So that retro NES dropped on friday. I was a tad terrified to see a bunch a white folks lined up after Trump’s election. But naw they were here for some Nintendo product.

It doesnt make a lot of sense to me when they’ve had Virtual Console options for years now, its like Sega releasing Genesis Sonic games over and over again. At least Nintendo has something of an excuse… actually no, they’ve been just as self-indulgent with their games these days, what with turning Smash Bros from a fanservice fighter to a Nintendo history museum. But hey, its cheaper than current Nintendo consoles and actually has games that people want to play. Its just Nintendo trying to pacify their market, but the duplicity has its benefits. Easy money for them (unless a third party made it) and simple fun for you.

Its been years since I held an NES controller. Its so simple. A D-Pad, 2 buttons, and the games still kick more ass than modern Nintendo. Then again I use emulators. You get a wider selection of games that way.

I actually thought the Wiimote was a decent substitute for an NES controller even with my monster claws. As Nintendo has this thing with forgetting the past ever happen  (unless they need money), the Nintendo Switch is ditching motion controls (I guess) and is going for some more bonkers ass gimmicks that dont make the games any better. All they needed was to fine tune their Wii controllers (and find a better design philosophy) to make better titles. All the Wiimote is now is untapped potential. 

Every time I played Racing Transformed, I kept imagining how it would’ve played on Wii. The controller was that convenient. Fewer buttons to press, you actually feel like you’re driving a car and not a stick, and since modern racing games use the shoulder buttons for Amma knows what reason, the Wiimote felt more traditional and familiar.

You know how amazing it was to sit around playing Brawl and seeing everyone using a different control setup? None of us had working GC controllers so we just used different Wiimote configurations. One guy used a Classic Controller, another cat used nun-chucks, me and some other dude was using the standard sideways shit. Well, ol’ chucky was getting his ass whooped so he went sideways too… it was cool. Everyone had their preferred set-ups and could still enjoy the game on equal footing. The Wiimote offered people options of how they wanted to play a game.

The (stupid) thing I liked about the Wiimote was the placement of the A and B buttons, so if a game required you to presss 2 buttons (like say RE4), you could press those 2 as though you were just gripping it, and for shit like Trauma Center, it makes sense. Do you know how natural and comfortable this shit feels!? Its a silly thing to appreciate, but I like it. Hell when im playing Xenoblade or Last Story, I can kick back, have my shit behind my head, and just play all chillaxed and shit. You could swear I was playing telepathically or w/e.

Motion/pointer controls made certain games/genre’s more convenient to play.  FPS’ s would take some getting used to, especially since the developers were fans of shaky cams. The one FPS I felt warranted any praise was Red Steel 2. And I really have to applaud Ubisoft on making a competent shooter with good controls and actual sword combat that feels like they gave a damn. Nintendo had to feel shitty when a western dev outdid them once more. Then you have games like Super Monkey Ball which just feels more natural to play with a Wiimote, as well as Samba de Amigo that could be played with the standard nun-chucks. And with the numerous rail shooters, you didn’t need to buy any light-guns or extra peripherals beyond the normal 3 to enjoy the majority of titles on the system. 

What saddens me is that this was usually good for old games. When it came to brand new titles, developers (even Nintendo) used motion and pointer controls for the most benign, stupid, and unintuitive of game design. Skyward Sword will forever remain the #1 example of how not to design motion controls (you even needed motions, not the pointer, to fucking AIM!). NSMBW, certain (very little) platforms can be moved by tilting the Wiimote,  just makes the level feel disorienting and not more awesome, more so because the game isnt about using motions, here they’re just phoned in. Marvel Ultimate Alliance, you gotta flick the damn thing in retarded ways just use special moves (or tediously scroll through them in mid-fight). Fighting games, my stars! You should’ve seen the assholes trying to force motion controls on regular special moves in Guilty Gear Accent Core. Praise Amma they let you use the Classic Joe. Some genre’s just dont work at all with motion controls. Then again, there’s TvC and that 1 Naruto shit piece.

The Wiimote demanded simplicity of controls, which seemed like a good idea considering developers don’t seem terribly fond of allowing the player the luxury of customizing their controls these days. And developers tend to map controls in spots you may despise. (RE4 Wii has the “shoot”command mapped to A, what the shit..) Seeing as the Wiimote has fewer buttons and an unorthodox layout, and developers unwilling to compromise their more complex controls, we have large collections of wii games with frustrating controls, making many games virtually umplayable.

Unfortunately, because of the incompetence (or intentional sabotage) of developers, we have legions of gamers who feel that the Wiimote was a tacky gimmick. Having no positive effect on a game’s enjoyability.

When I look at the controller for the Switch, I see limitation. It offers no convenient controls for games, just an option for a screen. The Wii at least offered interesting games (sometimes) that made decent use of it’s controller to last longer than a week. Switch, its just taking your console with you. Nothing to do with making the games better.

You know what PlayStation does at least? Maintain the same controller design for newer consoles. I really wanted the Wiimote to be kept around for a while longer, but no! Its all about these fucking screens! Since when have funky screens done anything to enhance a game for you, since the original DS? Oh shit, puzzle games? RPG menu navigation? Drawing pictures? The Wiimote had more range of genres, at least.

Dont say Angry Birds…

I feel that due to the unwarranted bile thrown at the Wii, there won’t be any kind of resurgence for it, controller and all. NES and Genesis you’ll see for years. No one hated those consoles. Im pretty sure even the PSP will get some retro release in the future.