Razer Raiju Review: Give It Time And You Will Love It
+ Bigger than the standard DualShock 4 controller
+ More comfortable to use
+ Has better grip
+ Has 4 additional programmable buttons
+ Faster button presses
+ Can be used on the PlayStation 4 and PC
- It is pricey for a game controller
- It’s not wireless
- Can be a bit awkward to use at first
For consoles, we are usually stuck with 1st party controllers created by the console brand itself. There are 3rd party controllers available for a while but usually, it’s been nothing but a cheaper knockoff version of the original controller. This one on the other hand is a premium offering by Razer that is created with the PlayStation 4 in mind. This is the Razer Raiju gaming controller.
Unboxing the Razer Raiju
In case you missed it, we posted our official unboxing of the Razer Raiju gaming controller. I’ve included the unboxing video just above here but if you need more details on the unboxing, you can find it by clicking here.
What is the Razer Raiju?
The Razer Raiju is a gaming controller that was designed to give PlayStation 4 gamers a competitive edge in gaming. This was the result of a partnership with Sony Interactive Entertainment, which led to the Razer Raiju becoming one of two officially licensed controllers that will work seamlessly across all PlayStation 4 systems. It does have a number of improvements from the original controller.
Compared to the standard DualShock 4 controller for the PlayStation 4, it is bigger and heavier, better grip, and has 4 additional fully-programmable buttons. It also has a Quick Control panel consisting of 4 buttons; microphone mute, game volume adjust, chat volume adjust, and profile switch. Razer claims that it is much more durable compared to the DualShock 4 controller thanks to it being made of aircraft-grade aluminum and high carbon steel.
One of the major complaints by many gamers, especially when they’ve experience what it’s like to use an Xbox controller, is the PlayStation controller’s size. While the DualShock 4 has improved a bit in this regard, it’s barely any different. The Razer Raiju is noticeably bigger and is very close to an Xbox 360’s controller size.
Together with the grip at the back of the controller, the Razer Raiju is a very comfortable game controller to use thanks to its improved ergonomics. It has everything that a standard PlayStation 4 controller has, even the touchpad, meaning here that it will not have any limitations when it comes to operating the PlayStation 4.
A common misconception with the Razer Raiju game controller is the 4 additional fully-programmable buttons. It’s meant to be an alternative to pressing existing buttons rather than being its own standalone functions. This is especially helpful for games where you need to press multiple buttons simultaneously, such as Tekken 7.
What really sets the Razer Raiju apart from the DualShock 4 controller is that it is a wired controller. It utilizes a Micro USB to USB cable to connect to the PlayStation 4, and the cable itself is detachable. While a wireless controller may be more convenient, a wired controller will ensure consistent performance with no delays whatsoever.
If you have grown accustomed to the standard PlayStation controller, you will most likely find yourself disliking the Razer Raiju at first even if you do like the size and grip of it. This is not because the button layout is different because in truth, that is exactly the same as the original controller with the exception of the 4 additional programmable buttons.
For one thing, the buttons feels more akin to a mouse click rather than what we’re used to. It’s similar to the feeling of using a keyboard with a different mechanical switch than what we’re used to. On the DualShock 4, you can really feel the button bottoming out with a noticeable amount of resistance whereas upon pressing it on the Razer Raiju, the button moves ever so slightly inside with very little resistance followed by an audible “click” sound.
The reason it was designed this way is because Razer wanted to shave off the time it takes for the action to occur when you’ve pressed a button. This is especially useful in competitive gaming as it means you will always be faster than your opponents assuming they’re using a regular controller. For example, if 2 players were to press the punch button at the exact same time with one using the DualShock 4 and the other the Razer Raiju, the latter will execute the punch first.
In the case of the directional pad (d-pad), it is noticeably stiffer than the standard controller, and this one ultimately boils down to user preference. I myself prefer it to be stiffer as I will be able avoid accidentally pressing the d-pad from time to time. The analog stick on the other hand feels similar to the original, with the exception of the knobs being bigger and grippier, thus making it easier to use.
As far as using the additional 4 buttons go, it can feel excessive at times. While 2 of those buttons on top of the Razer Raiju are helpful, it’s not the same case for the 2 trigger switches at the back. This is because it’s more suitable for the racing genre, as it would be able to mimic the paddle shifters found in cars. On the plus side, you can remove these 2 trigger switches with the included screwdriver, and it’s quite easy to do so.
The one thing I love about the Razer Raiju is the fact that it’s also compatible on PC. Since it utilizes USB connection, all you have to do is just plug in the controller to your PC and it should work right off the bat. The controller will work seamlessly without any additional software, and you can customize it directly on Steam before you launch your games. In fact, the only thing missing when using it on PC is force feedback, which Razer stated that they will be adding it in a future firmware update.
Razer Raiju Verdict
Overall, the Razer Raiju is an excellent game controller for both the PlayStation 4 and PC. However, it is also a controller that will require a bit of getting used to as it can feel very different from the standard DualShock 4 controller. It has everything you need to not only give yourself a competitive edge in gaming, but to also provide you with better ergonomics while doing so. Not to forget, it also does come with a protective carrying case.
If you prefer the Xbox controller layout more, you can opt for the other officially license PlayStation 4 controller known as the Nacon Revolution Pro. Other than that, the only thing that will be stopping gamers from adopting the Razer Raiju will be its asking price. It is retailing for RM739, and it is definitely worth the money if you take gaming seriously. I will give the Razer Raiju game controller with our Gold Pokdeward.