[Review] FUSION Wired FightPad for Nintendo Switch from PowerA

Written by Nintendad

Key features

  • Six-button, arcade-style layout with ALPS action buttons for precise control
  • Toggle switches for D-pad and shoulder buttons enables customisation options
  • R bumper can be assigned as C-stick for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  • Highest quality floating D-pad design delivers responsive and smooth motion
  • Optimally weight balanced for a comfortable and solid feel in your hands
  • Three interchangeable magnetic faceplates let you switch up your style and colour preferences
  • Inspired by the iconic Sega Saturn gamepad, revered by fighting game enthusiasts
  • Official licensed product with two-year limited warranty – Register at PowerA.com

Box Clever

My initial thoughts when opening up the beautifully packaged FUSION Wired Fightpad from PowerA was how well made the controller is. I, for some completely unfounded reason, had the misconception that the pad would be small and gimmicky. How wrong I was!!

The FUSION pad is a truly wonderful looking piece of kit and combines it’s aesthetic charm with practicality. It’s big, though not overly intrusive and after holding it for but a few fleeting moments, it became apparent how comfortable it is too. It combines elegance and ergonomics in a carefully crafted controller that affords the user the feel of a classic gamepad but brought barnstorming into 2019.
The removable face plates are incredibly accommodating when it comes to swapping them out and due to their magnetised nature, they don’t ever feel loose.

Welcome to the D-Pad appreciation society

Obviously we want our pretty things to be, well, pretty, but how does the controller itself hold up when put through the rigours of an intense brawler? I’m delighted to say, superbly. The FUSION Wired Fightpad from PowerA is sturdy and robust, meaning even if like myself, you’re not the most gifted fighter, you can bash away at the sturdy and responsive buttons to your hearts content. The D-Pad is a thing if beauty and has a floaty design that means it feels slightly higher than the rest of the face buttons. What this allows is effortless ease when manoeuvring your fighter and combined with, once again, the superior build quality of the D-Pad, you really do feel completely in control of your character.

This also translated incredibly well to 2-D titles and the FUSION Wired Fightpad became my go-to controller for reliving the classics of my childhood, on the SNES online app. Super Mario Mario World and Super Metroid were especially enjoyable to play through with this controller, thanks in no small part to the excellence of the D-Pad. Another fantastic feature of the D-Pad is that it can be set to act as not just a D-Pad, but also the left or right analogue stick too. This feature made playing the recently release Link’s Awakening a sheer delight, as, with but a flick of a switch, the D-Pad was assigned to function as the left analogue stick, completely negating Nintendo’s decision to not allow the game to be played with a traditional D-Pad.

Ready? Fight!!

Back to fighting games and with the frantic nature of the brawlers, the accuracy of button presses can be the difference between victory and defeat. With the FUSION Wired Fightpad being, funnily enough wired, it meant that every single input was registered instantly, allowing accuracy in even the most nefarious of moments.

The FUSION Wired Fightpad from PowerA actually 6 face buttons, A,B,X,Y and R and ZR. This is as well as the standard shoulder bumpers and triggers – L, ZL, R & ZR. As a pad aimed at the brawler market, this lends itself perfectly to performing blocks and dodges mid battle. The +, -, home and capture buttons found on the more traditional Nintendo Switch controllers are all present and correct too and fulfil their intended functions as you would expect. The final trick that PowerA have up their sleeve is the customisation switch for the shoulder buttons. Set to default, they work as you would expect, but by shifting the switch over, the two shoulder bumpers mimic the C Stick found on traditional GameCube controllers. What this means is that, certainly for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, you have the power of quick directional smash moves, in an incredibly convenient position.

Feature comforts

While ardent competitive types may say that this affords an unfair advantage, realists will simply counter that it is yet another example of PowerA’s relentless quest to think outside of the box; to innovate rather than stagnate, to refine rather than decline.

If the already feature rich FUSION Wired Fightpad didn’t have enough to offer, the inclusion of a 3.5mm audio jack furthers the affluent heights that the controller takes you too. The ability to plug headphones into a controller should be industry standard in 2019, and I’m delighted that PowerA have added it to this absolute behemoth.

The weight of the controller, something that I’ve actually found somewhat wanting on previous controllers from PowerA, is absolutely spot on. The FUSION Wired Fightpad feels just right, meaning it comes across as a high end product, not just another cheap gamepad option.

With the product being wired, the length of the cable is obviously important, and thankfully, PowerA haven’t committed a faux-pas in this regard. The cable was sufficient to reach from my wall mounted Switch, to my sofa at the other side of the room. Admittedly there wasn’t a great deal of slack, but this is due to my decision to drill my dock to my wall, not due to a lacking cable.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, the FUSION Wired Fightpad from PowerA is a Fightpad. It’s not trying to be the new controller for prolonged visits to Hyrule in Breath of the Wild, but has been made for giving you the upper hand in your favourite beat ’em up. And it succeeds, on every single count. With more customisation options than a custom amiibo Etsy page, it shines as both an exceptionally crafted controller and a proof of concept that defines the ethos of PowerA.

Pros

  • Consummately crafted
  • The D-Pad is the perfection
  • Offers customisation in abundance
  • Ergonomically designed to provide prolonged comfort
  • Utterly perfect for beat ’em ups and retro classics
  • Provides a place to plug your wired headset

Cons

  • IMHO, not a single one.

Verdict

The FUSION Wired Fightpad from PowerA is a meticulously designed controller, which provides the perfect foil for brawlers and 2D classics alike. And who knows, it might even surprise you with how well suited it is for other genres and titles too.

5/5

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