The question is: who understands?
Nintendo is always looking to revolutionize the way we play video games and it couldn’t be more evident than in its unusual controls. Always avoiding the obvious, it’s not always easy to understand their logic, even among industry veterans like Phil Spencer, president of Xbox.
In the new Crackle documentary series (via CB), Playing With Power: The Nintendo Story, which celebrates Nintendo’s history in the industry, Phil confessed that he never understood exactly what the idea of the controller was. Nintendo 64.
Launched in 1996, it was one of the first to include an analog button to control three-dimensional movement. It caused quite a stir at the time, but what confused people the most was its location.
Defying all design standards, in addition to the two handles needed to comfortably hold a controller, the Nintendo 64 brought a third analog exclusive – right in the middle of the controller.
“I still don’t understand this control, being completely honest,” Spencer revealed. “There must be several controls in one, I don’t know, but it takes three hands to play!”
It’s a thought that still confuses those who haven’t lived through that time, but the proposal was really to bring more options to the player. Holding control by the directional buttons, it behaves like the old controls from the pixelated era of consoles. As for the central grip, it was perfect for 3D adventures like Super Mario 64 and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.
Although still confused by the control of the time, Phil Spencer is an outspoken admirer of Nintendo’s work and helped bring Banjo and Kazooie, the Microsoft characters who made their Nintendo 64 debut, to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
What do you think of Nintendo’s controls? Do you have a favorite? Be sure to comment!