We dig into why the Mobapad M6 HD could replace your humble Joy-Cons, then check out the indie gem Pepper Grinder.

Finding the perfect Switch controller often feels like playing a game of concession making. Maybe you’ll find a unit that packs in a bit more bulk for a comfier hand-feel, but lacks any sort of rumble. Or maybe you gain some helpful back paddles, but lose joysticks.

But now, for the first time in a long time, there seems to be a solution that seems to tick all the boxes. In fact, it might even surpass Nintendo’s original offerings, and there’s a bloody good chance you’ve never even heard of it: the Mobapad M6 HD.

With a formfactor that looks slightly similar to the Razer KISHI V2 the Mobapad M6 HD is a very sleek looking unit. Showcasing an all-white aesthetic (including the joysticks and buttons), it’s an absolute stunner when paired with the Switch, especially the Switch OLED Model. But my love for the Mobapad M6 HD is not just material looks – the feature set beefing up the unit is also worth swooning over.

The d-pad for instance, much like the Xbox’s premium Elite controller, is swappable, allowing for both the regular four-point pad or an octagonal alternative. It’s a minor feature all things considered, but allows for some wonderful flexibility depending on the types of games you like to play.

The big-ticket item though is unquestionably the analogue sticks, which are able to outdo Nintendo’s own joy-cons by eliminating gamers’ biggest pet peeve: stick drift. It’s all thanks to the power of hall effect sensors which use magnets to provide a much more accurate output, and this inclusion should help with long-term peace of mind. The larger overall size of the sticks and their more natural feeling concave nubs just add to the overall enjoyment of the Mobapad M6 HD and show how much attention has been put into its design.

This enjoyment carries across to the controller’s primary buttons as well, which leverage micro-switches for a more tactile feel. The constant clicking might not be for everyone, but I did enjoy how responsive they felt, and was more than willing to handle the noise as a consequence of that.

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HD rumble has somehow also made the cut, which is honestly a surprising inclusion here. Most third-party accessories skip rumble altogether, or offer a significantly worse rumble than Nintendo’s so the fact that the Mobapad M6 HD includes it is impressive. Is it as accurate as your standard joy-cons? Admittedly, no there is a certain nuance that you’ll still miss here, but it’s not a huge difference and might be worth the trade-off for all the other features you are scoring.

The one downside to the Mobapad M6 HD is the consequence of its size. While we’re more than happy with the bulk the device adds to the mainline switch, said bulk prevents me from actually being able to continue housing it within my current case. That means having to invest in a larger alternative solution, which is by no means a huge issue, but will still come at an additional cost should you wish to keep the MobaPad attached at all times. I also found that my right bumper was a little spongey and less tactile when compared to the left side, but that could just be a one-off and not indicative of a larger issue.

Those niggles aside the Mobapad M6 HD should be an incredibly appealing option for any Switch gamer. The fact that I haven’t even mentioned the NFC compatibility speaks volumes to how much it has going on. If you’re looking to amp up your Switch setup, this could just be the solution.

The Mobapad M6 HD availale for around $122 on the Mobapad website.

Also out now…

Pepper Grinder (Switch, PC)

Bound to be one of the great indie gems of 2024, Pepper Grinder is a fine return to form for Devolver Digital’s unique library of games and the perfect example of a simple premise executed with complete confidence.

It all kicks off when the titular Pepper is immediately left for dead down a cruel cavern, only to stumble upon an all-powerful grinder that allows her to jump back in the action and cause all sorts of gleeful destruction.

Luckily using said grinder to speed across levels is always an absolute hoot, as you effortlessly carve your way through all sorts of soft surfaces. Adding in a leap mechanic, granting the ability to jump from surface to surface, only adds to the appeal and provides an almost combo-like feeling as you glide around collecting coins and taking down foes. It’s not always as simple as it sounds though, with some enemies requiring careful navigation, like strange beetle creatures that need to be drilled from underneath.

Pepper Grinder is frequently filled with creativity, be that new ways to implement the grinder (attaching a key to turn a lock as the simplest example), increasingly complex boss fights or surprising modes of navigation, meaning you’ll almost certainly never be bored throughout its relatively short run-time.

Despite that potential gripe, this is still an engaging adventure that’s well worth the grind.

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