react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable

Review Product Provided by Turtle Beach

Following the release of an award-winning controller last year, Turtle Beach is back with a new controller for players. After opening up the opportunity for pre-orders, the React-R will become available tomorrow. Since I have had the benefit of using this new controller over the past week, I have to say that I am impressed with it and was actually pretty happy with it from the moment I gave it the initial grip test. But let’s give this controller a proper breakdown so you can decide if it might be a good fit for you.

What’s In The Box

 		 		 		react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable
 		 		 		react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable

While you have your typical manuals inside, you also have the React-R controller itself and a USB cable to plug it into your PC or Xbox console. The USB C cable is roughly 10 feet long and can be found underneath the cardboard carrier they have built in the box to hold the controller. This carrier lets players gently hoist the controller out of the box which is a nifty design to help prevent any potential damages to the controller, cable, manuals, and box all at once!

Aesthetics and Build Quality

As a base, this controller comes in two different color options: all black or white and purple. While I can see the majority of users going with the black option as it will match with the base Xbox Series X|S color, I have the white and purple controller. Either choice does well and you always have the opportunity to put a skin on it, but you won’t want to get a typical Xbox controller skin.

The case of the controller isn’t smooth like usual and instead has been given ergonomic texture grips. These are textured handle surfaces that provide a comfortable, fatigue-free shape and keep your hands firmly in place while reducing strain over long gaming sessions. This design is what I was happy to find when I did the initial grip test. I love when controllers have a nice grip on them that doesn’t feel like they dig into your palms, even when you are in high intensity, white-knuckle gripping, sweaty gamer mode. Seeing how every gamer out there has those moments while playing their favorite games, the ergonomic texture grip is a huge plus to this controller’s design.

On top of that, they have added two buttons to the back of the controller as well. These buttons don’t have an initial function and the placement is outside of my standard controller handling area, so I wasn’t hitting the buttons on accident either. These two buttons are completely mappable and able to be set up to your preferred function. This is a huge deal for speedrunners and major league players seeing how these open up a new world of options when it comes to your control scheme, handling, and can even help smooth out some tricky button setups.

Specs and Special Features

 		 		 		react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable
 		 		 		react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable
 		 		 		react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable

Along with the unique ergonomic texture grips and two mappable buttons on the back of the controller, they have added some buttons to the front face as well. By lowering and centering the usual middle buttons, they added a small panel on the top that provides sound control options. On the panel, you have a button to turn on or off the Superhuman Hearing, a quick mic muting button, and a button that switches your D-pad from being a standard D-pad to the volume controls for your headset.

No longer does it matter if you have an all-in-one functioning headset or enjoy using a standalone microphone from your headset! The controls are all functional from the controller itself. This goes mostly for PC users, but even if you are on Xbox this definitely opens options in the sound control department. Aside from the sound controls, it also features dual-rumble motors for balanced rumble action in the palm of your hands.

The React-R controller works on PCs with Windows 10 and 11, as well as, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S.

What It Could Have Done Better

My only issue is that the React-R doesn’t come with a second option that makes it compatible with the PlayStation consoles. It’s such a great controller, but only those on PC and Xbox consoles can use it for now. Hopefully, that changes soon.

Verdict

Turtle Beach’s new React-R controller puts the controls back in the hands of gamers for such an affordable price! Running for only $39.99 USD, this controller works just like an Xbox official controller while providing a few more control options for both gameplay and sound controls, all while having a unique grip design that is incredibly comfortable to hold. I have played a variety of games with this controller over the past week and truly have no qualms with it at all. Definitely, a top-tier device, and I hope they make one compatible with the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 soon as well.

 		 		 		react-r controller review: making top tier control affordable

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