Best Budget Fightsticks 2023 – Cheap fightsticks that are good

Best Budget Fightsticks – At a Glance

Mayflash F300 Arcade Stick

Mayflash F300

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Mayflash F500 Review

Mayflash F500

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Hori Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai Review

HORI Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai

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8Bitdo Arcade Stick

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Qanba Drone

Qanba Drone

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Hori Mini Fightstick 4

HORI Fighting Stick Mini 4

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Best Budget Fightsticks Guide

Should you get a cheap fightstick? a few years ago, I wouldn’t have recommended it. Still, thanks to manufacturers like Mayflash, Hori, and Qanba, budget fightsticks have gotten a lot better and can serve as an excellent introduction to the wonderful world of fightsticks.

Below, I have listed the best budget fightsticks on the market. These fightsticks are cheap and cheerful, and some can even be modded to give the more expensive sticks a run for their money.

Mayflash F300 – Great value fightstick that can be played on most platforms

As a beginner fightstick, it’s great, featuring the standard 8-button arcade layout and joystick. However, perhaps the stick’s best feature is the ability to play on almost any platform, including Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, PC, and even switch.

It’s a universal stick that’s fully customizable and can be upgraded to Sanwa Denshi parts.

The Good

  • The price – Excellent value for money
  • Customization – Can easily be customized
  • It looks and feels sturdy
  • Universal stick – can connect to almost any platform
  • Great beginner fightstick

The Bad

  • Buttons and joystick are non-Sanwa
  • Buttons feel mushy
  • Maybe too small for some people
  • The setup is slightly fiddly, and the extra wires are annoying.

Mayflash F300 full review

Mayflash F500 – Bigger, better, and more customizable than the F300

For not much more money you can get the Mayflash F500 which is bigger and better than the F300. 

The F500 sports a better design and added metal plates mean better quality.

Throw in a headphone jack, additional customization like the ability to swap out the artwork, and, of course, the universal feature, means you have a pretty sweet deal.

The Good

  • Excellent value for money
  • Bigger and better quality than the Mayflash F300
  • Headphone Jack
  • Customizing the fightstick is a breeze
  • Octagonal plate included
  • Universal Fightstick

The Bad

  • Parts are Non-Sanwa
  • Buttons feel slightly mushy
  • Setup is awkward

Mayflash F500 full review

HORI Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai – Best Mid Range Stick

The HORI Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai is a great fightstick built on a solid base and has quality parts to boot.

While technically not a budget stick – you can still pick one of these up when on offer from under $100.

If you’re looking for a quality fightstick but don’t want to pay a ridiculous price, look no further than the RAP 4.

The Good

  • High-quality parts
  • Solid premium design
  • Sturdy base and quite wide
  • The joystick and buttons are very responsive
  • Useful assign mode
  • A cheaper alternative to the Madcatz TE and Razer lines

The Bad

  • Difficult to swap out artwork
  • Buttons can get a bit loud
  • No headphone jack

Hori Real Arcade Pro Kai 4 full review


8 Bitdo Arcade Stick – Great wireless stick for Nintendo Switch and PC

While I wouldn’t always opt for a wireless fightstick, the 8Bitdo’s 2.4 GHz connection is actually decent. You can also play the stick through a wired connection, so there are no issues.

The nightstick’s NES-inspired design is particularly appealing, and the overall build quality is solid for the price.

The Good

  • Great design
  • Hefty weight emphasizes quality
  • Easy to mod buttons
  • Great feeling joystick
  • Wireless option provides little to no input lag
  • Can modify button mapping and assign macros easily
  • 40 Hour battery life

The Bad

  • Stock buttons may feel slightly mushy for veteran stick players
  • Difficult to modify joystick for beginners

8Bitdo Arcade Stick Full Review


Qanba Drone – Great Stick for Beginners

Qanba already has two other budget fightsticks: The X1 and Carbon. The Qanba drone, however, beats them both.

While not as flashy as its higher-end sticks, the Drone still serves its purpose as a great beginner stick.

The Qanba Drone is also easily moddable, meaning, with the right parts, this can easily hang with the big boys in terms of quality and performance.

The Good

  • Small and compact
  • Great budget option
  • Buttons are responsive for the price
  • Eye-catching design
  • It can easily be modded with Sanwa parts

The Bad

  • Loose joystick
  • Buttons can get a bit loud and feel a bit hollow at times
  • Non-Sanwa parts

Qanba Drone Full Review

Hori Fighting Stick Mini 4 – Ultra Small and Compact stick

Hori Mini Fightstick 4

Are you looking for an ultra-cheap portable fightstick? Then look no further than the Hori Fighting stick mini 4.

The Hori mini stick is one of the cheapest on the market and still provides 8-button arcade support while being able to fit in your bookbag.

What’s cool is that Hori also has different editions of this stick, including a Nintendo Switch Street Fighter version.

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The Good

  • Ultra Small and Compact
  • One of the cheapest sticks
  • The Nintendo Switch version has a great design
  • 8 button layout

The Bad

  • Cheap parts
  • Maybe too small for some