I picked this controller up a while ago and have gotten some use out of it, so here are my thoughts. If you want to help me choose a face for my controller, check out the poll linked below!
I got the Super Mario edition of the Faceoff, planning to get a second one if I liked it. I’ve stuck with the red Mario face for now, and as a whole the controller feels pretty sturdy. The removable face sits nice and snug and if you didn’t know any better, it might not even occur to you that it’s removable. I honestly don’t know how to take it off, either!
The grips have a nice texture to them, the feel of the smooth plastic under my palms doesn’t say premium but isn’t unpleasant. I would prefer something a little more textured.
In terms of weight, it’s pretty light. Not to the point it feels unusually light or cheap, but even with the weight of the cable it’s probably only a little heavier than a ps4 controller in spite of it’s size, but probably not quite as heavy as the Xbox One’s controller in the hand.
This controller is officially licensed by Nintendo, and naturally looks right at home next to Nintendo’s own Pro Controller if you pop out the 10-foot long USB-C connector cable, a decent length which may be too long for some people but then you could probably just use a different USB-C although I have yet to confirm if this is possible.
The biggest differences here when compared to the Pro (aside from being wired) - the Faceoff has no HD rumble, or any kind of rumble for that matter, and does not have the built-in NFC.
It does, however, have 2 programmable buttons on the back of the controller. These are easy to set up, and I have found use for them.. once. They don’t really get in the way, I’ve only really had a mis-click when holding the controller with one hand. You can take the back plate off to essentially remove these buttons but I haven’t found it necessary to do so.
When it comes to compatability, the PDP Faceoff works flawlessly with the Switch. I’m also happy to report that it works great on PC with Steam, and is fully re-mappable from within Steam. I have been using “Big Picture” more often these days.
I have had some minor driver issues, sometimes Windows picks the controller up and installs the wrong driver. Usually unplugging it and plugging it back in fixes that but there has been one or two times that hasn’t worked. Not entirely sure why it sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t, but it always works. Just sometimes not straight away, usually when you really want it to.
Now the most important part - the buttons! They’re clicky and responsive, again nothing to write home about but it’s a click that feels it will be reliable for many, many hours of gaming.
The thumbsticks are outstanding. They feel sturdy with a nice consistent springback that you’d appreciate if you’ve ever experienced JoyCon Drift. Spoiler alert: It’s not pleasant.
I absolutely love the D Pad. It might even make foregoing HD rumble worthwhile for some. But then you won’t have to if you have Nintendo’s pro controller. It certainly beats playing with JoyCons, even with the grip, mostly due to the D pad and thumbsticks.
Overall, I would say the PDP Faceoff for Switch is an excellent choice if you’re looking for an extra controller even if it’s just as a backup for when you’re charging your JoyCons. It’s mostly painless to use with PC as well, which is an added bonus if you want to play something like Dark Souls III that just works so much better with a controller.
To end this off, I’d like to have a bit of fun with a poll since I haven’t done one in a while. Mario Gang or Luigi Gang? Tell me why in the comments, the winner gets to be my controller’s face forever!