8BitDo is well-known for its gaming accessories, specifically controllers, inspired by retro consoles, but today, the company is taking inspiration from arcade machines for its latest accessory. The 8BitDo Arcade Stick has a fairly self-explanatory name, with a large joystick and eight physical buttons inspired by arcade machines, and it's compatible with the Nintendo Switch and Windows PCs.
There are a few features that make 8BitDo's offering stand out from other arcade sticks though. The controller is compatible with the 8BitDo Ultimate software, which lets users remap the eight face buttons to any button on a conventional controller. There are also two dedicated macro buttons at the top, and macros can also be created in the 8BitDo Ultimate software.
There's also what 8BitDo calls a dynamic button layout. As you change between Windows and Switch input modes, the face buttons can display which buttons on the stick are mapped to the Switch or Xbox controller buttons. There's also a switch that lets you assign the joystick to either analog stick on a conventional controller.
The customization goes beyond software features, though, as the 8BitDo Arcade Stick is also designed to be modifiable on a hardware level. The joystick uses a universal mount so you can replace it with any other popular arcade stick, and the buttons themselves can be swapped with 30mm or 24mm arcade buttons. You will need to open the controller to do that, though.
Rounding out the feature set, the 8BitDo Arcade Stick works via Bluetooth, a custom 2.4g connection, or with a wired connection. The 1,000mAh battery should last up to 40 hours playing with the 2.4g connection or 30 hours on Bluetooth, and it takes four hours to charge.
If you're interested, you can preorder the 8BitDo Arcade Stick from Amazon for $89.99. It will begin shipping on October 20.
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