Official controllers can often be quite expensive, and so a high number of people take to looking to third-party manufacturers for cheaper alternatives. We reviewed Gioteck’s WX4 switch controller back in November, but now it has had a new lease of life alongside the PlayStation 4’s VX4 range thanks to a Fortnite inspired paint job.
As we’ve already tackled the WX4 before, we’ll touch up on it briefly, with the core of the review focused on the VX4.
BUILD QUALITY & DESIGN – 3.7/5
It’s not often that we revisit something for the score to be knocked down, but I just couldn’t keep it the same with the WX4. One of the things I really liked about this controller originally was the textured feel which enhanced the grip, but due to the new paintjob, the surface now feels smooth. Which, when using for prolonged periods, doesn’t have the same grip that the standard model did when it comes into contact with sweat.
As for the VX4 it’s a similar issue with regards to the lack of a textured surface which usually performs better beneath a sweaty palm. Instead, it has a smooth lightweight plastic case with the new Fortnite inspired arctic-camo pattern on top. The VX4 does feel a little cheaper than the WX4 though, and it actually is because the version we were sent is the wired one. But despite that, I feel the thumb sticks actually feel a little better, because they’re not as stiff and feel like they snap back into place more quickly.
The VX4 also shines a little more when it comes to the quick-fire triggers and other buttons too. The triggers feel great quality, and are much better than the stick on covers you can get to put on the official controllers. As for the buttons, they have their own unique design for the Cross, Square, Circle and Triangle, as opposed to the standard button design on the WX4. I really liked the look of these, and again they feel pretty robust too.
Sadly, there is another downside to the VX4 though and its because it is wired. Now I have nothing against wired controllers themselves, but I really dislike when peripherals and accessories come with rubber-insulated cables. You can buy cheap Chinese headsets from Amazon with nylon braided cables extremely cheaply, and so for this budget controller not to have that, I feel the build quality suffers that little bit more.
If we take a second to look at the new design itself too, I have to say, I quite like it. The arctic-camo paint job really does look nice. But if it didn’t say it was Fortnite inspired in the press release, I would never have guessed. I have a similarly designed Onikuma K1 headset that looks just as nice but they haven’t used the name of a popular game to boost sales. I’d have at least expected to see a Fortnite logo or something to give the game more of an identity. Because these colours can be found in a large number of games.
COMFORT – 4/5
Like in our last review, in terms of comfort, both controllers feel pretty comfortable. Exactly what you’d expect form a brand with the reputation of Gioteck. Both the VX4 and WX4 are crafted with ergonomics in mind, meaning they have been designed to maximise comfort and prevent any repetitive strain injuries occurring. But with the lack of the textured casing, it doesn’t feel as great as the official controllers following prolonged use.
Fortunately, it isn’t all doom and gloom. The rubberised thumb grips mean that even with sweaty hands, your thumbs tend to stay on the analogue sticks. And they feel better quality than the official ones, or at least on the VX4 because mine wore away pretty quickly, and that’s not even from rage quitting. The rubber just wore down around the edges leaving me to play with solid plastic as I’m too lazy to replace them.
With a generous length of cable on the VX4 too, it does mean you have plenty of slack available, so you can sit a fair distance from the console. Much better than in the old days where you’d be sat up close to the TV being told by your parents your eyes would go square if you didn’t move back. Luckily my eyes are still round, and they should stay that way if I pick the VX4 up over my wireless controllers the next time I take to playing Apex Legends or Paladins.
FUNCTIONALITY – 4.3/5
Here, the WX4 hasn’t changed at all. It’s still as good as the original we put to the test. The VX4 does share some features like use on multiple platforms, and in fact, it performs a little better functionally compared to its Switch counterpart, although it still has one particular flaw I’ll discuss in a minute.
The best part about the VX4 was also the thing I marked it down on earlier. The fact it is wired. No more annoying messages popping up saying battery low, and having to scramble to find a charger cable, or put your game on pause whilst you dock it. Don’t get me wrong, those times in the past have allowed me to catch up on my TV shows. But, I do love the fact it is always on and won’t disconnect mid game. There is a wireless version for those who disagree though, but it will set you back a few more pennies.
In terms of the buttons, triggers, sticks and d-pad, again the controller impresses. They’re very responsive, again partly due to being wired as there is no signal loss to cause a delay. But they also feel better than that of the WX4 too, as mentioned above with the thumb sticks being less stiff, and more free moving. And that’s the same for the rest of it too. I couldn’t fault it at all.
The flaw comes with the touch pad button. It is there, and you can press it. But that’s where its limits lie. When you look at the fact it is budget, you can’t be too down heartened. But, it isn’t a feature on the more expensive wireless version either. It’s not a major issue really because not many games really ever made use of it. But if you’re claiming something is ‘Premium’ I expect all the bells and whistles, or there about, like the WX4 has with the motion and vibration support.
Value for Money – 5/5
Just like with the WX4 review, it still scores top marks for me in terms of value for money. I mean, both controllers are considerably cheaper than the official controllers. Not surprising really. But both offer a decent experience when in use.
Yes, there are some parts I am less happy about, but there were also bits I found surprisingly good about the PS4 controller. But, compare what you get for your money, and it almost makes more sense to go budget because the benefits don’t really make for much of an argument to go official. Like I said above, the touchpad although would be nice, isn’t needed in 99% of games, as developers never really made use of it. And the WX4 pretty much has full functionality of the Pro Controller, even if the Pro does feel nicer.
But just to show you how much you save, below is the cost of the Gioteck controllers from Argos:
- VX4 purple wireless for PS4 £29.99 Buy VX-4 purple here
- VX4 arctic-camo wired for PS4 £19.99 Buy VX-4 arctic-camo here
- WX4 arctic-camo wireless for Nintendo Switch £29.99 Buy WX-4 arctic-camo here
Now the prices of the official variants:
- Official Wireless PS4 Controller ranges from £40-£50
- Sony don’t actually make a wired version, just cables for the Wireless
- Official Nintendo Pro Controller ranges from £55-£60
So, if you look at the two wireless varieties, since Sony don’t do an Official Wired Controller, you’re saving over £10 on average with the VX4 and £25 on the WX4. That could buy a tasty takeaway, a couple beers and set you up for an extremely good games night. Or you could just go buy a new game instead. Either way, it saves you a few bob, and you don’t lose out on much really.
OVERALL SCORE – 4.2/5
In the end, third-party controllers are often called budget for a reason. There are some that defy that logic, but official controllers are often made of more premium materials, and have a bunch of extra features.
That said, what Gioteck offer with the VX4 and WX4 controllers, and for the price point they’re set at, you could do far worse for your money. They practically pack the same features, more so the WX4 compared to its PlayStation equivalent, for a whole lot less. Yes, there were a few downsides, and the new design whilst nice, does impact on build quality and comfort for me, personally. But do the pros outweigh the cons? Most definitely.
Gioteck VX4 and WX4 TL;DR:
- Build quality and design are better than expected, but new design does have a negative impact;
- Essentially a 3-in-1 controller as can be used on PC, PS3 and PS4/Switch;
- VX4 lacks some features such as the touch pad, although it still has button capability;
- WX4 packed full of features, only really lacking built-in amiibo functionality;
- VX4 response time was great, and no need to charge it up, so bye-bye low battery alerts;
- WX4 performed well but did experience some delay compared to playing games handheld, and the battery died quite quickly;
- Excellent value for money, saving a fair few pennies on official alternatives.
The Gioteck VX4 and WX4 ranges are available now at Argos. You can find more information about the products on the official website by clicking HERE. And if you haven’t had your fill of our reviews just yet, then click HERE and we’ll take you to loads more.