The XBOX 360 has no shortage of 3rd party game controllers and while several companies have released there own version of the Microsoft standard controller very few have maintained the overall quality level that Microsoft has adhered to.
Welcome to the Onza Razer. The latest in a well-rounded peripheral line up from the Razer Company based in ……USA. Razer typically has focused on PC gaming assecories but with this offering has thrown their hat into the console arena.
The Onza is a well built and rugged wired controller. Right off the bat you will notice that the cable is approx 24 feet long with a braided housing versus the typical rubber sealed cable.This ensures that your cable wont get accidentally eaten by small animals that you may have sharing your gaming space with ( I have heard many horror stories about little feline friends taking interest in gaming cables)
As far as the layout and configuration goes it sticks close to the standard MS wired controller with a few additions and improvements.
The left and right thumbsticks now has tension adjusters that allow a gamer to literaly ” dial” down to a resistance level that suits their needs based on the game they are playing.The thumbsticks themselves have notched dials attached the underside that make it quick and easy to adjust the resistance for each. This combined with the in-game sensitivity slider can really fine tune the experience.
The Razer Onza comes equipped with an extra set of bumper buttons. These buttons can be programmed to function as a face button ( A,B,X,Y) in addition to the existing ones. If reloading with a bumper button is your thing and your game doesn’t allow for that configuration in the game menu; well you can make it happen with the Onza. The default setting of the extra bumpers is a double up of the existing primary bumpers so you wont have to worry about accidentally clicking the wrong bumper in the heat of combat.
The final and in his reviewers opinion the best reason to own this controller are the backlit ” Hyper response action buttons”. Put simply these are the face buttons you know ( A,B,X,Y) rebuilt in a far superior manner.These buttons now have a quicker response time and come close to being full touch buttons with next to no travel distance. You lightly touch each button and it registers with the same response as a standard controller. I have actually improved my ability in FPS games due to this and no longer worry about ” sticky” buttons The fact that they are backlit and glow in a dark room is just icing on the cake.
Some negatives that affect initial usability of the controller are the rubber thumbsticks and the L and R triggers. The Thumbsticks do not have the traditional ” nubbies” on them which helped with grip. Instead the Onza has softer more ” tacky” rubber thumbsticks and while this at first an improvement the downside is that eventually you will get a case of ” sweaty thumbs” and your grip will diminish.Occasionally wiping them off will help with this though.
The Left and Right triggers are also designed differently than the standard MS controller. In this case they are more curved and have a longer arc to them. It will take some getting used to at first but eventually you will adapt. I did find that my fingers slipped off them every once in a while but again that is most likely part of the “getting used” to phase
Overall everything about the Onza comes together in a very nice package that is well worth the $49.95 you will pay for it.I wish I could say that it is an easy choice over the standard Microsoft controller but you pretty much need to get your hands on one before you can make that call.