Razer has announced a new version of the Wolverine wired controller built specifically for the Xbox Series X / S, with support for Xbox One and PC. It’s called the Wolverine V2 and has more enthusiastic features than the bundled controller included with the Xbox console, such as a “mecha-tactile” switch under its face button, trigger stop for customizable trigger feel, and multiple macro buttons.
Most of the changes from the previous version were cosmetic only but made the controller more comfortable and fun to use. Razer makes the grip rounder than before and covers it in a grippy, non-slip texture, so it doesn’t slip if you sweat while playing. It felt great fun — bordering on ergonomics — to hold in my medium-sized hand.
From a usability standpoint, I like that Razer moved the Xbox system-level buttons (menu, view) closer to the left analog stick and face buttons. The share button, which is new to the Xbox Series X / S controller, is here as well, and you’ll find that in between the D-pad and right analog stick. Beneath it is a handy audio configuration button that’s used to adjust the volume on the fly while connected to your Xbox. Holding it in while pressing up or down on the D-pad will tweak the game audio in your headset, which can connect to this controller via a bottom-mounted 3.5 mm headphone jack. By holding this button and tapping left or right on the D-pad, you can adjust the chat volume.
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Really, nothing else is new with the Wolverine V2, but there are still some surprises here if you haven’t yet used the Raion fight pad made for PS4. This one features “mecha-tactile” switches under the D-pad and face buttons. The result is a set of quiet buttons, yet more tactile than I’m used to feeling in a controller. Each press feels more precise and requires less effort to push, actuating at 1.2 mm. If you need to game quietly to avoid waking people up, this is far quieter than the clacking sounds the standard Xbox One controller produces when you repeatedly mash the face buttons.
Analog sticks are large, concave, and have a cross-shaped etch at the center to help keep your thumb in the center. Nothing special, but they feel just as responsive and made as good as Microsoft. Triggers are probably where these controllers differ most from packaged controllers, and as someone familiar with Microsoft’s LT and RT trigger feelings, I was initially knocked off by the one on Wolverine V2, which seems to offer a little less mileage. Though, I quickly got used to them and even found myself making use of the trigger stop switch, which further reduces the distance you need to press it.
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Wolverine V2 has two additional buttons next to the trigger called M1 and M2, like the previous version too. They’re like the macros you’ll find on the keyboard, so you can customize what they do in the Razer Controller Setup for the Xbox app on your Xbox console or PC. For example, one could be assigned to replace standard buttons such as X, A, above the D-pad, trigger, or click on the left analog stick, to name a few examples. You can also set quickly adjust analog stick sensitivity.
Despite the price cuts from the previous generation, $100 is still a lot of money for the Wolverine V2 given that most people’s needs are well catered for by a standard Xbox One or Series X / S controller. But if you’re someone who wants more functionality and you don’t want to pay $180 for a more feature-packed Microsoft Elite Series 2, this new controller is a great choice that separates the differences.