The kings of controller customisation have been in touch. They’ve got their new Instinct Pro Xbox controller on offer. We’ve been lucky enough to get our hands on one, a glorious custom purple design that I chose myself from a myriad of choices. Purple is definitely best though, you can’t beat a purple peripheral.
Now that’s the USP with SCUF. You can customise their controllers pretty much to your delight, from the faceplate colour, the colour of the triggers, the colour of the rims around the analogue sticks, the analogue stick style themselves and even if you want the traditional. They do follow the official Xbox controller down to the millimetre, but everything else in between is fair game. If you want domed analogue sticks, they’re yours. If you want to concave them if that’s more your thing, then go for it.
Mine is a little closer to what you’d come to expect from the standard Xbox Series X controller, as that’s something I’m used to. But I did get a very nice custom paint job and there are a few more added extras featured on the controller. The first and most obvious are the flappy paddles on the rear of the controller. This is nothing we haven’t seen before, SCUF isn’t unique with this functionality, but SCUF’s placement of the paddles is night-on perfect! They sit pretty much in line with your middle finger and require very little movement to actually press each paddle.
The other feature that’s been massively overhauled since we last took a look a SCUF a couple of years ago, is the fact that they’ve included a toggle that removes the travel distance of each trigger button. Flick the toggle left and the triggers turn into buttons akin to a mouse on a computer, which is very advantageous when playing FPS games. Release the toggles to the right and they turn into triggers that suit playing racing titles. This improvement is vastly welcome and beats using the included key from previous SCUF models.
On the bottom of the controller you can find a 3.5mm aux input for wired headsets when playing with a console and it also comes with Microsoft’s proprietary expansion port which works with a range of Microsoft products, like headsets, their keyboard add on and so on. Down the centre of the controller you can find the usual Microsoft logo power on button, View and Menu buttons which are found on traditional Xbox controllers and the share button too, all features that’ll work with both Xbox consoles and PC when playing GamesPass titles.
So what else came in the box apart from the controller? You get a braided USB Type-C cable to connect to your computer if you’re a PC gamer, a set of AA batteries if you’re planning on playing over Bluetooth on a PC or console, though at this price point there really should have been rechargable from the get go without the need for Xbox’s Play and Charge kit. There’s also an extra set of analogue sticks, though these were a lot longer and had a lot more travel distance on them when I used them playing games. Again, a lot more advantageous for racing games and for finer movements.
The SCUF Instinct Pro has the ability to change profiles on the fly, and get this. There’s no need for any additional software! Though the profiles only really affect the rear triggers, you’re able to hotswap on the fly, and even change button mapping. It’s simple to do too. Just hold down the profile button on the rear of the controller, then hold down the trigger and action you’d like to assign. For example if you’re playing an FPS, holding the B button and a rear paddle will assign crouch and prone to the rear paddle of your choosing. There are three profiles in total. Blue for FPS, red for Sport and green for racing games.
The controller is super comfortable to use while gaming. Down the rear handles is a grip in a hexagonal pattern, and its lightweight enough even with the controller plugged in to not fatigue your hands. There’s no real stretching of fingers either to hit certain buttons. As I said, I chose concave analogue sticks and the grip provided never saw my fingers slip from the sticks in hairy moments. Everything was responsive, and with a cabled connection, input lag was kept to an absolute minimum, and to be honest, wasn’t noticed at all.
The SCUF Instinct Pro isn’t cheap, and if you want all forms of customisation, you’re looking at the best part of £250. But, if you consider a brand new official Xbox controller will set you back £200, an extra £50 for these added customisation options is a pretty good deal if you ask me. The SCUF Instinct Pro is one of the best custom controllers that money can buy on the market right now. It’ll be an amazing addition to your gaming lineup. To get started on your own customisation, head over to the SCUF website.