What's The Deal With Nintendo Controllers

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What's The Deal With Nintendo Controllers

For all the good and all the bad, Nintendo sure does make a lot of strange moves. But over the last few generations of gaming, Nintendo has redefined how we play and control games with each major product release. Sometimes this works out to staggering success, like the Wii, and sometimes, well, it doesn’t, like the Wii U. No matter the outcome, Nintendo is always thinking ahead. This forward thinking is what has earned Nintendo its reputation, though what is brilliance to some is fixing what ain’t broke to others.

Today, we’re here to ask why: Why does Nintendo build such weird controls? Is it innovation or simply misplaced fascination with a fad, or is it somewhere inbetween? Nintendo’s design decisions are more in line with one another than you might think, and what they do they usually do for good reason. From the Wii to the 3DS to the Labo, Nintendo’s takes on what a controller can be are founded on evidence. And when we consider Nintendo’s past, as well as other major console-makers, we can start to make predictions about the future.

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Tag: the gamer, TheGamer, Nintendo, Switch, Wii, Wii U, 3DS, DS, Gamecube, Mario, Zelda, Super Smash Bros, Video Games, Sony, Xbox, PC

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40 Comments

  1. someone at nintendo: what if we made a pretty basic console.. but it’s filled with charm and has amazing games?

    nintendo: genius, let’s make the buttons in weird places and make it a cube!

    note: i enjoy the gamecube button layout it’s just kinda weird when u look at it and would work terribly in other consoles

    Reply
  2. This has nothing to do with the video, but one time my brother wanted to play my switch and we played Mario kart 8 deluxe and i had the tablet itself and my brother had the joycons, I had to guide him through the race track, most fun we’ve had in one day

    Reply
  3. Nintendo was never a greeting card company. They produced playing cards, and started out exclusively producing playing cards, but they have had numerous ventures since then, most recently, toys.

    Also, Nintendo‘s focus on being unique instead of powerful has only been around for the last 15 years or so. Their first four generations of game systems were built to be powerful than their competition.

    Reply
  4. I want to buy a Nintendo device that is portable and can also have the controllers changed from the screen and can easily put into a box to connect it to a TV
    And no I do not wanna buy a PlayStation or Xbox console missing its disk storage so if I see a game I want in GameStop on sale I CANT GET IT BECAUSE DISKS DONT WORK FOR MY CONSOLE.

    Reply
  5. I don’t want a new console yet I want one in like a while cuz I’m getting a switch like later this year and I want the investment to be worth it and I want to have my switch for a while so that I don’t have to save up for another console a couple months later

    Reply
  6. Somehow you completely missed that the two screens of the DS were actually a throwback to the classic Game&Watch handhelds. So no, the DS did not invent that set-up in the handheld space, that happened about twenty years earlier.

    Also: "Nintendo has never set out to develop the most impressive device out there"
    The N64 was the most powerful console of its generation by a long shot, and NES, SNES, and Gamecube were very competitive. It's only with the Wii that they began to focus less on graphical fidelity and more on setting themselves apart in other ways.

    And just because Sony and Microsoft are bigger companies doesn't mean that they can pour their whole budget into gaming. You have to compare their GAMING divisions with Nintendo, not the rest of the business. Divisions within big conglomerate companies have their own budgets and operate almost completely independently from one another.

    Then the way you talk about Nintendo games being simpler and centered around gameplay "gimmicks", I mean, I don't even know where to start with that one…

    All in all I'm seriously impressed at how much you managed to get wrong in such a short time-span. Congratulations.

    Reply
  7. For the longest time i wanted Nintendo to fall just like Sega did. Now i just want all 3 to succeed and push the entire industry as a whole forward. But getting back to the original topic, i cannot stand nintendo controllers.

    Reply

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