I typically play my NES games on the real thing. There’s just something about playing games the way they originally where intended, but sometimes I want to play an NES game I might not have in my collection or I want to play a NES game over the internet so I load up an emulator. When I play my NES games on my PC I end up using a Sega USB controller I got years ago. It’s similar to the Sega Saturn controller which is great when I’m playing Sega games but can be a problem with NES games. I kept seeing a USB version of the NES controller at my local used games store and I was interested but since it was third party I figured it probably wasn’t worth my time. I’ve been burned by third party controllers way too many times in the past.
I kept putting it off… until now! After doing some research online I found that most people had positive things to say about the Classic NES USB Controller. With an Amazon review of 4.3/5 could it really be that bad? Also I was able to get it ordered and shipped for a total of $5. So why not?
Arrival Day Came…
After opening my smiley Amazon box I was presented with this cool looking packaging. The cover art sure looked like an NES controller but what about the real thing? Well…
Can you tell which one is the real NES controller and which one is the USB remake after I covered up the Nintendo logo?
At first glance I was impressed. It looks almost exactly the same as the real NES controller. I think you’d have to be a real NES freak to tell the difference. Besides the logo the only real differences are the grey boxes are rounded and the A and B font is a little different. Other than those minute details the look is spot on!
How Does it Feel When Playing?
Alright so it looks great but how does it feel when playing a game? Everyone knows third party controllers are known for unresponsive buttons and breaking easily. This bad rap is the exact reason I was so hesitant to buy one of these in the first place.
What better way to test this out than a game of Tecmo Super Bowl? Here’s me playing with the new controller…
At first I thought I was in for a big disappointment. The buttons seemed very sticky but I didn’t want to give up that easily. I remembered back to my 8 bit days and how when you would play with a brand new NES controller it typically didn’t feel as comfortable as one that had hundreds of hours of play. I then just mashed away at the buttons to see if they’d loosen up and you know what? They did. After mashing the buttons for a minute I could tell it was feeling loser and as you can see in my video I was able to juke my way to a touch down.
After playing a game with the USB controller I went and played a game of Tecmo Super Bowl on a real NES. Then I came back and tried the USB one again and I have to say it felt nearly identical.
I give this controller a 5 out of 5. If you’re looking to have a more pure NES experience with your emulator the Classic NES USB Controller is the way to go!