8BitDo Pro 2 Controller Switch Review – The King

8bitdo pro 2

When it comes to third party controllers, the top of the food chain the past few years belongs to none other than 8BitDo. The company has produced so many fantastic controllers over the years that it is hard to settle on which one stands at the top. Well, 8BitDo has finally produced and released a proper sequel to their Pro controller, and I have to say, the 8BitDo Pro 2 is a force to be reckoned with.

Does that mean that the 8BitDo Pro 2 is the best controller on the Nintendo Switch right now? Let’s find out in this extensive physical review!

Right off the bat, I want to point out the excellent packaging and presentation. As is usually the case for 8BitDo, the Pro 2 controller comes in a nice sleek box design that thoroughly protects the device and keeps it in pristine condition until you remove it from said box.

The contents of the box are simple: you get one 8BitDo Pro 2 controller, an 8BitDo themed USB-C charge cable, and an instruction manual to help with certain inputs that you may need to memorize as this is a third-party controller (Meaning it does not wake up the Switch wirelessly or support HD rumble and NFC scanning). The inputs serve to help new owners to learn the correct button presses to sync the controller with the device, as well as lowering rumble intensity among other options.

At the time of this review, there are three different color variants: Black Edition, G Classic Edition, and Grey Edition. For this review, I got my hands on the G Classic Edition, and it is absolutely gorgeous. The color scheme is retro, and the buttons and joysticks all look great.

8bitdo pro 2

The way the controller handles is even more impressive. The 8BitDo Pro 2 fits the hands like a glove and is one of the most comfortable controllers I have ever held, and that even includes the new PS5 DuelSense controller or the now classic Xbox 360 controller.

One major complaint with current generation controllers is the lack of a standard and solid D-pad. The 8BitDo Pro 2 D-pad brings us back to the classic SNES controller feel but does it even better. The way all of the buttons click is quite satisfying, and all of the games I tested with the D-pad (Celeste, N++, and Smelter, a game I’m reviewing) responded beautifully. I will absolutely be playing my difficult and precision-based platformers with this controller hence forth.

The button layout is also great! It moves away from the Switch Pro Controller/Xbox style where the joysticks are non-symmetrical and instead adopts the symmetrical style more akin to the PlayStation controllers (However, 8BitDo has mostly made their controllers with symmetrical joysticks).

But to be better than the Pro Controller, the gyro controls need to work, yes? Well, I have good news for you!

Please excuse my messy desk

The gyro controls not only work, but I would argue that they are more responsive than the Switch Pro Controller. I personally am not a fan of gyro controls, but I found that the 10+ rounds of Splatoon 2 that I played with the 8BitDo Pro 2 gyro controls was the best gyro experience I have had on the Switch yet. Precision shots were super easy, and the overall feel of the controller is much more comfortable.

There are many buttons on the controller, but most of them translate over to the Switch with no problem. The home button is a pixelated heart, and the screenshot button is a star. They are cute and serve their purpose well. The start and select buttons look and feel identical to the SNES ones, which is both nostalgic and convenient, as both buttons are a decent size and hard to miss. One last little button that actually serves no purpose on the Switch is the “profile” button located between the joysticks, but this is for PC and mobile gaming.

The Pro 2 controller has rumble, but it is not nearly as impressive as the HD rumble feature of the Switch controllers that we have become used to. Thankfully, the feature is at least there, which is better than the DualSense on the Switch, but it is hard not to feel the difference between HD and regular rumble.

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Finally, the newest addition to the 8BitDo Pro 2 controller are the back buttons for some pro-level gaming. These are wonderfully placed, click well, and help to keep your thumbs on the joysticks. Sadly, there are not a whole lot of games that support these buttons on the Switch, but like the HORI Split Pad Pro, these buttons do thankfully serve a purpose in games like Monster Hunter Rise and DAEMON X MACHINA that you can map them to.

Everything else about the Pro 2 controller is equally as impressive, like the insanely long battery life (Genuinely around 20 hours; tested twice), the wonderfully responsive triggers and shoulder buttons, and the incredibly affordable price compared to the competition.

Sure, the 8BitDo Pro 2 may be missing a couple things, namely HD rumble and NFC scanning for amiibo, but this is the ultimate controller for the Nintendo Switch. You do not need anything special to connect the device, and it works flawlessly whether you are connected with the provided USB-C wire or via Bluetooth wireless connection. It cannot wake up the Switch, which is also a bummer, but all of the positives outweigh the small missteps tremendously.

This is officially the best controller you can get for the Nintendo Switch. I have tested just about every first and third-party remote on the console, and the Pro 2 is officially my go-to controller, retiring my Splatoon 2-themed Pro Controller in the process.

Yes, it is that good.

8BitDo Pro 2 Controller Review provided by Nintendo Link
Maker: 8BitDo
Release Date: April 14, 2021
Price: $49.99, £41.99 (Pre-order)

8bitdo pro 2

Masterfully designed

Top-tier D-pad

Fantastic gyro controls

Buttons clicking and response

Fits like a glove

Much cheaper than the competition


No HD rumble

Can't scan amiibo

Can't wake up Switch (Most 3rd-parties can't)

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