Console controllers are interesting things. Somehow, with millions of identically shaped controllers out there, your own feels most familiar. Borrowing someone else’s feels alien and strange. The sticks drift differently than yours, the buttons are squishier, and the trigger less sensitive. Little do you know, they are thinking the same thing about yours. So it’s important that when your beloved controller finally bites the dust, and it will, that the controller you replace it with feels right. The Terios Wireless Controller does a good job at making itself at home in your hands.
The unboxing experience is simple and short. The controller lies inside the cardboard sleeve and box, safely wrapped in foam. Also inside the box is the somewhat short micro-USB charging cable and information cards.
The Terios Wireless Controller can be found on Amazon for $33. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.
Design: Back to the Basics
First impressions are better than expectations. Admittedly, expectations were somewhat low given the price of the controller at just over $30. My experience with less expensive third-party controllers in the past has not been stellar. However, picking up the device for the first time caused me to raise an eyebrow. The color scheme was on point, and the texture of the materials was not cheap feeling at all. In fact, I immediately took a liking to the comfortable side panels and layout.
The Terios Wireless Controller for PS4 is dimensionally very similar to the standard Dualshock 4. It is certainly recognizable as a PS4 controller alternative. However, further observation had me noting just how different the Terios was, without straying too far from the tried and tested design. It’s chunkier in some areas such as the bevel in between the thumb sticks with the aux port. It’s sleeker in others such as the minimalist touchpad and lightbar. Overall, the design is more playful than the stock Dualshock 4.
Buttons? We got ’em
There are also more buttons. Something owners will recognize instantly is the turbo button and additional two rear buttons which are accessible by one’s middle fingers. The turbo button allows any button to be programmed to be repeatable. When the turbo mode is active, just hold down the button for which turbo is programmed and it will repeat the action until you lift off. It is a handy feature for games where repeated button presses are necessary and fatiguing. To pair the turbo button, hold down the turbo button and the button you wish to pair.
The two rear buttons are a bit of an anomaly. Normally, these would be programmable to any other controller buttons as well. However, there were no instructions on how to change their standard orientation of being paired to L3 and R3. Doing some digging on Terios website, I was happy to find instructions on how to pair them to other buttons by pressing the share button and the rear buttons at the same time, but that did not work either. While it’s nice to have the option of pressing L3 and R3 with two alternative inputs, it would have been better to make them programmable to all buttons, or make the process of changing the pairing more clear.
Comfort has to be mentioned here too. The Terios Wireless Controller feels great. It fills out one’s hand snugly even though it’s width is nearly identical to the Dualshock 4. The rubber padding on the side prevents sweaty palms from being a problem during those final battle royale moments.
Performance: Solid Hardware with a Side of Lag
Pairing the Terios Wireless Controller for the first time was simple and painless. Instructions for pairing came in the box and were easily understood. Turn the PS4 on, plug the controller in and press the PlayStation button. After it is paired, it can be used to turn on the PS4 and turn it off just like any other controller could.
The thumb sticks feel nice and resistance is appropriate. They do not feel too loose or stiff. However, when pressing them down to activate their buttons, a tiny two stage click can be felt and heard. It’s present on both and in the heat of the game, you’d probably never feel it, but it is slightly noticeable.
All other buttons feel great. The triggers and bumpers are smooth and have appropriate travel lengths. The touchpad button worked as it should and it was all around a pleasant tactile experience. My middle fingers rested nicely on the two extra buttons on the back which themselves have a soft but positive activation point.
Playing catch up
It was, however, not long into my gameplay when I noticed a tiny lag. It was not as much as other controllers I’ve had in the past. Nonetheless, it was definitely present while playing the Terios Wireless Controller. Hard numbers for input lag can be difficult to get, especially on console. However, I felt a slight but noticeable delay in my input from the Terios to game action. I tried plugging it in to see if it would help, but unfortunately, the lag was still there.
There’s no better way to test the delay than to put the controller through a test. I ran through the Call of Duty shoot house three times with both controllers after a warm up session and averaged my time with both. The Dualshock beat out the Terios by an average of around 6 seconds. The delay adds a bit of robotic stiffness to one’s movements, especially when trying to track a moving target.
Despite the lag setback, I found myself enjoying my time with the Terios Wireless Controller. It genuinely impressed me for the amount of cash it is asking for. Players of slower paced games such as RPG’s, management games, or even some other action games will be pleased to find a controller whose battery can last them 12 hours.
A solid all-around experience
The Terios Wireless Controller has more heart than what is labeled on the package. It’s always nice to be pleasantly surprised than to simply have one’s expectations met. Or worse, be let down when one’s expectations were already low. For $30 one expects a barebones controller that works most of the time. In this case, Terios not only added a turbo button, but also two additional buttons in the back. Those features alone already do what the normal Dualshock cannot. Coupled with the fact that it is wireless and connectivity was flawless during my testing, it becomes an even better bargain.
The Terios is a fantastic controller for the average gamer who simply needs an affordable, reliable solution for a replacement Dualshock 4. The Terios Wireless Controller makes the days of gambling on 3rd party solutions seem far away. And while slight lag issues may keep pros from buying this for their championship tournaments, casual gamers benefit from the cost savings, additional buttons, and comfort of the Terios Wireless controller.