorPWR begins to essentially lose some factors with regards to a number of notable design quirks. The largest of these is its method to connectivity. Rather than attaching to your telephone wirelessly, it solely connects through lightning cable — particularly, one which juts out of the again of the controller. The wire is excessively lengthy and awkwardly hangs down when taking part in. The mount has just a little groove to clip the wire in place, however it may’t match a couple of move of the wire. Mine coils round no less than twice, so there’s all the time a loop hanging off even when clipped.

    With your telephone’s lightning port in use, you possibly can’t use that to cost it whereas taking part in. To remedy that, the controller itself has a lightning port on the backside, which permits for pass-through charging. It can really feel just a little annoying to have a charging wire dangling between your palms, particularly because it’s subsequent to the headphone jack (although it’s bizarre to have a headphone jack in any respect when your iPhone’s lightning cable port will all the time be in use whereas taking part in).
    The vary of the mount can also be just a little restricted. While the field says it helps iPads, I’ve no earthly thought which one would match. I’ve an iPad Mini and the clip doesn’t lengthen practically sufficient to suit it. My iPhone 12 can match within the clip with its skinny case on, however just a little rubber bumper signifies that I wouldn’t have the ability to match my telephone if it have been only a bit wider. If you utilize a thicker case, you may have to take away it earlier than slotting it in.
    I simply don’t know easy methods to justify a full suggestion regardless of what number of methods I slice it.

    Quirks like that put a dent within the general worth, which is one thing RiotPWR can’t actually afford to lose right here. Considering how stiff the competitors is, any in any other case small annoyance turns right into a a lot larger knock towards it. On some degree, I actually do love the RiotPWR Xbox Edition. It’s a wise system that compliments the Xbox ecosystem effectively. Anyone who strictly performs console-quality video games on their telephone may doubtless profit from it. I simply don’t know easy methods to justify a full suggestion regardless of what number of methods I slice it.
    Our take
    The RiotPWR Xbox Edition is a well-built cloud gaming controller that just about feels pretty much as good as a first-party system. It’s a superb Game Pass companion due to its Xbox gamepad format and a sturdy cellular mount. It’s only a matter of competitors. It doesn’t actually compete with one thing just like the Backbone and even only a common Xbox controller with a mount — particularly as a result of its $70 price ticket. It’s an ideal cellular system, simply not an ideal cellular system for 2022.
    Is there a greater different?
    The Backbone and Razer Kishi V2 are pricier, however extra swish cloud gadgets. If you have already got an Xbox controller, simply get one thing like Otterbox’s cellular clip and avoid wasting money.
    How lengthy will it final?
    The clip itself feels sturdy, but it surely’s on the mercy of telephone producers. If the iPhone will get thicker, for example, it won’t match down the road.
    Should you purchase it?
    No. It’s an ideal system for what it’s, but it surely’s laborious to justify the acquisition at this worth level when there are higher options on the market.

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