The Tesla Arcade is likely one of the most unique additions to a car in recent memory. The addition of Tesla’s gaming console adds something to do when Supercharging or could be a source of entertainment for when Tesla vehicles are fully autonomous (although that could be some years away). It truly revolutionized the experience of owning a vehicle for entertainment purposes.
However, some games require a controller, and there are plenty of options on the market. However, each controller has its own distinct advantages and disadvantages, and there are some products that are better in a pinch, and others that are better for a more enjoyable gaming experience. Whether you need a last-second Christmas gift or you just picked up your first EV and you want a controller in case slower charging methods are only available during your first road trip, here’s the perfect list of what you can expect from each option:
THE BEST BARGAIN: EASYSMX WIRED GAMING CONTROLLER
The EasySMX Wired Gaming Controller is only $20 on Amazon and is even included in the e-commerce giant’s Prime program, so it can be at your front door in as little as a few days. It features dual vibration, one motor on each side, and an ergonomic design that will give comfortability while gaming for your thumbs. (Sounds like a reach, but if you’re at a destination charger, you’ll thank me later).
It features a sub-par compatibility profile, however. So if you intend on using it for your Tesla, but you’re at a buddy’s house who only has one controller, you won’t be able to run to your car and grab this. It will work on Windows, PS3, and Android, but not Xbox One or Mac. It also won’t work on newer, updated PlayStation models.
You get what you pay for. This won’t be the best option if you are used to the high-quality gaming pads on the market, but it will definitely get the job done.
THE BEST QUALITY: XBOX ELITE SERIES CONTROLLER
The Xbox Elite Series Controller is the best of the best. It starts at $179.99, which is a lot of money for a controller. However, this thing will likely last as long as your Tesla will. Despite Xbox having a somewhat poor reputation for its quality of gaming controllers, this might be the best option for those who want longevity. It would probably be best to buy this if you’re a regular gamer, however, because you might not get your money’s worth if you’re not gaming on a somewhat regular basis.
It features an adaptable hand zie feature that improves accuracy and speed of gaming. It has metal and rubber joysticks, which are interchangeable based on your playing style. Yes, this is an excessive buy for a Tesla only, but it’s also the best quality controller you can buy. You will need either a Bluetooth Controller Adapter or a USB-C cord for connectivity. You might be able to find one of these at a GameStop or BestBuy, but chances are you will be ordering directly from Microsoft.
This is for the real gamers out there.
THE MOST AVAILABLE: XBOX ONE WIRELESS/WIRED CONTROLLER
If you need something today, the Xbox One Wireless or Wired options are the best bet. You can find these controllers literally anywhere: Wal-Mart, Best Buy, you might even find one in an Ollie’s Bargain Store if you’re lucky enough. You can also find affordable used versions at gaming retailers. It is similar to the Elite Controller, but with fewer options and lower quality. It is a perfectly reasonable option for short-term gaming in your Tesla.
However, if you are a more regular gamer, expect to buy around two of these a year. A common issue (that I’ve felt personally for many years) is stick drift or catchy joysticks. Stick Drift is when your controller is not being utilized but is turned on and connected to a game, and your player moves without you touching the joystick. After hours of use and pushing a joystick in one direction, let’s say forwards for a driving game, for example, these $60 controllers will begin to catch this problem. It can be fixed temporarily, but it is better to just move on to a new one, at least in my opinion.
If you forgot your gaming nephew who owns a Model 3 a cool controller for Christmas, you can run over to any large retailer and find one of these. We won’t tell them that you forgot to buy them a gift.
THE BEST VALUE: POWERA ENHANCED WIRED CONTROLLER FOR XBOX
If you want the Xbox One Wireless/Wired Controller, but can accept slightly lower quality and an awesome price tag, this is the choice for you. It feels, looks, and reacts just like a regular Xbox Controller, and it comes in many different colors. It simply plugs right into the USB port, and you can start gaming, it’s that easy!
For only $37.99, it’s available on Amazon and it is Prime-eligible; this is the best bang for your buck. It might be too late to snag this to have it under the tree in time for Christmas, but it would be a great alternative to those who just are not convinced that the regular Xbox controller is any better (It’s a good compromise).