I was lucky enough to get my hands on the Razer Raiju Ultimate for the PlayStation 4 and what better way to test out this beast of a controller than during the Modern Warfare free Multiplayer weekend, because lets be honest multiplayer first person shooters are where controllers of this calibre should be tested. I will start my Razer Raiju Ultimate Review with full disclosure, I usually play on a Xbox One X with an Elite Controller and reserve the PlayStation 4 for the exclusives such as God of War, Horizon Zero Dawn, Last of Us etc. The Razer Raiju Ultimate could be mistaken for an Xbox One controller at first glance so I thought it would serve me well in the battlefield on the PS4 console.
Razer Raiju Ultimate Review
The Razer Raiju Ultimate comes in a high quality carry and storage case that includes a braided nylon USB to Micro-USB cable for charging and wired play, an adjustable tilting directional d-pad module, two additional thumbstick modules, and of course, the actual controller. The carry case offers a high level of protection for the controller and additional parts; all with their own secured housing units. The controller itself feels and looks like a great quality product and resembles the Xbox One Elite Controller, it has soft rubber grips on the undersides which feels almost like leather. The Razer Raiju Ultimate can be used on PlayStation 4 and PC via Bluetooth connectivity and wired through a USB connection.
The Razer Raiju Ultimate is notability larger and heavier than the traditional PS4 controller. The PS4 standard controller comes in with a weight of approximately 214 grams, the Razer weighs 352 grams. I am familiar to an Xbox Elite controller that weighs 348 grams so it wasn’t something I needed to adjust too. Players who have been using standard controllers will noticeably feel the difference and it may take some getting used too. The large weight increase is due mainly to the additional buttons and better quality materials of the Razer Raiju Ultimate. The controller features trigger paddles M3 & M4 on the underside of the grips and unique multi function hair triggers, M1 & M2 between the L2 and R2 triggers. The D-Pad and two thumbsticks are also interchangeable, using magnets to lock them into place which adds to the weight.
The interchangeable D-pad offers players the choice of a traditional D-pad that has seperate vertical and horizontal buttons and another with more of hexagon configuration, mainly for games that have D-pad option wheels where a player is required to press in-between up and left to select a desired option as an example. The Xbox Elite controllers offer a similar changeable D-Pad. I tend to stick with the traditional D-Pad but for players wanting to use the hexagon style it works just fine on the Razer Raiju, I didn’t find myself accidentally hitting the wrong button when using map call outs in Warzone or Apex Legends. The additional M1, M2, M3 & M4 buttons can have any other standard button mapped to them. For example the circle button can be mapped to M1, or Triangle to M4, or if for some reason a player really likes the X button they can map it to all four additional buttons if they choose.
Players can download the Raiju for PS4 app to IOS or Android devices and connect the Razer Raiju via Bluetooth to configure the controller to their own individual settings. I downloaded the app on IOS and found it quick and simple to use. The controller is connected by pressing the Bluetooth button on the bottom centre of the controller that looks like a traditional settings button. Once the controller is connected the player can set four different profiles, the app has default profiles set for Shooter, Fighting, Sports and Racing. The player can choose to create new profiles but can only set four active profiles at any given time. Selecting a profile allows the player to map the M1, M2, M3 & M4 buttons to the desired standard buttons, ultimately giving them endless configurations. The player can also set the controller vibration intensity from 0% – 100% and personalise the Razer Chroma LED effects which display around the large centralised button unique to the PlayStation 4 controllers. I really loved this option, although its only cosmetic I found myself spending a lot of time playing with the effects and colours to customise each of the profiles, but generally sticking with the bright multi colour neon effect that Razer is famous for.
Next to the settings button sits the profile selection that allows players to change controller profiles on the fly. Unfortunately the player will have to remember the order of each profile as there is no way of telling which one you have on, this is where the Razer Chroma effects can come in handy, if the player sets up different colours or effects for each profile they will change with each selection.
The Razer Raiju has the same button configuration as the standard PS4 controller with the thumbsticks vertically placed next to each other with the D-Pad and the action buttons to the top left and right of them, L1 and R1 hair triggers and L2 and R2 bumper triggers placed at the head of the controller. All the buttons and triggers have a great quality feel to them especially the mecha-tactile style action buttons which have a soft cushion touch with tactile feedback. I have to admit this was one of the best features on the Razer Raiju. The controller comes with two standard thumbsticks that are the normal height of any other current generation controller on the market and two additional thumbsticks, one is higher than normal and another has a dome top at normal height. A lot of players like to use controller mods such as Kontrol Freaks to increase the height of thumbsticks so this option eliminates the need for those mods. The dome thumbstick offers no real advantage other than individual player preference for comfort.
I found myself using the standard thumbsticks after trying out different configurations over a few hours of gameplay. Changing the thumbsticks is easy with the magnetised lock in, just pull up on them and they pop off, and push down to pop them back on. I was a bit disappointed that only two additional thumbsticks where included. The Xbox Elite controller has four additional thumbsticks available to swap in and out.
Like many high end competitive controllers on the market the Razer Raiju offers two paddle triggers on the underside of the grips. The advantage in FPS games is that players do not have take their hands off the thumbsticks to activate a weapon reload, weapon swap, slide, melee etc. In fast paced games like Modern Warfare that split second movement can be the difference between getting a kill, or being killed. On the Xbox Elite controller I have those paddles set to weapon swap and melee attacks so I did the same on the Razer Raiju. After several matches on the Razer Raiju I quickly disabled the paddles altogether out of pure frustration. The paddles on the Razer are quite large and take up a decent area on the underside of the grips, I constantly found myself bumping them unintentionally and could not find a comfortable position to hold the controller without them getting in way. The paddles cannot be removed if you don’t want to use them. In comparison to an Xbox Elite controller where these paddles are much smaller and can be removed. I found this to be a huge let down overall, especially when underside paddle triggers are generally what sets competitive controllers apart from standard ones and I just couldn’t get used to them on this controller.
The Razer Raiju also offers trigger locks for the L2 and R2 bumper triggers allowing the controller to register a button press at half the distance, essentially turning them into hair triggers which gives players a significant advantage in FPS shooters. I did find the M1 and M2 buttons all but useless for the most part, they are not in a position that allows players to utilise them whilst using other triggers and I generally found no use for them. They could potentially be handy if you play claw, but that’s an entirely separate issue altogether….
After short period of gameplay with the Razer Raiju I was surprised to feel my hands getting quite fatigued. Although the design is much closer to that of an Xbox controller and with almost no weight difference to an Xbox Elite, I thought it was odd. I decided to change back to the standard PS4 controller to see if it went away, and it did! After closer inspection I noticed that the Razer Raiju is slightly more bulky and wider than an Xbox controller and has shorter grips, it is especially bulker and has less overall grip than a PS4 controller. For players who are used to PlayStation 4 controllers this may cause significant discomfort until you can adapt, if you can adapt at all. For the price tag on the Razer Raiju Ultimate I would expect that it may take a little getting used to, but not actually cause significant discomfort after a short time of game play, after all its double XP weekend on Modern Warfare so I cant be taking breaks mid grind because my hands are killing me. Maybe I’m just a bit precious but if I’m having these issues I bet there are many others who have, or will experience the same problem.
I have heard complaints of drop outs and freezing for Razer controllers in general. I have not personally experienced any drops outs so far and I found the Bluetooth connectivity responsive and accurate and could not tell the difference between Bluetooth and wired gameplay. I was however very disappointed that my headset would not connect to the Razer Raiju controller through a wired jack connection. I have a Turtle Beach PS4 specific headset which would not produce audio using the Razer Raiju controller. I found that was really ordinary considering its an officially licensed product from Sony. After a bit of research it appears only Razer branded products will work with the Razer Raiju Ultimate. I think its unreasonable to expect players to purchase a new headset along with the controller especially at the price point of the Razer Raiju, which brings me to my next point, the price. At the time of this review the Razer Raiju Ultimate is priced online and instore for around $300 AUD to $380 AUD depending on the outlet. JB Hi Fi is advertising the price at $349 AUD. In my opinion that is a large chunk of coin for a controller in general. In comparison the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is retailing in JB Hi Fi for $249 AUD, and is arguably one of the best controllers on the market based on reviews and feedback from players. It has many more features and customisable options, and it will work with any licensed headset.
Razer Raiju Ultimate
- QUALITY - 92%92%
- FEATURES - 87%87%
- COMPATIBILITY - 63%63%
- PRICE - 55%55%
Overall the Razer Raiju Ultimate is a solid controller for the player who wants that extra edge in competitive online multiplayers. It offers an array of customisable options and features allowing players to truly build a personalised controller for their needs. There is no doubting the quality of the controller and its built with the intention of playing through those long gaming sessions over a long period of time. I personally loved the tactile feedback on the action buttons and wish the Xbox Elite had that feature available. The Razer Chroma effects scream gaming controller and can sync up with a Razer PC and its accessories if your into that type of thing. I really wish the controller worked with non Razer branded gaming headsets and had the option to customise, or adjust the under grip paddles because that was a deal breaker for me, along with it being one of the most expensive controllers on the market. The Razer Raiju Ultimate for PlayStation 4 is a good quality controller for the player looking to take their gaming to the next level but it just isn’t worth the heavy price tag.