The debate has been raging for years whether first-person shooters are better with a mouse and keyboard or a console controller. I’ve heard arguments for both and I’ve been playing FPS games on PC and consoles for long enough to know that my accuracy is pretty terrible on both. At this point, I’ll take all the help I can get. Kontrol Freek has a pretty big line up of peripherals on last-gen systems and now they are entering the next-gen market with peripherals for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Kontrol Freek was nice enough to end us along some FPS Freek peripherals for the Xbox One. Did they help improve my game? Yes and no.
Installation of the peripherals is simple enough. They snap right onto the top of the thumbsticks on the controler and are snugly held in place, so you won’t have to worry about them slipping off during heavy, intense gameplay. The idea behind Kontrol Freek peripherals is that is pretty much adds a second thumbstick on top of the original thumbsticks to make it easier to move them. The Kontrol Freek sticks do feel nice but they also feel weird. It’s probably due to the fact that it feels unfamiliar. After using the default Xbox One thumbsticks since launch, it was like relearning how to use the controller all over again. Luckily you should be able to get accustomed to the new sticks rather quickly. The thumbsticks feel a lot looser now and don’t have as much resistance when moving them around like they do without the peripherals.
I tried the FPS Kontrol Freek with two games — Call of Duty: Ghosts and the Titanfall beta. My biggest problem with FPS games is trying to find the perfect controller sensitivity. If it’s too low, I often get killed because I can’t turn around fast enough to kill someone behind me. Too high and I’m spinning in circles like an idiot. The other problem is that if the sensitivity is too high, I cannot aim at all. If it’s too low, I can aim better but can pretty much only kill things directly in front of me. The Kontrol Freeks did an amazing job of helping me improve my accuracy when aiming down the sights. Since it raises the thumbstick about an inch, I don’t have to pull on the stick as much when precision aiming. I played one round of team deathmatch without the sticks and I went 8-13. The next round with the sticks I went 10-6. I know scientists all over the world will freak out (no pun intended) at my horrible experiment due to lack of a control and repeated tests, but hey, I’m not a scientist. Of course, this was just me. I feel like while my performance may improve, it may be different for other players. It really depends on your preference I guess.
I was impressed at how well the sticks worked while aiming down the sights, but then I started having problems. When trying to free aim, I was having all kinds of difficulty. Now, I am not going to blame Kontrol Freek for this as I feel it’s my own fault. I’m going to chalk it up to not being used to playing with the thumbsticks higher than they are on the controller. This is something that you should all keep in mind if you ever plan on picking one of these up. Be prepared to feel like you are playing on a brand new controller again. The other issue I ran into is that while they work great for FPS games; but fighting games — not so much. I loaded up some Killer Instinct to see if these would work playing multiple genres and it was a disaster, to say the least. So I decided at that moment, after getting my rear end handed to me by an online Jago, to remove the sticks. That’s when I really noticed just how tight these things lock onto the controller. The peripherals lock on tight to the thumbsticks and I was scared to take them off. The part that clips onto the existing thumbsticks is made of plastic and it feels strong right out of the package, but I wonder how these will hold up after repeated removals over long period of time. Granted, that period of time may be a long time. They are built that well.
Like I said above, I feel like this is something you need to try out to see if it actually helps improve your game or not. Luckily, If you are interested in trying these, you won't have to worry about breaking the bank to do so. Kontrol Freek has a pretty big line up of peripherals for almost all consoles out there that range in price from $5 to about $15 or so. They can be bought on their official website and I think I've seen them in GameStop as well. The great thing is that I can tell these products are made with care. Just because they don't cost much doesn't mean you're getting a cheap piece of plastic that will break after a few uses. The Kontrol Freek FPSes are sturdy, so you know you won't have any issues with them anytime soon.
Overall, I would say that Kontrol Freek products are a good investment for those who want to improve their game. Just be prepared that they may take some getting used to, but I feel like after some dedicated use, you will be picking off head shots left and right just like everyone else online. Maybe they are using Kontrol Freeks as well.
* The product in this article was sent to us by the developer/company.
I have been playing video games for as long as I can remember. My earliest gaming memories come from playing Lady Bug and Snafu on my fathers Colecovision and Intellivision respectively. It wasnt until I was 6 years old and played a Mortal Kombat 2 arcade machine in a game room at a hotel that I truly fell in love with a videogame. I have so many wonderful memories of my dad and I playing Mortal Kombat on SNES every night after dinner. Throughout my childhood NES, SNES, Gameboy and Sega Genesis were the loves of my life. Here I am 29 years old and still as much in love with videogames as I ever was. And for the record... I enjoyed the Mass Effect 3 ending... sue me