Logitech PowerShell iOS Controller (Review)

Logitech Powershell

I’m a gamer. I play games on all platforms, consoles, PC and occasionally my smartphone. Although I am a gamer, I’ve stayed away from playing games that were on my smartphone mainly because the games that I really wanted to play weren’t fun to play.  The games were often too elaborate and the touch controls didn’t make them enjoyable to play. So I stuck with the Candy Crush games and the simpler games that utilized the touchscreen best. I felt cheated. Why couldn’t I get a good peripheral that allowed me some old school style control for a lot of the really good games available in the App Store? Logitech PowerShell can you help me?

Impressions

Powershell 1I got my hands on the Logitech PowerShell and right away when I opened up the box I liked what I saw. It looked old school, and it felt like I was finally going to have some fun. I could already see myself doing some major level building in Final Fantasy (so what, I’m a nerd) or getting my drive on in Asphalt or Need for Speed and some other cool games. I took it out and I connected my iPhone 5S and began to play around a bit.

 

Design

Powershell 6The design of the PowerShell is reminiscent of an old school Super Nintendo and Sega Master system controller put together. It’s somewhat light and has a matte style appearance in the front. XBox style buttons and a conventional analog D-Pad, L and R buttons on top and a soft rubber backing for grip in the back. It has a slim build that falls right in line with the build of the iPhone 5/5S so everything fits in a streamlined and clean look.

It’s a very solid build and a well put together peripheral. It felt a little weird at first but again not because it was built poorly but because I’m so used to PS and Xbox controllers that the size of it feels a tad off but I got used to it. The PowerShell also has this weird extension add-on piece for a set of headphones that I didn’t understand, for $69.99 we couldn’t just get a headphone jack built in?(originally the PowerShell was $99.99)

 

Gaming

Powershell and Iphone 5Right away when I attempted to play some games the issues began. As I mentioned before I play the Final Fantasy games religiously and I really didn’t bother with them on the iPhone because I really hated the touch D-pad so you can imagine my disappointment when I couldn’t play them at all with the PowerShell. The PowerShell unfortunately doesn’t support any of the FF games and that kind of sucked. It totally killed my desire to use it honestly, but for the sake of the gamers out there I proceeded to use it anyway. I figured if I’m going to use the PowerShell I’d find some games to play.

I went to their website to check the list of supported games and sadly most of the games that they support I didn’t really want to play. The games I did end up playing like MiniGore, Ms. Pac-Man and Grand Theft Auto:San Andreas were no fun at all because using the analog D-Pad was dreadful. It was delayed not very smooth and after awhile of mashing that D-Pad your thumbs would start to hurt. It also was a very limited controller to use if you really wanted to play the more elaborate games, especially first person style shooters. These games typically require more than just the D-pad and the six buttons that the PowerShell offer so you end up back at square one using the touchscreen and having your thumbs ruin your game. Simple games are really all that you can play with the PowerShell and it almost makes me wonder why use it at all.

 

Final Thoughts

Although the Powershell is very well built, solid and great looking peripheral, I found it to be not very useful at all in playing any of the games that I really wanted to play. Is that the fault of Logitech solely? No. The games’ developers at some point should begin to include support or more support for third party peripherals. If and when they ever will who knows? If in fact they did then the PowerShell would be a great peripheral to have.

Also, the PowerShell’s D-pad sucks in that you have to mash it occasionally to use it. There are too few buttons so this in turn limits your options when you want to play more elaborate games and it only supports the iPhone 5 and 5S which also limits you. That being said I couldn’t possibly justify anyone paying the $69.99 asking price for this device at all. It’s too expensive especially considering that just about a month ago it was priced originally at $99.99 which was even more ridiculous. Peripherals should accentuate the device not cost you a whole lot of money and barely be useful. If you’re gaming on your iPhone 5 or 5S I’d have to say for now the Powershell may not help you much and I wouldn’t recommend it.

Pros

  • Great build
  • Nice soft grip
  • Relatively lightweight
  • Streamlined and clean look

Cons

  • Way too expensive
  • D-pad is stiff and difficult to use
  • Weird headphone attachment
  • Hardly any games support
  • Too few buttons
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Mike Bitter is a born gadget head and true lover of technology. It all started with computer classes at age 10 and his first PC the Tandy 1000. From then on he found his love and he became a gamer and a PC builder and has not stopped since. He specializes in hardware, troubleshooting and custom PC building. He’s known as the “fixer” amongst his friends whenever there is a problem with a PC or a Mac. He’s also fully immersed in all things that pertain to the world of computers and gaming. He's an 80's baby and he grew up watching technology evolve from the NES to PS4 and from the Commodore 64 to the iMac. He has a unique and minimalist perspective on technology and is here to help the average person to understand technology today.