Grab the best controller for Rocket League on PC when your keyboard and mouse simply won’t cut it.
Rocket League is one of the most entertaining free-to-play titles available right now, combining soccer with rocket-powered cars. It has been considered an eSports title ever since its release back in 2015, which makes it competitively viable among more serious players.
Chances are you also play Rocket League on your PC, and it’s one of the only games where you would prefer using a controller over keyboard and mouse. After all, the vast majority of professional Rocket League players use a controller, as it allows them to steer their cars more precisely. It gives them granular control over their car’s speed and makes air rolls easier. Dribbling the ball also gets much simpler.
It boils down to personal preference as both controller and KBM got upsides and downsides. However, even though a mouse and keyboard combo is great for shooters and other genres, playing Rocket League with a controller has a far easier learning curve thanks to the straightforward and intuitive mapping.
In the end, a controller is the best way to go for Rocket League pros, and it’s why you should have one too. Now that you are in the market for the best controller for Rocket League, check out our roundup to find out which is worthy of your hard-earned cash.
- 1 Best Controller for Rocket League PC (Reviews)
- 2 Best Controller for Rocket League on PC F.A.Q
- 3 Conclusion
Best Controller for Rocket League PC (Reviews)
The following list features some of the best first-party and third-party controllers for Rocket League on PC, ranging from inexpensive wired models to premium wireless options. Note that every controller on this list should pair with your desktop or laptop without a hitch and work with Rocket League out of the box.
1. Microsoft Xbox Core Controller
- Experience the modernized design of the Xbox Wireless Controller in Carbon Black, featuring sculpted surfaces and refined geometry for enhanced comfort and effortless control during gameplay with battery usage up to 40 hours.
- Stay on target with the hybrid D-pad, textured grip on the triggers, bumpers, and back-case. Plug in any compatible headset with the 3.5mm audio headset jack.
- Connect using the USB-C port for direct plug and play to console or PC. Support for AA batteries is included on the rear.
- Weight: 281 grams
- Battery: 2 x AA
- Connectivity: Bluetooth, Xbox Wireless, USB-C
- Layout: Xbox
The Xbox Core Controller is Microsoft’s latest gamepad that ships with the new Series X and Series S consoles. Much of its ergonomics have remained the same as the original Xbox One Controller, but with a few incremental changes that make the latest model more attractive to PC and Xbox console owners.
This time around, Microsoft has made some slight adjustments to the Xbox Core Controller’s overall footprint to fit in various hand shapes and sizes. However, this also means some Xbox One Controller attachments don’t clip on the latest model anymore.
The textured rubber grip on the back now extends to the sides and covers the triggers, making the controller easier and more comfortable to hold onto during your intense Rocket League sessions. Unlike the original, the D-pad uses a hybrid design like that on the premium Xbox Elite Series Controller, and it’s quite tactile too. There’s also a dedicated Share button in the center of the controller, which at the time of writing works exclusively on the Series X|S consoles but not PCs.
As for connectivity, the built-in Bluetooth makes pairing the Xbox Core Controller with your Windows 10 PC a breeze. The Xbox Wireless Adapter lets you take leverage of the controller’s ultra-low latency wireless protocol. To lower the latency further, you can plug the controller into one of your PC’s USB ports over a USB-C cable.
Much like the original one, the Xbox Core Controller uses two AA batteries for power, which some people may not like. That said, buying a separate rechargeable battery pack attachment remains viable.
|Textured triggers and bumpers||Still uses AA cells for power|
|Hybrid domed D-pad|
|Plug-and-play on Windows|
2. Sony DualSense Wireless Controller
- Haptic feedback - Feel physically responsive feedback to your in-game actions with dual actuators which replace traditional rumble motors. In your hands, these dynamic vibrations can simulate the feeling of everything from environments to the recoil of different weapons.
- Adaptive triggers - Experience varying levels of force and tension as you interact with your in-game gear and environments. From pulling back an increasingly tight bowstring to hitting the brakes on a speeding car, feel physically connected to your on-screen actions.
- Built-in microphone and headset jack - Chat with friends online using the built-in microphone or by connecting a headset to the 3.5mm jack. Easily switch voice capture on and off at a moment’s notice with the dedicated mute button. Internet and account for PlayStation Network required.
- Weight: 210 grams
- Battery: Rechargeable
- Connectivity: Bluetooth, USB-C
- Layout: PlayStation
The Sony DualSense is one of PlayStation 5’s key highlights for its advanced rumble motors and “adaptive” triggers, which literally change resistance based on what’s happening in the game. Accelerating the battle cars can now actually feel like a real deal. Haptic feedback is also undoubtedly the best you will ever feel in a controller.
Unfortunately, support for DualSense’s haptics and adaptive triggers is still in its infancy on Windows, as games themselves will need to be compatible to take advantage of them. At the time of writing, the only AAA titles that offer full support for this controller are Metro Exodus: Enhanced Edition and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.
It’s worth noting that Rocket League will still work with the DualSense, and so will every other game you own on Steam, thanks to the platform’s extended support for the controller. You can use either Bluetooth for a wireless connection or plug the DualSense into your PC using a USB-C cable for wired play.
It’s slightly less comfortable to hold than the Xbox Core Controller due to its different analog stick layout, which may take some time to get used to. Having said that, you will certainly enjoy its tactile buttons, touchpad, and accurate thumbsticks.
Rocket League hasn’t been updated to take advantage of DualSense’s haptics and triggers yet, but it’s bound to happen in the near future. Regardless of its limited feature support on PC, the Sony DualSense is still the best Rocket League controller you can buy today.
|Great design and build quality||Adaptive triggers and rumble work only in a few PC games|
|Accurate analog sticks and tactile buttons||Battery life could be better|
|Superior haptic feedback|
3. Razer Wolverine Ultimate
- With interchangeable thumbsticks and two interchangeable D Pads, swap between optimized thumbstick heights and shapes, and quickly change between a tilting or individual D Pad button layout
- The Razer Wolverine Ultimate comes loaded with a slew of extra buttons for advanced gaming 2 remappable Multi Function bumpers, 4 Multi Function triggers and a Quick Control Panel
- With the remapping function both on the fly or with Razer Synapse for Xbox , you can master next level techniques like moving and aiming with both thumb sticks
- Weight: 272 grams
- Battery: NA
- Connectivity: USB
- Layout: Xbox
The Wolverine Ultimate from Razer could very well be one of the best controllers for Rocket League on PC, aside from a major caveat: It doesn’t have wireless connectivity. However, it gets you two additional remappable back bumpers and four extra multi-function triggers, which allows for performing other actions in Rocket league without taking your thumbs off the analog sticks.
Like most premium controllers, the Wolverine Ultimate offers swappable thumbsticks and interchangeable D-pads – with thumbsticks of different heights and shapes, and an individual or tilting D-pad layout. In addition, the extremely clicky face buttons (A, B, X, Y) are the controller equivalent of making a move from a membrane keyboard to a mechanical one for the first time.
Of course, Razer is known for Chroma RGB lighting on its PC peripherals and accessories, so its presence on the Wolverine Ultimate was mostly inevitable. However, it doesn’t work with the Razer Synapse software and asks for a separate app. Aside from changing the lighting effects, the app also allows for button remaps, thumbstick sensitivity customization, as well as vibration intensity adjustments for the triggers and haptic motors. It’s great if you don’t feel like changing your button functions on a per-game basis or want to set macros for various actions.
The detachable, 10-feet braided micro-USB cable on the Razer Wolverine Ultimate takes some time to adjust to, but the minimal input lag seems like a worthy trade-off for competitive Rocket League matches.
|Swappable thumbsticks and D-pad||Needs its own separate app for deeper configuration|
|Extra multi-function bumpers and triggers||Weight is somewhat off-putting|
|Extremely tactile face buttons||Kinda expensive for a controller that has no wireless connectivity|
|Chroma RGB backlighting|
4. Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2
- Play like a pro with the all new Xbox elite wireless controller series 2
- Tailor the controller with new interchangeable thumbstick and paddle shapes
- Experience limitless customization and exclusive configuration options with the Xbox Accessories app
- Weight: 345 grams
- Battery: Rechargeable (lasts for up to 40 hours)
- Connectivity: Bluetooth, Xbox Wireless (2.4 GHz), USB-C
- Layout: Xbox
Spending over $150 for a controller might seem like a tough sell, but the Microsoft Elite Series 2 is one heck of a gamepad. Everything about it screams luxury, whether it’s the uniquely designed textured grip, matte finish, the satisfyingly clicky face buttons, or the included premium carrying case.
There are plenty of customization options too. You can add up to four shift paddles to the rear side of the controller, swap out the thumbsticks for four different options, and opt for a domed eight-way D-pad. Not only that, but you can also adjust the stick and trigger sensitivity with just the flip of a switch. The near-endless options give you an unprecedented level of control over your battle car in Rocket League.
The Series 2 features significant improvements over its predecessor, including better ergonomics, Bluetooth connectivity, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and faster charging via a USB-C cable or the included dock. Unlike the AA batteries on the Xbox Elite Series 1, the Series 2 has a built-in battery that’s more convenient to recharge, but it also can’t be replaced easily by the user.
Overall, the gen-to-gen changes on the Xbox Elite Series 2 Controller are overwhelming, to say the least. It has everything players loved about the original Elite, with the added benefits of better connectivity and extreme customizability. If you are willing to shell out nearly three times the cost of an Xbox Core Controller, this is the best Rocket League controller you can buy today.
|Luxurious and comfortable to hold||Fairly expensive|
|Offers incredible hardware and software-level customization||Non-user-replaceable battery|
|Snappy face buttons and tunable triggers||Heavier than most controllers|
|Included Bluetooth connectivity and USB-C charging|
5. Nacon Revolution Unlimited
- Wireless and wired connections
- Audio & chat support in wireless and wired modes
- Dual customisable* sticks with 30/38/46 amplitude
- Weight: Variable
- Battery: Rechargeable (Internal)
- Connectivity: Bluetooth, 2.4 GHz, Wired
- Layout: Hybrid
The Nacon Revolution Unlimited is a DualShock 4 replacement with better ergonomics and customization options, and it works flawlessly on PCs. The bulked-out shape and rubberized texture make this controller well suited for extended Rocket League sessions without discomfort.
However, unlike the original DualShock 4, the Nacon Revolution Unlimited uses Xbox’s signature asymmetrical thumbstick layout but leaves the touchpad and other buttons intact. Both the D-pad and face buttons are satisfyingly clicky, and so are the four extra programmable buttons placed along the back.
You also get a box of parts for customizing the controller’s analog sticks to your preference, with three metal shafts of 30/38/46° amplitudes. The heads are interchangeable too. In terms of weight adjustments, there are 10-gram, 14-gram, and 16-gram cylindrical weights that you can put in the compartment under the controller’s rear palm grips.
There’s no light bar on the Nacon Revolution Unlimited, but a ring around the right thumbsticks glows during play. There’s also a small LED status indicator at the bottom, right above the 3.5mm headphone jack. One neat thing about the touchpad is the tiny PlayStation button symbols etched from top to bottom.
The Revolution Unlimited comes with pre-programmed button profiles, but you can create your own preset using the official software on Windows. However, it’s relatively basic, lacks instructions, and requires the controller to be connected wired over a USB-C cable even though it’s wireless.
In total though, the Nacon Revolution Unlimited is an excellent choice in the ocean of third-party hybrid controllers. Its deeper levels of hardware and software customization also make it fantastic for serious Rocket League players.
|Asymmetrical thumbstick layout||Configurator software has issues|
|Offers wired and wireless connectivity|
6. PowerA Spectra Infinity Enhanced
- Thousands of Color combinations with hundreds of vivid colors and three distinct Spectra zones plus two LED modes: select either “breathing” or “solid” modes
- Advanced gaming Buttons: two mappable Buttons on back plus 3-way trigger Locks for super-precise throws
- Immersive dual rumble motors plus New share button and volume dial with one-touch mic mute
- Weight: 447 grams
- Battery: NA
- Connectivity: Wired (Micro-USB)
- Layout: Xbox
If you are on a budget, the PowerA Spectra Infinity Enhanced is worth checking out. It looks just like a regular Xbox One controller, albeit with RGB lighting, two additional programmable buttons on the back, and three-way trigger locks. However, you don’t get wireless connectivity and the same build quality as first-party Xbox controllers.
The face buttons, analog sticks, and the D-pad have edge lighting, which you can customize to your heart’s extent. You also get three-way hair trigger locks, perfect for quickly adjusting the speed of your battle car in Rocket League, super-precise throws in NBA 2K, and better gun control in Call of Duty. It works surprisingly great, and you can fine-tune your trigger pulls on the fly. Additionally, the controller has a dedicated volume dial and one-touch mic mute for headsets that connect over its 3.5mm stereo audio jack.
If you are fine with the limited 10 ft. cable connection over micro-USB and don’t care about an untethered gaming experience, the PowerA Spectra Infinity Enhanced is the best controller for Rocket League at a budget-friendly price.
|Cheaper than the first-party Xbox controllers||No wireless connectivity options|
|Programmable rear buttons and trigger locks||Micro-USB port|
|RGB edge lighting|
7. Astro C40 TR
- Ready for any environment, the TR line of ASTRO Gaming products deliver Premium design and performance for every type of Gamer
- Optimum rear button layout for superior ergonomics improves Precision during Critical moments. Mappability streamlines the Controller for any genre and playstyle while improving response time
- Quickly and easily swap the analog stick or d-pad modules for consistently sharp performance. Setup the Controller in either offset or parallel configurations
- Weight: 320 grams
- Battery: Built-in rechargeable
- Connectivity:4 GHz, Wired over USB
- Layout: PlayStation (Modular)
The Astro C40 TR is one of the most premium, high-end DualShock 4-replacement for PlayStation 4, and it also works exceptionally well as a wireless PC controller. Its semi-modular design gives Rocket League players incredible flexibility over controls.
Like most premium controllers, the C40 TR has fully remappable buttons, adjustable stick/trigger sensitivity, and hair triggers. What sets it apart from the rest is its swappable components, allowing you to replace the left analog stick with the D-pad and switch to an Xbox-style offset layout. You can also put two of the thumbsticks on the left and the D-pad on the right, even though it wouldn’t make any sense. Obviously, the face buttons and touchpad remain fixed in place.
The C40 TR has two additional buttons on the rear side of the controller, sitting naturally beneath your fingers with ample resistance to prevent accidental registers. You can bound them to any other button without using software or switching profiles.
With that said, Astro does offer an app for Windows that lets PC gamers create control profiles for different games, remap buttons, adjust stick and trigger sensitivity, calibrate stick dead zones, etc. It even has an audio equalizer for the 3.5mm headphone jack on the C40 TR, which is just impressive and bizarre at the same time.
If customization is your end goal, the Astro C40 TR is the best Rocket League controller to buy. Sure it costs a lot, but it’s one of the only semi-modular gamepads out there. Plus, it makes replacements cheaper in case one of the analog sticks or the D-pad stops working.
|Remappable buttons, swappable thumbsticks, and D-pad modules||Bulky design means not ideal for smaller hands|
|Uses premium high-quality materials||Micro-USB over USB-C is a crime|
|Works in both wired and wireless modes||Quite expensive|
Best Controller for Rocket League on PC F.A.Q
Q1. How do I choose the best controller for Rocket League?
The most vital aspect to consider when choosing the best controller for Rocket League on PC is your personal preference. If you aren’t too much into customization or want an optimal experience, we recommend getting an Xbox Core or a Sony DualSense controller due to their overall feature set and plug-and-play factor.
On the other hand, if you want a premium controller that offers endless customization options, the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2, the Razer Wolverine Ultimate, or the Astro C40 TR is worth looking for. However, these controllers come with a hefty price tag too.
If you have a limited budget, the PowerA Spectra Infinity Enhanced or the Logitech F310 is the way to go. Both are available for relatively affordable prices, though they only work in tethered mode and lack wireless connectivity.
Q2. Wired or Wireless: Which one is better?
If you are a competitive Rocket League player, plugging the controller into your PC using a cable is the best idea. However, with the latest 2.4 GHz wireless protocols, the input latency of controllers is basically on par with wired mode, and you would be hard-pressed to see a difference in responsiveness.
The latency will be slightly higher over a Bluetooth connection, but it’s still good for casual Rocket League matches. However, a wireless controller needs to be recharged often so that it doesn’t end up disconnecting mid-match.
Q3. How do I set up a controller on Windows?
Most controllers are plug-and-play, especially the ones that work natively with Xbox consoles. If your gamepad supports a wired connection, all you need to do is plug one end of the supplied cable into its data transfer port (either USB-C or micro-USB) and the other end into one of your PC’s USB ports. Windows will automatically find and install the proper drivers for the controller.
If your desktop or laptop has Bluetooth connectivity, you can put your supported wireless controller in pairing mode (check the user manual) and select it from the list of devices in the Settings > Devices > Bluetooth menu.
Some controllers also come with a 2.4 GHz wireless adapter. Simply plug it into your PC’s USB port and turn on the controller. Windows will set it up and allow you to use it in Rocket League and other games.
Q4. Is there any companion app I need to install for my controller to work?
A handful of controllers do offer button remaps, trigger/stick sensitivity adjustments, RGB lighting effects, and more via an official Windows app. If you wish to unlock your controller’s full potential and customize its various functions to your preference, we recommend downloading the required app from the manufacturer’s official website.
However, you won’t necessarily have to install the companion app in order for the controller to work. It should 100% work outside the box, albeit you won’t have access to any deeper customization options.
So, there you have it. Our comprehensive guide contains a list of the best Rocket League controllers for PC, along with in-depth information and buy links to every model we’ve mentioned here. Hopefully, in the end, you won’t have any trouble deciding which wired or wireless gamepad is perfect for your Rocket League sessions.
Please let us know in the comments which model you’ve ultimately fixed on to buy, and what your reasoning is behind using a controller over a keyboard and mouse setup for Rocket League.