Are you a fan of the N64 controller?

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SolidGame_basic

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Poll Are you a fan of the N64 controller? (81 votes)

Yes 33%
No 67%

When Nintendo announced they would have a wireless N64 controller, I got excited! I love the N64 controller. Unfortunately Nintendo decided to then put N64 games behind a paywall instead of selling them directly. But I digress. I will get my hands on that wireless N64 controller eventually. With that said, are you a fan of the N64 controller, SW? Seems like it's a divisive controller for some reason. It just felt right for me and was fun so I'm a yes!

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Pedro

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#1 Pedro
Member since 2002 • 55336 Posts

Awful design but I am told that stating a design is bad is really the player's fault. 😎

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Archangel3371

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#2 Archangel3371
Member since 2004 • 36421 Posts

I guess I am somewhere in the middle. I thought it was ok. Honestly though it feels like it’s been so long since I’ve used one that I kind of need to get my hands on one to see how it feels again.

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Vaativids

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#3 Vaativids
Member since 2021 • 337 Posts

Unfortunately, I never did end up growing an extra arm. :(

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davillain-

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#4 davillain-  Moderator
Member since 2014 • 48984 Posts

It was okay, never had issues with N64 controller and I just went along with the design and I'm good at adapting to controllers. If I were to play N64 games today, I'd still be good to go.

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adsparky

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#5 adsparky  Online
Member since 2006 • 2146 Posts

It was kinda ok, not that good, not that bad, until you played Mario Party, then you realize it is probably one of the worst controllers that have existed.

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Juub1990

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#6 Juub1990
Member since 2013 • 11318 Posts

The joystick becoming stiff as **** after repeated usage was a much bigger problems than the three handles.

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dracula_16

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#7  Edited By dracula_16
Member since 2005 • 15049 Posts

For me, I kinda liked it. The Z trigger and the analog stick were innovative at the time. I didn't like how big it was, though.

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sakaiXx

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#8 sakaiXx
Member since 2013 • 13578 Posts

I hate the analog placement and overall the controller sucks but honestly the big A/B action button is quite good. Console publishers really should make more of these big confirm/action buttons like the gamecube, Sega Genesis and N64.

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warmblur

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#9  Edited By warmblur
Member since 2017 • 7973 Posts

Yes

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VFighter

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#10 VFighter
Member since 2016 • 10112 Posts

Its good for their 1st party games, ehhh for everything else.

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HalcyonScarlet

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#11  Edited By HalcyonScarlet
Member since 2011 • 10812 Posts

In the context of its time, I preferred it to the GC controller. Also not a fan of the PS1 controller.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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#12  Edited By GirlUSoCrazy
Member since 2015 • 16025 Posts

It had some interesting ideas like the polygon shaped recess of the analog stick designed to help you properly aim in certain extremities, but this also was a limitation making it difficult to hold the stick at points in between.

They acted like the Z button was an innovation but it's no different than any other trigger you could use with an analog stick.

The C "camera" buttons were a good idea and maybe designed for Japanese gamers who weren't used to the idea of walk/camera controls. But they had clear limits. Nintendo was trying to onboard gamers who only played 2D games but resulted in nerfing this a bit. And it would have been a great 6 button arrangement for 2D games except there weren't any.

Overall it was not the worst way to design a controller but not the greatest either.

The memory/rumble pak situation was terrible.

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xantufrog

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#13 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 17063 Posts

No not at all. But I don't like the gamecube controller for anything outside of Smash either, so I'm pretty mixed on Nintendo's controller choices

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HalcyonScarlet

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#14 HalcyonScarlet
Member since 2011 • 10812 Posts

@xantufrog said:

No not at all. But I don't like the gamecube controller for anything outside of Smash either, so I'm pretty mixed on Nintendo's controller choices

I never really got on with the GC controller. It just felt kind of cheap next to the Xbox Controller S for me. Small, silly layout. Tiny d-pad, who knows why... I just don't get it. I also never liked Nintendo's 8 way analogue stick. As you rotate it, you can feel it click a different direction, where as the Xbox and PS had smooth rotations in the analogue stick. Also those analogue shoulder buttons offered so little resistance, they wouldn't work in the same way as on Xbox controllers.

I can forgive the N64 controller. It was a time when everyone was new to 3D games, so getting controllers right was tricky.

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Chutebox

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#15 Chutebox  Online
Member since 2007 • 48175 Posts

No, I couldn't stand the thing.

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pyro1245

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#16  Edited By pyro1245
Member since 2003 • 8277 Posts

It's okay. I didn't think it was bad in the 90's, but now I think it's a pretty bad controller.

Mainly just because of the stick. Terrible accuracy. I don't really mind the fact that you can't hit all the buttons. It worked well for games like OoT, but you really need to replace the stick with something better.

They should have just made it like the Brawler64 or something.

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pillarrocks

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#17 pillarrocks
Member since 2005 • 2271 Posts

I kinda liked the N64 controller though if I had to use the controller now, I would hate it. Just the design of the controller and and C buttons.

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uninspiredcup

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#18  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 48394 Posts

Aesthetically think it looks horrible. Like something designed by Toys R' Us, cheap plastic, garish colours.

Sega hardware comparatively always looked sexy.

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hardwenzen

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#19 hardwenzen
Member since 2005 • 14560 Posts

For the time, when i was a kid, i liked it. But that's only because i had low standards/no standards at all lol. Its a shit controller. Dualsense, Xbone and Series are the best controllers ever made.

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Jag85

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#20 Jag85
Member since 2005 • 16185 Posts

Yes, I am a fan.

The two main flaws of the controller were the analog stick's lack of durability, and the D-pad.

But other than that, it felt pretty comfortable holding the analog stick with the Z-trigger. It was also revolutionary, popularising the analog thumbstick and force feedback.

Either way, the GameCube controller was an improvement in every way. It made the N64 controller redundant.

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lebanese_boy

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#21 lebanese_boy
Member since 2003 • 17301 Posts

I didn't really hate it or anything but I was definitely not a fan. Not among Nintendo's best that's for sure.

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JasonOfA36

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#22 JasonOfA36
Member since 2016 • 3706 Posts

Ergonomic nightmare by today's standard.

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deactivated-618bc23e9b1c9

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#23 deactivated-618bc23e9b1c9
Member since 2007 • 7339 Posts

Big ole NO. Always hated that thing.

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sheep99

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#24  Edited By sheep99
Member since 2020 • 1106 Posts

Nintendo fans will say its the best controller in the world but they are stupid like all the fanboys

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omegaMaster

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#25 omegaMaster
Member since 2017 • 2256 Posts

Well, it certainly hasn't aged well. The dualshock is 10x better.,

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Vaasman

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#26 Vaasman
Member since 2008 • 15107 Posts

It was an interesting first try at popularizing the analog stick but obviously build on the flawed concept that the d-pad and stick should be separated. At the least, there's nothing especially wrong with it from a comfort or stability perspective, it's just that it aged horribly once controllers started putting d-pad and stick on the same thumb.

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JustPlainLucas

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#27 JustPlainLucas
Member since 2002 • 80363 Posts

It was cool back in its time, but I can't imagine ever going back to it again, certainly not to pay 50 dollars for a replica to pay for a 50 dollar a year service. But when I was a kid, it was fun to use the stick for games like Super Mario 64 and GoldenEye. But then... there was Mario Party, and we hated the stick.

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Speeny

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#28 Speeny  Online
Member since 2018 • 3092 Posts

Never used one. Though the joystick in the middle would probably bug me and throw me off from time to time lol.

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DEVILinIRON

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#29 DEVILinIRON
Member since 2006 • 6901 Posts

I would prefer to use something else, if I could.

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Eoten

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#30  Edited By Eoten
Member since 2020 • 5767 Posts

I don't mind the N64 controller. People try to pretend it's complicated because they think they're being cute and pretending you're supposed to use the three grips at the same time. But $60 for a wireless one is a ripoff. Get a wireless Tribute64 controller from Retrobit.

Get one of these and thank me later... essentially the same analog stick as what the Gamecube controllers used.

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Eoten

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#31 Eoten
Member since 2020 • 5767 Posts
@Vaasman said:

It was an interesting first try at popularizing the analog stick but obviously build on the flawed concept that the d-pad and stick should be separated. At the least, there's nothing especially wrong with it from a comfort or stability perspective, it's just that it aged horribly once controllers started putting d-pad and stick on the same thumb.

Build on a flawed concept about where the analog stick and d-pad goes? What the **** are you talking about? Nobody else even had an analog stick when the N64 came out.

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Vaasman

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#32  Edited By Vaasman
Member since 2008 • 15107 Posts
@eoten said:
@Vaasman said:

It was an interesting first try at popularizing the analog stick but obviously build on the flawed concept that the d-pad and stick should be separated. At the least, there's nothing especially wrong with it from a comfort or stability perspective, it's just that it aged horribly once controllers started putting d-pad and stick on the same thumb.

Build on a flawed concept about where the analog stick and d-pad goes? What the **** are you talking about? Nobody else even had an analog stick when the N64 came out.

What the **** do you mean what the **** am I talking about? Just because it hadn't been done before doesn't mean it wasn't plainly flawed when compared to the modern controller layout of dpad and stick on the same thumb. Modern design covers the same goal better, and without the ridiculous 3rd hand hold. That's not a hard thing to understand for anyone with human hands. Although as a bot, you might have an extra set of fingers or a 3rd arm, idk.

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madrocketeer

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#33 madrocketeer
Member since 2005 • 9467 Posts

Played Ocarina of Time on a friend's N64 once. Bloody hell I hated the stick and Z trigger placement; it's like it was designed by a race of three-armed radioactive mutants. But other than that, it was usable.

Still, give me the Xbox 360/One controller instead any day. Prefer the offset sticks over the DualShock's parallel placements.

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osan0

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#34 osan0
Member since 2004 • 16545 Posts

No. its pretty poor. pretty much every controller since then, including the OG dualshock, is a better controller.

In fairness to Nintendo, at the time, developers and hardware manufacturers were still trying figure out 3D games in terms of proper navigation and controls. before the N64, the PS1 had no sticks and controlling many 3D games was awful. many games were really just 2D games with 3D graphics slapped on. nobody else was any better really in console space.

But yeah..Nintendo kinda ended up needlessly overcomplicating it. i mean the controls for goldeneye would be deemed outright unacceptable today (and rightfully so...they are horrendous).

I remember when sony released the dualshock not long after it was like "oh yeah....that makes a lot more sense". the second stick was a very important improvement and it had rumble built in as standard too which was nice.

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Kadin_Kai

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#35 Kadin_Kai
Member since 2015 • 1968 Posts

No, but it did lead the way for analogue sticks for console gaming.

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robert_sparkes

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#36 robert_sparkes
Member since 2018 • 5688 Posts

At the time I thought it was ok but going back now is difficult.

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Mesome713

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#37  Edited By Mesome713
Member since 2019 • 1669 Posts

I’m gonna buy the controller just to play Kirby. That game was so fun. Need the controller to take me back. Back in the days when I was young I’m not a kid anymore…

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lamprey263

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#38  Edited By lamprey263
Member since 2006 • 40544 Posts

I mean, the thing makes me nostalgic, but it's a pain in the butt to use these days.

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pmanden

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#39  Edited By pmanden
Member since 2016 • 1938 Posts

Absolutely NOT a fan. I still remember the first time I picked up the controller and had a go at Super Mario 64. It felt kind of weird, especially the hard to reach Z-button and the extra handle in the middle. I guess the controller is best suited for people with three hands? Come to think of it, I never really liked any of Nintendo's controllers. Even the controller of their greatest console ever (Snes) was not perfect, being way too small.

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outworld222

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#40 outworld222
Member since 2004 • 3485 Posts

Used to be. But I cannot play with it today. It’s a very odd design, and more of a reason that N64 games should be ported to modern systems if they haven’t been already.

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pmanden

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#41 pmanden
Member since 2016 • 1938 Posts

@xantufrog: I have never played on Gamecube. The strange looking controller was certainly a big part of the reason why I never bought the console.

The NES controller is probably still Nintendo's best ever. At least it is totally non-gimmicky.

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pmanden

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#42 pmanden
Member since 2016 • 1938 Posts

@uninspiredcup: The 3-button Sega Megadrive (Genesis) controller might go down in history as the sexiest controller ever. The console itself is also a sexy beast.

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uninspiredcup

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#43  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 48394 Posts

@pmanden: Yes, the Mega-Drive is basically this if it were a console.

While the average Nintendo console =

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pmanden

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#44  Edited By pmanden
Member since 2016 • 1938 Posts

@uninspiredcup: Lol, your pictures perfectly sum it up. Great post.

No doubt that Batman was a big inspiration to Sega. Heck, I am pretty sure the Genesis controller would work effeciently as a batarang.

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SecretPolice

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#45 SecretPolice
Member since 2007 • 39481 Posts

It worked well for the N64 games at the time.

Playing Mario Party, was brutal on both the controller and the hands tho. lol :P

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Epak_

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#46 Epak_
Member since 2004 • 11828 Posts

Maybe not a fan, but it works and I play games with it just fine.

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rmiller365

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#47 rmiller365
Member since 2010 • 1425 Posts

Absolutely not. There's a reason why dual analog sticks are standard now, and going back to those "C" buttons is a nightmare for camera control. It's also similar to the GC controller where it was so small my hands swallowed the entire controller leading to odd hand placement if you have adult sized hands. All my old N64 controllers also have an issue where the plastic in the analog stick grinds on itself over time leading to white plastic powder in the analog area.

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Mozelleple112

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#48 Mozelleple112
Member since 2011 • 8304 Posts

One of the worst controllers ever made for sure.

Controller rankings go like this:

  1. Dualshock 5
  2. Xbox Series
  3. Xbox One
  4. Dualshock 4
  5. Xbox 360
  6. PS3
  7. PS2
  8. Switch Pro
  9. Wii U Pro
  10. PS1
  11. Xbox
  12. Joycon
  13. Game Cube
  14. Dreamcast
  15. N64
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robert_sparkes

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#49 robert_sparkes
Member since 2018 • 5688 Posts

From what I remember the N64 pad was great for wrestling games and not much else. It was very uncomfortable for long periods of time.

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Sushiglutton

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#50 Sushiglutton
Member since 2009 • 8887 Posts

Thought it was fine at the time. Worked well for Nintendo’s own games. I also remember that Turok used it cleverly by letting the yellow buttons control movement and the stick aiming. Such a simple yet great idea!

If I recall correctly Goldeneye used the stick for both aiming and movement, which was anything but smooth lol.

The stick was of pretty low quality by todays standards…