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SCUF Impact PS4 controller review

SCUF is a brand name that has long existed in the realm of console esports, often the controller of choice for competitive players and with some of the biggest names in games such as Call of Duty, Halo and Fortnite using their controllers and even having their own designs.
SCUF Impact PS4 controller review

I was lucky enough to receive a SCUF Impact controller to review for GINX Esports TV, and was sent popular YouTuber Ali-A's design to test out.

Credit: SCUF Gaming

The first, and most noticeable difference between the SCUF Impact and the standard Dualshock 4 controller is the shape of it. Where the standard DS4 is quite small and looks light, similar to its PS2 and PS3 predecessors, the SCUF Impact is a big, thick controller more reminiscent of the Xbox 360 pad. I always assumed these would be better for bigger hands but ironically I, with my small juvenile hands, found it much more comfortable than the DS4 that you get with your PlayStation 4 system. The placement of the paddles on the back (which are also removable based on user preference) is clearly well-planned, a comfortable fit that doesn't grate on the hand with a few hours of use.

Building the SCUF Impact

User preference is evidently at the forefront of SCUF's process. These are not products that have a "one size fits all" approach. This starts from the very core of the make-up of the controller up to the way it looks.

Going through the customisation options, there's little left to the imagination with so many bases covered. With a choice between the SCUF Impact, the SCUF Infinity 4PS Pro (both PS4), the SCUF Prestige and the SCUF Elite (both Xbox 360), the customer is immediately presented with a variety of options to choose from. From then on, it becomes a minefield of colours, designs, sticks, triggers and bumpers.

With multiple professional players and teams across different titles having their own personal designs, it's easy to support your favourites straight from the off.


Though my controller came loaded with the SCUF thumbsticks, I swapped these out for some standard PS4 sticks (which is really easy to do with the Impact technology and peripherals provided) as I find them to be more durable and comfortable than the SCUF sticks. It also came with the excellent SCUF grip that is well-suited to long play sessions and the optional Trigger Control System, which shortens the length of the triggers and makes actions such as shooting in FPS games more instantaneous. In fact, the only issue I had with the triggers is that, when switched on, I was unable to drive vehicles properly in Fortnite. It's not that important really, but for review's sake it's probably necessary that I tell you. I just switched off the trigger control system when playing Fortnite.

Using the SCUF Impact – Gameplay

Obviously, gameplay is the most important thing when trying out a new controller. And after some growing pains, the SCUF Impact is absolutely beneficial to my abilities which, to be fair, are in dire need of help. When I first used a SCUF controller a couple of years ago, it was difficult, and if you're in the market for a new SCUF you should absolutely expect a couple of weeks of playing below your average level, as you get used to hitting the right buttons and not accidentally spamming the wrong ones. But there is a clear upward trend in ability once you get used to using paddles and that, ultimately, is what we're all after.

A controller will never capture the diversity of a mouse and keyboard, but the SCUF paddles definitely do a good job of moving controller players slightly closer to their PC master race counterparts.

The drawbacks


Though I'm a huge fan of the SCUF Impact and a huge advocate of it, it wouldn't be right to ignore some of the drawbacks of the product, too.

The price has always been, and will likely continue to be, a huge sticking point, especially when you look at the rough demographic of the product. The teens that will typically be looking to get a controller are unlikely to have the disposable income to afford a SCUF – though I imagine their sales figures may suggest differently – and it is not an easy thing to part with money for.

Even I, at 23 years old and with a full-time job, get a little anxious looking at the SCUF Impact prices, which start at £119.99 but can cost in excess of £200 when maxed out. This a huge commitment, and likely a lot of overtime or household chores, for the young adults that will be looking to purchase this, and definitely pushes many away from purchasing. That said, the technology, time and cost that goes into production of these controllers justifies a hiked price in comparison to the standard DS4, whether such a significant increase is justified is hard to really judge. Personally, I know I am getting a lot of worth from the controller and would struggle to go back to having one without paddles, but that's very easy to say when I didn't have to pay for it. I know if told I had to pay out for the product, I would struggle to agree to it.

Credit: SCUF Gaming

Also, for the price, you would expect to be given some extras; a charging cable, spare sticks or a case, for example, but none of these come as standard. You can often get a discounted price on player packs, which consist of some of the above, when purchasing a controller, but again these aren't cheap. Compare this to a product such as the Razer Raiju, which provides both a case and a USB charging cable as standard, and you can see where SCUF falls short in terms of customer service.

Many SCUF users have complained about their controllers breaking within months or even weeks of purchase, but I have no complaints in this regard; my old one is showing signs of cosmetic wear and tear after around two and a half years, so this may come down to how one personally uses and treats their controller, or maybe there are inconsistencies in manufacturing, but my personal experience in regards to the durability is nothing but positive.

Overall, I think the SCUF Impact is a fantastic controller with far more upsides than downsides. It is almost guaranteed to improve your gameplay once you get used to using the paddles, and for competitive console or controller players it borders on imperative to be able to compete with other players. However, if you're a casual player or do not necessarily have the disposable income, I wouldn't fork out on a SCUF in the hopes of magically becoming a pro player.

Verdict: 7/10 – A fantastic controller, but the price and minimality of what comes in the box does hold the product back slightly. I'd struggle to play without one now, but it would have to take some courage to set aside £200 for it.