Best PC controllers of 2017 and 2018: Make the most of PC gaming

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While the PC peripheral market has been flooded with high-end gaming mice, keyboards, and headsets over the past few years, there’s been surprisingly little expansion when it comes to controllers for gaming laptops and PCs.

Still, there are a few options out there, from dedicated PC gamepads to console controllers that are happy to connect to your Windows machine, and as eSports and pro gaming continue to expand we’re expecting to see more and more crop up.

Part of the reason that PC controllers haven’t expanded as fast as you might expect is that plenty of PC gamers are happy to stick with the mouse-and-keyboard setup, which is still the most effective way to play many first-person shooters, and pretty much essential if you want to be competitive in games like League of Legends or StarCraft.

Still, with the proliferation of major multi-platform games, and the fact that a decent gaming rig can still blow even the Xbox One X out of the water when it comes to performance, you can see why you might still want a solid PC gamepad to play games like For Honor or Gears of War 4 that were designed with a controller in mind.

There are other reasons to invest in a good gaming controller for your PC though. For one, if you want to make the most of services like PlayStation Now or PS4 Remote Play, you’ll need a controller to play those games through your PC.

You’ll also almost certainly want a pad if you’re using streaming devices like the Steam Link or Nvidia Shield TV to bring PC gaming into your living room – it’s much more relaxing sitting back with a gamepad than it is trying to balance a keyboard on your lap on the sofa.

We’ll be comparing the following PC game controllers based on a variety of factors, including build quality, durability, battery life, whether they’re wireless or wired, game compatibility, and whether they feature any additional buttons or functions for more advanced gameplay options.

Oh, and we’ll be bearing in mind price too, to make sure we’re only recommending controllers that give you plenty of bang for your buck.

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Xbox One Controller


SteelSeries Stratus XL


SteelSeries Stratus XL

PlayStation DualShock 4


PlayStation DualShock 4

Horipad Pro


Horipad Pro

Nintendo Switch Pro Controller


Nintendo Switch Pro Controller

Xbox 360 Controller


Xbox 360 Controller

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