Although the SCUF brand of controllers has been around in 2010, its popularity has been kept secret from a large population of gamers. Meant to deliver the fastest response time, the most comfort, and some added bells and whistles, the SCUF controllers have been touted by MLG pros and highly competitive multiplayer gamers, so much so that we had to check them out.

Our goal was to find out whether the SCUFs could truly improve out competitive multiplayer feel, but more importantly if they could justify the admittedly high price tag. Read on to find out.

Designing a SCUF controller is a fairly easy process, with helpful tutorials along the way. Sure, players can pick one of the basic models and be done with it, but SCUF offers so many customization options that it’s hard not to poke around. Players can customize their faceplate with a number of flashy colors and faux materials, from bright green camo to pink chrome. They can also choose joystick height – going lower for gamers with smaller hands or higher for longer thumbs.

By and large the front of a SCUF doesn’t look that much different from the average controller. SCUF replaces the PS button logo with their own logo and the joysticks have different grip patterns (and a concave or domed shape), but cosmetic changers are really not what makes these controllers so popular. Rather, it’s the backside of the SCUF that makes it standout from the pack.

SCUF 4PS Raised Joysticks

First off, SCUFs come with grip handles on both sides of the controller to make sure it doesn’t slide around if your hands get sweaty. The grip material also just feels nicer in your hands, making sure the controller is locked in place.

Alongside the grip handles, every SCUF comes with a set of paddles that double as “face buttons.” Now players can pre-program the paddles to double specific face buttons or they can purchase an EMR kit for manual reprogramming, but the basic idea is that players will have access to two commonly used buttons without moving their thumbs from the joysticks. So, say the player wants to reload or jump while still tracking on an enemy; the paddles make that possible.

One instance where the SCUF 4PS showed its advantages versus a traditional controller was while playing Destiny’s Trials of Osiris mode. Since the mode is very focused on keeping teammates alive, being able to hold down a paddle to revive a teammate while also aiming was a godsend. The controller’s paddles also made it easier to jump in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare while also keeping the line of sight focused.

SCUF Controller Features

It’s with those paddles that the utility of SCUF controllers truly comes into focus, and it’s easy to see why competitive FPS players flock to them. Being able to keep your thumbs on the joysticks at all times can make a huge difference, and the paddles offer the ability to preform other tasks simultaneously.

But of course, with that added utility comes a price, and for SCUFs it can be a steep one. Depending on the model, and the amount of customization a gamer wants, SCUF controllers can cost upwards of $140. Needless to say, the controllers are not going to be for everyone, but are clearly designed with the competitive FPS gamer in mind. Those who just want an extra controller should probably look elsewhere.

However, if the SCUF does intrigue you, we’d recommend giving them a try. They work as advertised and thus far have increased our competitive multiplayer play in games like Destiny, the Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 beta, and we even found the controller useful for unique indies like Galak-Z: The Dimensional. If you treat gaming as more than a hobby, SCUF controllers may be just the tool to take your gameplay to the next level.

The SCUF 4PS PS4 Controller can be customized and bought at the official SCUF website.