Xbox Victrix Pro BFG review — Simply the best

When Street Fighter 6 launched, I was looking for a gamepad that could function as a fightpad. I play on Xbox, and as much as I like the Xbox Series controller and its directional pad, I kept dropping the quarter-circle forward motions. I tested all kinds of controllers, but they were too expensive or the ratings weren’t good enough. It was clear Xbox lacked solutions for fighting game players. Then I remembered the revered Victrix Pro BFG. Our own David Burdette reviewed it for the PS5, but there wasn’t one for Xbox. Victrix only had the Gambit: an Xbox licensed controller with a d-pad that could be better than the standard Xbox controller. And it was under $100. I bought that as a stopgap. But a few months later, the Victrix Pro BFG was announced for the Xbox. About time. There was only one problem: it still had to work well.

As the resident Xbox player, GamingTrend figured I should review this. I can, thankfully, say that the Xbox Victrix Pro BFG is, without a doubt, the best Xbox controller on the market right now. It handled every relevant genre I threw at it. It’s comfortable, snappy, and ridiculously customizable.

When I opened the box, I smelled that delightfully weird new rubber smell – that same smell when you walk into a sports store and it’s just fresh rubber everywhere. I like that smell. Don’t judge me. Inside the box is the carrying case – a hard case pouch with a silky smooth zipper. Open the case and inside is a 3m braided cable that was delightfully tucked inside a mesh compartment and wrapped with a velcro strap – love that; the fightpad module, two control stick gates, and the wireless USB stick. Underneath those reveals two thumbsticks, one for sniping and another for quicker motions, two more d-pad options, and a tool to remove the modules.

I grabbed the controller and immediately loved the grips on each side of the fangs where your palms rest. It absorbs sweat well and you can’t feel it as you hold it for long periods of time. The underside is layered with textured grip, as well, but what also felt very good was the weight. It’s heavier than the Gambit, but not as heavy as Xbox’s default controller. Both the Gambit and the BFG have vibration mechanisms, but perhaps it’s the wireless battery (can last up to 20 hours) that provides the extra heft. Regardless, it’s nice that a Victrix controller doesn’t feel like it could break with enough pressure.

I have to compare the BFG to its cheaper version: the Gambit. From the top, the Pro BFG is designed much better . On the Gambit, the spot where you insert the 3m braided cable is tucked into a deep hole. You can’t see where you’re plugging the USB-C and sometimes it feels like you’re going to break the connectors while you try to insert it in the correct spot. The BFG’s port is out in the open, as it should be. The concern, of course, could be that it could pop out if you trip over it, but it fits very tightly in the port.

That’s one of the upsides with the BFG, too: everything is comfortably snug and perfectly tight. Each thumbstick resists your movement, but allows your thumbs just enough give so your micro movements register, and your big swings aren’t wild. You can adjust how all of that feels, but by default, the thumbsticks feel wonderful.

Despite how good the thumbsticks feel, it’s disappointing that the default A, B, X, Y buttons don’t feel as luxurious. They’re the typical Xbox membrane-style buttons but slightly snappier. On the bottom is a function button that serves a few different purposes like changing volume or switching between the SOCD modes. Not much reason to mess with it, so it’s nice it doesn’t get in the way. On the backside is the profile button that serves as the mechanism to set the back paddles to your desired button and switch between profiles. It also doesn’t get in the way, and it’s just big enough and protrudes far enough that it makes it easy to do quick switches on the fly when necessary.

While I was playing Helldivers 2, I wanted to switch the sprint button from clicking in the left thumbstick to one of the back paddles. It was a very quick and simple process. During a boss fight, I needed to make some quick maneuvering grenade throws without taking my thumb off the sticks, so I quickly remapped one of the back paddles to the grenade button. The only scary moment was while the controller accepted the change, I was frozen for about 1.5 seconds. But once it was done, I was delivering democracy with ease once again.

I also booted up Halo Infinite. This time, I played wirelessly. My office space isn’t huge, but it would be a good opportunity to sit back as far from the screen as I could and enjoy a game without feeling tethered to my desk. Halo is also a franchise I’ve spent a lot of hours playing competitively, so I could get a sense of how useful the back triggers are for a franchise that demands accuracy over longer shootouts. I remapped jumping, reloading, weapon swapping, and grenade switching to the back buttons. It felt wonderful. The back buttons responded quickly, without needing to press too hard. Most wonderfully, the buttons were placed exactly where my fingers naturally rested, so it was that much easier to execute.

Meanwhile, playing wirelessly barely felt any different from using the USB-C cable. While standing completely still and moving the thumbsticks, I could notice a millisecond delay, but it made no difference in the heat of battle. Also, my first four sniper shots were pure headshots, two of them flicks. That just felt good. It’s a testament to the way the thumbsticks snap and utilize just the right tension.

Both Helldivers 2 and Halo Infinite benefited from the uber-sensitive triggers. I’m not kidding. They are ridiculously sensitive; maybe too sensitive. But I’d rather have more sensitive triggers than less. There are a few trigger stop settings, but for shooting, I used the highest trigger stop for the least amount of depressing. Feather it just a teensy bit and you’re going to fire a shot; same with aiming down sights. I allowed the left trigger to have greater depression so it wouldn’t be super responsive, and every once and a while my hand would grip the controller tighter and I would subconsciously press the button. That’s how light and sensitive the triggers are; you don’t even notice when you’re pressing them. The Gambit is very similar, so it wasn’t new to me, but because the triggers are so long and wide, even a resting position could trigger something if you’re not careful.

Street Fighter 6 was the reason why I was interested in this controller in the first place. The fightpad was my selling point. Originally, I wanted a dedicated fightpad, but using a controller that was more versatile seemed like a better option. The immediate upgrade from the Gambit and Xbox Series controller were that the buttons on the fightpad have a click to them. They didn’t require as much compression as the membrane A, B, X, Y buttons, and I wonder why those buttons didn’t get the same treatment because it feels good. But the clicky buttons still require more compression to get something from them compared to a mouse click or a mechanical keyboard. Still, my moves were more accurate and I found myself pressing the buttons once or twice instead of mashing and hoping to execute moves. Combined with the diamond d-pad that allowed easy circular motions, I was quickly executing moves I had trouble doing with the Xbox Series controller or the Elite Series.

The trade-off is that the fightpad doesn’t feel exceptionally great while holding with a traditional grip. My thumbs rested in between the A/B and RT/LT buttons and I frequently confused which buttons my fingers were resting on. A home bump would be nice to indicate where neutral is. I resorted to resting the BFG on my lap and tapping the fightpad buttons like an arcade stick, while holding the controller in my left hand for executing motions. That felt much better, but there were a few double-button combinations I couldn’t perform easily, and I’m not sure what the solution to that problem is. What is there is still better than nothing, but it’s not the exact solution I was hoping for. It’s still a far better option for fighting games than any other gamepad available for Xbox currently.

Once I was ready to swap out the fightpad, getting it out was extremely difficult. The instructions say to unscrew the screws and flip it over and it will come out. That’s not what happened. Mine remained firmly in place. I tried flipping it, pulling at it, and gently tapping it on my lap or palm. Eventually, I plucked it out using the module tool and one of the screws as leverage. Of course, it’s great that it’s firmly in place, but I shouldn’t feel like I have to use the screws with the module tool to get it out, or slap the controller into my palm or lap to force it out. I imagine that will wear out the controller faster.

I wanted to play around with the d-pad a bit more. I already had a taste of a Victrix d-pad thanks to the Gambit, and it’s an excellent and responsive d-pad, even when playing Street Fighter 6. I imagine the BFG would feel the same and based on SF6, that’s true. But what happens if I play something that demands platforming precision like Celeste? The BFG comes with a 4 directional, an 8 directional, and the diamond directional d-pad. The 4-way d-pad is great for platformers. The 8 directional is great for pseudo 3D games or fully 3D games, but the 4-way and diamond were my most frequent choices.

Playing Celeste with the four directional d-pad felt much better compared to the Xbox Series d-pad. The BFG’s d-pad felt more lifted from the face of the controller allowing me to feel the distinct directions I pressed. Because the Xbox Series controller is trying to do everything – same with the Elite Series – sometimes I would press in a diagonal direction unintentionally, leading to Madeline’s death. I still died plenty – it is Celeste – but never wondering about which direction I pressed made it less frustrating.

Swapping the d-pad created a little anxiety, at first. The diamond d-pad is the default out of the box. In order to swap d-pads, you have to pull it out, but it’s very snug. I felt like I was going to break the plastic d-pad if I pulled it too hard. I love that it fits snugly, but I shouldn’t feel like I’m going to break it. Once it popped off, I grabbed the 4-way pad and had some trouble snapping it into place. It was cumbersome, more than I would have liked, but once I correctly lined up the notches, a firm press snapped it into position and it wasn’t coming out easily.

Swapping thumbsticks is really easy, and much better compared to the Gambit. With the Gambit, you switch out the entire thumbstick; base and everything. With the BFG, it’s just the stick. Firmly pull the rubber pad, it will pop off, then grab the replacement stick you want, line up the grooves, firmly press, and snap; it’s on. Easy.

The absolute worst part of the Victrix Pro BFG is the Victrix Control Hub for PC. It’s the software that allows you to calibrate and change all the settings on the controller in a more precise environment. It’s much easier to adjust the triggers, for example, than using the switches on the back, which ultimately feels like a guessing game. But the Control Hub doesn’t work with the Xbox Victrix right now, for some reason. The Gambit works fine, but no matter how much I’ve tried, the hub won’t recognize the BFG. According to year-old reviews from those who owned the BFG for PlayStation, this has been an issue. David Burdette said it worked for him. I’m not sure why it’s not working with the Xbox version. They are different, but the Xbox version is simpler without the added touchpad, I would imagine. So, in the meantime, you’ll have to use the profile button that allows you to swap between three profiles. Again, adjusting those and swapping between those are easy, but it would be nice if the app worked.

On the bright side, there is a Control Hub app for Xbox that was introduced for the Gambit. It works for the Xbox Pro BFG, as well. And it works! This is where you can get more granular with your configurations: Change your face and shoulder buttons to whatever you want, change your triggers, map the back paddles, adjust vibration intensity, permanently invert your sticks, adjust mic monitoring, and more. If you’re at your friend’s house or at a tournament where you can’t access the hub easily, the absolute necessities are available to change on the controller itself. But the Hub is where you can go wild. So thankfully, it works for Xbox.

Podcast Editor | [email protected]

Anthony Shelton hosts and produces the Gaming Trend podcast and creates opinion videos occasionally on YouTube. He carries some of the strongest opinions among the staff and is generally harder to impress. But if impressed, he sings developers' praises just as loudly. He typically plays everything except horror and most RTS, but genres he gravitates towards are platformers, FPS, racing, roguelikes, fighting, and loot-based games. He has quit Twitter and uses Threads. Follow him at iamashelton.



Victrix Pro BFG Xbox controller

Review Guidelines

The Xbox Victrix Pro BFG is the premiere Xbox controller that handles everything with precision thumbsticks, sensitive triggers, and back buttons that perfectly conform to your fingers. The fightpad isn’t the reason to buy it, but it’s still a better option than most other third-party or the default Series X controllers. All the customization options give you everything you need to enjoy your gaming sessions thanks to the Xbox Control Hub app. No matter how you spin it, the Elite Series 2 cannot top this beast.

Anthony Shelton

Unless otherwise stated, the product in this article was provided for review purposes.

See below for our list of partners and affiliates:

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now

Buy Now


To Top