Nintendojo Holiday Buyer’s Guide: The Controllers & The Gear

The supplies every gamer needs for the best play they can get on Nintendo Switch!

By Robert Marrujo. Posted 12/19/2018 06:00 Comment on this     ShareThis

We’ve already covered the best games to be had on Nintendo Switch and 3DS, but we all know that every good game needs an equally good controller. We’ve rounded up the best pads that money can buy along with a fine selection of gear to tote your systems around and more!


Nyko Wireless Core Controller—Assorted Colors ($29.99)

We were lucky enough to get one of these bad boys in the Nintendojo offices the other day and have been loving it ever since. We’ll have full details soon, but in the meantime know that this is a very comfortable, affordable alternative to Nintendo’s own Pro Controller. It boasts wireless connectivity, rumble, and motion sensing, but doesn’t include an NFC reader. It’s a small price to pay, really, for everything else that this controller has to offer! It’s also compatible with PC and Android devices.

PDP Faceoff Wired Pro Controller— Assorted Styles and Colors ($24.99)

Look, if there’s anything we’ve learned when picking third party controllers for Switch, it’s that there are a lot of options and many of them are very good. PDP has a huge array of wired Pro Controller-alternatives, so really any of them will end up suiting most players’ needs. That said, these Faceoff Wired Pro Controllers are quite nice in that they offer users the ability to swap out the faceplates. There are a number of different looks to go for, so it’s fairly easy to find one that will fit a player’s tastes. Keep in mind, however, that these are very stripped down compared to a stock Pro Controller: no wireless, no rumble, no motion controls, and no NFC reader. Ouch. For matches of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, however, they’ll definitely work in a pinch. They also have built-in turbo functionality.

Power A Wired Controller(GameCube Style- Purple)— Assorted Colors ($24.99)

Power A, HORI, and PDP are selling their own takes on the GameCube controller, specifically for use with Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. There’s a whole litany of them to choose from between the trio of manufacturers, so it’s really just a matter of finding the one that works best for you. This one from Power A, though, is arguably the closest to a GameCube pad in terms of ergonomics and look, so depending on how authentic you want your Smash Bros. experience to be, it might be the controller to choose.

HORI Battle Pad (Peach)— Assorted Styles ($24.99)

Speaking of HORI, we had to show off their version of the GameCube controller for Switch. It has a similarly authentic form factor but comes in some really cool designs, like this Peach iteration. All of these GameCube pads between the different manufacturers sell at the same price, so definitely investigate which one(s) will work for you!

Nyko Dualies ($49.99)

While there’s no denying Nintendo’s peripherals are always the best, there’s also no denying they’re also the most expensive. Enter Nyko’s Dualies, a more affordable version of Nintendo’s Joy-Con controllers. The positives of these controllers are built-in motion controls and rumble, plus a larger form factor that makes them easier to grip than a standard pair of Joy-Con. The negatives are that Dualies can’t slide into the sides of a Switch (they’re charged via an included USB-C cable) and they don’t have an NFC reader. Overall, the sacrifices are worth it for a cheaper pair of Joy-Cons that can quickly be launched for impromptu matches of Super Mario Party!

Nintendo Poké Ball Plus Controller— For Pokémon Let’s Go and Pokémon Go ($49.99)

It’s definitely a bit of an oddity, but the Poké Ball Plus controller is a must for Pokémon fans looking to experience both Pokémon: Let’s Go and Pokémon Go in a new way. Its design utilizes a single control stick and provides a much more authentic feel to go along with the gesture-based pocket monster catching in Let’s Go. If paired with Pokémon Go, however, it will allow players to engage with the game even when it’s not on-screen on their phones.

HORI D-Pad Left JoyCon— Assorted Styles ($24.99)

It’s the dream Joy-Con fans have wanted ever since Switch launched back in March of 2017! That’s right, a Joy-Con with a proper D-Pad. There are a few catches to keep in mind, however. For starters, it only works while docked on the side of a Switch, so it won’t work when playing on a TV. For another, it comes without motion controls, rumble, or an NFC reader. Oy. Still, what it does provide is a budget solution to playing 2D games with the precision that only a true D-Pad can afford. Possibly more for core gamers than causal ones, it’s nonetheless a really well-made and useful controller.


HORI Wired Internet LAN Adapter ($29.99)

Nintendo has been advocating for fans to play Super Smash Bros. Ultimate online using a wired internet connection, and thus far this is the only officially licensed one available for purchase. They can be slightly hard to find, but I’ve personally spotted some at Target as recently as a week ago. It’s a bit of an investment at 30 bucks, but for the stability it affords while playing Ultimate online, it might be worth it.

PDP Light Up Dock Shield (Pikachu)— Assorted Styles ($19.99)

Does it serve any real, practical purpose? Well, PDP claims it will protect your Switch dock, so yeah, there’s that, but… honestly, buy it because it just looks freaking cool. The front has an image of something awesome (this version comes with both Pikachu and Poké Ball faceplates) and then it glows all sorts of different colors! You’re welcome.

Power A Everywhere Messenger Bag For Nintendo Switch— Assorted Styles ($34.99)

A snazzy messenger back made to store your Nintendo Switch! Take your gaming on the go with some super cool designs on the side of each bag. With specially designed pouches inside, it’ll keep your Switch secure from the bus to the subway and beyond.

Nyko Kick Stand Multi-Pak ($12.99)

Ain’t gonna front— yours truly rocks the metal version of these (which can be bought for $4.99 at GameStop!) and is dying to get his hands on all these new colors. It’s a standard kick stand for Switch but it also has a sneaky, secret spot built into it for an additional Micro SD card, which means more games on the go without the need for an external case. Plus, colors! The colors man! THE COLORS!

HORI Splatoon 2 Splat Pack ($19.99)

We’re highlighting this particular case because it has such a cool design and some bonus goodies included, but in truth HORI sells quite a few different variants of this case to take your Switch all over the place with you. They’re not particularly padded, so a high drop will likely do some damage, but to prevent against minor scuffs and so on, these are great and slim, which in turn makes it much easier to put your Switch into another bag, like a backpack or purse. There’s also a nice, plain black variant out there if you want to make your Switch look boardroom-ready.

Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Headset ($99.95)

Alright, consider this a blanket pick for all of Turtle Beach’s various headsets. Now, don’t be turned off by the fact that this and many of the other Turtle Beach headsets say they’re for PlayStation 4, as in reality they work on Switch as well. Hit up this link to see which sets are compatible with Switch before you buy any of them. With that said, it’s fantastic to be able to take advantage of quality headsets for games like Fortnite on Switch, so be sure to put in the research and find the one that works best for you!

Those are our picks for the best controllers and gear for Nintendo Switch! Tune in for our final buyer’s guide where we’ll be covering collectibles and goodies!

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