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The Razer Junglecat turns your Android phone into a Nintendo Switch

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The Nintendo Change succeeded the place so many different handheld gaming merchandise have failed lately. However the Change is a gaming-only gadget that not everybody will need to put money into. Everybody has a telephone although, and that’s what Razer is hoping to capitalize on with the Junglecat sport controller. Merely slide them onto your present Android telephone and voila, a makeshift Nintendo Change with entry to all of your favourite Android video games.

What’s the Razer Junglecat?

The Razer Junglecat is a fairly easy gaming controller. It’s principally a Razer-built smaller model of Nintendo’s Pleasure-Con controllers. It’s primarily designed as an attachable controller to your cell phone (utilizing a appropriate case). It can be used as a standalone sport controller to your telephone, TV, or PC utilizing the little plastic divider. As soon as paired along with your telephone, the Junglecat replaces on-screen controls, offering a extra tactile and responsive gaming expertise.

The Junglecat replaces on-screen controls, offering a extra tactile and responsive gaming expertise.

How does it work?

 

The Razer Junglecat comes with three appropriate instances within the field. The included instances are barely totally different relying on the place you purchase it. Within the US, you’ll get a case for the Razer Cellphone 2, Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus and Samsung Galaxy Word 9. In Europe, you’ll get a case for the Huawei P30 Professional, Razer Cellphone 2 and Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus.

The Junglecat will nonetheless pair with different Android telephones (however not iOS) working Nougat and above through Bluetooth LE. It’ll nonetheless work the identical, you simply gained’t have the ability to connect it to your telephone with a case. The case itself is matte black plastic and feels sturdy. It’s not what I’d name enticing with the thick controller rails on the highest and backside, nevertheless it might positively be worse.

Razer Junglecat case ports

Sadly, not everybody owns one of many telephones Razer supplied instances for and you’ll’t purchase non-obligatory instances for different telephones. Given this, it’s weird Razer didn’t embrace a telephone clip on the Junglecat’s mid-section to carry different telephones in place. For a lot of, this will likely be an comprehensible dealbreaker.

When you’ve paired the controllers to your telephone, you may arrange customized button-layout profiles for various video games through the Razer Gamepad app. The app can be used for sport discovery, fixing one of many huge hassles of Android sport controllers: realizing which video games are literally supported.

In case your telephone helps video output you may also use the Junglecat with a TV or monitor. The Junglecat can be appropriate with Home windows PCs over Bluetooth LE. The 2 controllers pair with each other over a 2.4GHz connection.

Who’s the Junglecat for?

Razer Junglecat controller angle view with phone

Razer is clearly focusing on hardcore cell avid gamers with the Junglecat, given the corporate’s heritage. When paired with the Razer Cellphone 2 or one other high-end Android telephone, you may count on a powerful gaming expertise with the Junglecat.

With sub-14ms latency and a really secure Bluetooth connection, I used to be actually stunned by simply how native-feeling the Junglecat is to make use of. Your telephone is extra more likely to be the weak hyperlink right here reasonably than the Junglecat.

Your telephone is extra more likely to be the weak hyperlink in gaming reasonably than the Junglecat.

However I additionally suppose the Junglecat is for folk that wouldn’t essentially think about themselves avid avid gamers however nonetheless pay frequently. I’m removed from a hardcore gamer, but, no matter whether or not I used to be taking part in one thing casually on a prepare or one thing extra intensive at residence, I tended to connect the Junglecat as a result of it’s simply plain higher than not utilizing it.

I don’t personal a Change and doubtless wouldn’t put money into a gaming-only gadget. The Junglecat will get me an identical expertise with out as a lot outlay. I already personal a bunch of Android video games and the Junglecat made me need to play them much more. Having the ability to totally customise my button layouts and joystick sensitivity was notably helpful.

Don’t miss: 15 greatest Android video games with gamepad help

Is the Razer Junglecat any good?

Razer Junglecat controller front view standing

Sure, it’s. For $99 it appears a bit overpriced to me, but when that doesn’t put you off, it’s a really respectable possibility. Anybody into Android gaming that doesn’t have already got a sport controller or who has been searching for a extra Change-like controller ought to at the least test it out.

The Junglecat is nice nevertheless it feels a bit overpriced to me.

The Junglecat is nice in the event you’ve historically disliked the on-screen controls programs of most cell video games. There are positively cheaper choices out there, however many will not be as top quality as Razer’s effort right here. If you happen to nonetheless favor the texture of a daily controller, take a look at our listing of the perfect sport controllers for Android.

Customization can be a stable addition, with customized profiles out there for all of your video games. Having the ability to customise button layouts for every sport in your library is nice. Word which you can solely change button capabilities although, not map buttons to different on-screen controls.

The joystick sensitivity modification is nice, with fairly granular management. I didn’t discover any points with joystick dead-zones and the clickable joysticks can be utilized as L3/R3 buttons.

There’s a slight “rattle” to the match of the controllers on the case, nevertheless it’s corresponding to the Change’s Pleasure-Cons. Thumb rolls on the d-pad are responsive and cozy, because the buttons are much less pronounced and sharp than on my different controllers. Regardless of how small the Junglecat is I didn’t discover the structure to really feel cramped.

Responsiveness was unbelievable, and I’ve to confess I didn’t have nice expectations on the outset. At no level did I discover any lag in inputs from the Junglecat. It was truly way more responsive and dependable than on-screen controls.

Is it better than a regular game controller?

I wouldn’t say it’s better necessarily, just different, with different benefits. I already own a SteelSeries Stratus XL and I actually find the Junglecat to be a nice complement to it. While you might think it’d be an either-or situation, I really like having two styles of game controllers to choose from.

For me, the Stratus XL is more comfortable for extended gaming. But it’s also much bulkier and far heavier than the Junglecat (288g vs 106g) in terms of portability.

I like the Junglecat for shorter gaming sessions while I prefer a standard Android controller for longer ones.

Battery life is also a factor: the Junglecat gets 100+ hours via a built-in battery while the Stratus XL only gets 40+ hours via two AA batteries. For me, the Junglecat is my preferred commuting game controller while the Stratus is my go-to for extended couch sessions.

What’s battery life like?

Razer Junglecat Gamepad app

Fantastic. Each controller lasts for over 100 hours of gameplay. To turn them on, flip the tiny switch on the bottom of each controller. The lights near the shoulder buttons will flash blue as they connect and then stay a steady green once connected. You only need to pair one controller with your phone as the other will be automatically connected.

The indicator lights near the bumper buttons will blink red when your battery is low. The Junglecat takes two and a half hours to charge. Charging is done via a USB-C port on the bottom of each controller (you have to plug both in). I have to confess, in the two weeks of gaming on the Junglecat I’ve done, I’ve not killed the battery.

The verdict: Should you buy the Junglecat?

Razer Junglecat controller top view angled

If $99 isn’t too rich for your blood and you own one of the phones the Junglecat has a case for, then sure — especially if you’re an avid to semi-avid mobile gamer and don’t like on-screen controls.

Razer is crazy not to sell other phone cases separately, even if the Junglecat itself is great.

If you’re at all price-conscious or don’t own one of the three case-able phones, I think you can do better. As a Note 9 owner, I think the Junglecat is great. But Razer hasn’t done itself any favors by not selling other phone cases separately. The Razer Raiju is a slightly more functional but less portable alternative for $149.

There are, of course, cheaper options out there. These include the $79 Nintendo Joy-Con controllers which also work on Android and PC. But Razer has taken an Android-first approach here I prefer. Razer, of course, also has good attention to detail for mobile gamers. Overall, I’d still recommend the Junglecat for its quality, performance, and reliability. It’s just a shame Razer has kept the price high while keeping the number of supported phones so low.

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