The N64 controller.

CastletonSnob

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I've never had a problem with the N64 controller. I just hold the controller by the left and right prongs. I don't see what the big deal is.
 

laggyteabag

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Admittedly, I haven't held a N64 controller in years, but just look at the thing. It is a controller with 3 handles. That is an ergonomic disaster, no matter which way you look at it.

Again, I haven't played an N64 game in years, so I can't exactly remember quite clearly how well (or not) games actually play on the N64 controller, but it is clearly not an optimal design, and I have no idea how a controller with 3 handles got past the concept stage, let alone prototyping, and full production.
 

DJShaddycat

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I think it made sense at the time, design wise. Nintendo wanted a joystick on their controller without sacrificing the D-Pad. We've clearly figured out better ways to put the controller together to fit the D-Pad and the joystick on one handle, and buttons on the other. But I imagine they probably didn't suspect at the time that you would want to use both the joystick and the D-Pad
 

DellConagher

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I have never owned a N64, the closest I have was 2 years ago when my condo had a copy of "Army Men Sarge's Heroes" lying on the table, with no N64 in sight. But seriously, with the fact that I like Xbox controllers and Keyboard + Mouse, the N64 controller looks really uncomfy, imo.
 

SilentPony

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I remember when I heard about it being super bad, like years later, like 2008 or 9. I had no problems growing up with it, I don't remember any egregious button map layout or delay problems. I even have a USB one if I want to play N64 games on my PC and its not a problem.

I don't doubt some people struggled, but I wonder if its one of those "Ocarina of Time isn't a very good game" memes where its contrarian for contrarian's sake and to seem different.
 

The Rogue Wolf

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Well, it came out almost a year before the first DualShock controller, so it didn't have that to crib off of. I personally had little trouble using it, though certainly there were times I wished I had access to every part of the controller without having to practically juggle it.
But I imagine they probably didn't suspect at the time that you would want to use both the joystick and the D-Pad
First-gen oversight, basically, yeah.
 

sXeth

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The N64 controller was fine.

Yes, it looks awkward, but I can't think of any games that constantly made you switch between using the Joystick and D-pad, so having them separated was never a problem.

I have a vague recollection of one of the two RPGs on the system using the d-pad as well as the joystick. Though I could be remembering stuff off.
 

Elijin

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Apparently everyone forgot goldeneye? Where the joystick did movement, but fine aim adjustments were on the dpad? With weapon stuff on the ABXY?
 
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hanselthecaretaker

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It worked well mostly for N64 games, but I recall trying different fighting games with that anemic Dpad and wondered why they got rid of the perfect SNES design. It’s like half the size and was probably only meant for navigating menus. The yellow (c?) buttons were apparently for camera adjustment. Amazing wizardry was in effect every time gamers did anything functionally in Goldeneye or Perfect Dark.
 

Worgen

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Whatever, just wash your hands.
My main problem with it was the joy stick... hole >.> Not being round, the weird hexagon made it so you would hit the edges a lot and that would mess up doing moves in Killer Instinct, other than that it seemed fine, but I also last used it before I ruined my hands on psx and ps2 controllers.
 

Meximagician

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That controller with an awkward-to-find trigger switch on the back and can only be intuitively held by a Half-Life* alien? Yeah I wasn't a fan.
Then again I found the original Xbox controllers somewhat comfortable, so maybe I'm the crazy one.
*which is kind of impressive, given the N64 launched in Japan in '96 and Half-Life didn't even have a trailer until '97
 

Drathnoxis

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I always found it fairly comfortable to hold and use so I've never really understood the hate either. The analog sticks weren't the best or most durable, though.
I've never had a problem with the N64 controller. I just hold the controller by the left and right prongs. I don't see what the big deal is.
If you held it like that, how did you reach the analog stick and Z? Generally, I found that games required you to hold center and right prongs.
 

bluegate

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It was fine for its time... if only for a very little while, as it was superseded by PlayStation's DualShock controller a year later, a controller design that's pretty much still an industry standard 22 years later.

One thing that always irked me about Nintendo analogue sticks was how they housed them in squared casings rather than perfect round ones, always messing up 3D controls.
 

Catfood220

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It was fine, I never had a problem with it. Other than the fact that the sticks used to wear out far too quickly. I spent so much money replacing controllers.
 

Gordon_4

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Apparently everyone forgot goldeneye? Where the joystick did movement, but fine aim adjustments were on the dpad? With weapon stuff on the ABXY?
No I don't remember that at all, I remember fine aiming was done by holding down one of the shoulder buttons and using the joystick.
 
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Kyrian007

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No I don't remember that at all, I remember fine aiming was done by holding down one the shoulder buttons and using the joystick.
Yes, that was the default setting. And the setting the game was optimized for. However you could change that to enable movement and fine aim control at the same time. And that's where all the complaining comes from. People trying to get an edge in multiplayer complaining that the control setup wasn't good... even though they had themselves changed the settings to the awkward one instead of just "gitting gud" at the comfortable one.

The N64 controller was fine. If you needed a gamepad it was there and a quick enough thing to nudge the stick for an extra function (WWF: No Mercy for example.) And when main control was done with the stick, the gamepad was there for a quick enough "selector" or off function extra keys. The only real complaint I had was it wasn't particularly robust. The stick would invariably get more and more dead movement and become less and less precise. But of course, every other controller has that exact problem. Many last longer, but eventually succumb. The vanilla XBOX 360 controller was particularly well built... but eventually you needed a new one. However, with the N64, it was an easy fix rather than charge an arm and a leg for a new controller. I found an online seller who had a couple dozen brand new N64 controller stick "modules" he was selling for 5 bucks each. And after one went dead, one could with a screwdriver and about 10 minutes... have a working controller again. I still have 4 or 5 left. I wouldn't even dare trying to open up and repair a modern controller, unless it was broken anyway and I had already written it off.

And the 3 handles issue, that's just ridiculous. 1 handle is a legitimate problem. 2 handles is standard. 3... well are you going to ever use more than 2 at once? No, you don't have 3 hands? Then where's the problem, you only use 2 handles at a time... what's the problem with a 3rd that you can use when you are playing a different game with different controls? May have added some extra weight, but the whole thing is still lighter than a modern controller anyway.
 
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Elijin

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Yes, that was the default setting. And the setting the game was optimized for. However you could change that to enable movement and fine aim control at the same time. And that's where all the complaining comes from. People trying to get an edge in multiplayer complaining that the control setup wasn't good... even though they had themselves changed the settings to the awkward one instead of just "gitting gud" at the comfortable one.

The N64 controller was fine. If you needed a gamepad it was there and a quick enough thing to nudge the stick for an extra function (WWF: No Mercy for example.) And when main control was done with the stick, the gamepad was there for a quick enough "selector" or off function extra keys. The only real complaint I had was it wasn't particularly robust. The stick would invariably get more and more dead movement and become less and less precise. But of course, every other controller has that exact problem. Many last longer, but eventually succumb. The vanilla XBOX 360 controller was particularly well built... but eventually you needed a new one. However, with the N64, it was an easy fix rather than charge an arm and a leg for a new controller. I found an online seller who had a couple dozen brand new N64 controller stick "modules" he was selling for 5 bucks each. And after one went dead, one could with a screwdriver and about 10 minutes... have a working controller again. I still have 4 or 5 left. I wouldn't even dare trying to open up and repair a modern controller, unless it was broken anyway and I had already written it off.

And the 3 handles issue, that's just ridiculous. 1 handle is a legitimate problem. 2 handles is standard. 3... well are you going to ever use more than 2 at once? No, you don't have 3 hands? Then where's the problem, you only use 2 handles at a time... what's the problem with a 3rd that you can use when you are playing a different game with different controls? May have added some extra weight, but the whole thing is still lighter than a modern controller anyway.
As someone who didnt own a 64, I didn't know this. I guess the neighbour kids had done that, and I simply never knew it wasnt the default setup.

Add to that, the progression of dual stick controls for fps making it seem particularly clumsy in hindsight.
 

Specter Von Baren

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My main problem with it was the joy stick... hole >.> Not being round, the weird hexagon made it so you would hit the edges a lot and that would mess up doing moves in Killer Instinct, other than that it seemed fine, but I also last used it before I ruined my hands on psx and ps2 controllers.
Ironically, I think it was designed as a hexagon to help with that kind of thing.

For my own part, it was fine at the time, and I don't remember most games having any problems, I enjoyed my green starship.
 

Worgen

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Whatever, just wash your hands.
Ironically, I think it was designed as a hexagon to help with that kind of thing.

For my own part, it was fine at the time, and I don't remember most games having any problems, I enjoyed my green starship.
Yeah, it was almost certainly designed so that it was easy to do one of the main directions you would need with no ambiguity. But any game that needed a sweeping motion became harder since you would hit an angle which would mess up a smooth motion.
 
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