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#15 — Xbox Elite Wi-fi Controller

#15 — Xbox Elite Wi-fi Controller

#15 — Xbox Elite Wireless Controller

Microsoft has all the time been on the forefront of participant selection, whether or not that is permitting gamers to play older video games by way of backwards compatibility or by providing two totally different consoles with totally different specs at totally different worth factors. One space that Microsoft noticed match to enhance participant selection was with its controllers, particularly the Xbox Elite Wi-fi Controller, which gave customers extra customisation and management in how they performed their video games. Nonetheless, it additionally gave Microsoft plenty of complications, particularly with its second technology of Elite controller.
The Xbox Elite Wi-fi Controller was first unveiled throughout E3 2015, with Phil Spencer describing it on the time as “an elite controller for the elite gamer.” The Xbox Elite Wi-fi Controller supplied extra inputs than commonplace controllers, with interchangeable paddles on the again that enables customers to reload a weapon, for instance, with out having to take their thumb off an analog stick. It additionally has hair triggers that shorten the vary of movement of a set off press, a swappable D-Pad, in-depth button mapping, rumble management, and totally different thumbsticks so customers can discover probably the most snug match for them. Whereas not strictly a brand new factor to the market — Scuf had already launched its Scuf One Customized Professional Controller for Xbox One and a number of other peripherals that did related issues — it did deliver the concept of a premium, extra customisable controller to the mainstream.

On the time, there have been questions surrounding the Elite controller’s slightly hefty price ticket. Microsoft priced the pad at $150, which is sort of steep for one thing that actually solely supplied just a few enhancements over the controller everybody already owned. A few years later, in an interview with Eurogamer, Phil Spencer mentioned he “acquired some questions at E3 about, hey, you possibly can’t promote a $150 Elite controller. Who’s that for?” Spencer then went on to say that Microsoft could not make sufficient to fulfill demand and that there was certainly a buyer on the market who was “on the lookout for the premium expertise.” The Xbox Elite Controller launched on October twenty seventh, 2015, and it flew off the cabinets, virtually promoting out in every single place (Sounds much like the Xbox Sequence X|S launch, proper). Microsoft hasn’t launched particular numbers on what number of it offered, nevertheless it appears customers actually had been on the lookout for that premium expertise. Nonetheless, that is to not say there weren’t points. Over time, studies started to floor about varied issues with the controller, together with fragile bumpers and peeling grips (one thing we might see extra of with the Elite Sequence 2). Microsoft did supply replacements for patrons with faulty controllers however by no means actually commented on the problems customers had been dealing with. Although it is inconceivable to understand how widespread these defective controllers had been, it appears that there have been extra points with Microsoft’s subsequent Elite outing.

Quick ahead 4 years, and we might see Microsoft launch one other Elite controller. The Xbox Elite Wi-fi Controller Sequence 2 is constructed on high of the unique Elite controller’s design, and whereas on the floor they do look related, there is a good bit extra happening beneath the hood. The Sequence 2 has new textured grips, new tension-adjustable analog sticks for extra exact actions, some clicker buttons which are simpler to press, Bluetooth, a built-in battery with round 40 hours of battery life in a cost, and a swanky little charging dock. On the software program aspect of issues, button remapping was expanded so you might assign particular inputs to issues like taking a screenshot or mentioning achievements, and you might additionally immediately swap between three controller profiles versus simply two on the unique Elite. On the time, the brand new pad was priced at a good-looking $180. Have been the brand new options sufficient to justify the improve? Properly, it might seem so…

When the Elite Sequence 2 controller debuted in November 2019, very like the unique Elite, it was extremely well-liked, a lot, in order that industry-tracking agency NPD Group reported the Sequence 2 because the “fifth fastest-selling online game accent in U.S. historical past,” after simply three months in the marketplace. Nonetheless, it quickly grew to become obvious that the Elite Sequence 2 had points. Customers reported issues with the pad straight out of the field — one thing you positively would not count on for a controller with such a premium price ticket. A thread on Reddit detailed a few of the points, together with sticky and unresponsive face buttons, points with the bumpers, inconsistent Bluetooth connectivity, stick drift, grip points and different faults. Microsoft shortly issued an announcement to Home windows Central saying it was conscious {that a} small variety of customers had been experiencing points, and it was actively investigating. These with faulty Elite Sequence 2 pads in guarantee started exchanging them however would usually discover that the brand new controller they got had related points.

Xbox Elite Series 1

A number of months later, in April 2020, a class-action lawsuit was filed over “drifting” Xbox controllers. The plaintiff, Donald McFadden, claimed that he’d purchased two Elite controllers that had been each faulty with stick drift. He additionally alleged that Microsoft was absolutely conscious of the stick drift difficulty with its controllers and that the corporate “didn’t disclose the defect and routinely refuses to restore the controllers with out cost when the defect manifests.” Prospects had only a 90-day guarantee with an Xbox controller. If any points arose after that, they’d must pay to get them mounted. The lawsuit was later amended to incorporate the Elite Sequence 2 controllers. Shortly after that modification, Microsoft introduced it might be extending the Elite Sequence 2 guarantee. Microsoft mentioned it had acquired claims {that a} small proportion of shoppers had been experiencing mechanical points with their Elite Sequence 2 pads and upped the guarantee protection interval from 90 days to a yr from the date of buy — a victory for these with defective controllers. Ultimately, the lawsuit by no means made it to court docket. Microsoft requested an neutral adjudicator to deal with the declare exterior of the courtroom.

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The widespread points with the Elite 2 controller have left a little bit of a stain on Microsoft’s premium controllers — they are surely improbable items of equipment, however the sturdiness and high quality points have considerably tarnished the Elite identify. Nonetheless, today we do not actually hear about too many Elite Sequence 2 issues, so Microsoft might have adjusted its manufacturing course of in latest months to make sure a extra high quality product. Will we see an Elite Sequence 3 anytime quickly? It is attainable. Sony, although it would not have a premium controller just like the Elite, has radically innovated on its controllers with the brand new DualSense, which incorporates new options resembling haptic suggestions and adaptive triggers. If Microsoft does make one other Elite, maybe it should embrace related options to these, in addition to all the additional inputs and customisable options the Elite is understood for.

That is it for our 20 moments that outlined Xbox collection for this week! We’ll be again on Monday with a have a look at one other iconic second in Xbox’s historical past — it is one that you just positively will not need to go on studying… however going again to the Xbox Elite Controllers, what do you make of them? Did you ever expertise any points? Are you proud of yours? Would you prefer to see an Elite Sequence 3 with related options to that of the PS5’s DualSense? Tell us down within the feedback.

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