Hyperkin is back to its hobby of exhuming beloved gaming controllers of the past. Well, "beloved" is probably a little bit strong of a word for the Duke, the reimagining of the original Xbox controller with its awkwardly placed black and white buttons. But the Xbox 360 controller fared a lot better among the Microsoft faithful, bringing with it a much more sensible placement and shape for its shoulder bumpers, plus triggers with more grip and travel, among other ergonomic improvements. Even the US military adopted the controllers for some of its most sensitive tasks.
Named Xenon after the Xbox 360's secret internal codename, this is a pretty faithful rendition of the original controller. It's an officially licensed, "Designed for Xbox" product that recreates all of the award-winning crooks and curves that helped it along with a reputation of being one of the best gaming controllers ever made. You'll be able to use it with Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S, as well as Windows PCs. We don't have details on the release date or pricing just yet, but Hyperkin says that info will come along shortly.
Will Xenon be worth the cost?
While Hyperkin retained most of the original Xbox 360 controller's charm (including the "mushy" directional pad that many fighting gamers loathed), there are some changes it made to facilitate features on the newest consoles. Namely, you'll notice a "Share" button beneath the Xbox button, giving you one-touch ability to create screenshots and game clips on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One. The start and select buttons have been rebranded to line up with the "menu" and "view" buttons on the newer models, and you'll get a 3.5mm headphone jack on the underside to connect your headset.
This controller is also wired-only. For comparison's sake, the Duke controller was also wired-only, and it retails for $70. While we don't yet know the Xenon's pricing, it'd be a bummer to pay that much for a wired model considering the Xbox 360 originally shipped with a wireless controller, and $70 is the same price you can pay for the official wireless controller designed specifically for the Xbox Series X|S (in fact, you often can find it under $50 on sale).
The Duke somewhat justified its lofty price tag with the iconic Xbox startup animation integrated into the massive Xbox button, but there doesn't seem to be such a perk for the new product, unless you value the detachable USB-C cable to make replacements easier and cheaper. In any case, you'll have your choice between black, white, pink, and red color options once it finally lands.