With the popularity of fighting games at a record all-time high, fight sticks are quickly becoming the norm as the input method of choice, offering players an authentic arcade experience at home and the ideal button layout for performing intricate and difficult combos. Many companies have jumped at the chance to engage the growing market with their own fight sticks, each offering unique features, elite components, and varying price points. Razer’s Atrox, one of the newest sticks in the market, comes into the field with a higher price point than the competitors, but also brings a number of cool features that others sticks lack. The question is: Is this fight stick worth your time and hard earned money?
Developed and Manufactured by Razer
Retail Price: $199.99
Available for the Xbox 360 and PC.
*Review unit provided by Razer
The Razer Atrox has a list of features that make it pretty impressive and an edge against the competition. First off is the sleek, black, compact body, which is pretty good-looking and edgy. It has a nice, heavy weight to it and a rubber pad on the bottom, making it pretty stable when on a player’s lap or on a table. The clear top panel is solidly built, and features a nice Razer graphic, which can be interchanged at any time by giving modders quick access to the screws that hold it in place.
The stick also brings Sanwa Denshi components, known in the fight scene for their reliability, responsiveness, and overall quality. The face of the stick is decorated with eight buttons, with the start and pause buttons found on the right side of the stick, and each is responsive to the touch, meaning you won’t be able to blame the hardware if your combos aren’t landing. The Atrox also has a Sanwa eight-way ball stick for directional input, allowing players to pull off those quarter circles and half circle motions with ease, and an additional bat top stick for those looking for alternative grips.
The real beauty of the Atrox is when you open it, as the interior of the stick is organized, elegantly designed, spacious, and pretty much a modder’s dream. With the touch of button, the Atrox instantly snaps open, allowing players to change components at will thanks to easily accessible screws and an included screwdriver. Ample space allows for the storage the thirteen foot USB cable, which fits nicely in a small nook, as well as any other objects players could fit in, like extra buttons, phones, and other small objects. While the Atrox looks great as is, modders will immediately be able to change buttons and the stick whenever they choose, which is excellent.
The Atrox isn’t perfect though, even though it’s pretty close. One issue I had with the fight stick was that it’s very prone to finger smudges, thanks to the slick, glossy surface. It’s very noticeable thanks to the dark body, and only gets worse as time goes by. Keeping a disposable cloth nearby will keep it from getting too out of hand.
Another problem I had was that while the Atrox is PC compatible, thanks to it running on Microsoft software, it isn’t compatible with all computer USB drivers. On my home PC, the Atrox would not be recognized whatsoever, while on other PCs it would work just fine. It’s not really a problem that has to do with the Atrox, but it’s something to keep your eye out for if you’re primarily a PC user.
Overall, the Razer Atrox is a gorgeous and slick piece of tech that’s wonderfully designed and modder friendly. While it might be a bit too expensive for some, the premium Sanwa components, clean and clutter free interior and customization options make the Atrox a fight stick that you should definitively invest in.