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110 comments

firsties. (-1, Offtopic)

irc.goatse.cx troll (593289) | more than 9 years ago | (#11168845)

hearties for firsties.

Madness (1)

Richie1984 (841487) | more than 9 years ago | (#11168870)

My inner geek cried a little when reading that! Luckily, I still have my old NES with the classic D-Pad and A/B buttons so I'm not too saddened. I'd love to know what they'll replace it with but, as usual, they're keeping tight lipped. Oh well....

Re:Madness (2, Interesting)

supersuckers (841107) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169002)

Likely just dropping it in favor of the analog stick. Anyone remember the nes max controller? [axess.com] It had a, well, look at the picture. I hated it and would always use the outer black edge to control instead of the moveable thumb pad thing. I never used the dpad on my gamecube controller, but part of that is because I feel they made it too small. The xbox and ps2 ones have a better feel. Anyhow, I guess the only use left for the ol' dpad is on a belt buckle [nesbuckle.com]

Re:Madness (1)

blighter (577804) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169069)

The NES Max was the best controller!

The little moveable thumb-thingy was worse than useless but the black circle on the outside beat any D-pad all to hell for diaganol movement.

Add the turbo buttons and the ergonomic (for 10-year old hands) shape to the magical black circle of diaganol movement and it was in a league of it's own.

Best. Controller. Ever.

(Maybe just because that's what I had growing up...)

Re:Madness (2, Insightful)

Jane_the_Great (778338) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169194)

Pardon me sir?

The NES Advantage [8bitjoystick.com] was the best controller ever. End of discussion. The turbo features on it were inspired - you could actually control the amount of turbo you needed. Besides, the thing was sturdy as a brick. It was truly a controller ahead of its time.

Re:Madness (1)

jubei (89485) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169893)

I agree. The Advantage was my favorite controller for the NES. The adjustable turbo was great, but the slo-mo feature was pretty useless. It basically strobed the start button to pause/unpause rapidly.

Re:Madness (1)

RealityMogul (663835) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169278)

Power Glove, end of discussion. I never had more fun with that thing than when I first opened the box.

Re:Madness (1)

ajservo (708572) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169609)

I had more fun with it when I returned it for a copy of Strider and DuckTales.

The thing was a hunk of junk.

Or maybe you'd like to try to hammer out the Konami code on that evil controller?

Re:Madness (1)

RevAaron (125240) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170211)

Or maybe you'd like to try to hammer out the Konami code on that evil controller?

It was easy- you did it on the little real buttons and d-pad on the armpiece. duh.

Re:Madness (1)

harrkev (623093) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169958)

I never had more fun with that thing than when I first opened the box.

Yup. "Oh boy. A new toy!". Then you opened the box and thing went downhill real fast.

Re:Madness (1)

Gehenna_Gehenna (207096) | more than 9 years ago | (#11173635)

I had more fun with the box the glove came in than I ever had with the glove. It was a novel idea, ahead of it's time, but the tech just didn't live up to the expectation. It wasn't cool, just awkward.

Re:Madness (1)

yRabbit (625397) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169162)

Ahh, I have one of these. :) Indeed, I always used the black outer part of the directional control.

Re:Madness (4, Insightful)

RevAaron (125240) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170099)

I mean, they already have replaced the d-pad in favor of the analog stick. At least, in practice. The N64 and GC both have d-pads- but in most games in both cases you never even touch the d-pad.

Re:Madness (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11172648)

I'd love to know what they'll replace it with

Analog D-pad and analog A and B buttons? I wouldn't take reports like the Computer and Video Games one seriously without a verbatim quote, as Nintendo has a long record of using tricky and deceptive language to describe forthcoming products.

Re:Madness (1)

silicon not in the v (669585) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172939)

Yep, the NES was the bread and butter of my game-playing youth. I developed a blister and then a callous on the end of my left thumb that persisted for several years because of that. I still think it is the best movement control for scrollers or platformers. The only design problem I saw with that first NES design was how hard it was on your thumb because of the rough edges/corners and those arrow symbols engraved into the plastic on each direction. I remember playing Tecmo Super Bowl often at a friend's house (he and his brother and I would each pick a team and play through whole seasons) and if you broke loose for a long touchdown run, while trying to dodge tacklers, you were saying, "Ow ow ow." by the time you were getting close to the endzone. :) With the SNES they did round off those edges so it didn't hurt quite so much.

I read some comments on here about the NES Max and NES Advantage. I liked the Max because turbo buttons are invaluable on some games(Gunsmoke), but so much of my play was trained to a pad of some sort instead of joystick, that I couldn't get used to the Advantage. Also, I prefer to hold the controller, rather than having the base of the controller slide around as I move a joystick. That pad thing on the Max(I think they called it a "cyloid" control) was a little harder than the regular pad for most games, but I did find it useful in only about one situation--Track and Field II. There was a hammer throw event, where you had to go round and round on the pad to build up your speed before releasing that ball and chain, and you just couldn't beat the Max for doing that. Actually the Max was great for about every event in that game because most of the others involved pounding the buttons to go faster, vs. just holding down a turbo button.

They need to keep it (2, Funny)

00null00 (530499) | more than 9 years ago | (#11168918)

...upupdowndownleftrightleftrightBAselectstart is not so easy in analog. There are some good things a D-pad is needed for.

Contra is fair (1)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 9 years ago | (#11168987)

You can actually play through the game without dying, and earn your 30 lives instead of cheating for them.

My online trophy room [geocities.com]

Re:Contra is fair (2, Insightful)

blighter (577804) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169118)

But if you can play through without dying, what use are 30 free lives?

Especially since you only get them just after completing the game without dying...

That's like making the prize for finishing the 72 oz steak... another huge steak that you can only eat right then.

Ok, so what? (2, Insightful)

mcnut (712202) | more than 9 years ago | (#11168930)

I'm not really too surprised that as a symbol of their "revolution" that the traditional items of Nintendo will die... What I want to know, and what I think is going to be the only thing that matters is: how many games are there going to be on rollout, and will they for the first time since the SNES actually have a decent flow of games throughout the system life. I have a Gamecube that waits for the next Zelda or Mario (even another luigi game for god's sake). It gets used about once every 3 months when they come out with a new game, then it goes back away... Nintendo, the revolution we're looking for has a lot less to do with the hardware.. and a lot more to do with the games!

Re:Ok, so what? (1)

thelenm (213782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174231)

Nintendo, the revolution we're looking for has a lot less to do with the hardware.. and a lot more to do with the games!

Which is why I can't even find time to play all the games I've bought in the past month or two: Metroid Prime 2, Paper Mario, Pikmin 2, Donkey Konga, Mega Man Anniversary Collection... they're not all platformers or adventures like Mario or Zelda. But they're all fun, and worth playing when I have the time. And those are just the games I've bought recently, there are plenty more. I don't think there's a shortage of GameCube games.

2 things (1)

Bastian (66383) | more than 9 years ago | (#11168967)

On the A and B buttons: Maybe it's that the only Nintendo systems I have ever owned are the original cream-of-spinach Game Boy and the GBA, but I'm not exactly mourning the loss of these two letters as button names. Am I missing something here?

On the D-pad: Fine with me, as long as every single game on the next-gen system is a 3D platform jumper or shooter, and not a single puzzle game or RPG with lots of menus or what have you comes out. I was only content with the loss of the paddle controller after they quit making games like Arkanoid.

Re:2 things (1)

Zenikase (622230) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169028)

Don't forget fighting games.

Re:2 things (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11174314)

That's exactly what I thought, playing a 2D fighter with the analog stick is retarded.

Re:2 things (1)

spike42 (795924) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169211)

Nintendo never made many great RPGs (there are exceptions, Paper Mario for one), and maybe they are just trying to concentrate on what they do best. If they have some new control that makes their platformers and shooters better, it will be better for there games.

Re:2 things (1)

pretentiousPPC (618549) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170298)

Umm yea Nintendo never made many great RPGs [zelda.com]

Back on subject, I wonder if they are planning something on the lines of the DS, were there would be a touch screen on the controller.

From the little that I've played with the DS, and from the reviews of other people it's pretty cool and innovative. Plus it just seems like an evolution to their GameBoy/GameCube connected titles, like The Four Swords [zelda.com] and FF: Crystal Chronicles [zelda.com] .

Re:2 things (1)

Pluvius (734915) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170582)

The Zelda games are not RPGs except for the second one, which wasn't very well received. The only RPG series Nintendo has made which have gotten any real following are Mother/Earthbound and Fire Emblem.

Rob

Re:2 things (1)

squall14716 (734306) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174673)

Zelda is an action RPG.

Re:2 things (1)

jx100 (453615) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174081)

Well, it's sheer speculation, but the new controller could have some sort of touchscreen on it. If that's the case, a menu probably wouldn't be that bad of a thing, as you could just select the items.

Re:2 things (1)

Bastian (66383) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174595)

=P count me out. Having to look away from the TV, take a hand off the controller, take the stylus out of its silo, look at the touchscreen, tap on it a few times, put the stylus back in the silo, put the hand back in its original position, and look back at the T.V. is way too disruptive to maintain any sort of immersion.

When I play RPGs and tactics games, I want to be thinking about nothing but what's happening on the T.V. screen and whether or not I'm eating too many Doritos.

Re:2 things (1)

C0rinthian (770164) | more than 9 years ago | (#11175012)

Well, from what I've seen of the DS (Don't own one yet) theres actually a little strap with a stylus point you can put on your thumb. That way you can use your thumb on the screed without taking you hand off the thing. Keeps your greasy skin off the screen too...

Re:2 things (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11175045)

Screed = screen. Damn my fingers.

For one split second (1)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169007)

For one split second, I really did read the title as "Nintendo to drop dead".

Sad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11169049)

I am deeply saddened by this news. Ah well, I guess I could wait for the inevitable aftermarket controllers.

A little perspective, please (3, Funny)

alexo (9335) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169110)


> I am deeply saddened by this news.

Somebody needs to get out more.

Which games? (2, Funny)

ChibiLZ (697816) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169074)

Rest assured that no matter what they replace the d-pad with, it will be pulled off very well, and will most likely change the face of video game controls for years to come.

And you'll get to use this control scheme to play yet another Mario Party game, as well as 2 new Pokemon games, 8 new Harry Potter games, but unfortunately only a couple really great Nintendo properties.

Don't listen to me, I'm just bitter that we don't have a Kid Icarus sequel. Bastards.

Re:Which games? (1)

Danse (1026) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169510)

I want a Bionic Commando sequel!!

Re:Which games? (1)

Beyond_GoodandEvil (769135) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170292)

Bionic Commando was a sequel wasn't it?

Re:Which games? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11170451)

Bionic Commando was a sequel wasn't it?

Nope.

Re:Which games? (1)

Pluvius (734915) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170623)

Yup [wikipedia.org] .

Rob

Re:Which games? (1)

silicon not in the v (669585) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172149)

> Bionic Commando was a sequel wasn't it?

Not really a sequel--it would probably be better called a spin-off, like The Jeffersons was a spin-off TV show from All in the Family(Archie Bunker). The main character of Commando was called Super-Joe. Bionic Commando was a different guy going through a different type of game, but Nintendo linked in the plot so that the goal was to rescue Super-Joe, who had been kidnapped.

I think of it in the same was as how Mario stuck his big mustached nose into just about every game Nintendo ever made(rather than licensed) for the NES, just to show that, "Hey! Look at us! We're made by Nintendo(TM)!" He was the ref in Mike Tyson's^H^H^H^H^H Punch Out and the guy throwing the pills in Dr. Mario. A friend of mine has a book about Nintendo with an article listing all the places he showed up that I can't remember.

Street Fighter? (1)

LordOfYourPants (145342) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169093)

Ever try playing it with the analog joystick? Horrible. A drag to know I'll have to shell out more cash for an analog stick to play it.

Re:Street Fighter? (1)

ChibiLZ (697816) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169171)

If you're serious about fighting games though, there's absolutely no reason not to go out and drop some cash on a good arcade stick.

Gotta love the old school digital joystick technology.

Re:Street Fighter? (1)

hal2814 (725639) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169267)

If you're SERIOUS about fighting games, you'll go out and hack your favorite console's controller to handle arcade parts. That'll be a lot harder to do with analog directional pads. Or you might just wait until you can afford the arcade board to plop into your arcade cabinet of choice.

Dpad Joystick for SF2 (1)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169337)

I was able to win on hardest SF2 original, with all perfect rounds on SNES. In the arcades I have sometimes have trouble throwing fireballs.

Re:Dpad Joystick for SF2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11176769)

Y'know, I went and looked at your "hall of fame" earlier in this thread, and then get to this...

People believe this stuff a lot more ('specially 'round these here parts) when you accompany such outlandish claims with proof, like - screenshots or something.

And, even though I completely admire your accomplishments (provided they are as you claim), might I suggest a warm and caring Signifigant Other? In my hetero world, I enjoy a good game of "Find the G-Spot" much more than any pixelated goodness ;).

D-pad is necessary (4, Interesting)

superstick58 (809423) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169111)

So 20 years ago the D-pad was a revolutionary new way to control and replaced the analog joystick. Now the analog joystick is the revolutionary new way to control and will replace the d-pad? The d-pad was created because it offered many benefits over an analog joystick:

Smaller space constraints

Better tactile feedback(push, click)

Better for navigating 2D environments (menus)etc.

I know I generally use the d-pad just as much as the analog stick on various games. It would be rather inconvenient to see it go.

Re:D-pad is necessary (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169483)

You're forgetting that back then few joysticks were actually analog, most were digital and as far as digital control goes a dpad IS better. Also, back then joysticks came mostly in flightstick shapes, which are kinda impractical for platformers and the like.

Re:D-pad is necessary (1)

easychord (671421) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169650)

Classic joysticks like the Competion Pro for the 8bit and 16bit computers were better than dpads in my opinion. A nice short stick and the satisfying click of the microswitches, you could completely own any console gamer in Sensi Soccer who insisted on using a joypad.

This sort of joystick was also closer to the controls on the Arcade games of the time.

Re:D-pad is necessary (2, Informative)

gozar (39392) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170642)

So 20 years ago the D-pad was a revolutionary new way to control and replaced the analog joystick. Now the analog joystick is the revolutionary new way to control and will replace the d-pad? The d-pad was created because it offered many benefits over an analog joystick:

The d-pad actually replaced the digital joystick. Twenty years ago the only machines that I can remember having analog sticks were the Apple II and TRS-80. All the Ataris used digital sticks. Analog sticks didn't really come into their own until the release of the dual-shock controller for the PS1 and the N64.

Anyway, I'd like to see a controller based on the original iPod wheel. That way you can spin it for paddle games, but also use it for directional use.

Re:D-pad is necessary (1)

blincoln (592401) | more than 9 years ago | (#11171793)

All the Ataris used digital sticks.

The 5200 controllers had analogue sticks. They were a huge hassle and the early models broke all the time.

Re:D-pad is necessary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11171402)

I've found that a d-pad is good for pulling off special moves/fatalities in Mortal Kombat. Unfortunately, it also has a tendency to scrape my thumb raw.

Analog menus (1)

Spleener12 (587422) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172632)

In Metroid Prime 2 Retro did a menu system that seemed to be designed to be navigated with an analog stick.

It sucked ass.

Dropping a digital pad is a bad, bad idea. You still need it for some things. As far as the A and B buttons are concerned, they'll just be changing the names for those, I'm sure.

Re:Analog menus (1)

kerrle (810808) | more than 9 years ago | (#11173143)

Funny, virtually everyone I know really liked those menus.

I'll definitely admit that they may not scale well, though.

Re:D-pad is necessary (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174745)

"So 20 years ago the D-pad was a revolutionary new way to control and replaced the analog joystick."

No it didn't. Analog sticks were a lot more expensive, required precious CPU resources, and really weren't practical for something like the NES because they were too big. Don't forget that the original NES came with 2 controllers, a Light gun, and 3 games.

GBA compatibility? (2, Insightful)

ksiddique (749168) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169149)

If the Revolution will be able to play GBA games (which I have no idea if it will), dropping the D-Pad will be "teh suxx0rsz". I've got a GBA Player for my 'Cube and I'm so glad there's a D-Pad on my Wavebird. Playing GBA games with an analog stick just doesn't feel right.

Re:GBA compatibility? (1)

Bachus9000 (765935) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169481)

I went so far as to buy a Hori gamepad from Japan for my GBPlayer needs. It works beautifully. :)

Re:GBA compatibility? (1)

TechniMyoko (670009) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169503)

So did I, you practically need the baby to play Nintendo Puzzle Collection.

Re:GBA compatibility? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11170356)

I bought an imported set of Hori digital pads too, one of each color. They're marketed mostly for using with the GameBoyPlayer

I'd do it all again, just because of the amount of gaming I've done with them already, but Hori is bringing them to the U.S. for $15 each. That's cheaper than what I paid for them.

They should be in more stores by next week, although supposedly some stores have them already.

Damn. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11169290)

Switching visors just won't feel right.

Re:Damn. (1)

Karma Farmer (595141) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170253)

Yep. That's about the only game I can think of that uses the dpad.

Re:Damn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11174425)

ummm...Pikmen 2....anyone??

Re:Damn. (1)

Firehawke (50498) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174571)

Mege Man Anniversary Collection. Analog stick isn't fast enough on digital movement action games like that. The travel distance for switching from a walk to the left to a walk to the right is *MUCH* slower on analog sticks as compared to d-pad. The inherent latency on some movements will drive one absolutely bonkers.

no A & B buttons? (1)

EddieBurkett (614927) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169367)

The loss of the D-Pad makes sense from an evolutionary standpoint, but the loss of the A & B buttons? It seems silly for Nintendo to leave the X&Y or the C-buttons but get rid of the A&B, given their tie to history (unless this is just a gimmick to emphasize the "Revolution"). I'm thinking that if the A&B buttons are gone, then all buttons (save maybe one) are gone from the left side of the controller face. Everyone is thinking that Nintendo will still use the Analog pad, but given Nintendo's interest in the EyeToy (and again, the "Revolution" moniker), I wouldn't be surprised if Nintendo foregoes controllers altogether on the next console. Not that I know what they'd replace them with...

Confirmed (1)

satoshi1 (794000) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169507)

Has this actually been confirmed yet? How is this supposed to work when the Revolution can play Gamecube games?? You can't play many of those games without a D-Pad. I'd take this with a grain of salt.

Re:Confirmed (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11170637)

It's an unconfirmed rumor.

Anyone who was watching the gaming hype scene in the period running up to the gameCube's release should know that all speculative articles about Nintendo's controller design are pure bullshit. The design of the GameCube controller alone evolved many, many times. And that's just going on the mockups that Nintendo allowed people to see in the last months of the GameCube's development.

For proof, just take a look at one of your GameCube controllers. If yours has a D-pad (yes, people were saying back then that the GameCube wouldn't have a D-pad either), a circular B button, and a Z button, you are holding proof that most of all the articles about the GameCube's controller design are false.

So yeah, like the parent, I wouldn't lament the loss of the D-pad or controller face buttons just yet.

Re:Confirmed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11174788)

Has the gamecube play "actually been confirmed yet"?

Why Mario Thumbpits Of Course! (3, Interesting)

blueZhift (652272) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169617)

I would guess two things. First, whatever new control scheme Nintendo has in mind for their next console will be built with the next Miyamoto game in mind (another Mario perhaps). And the new controls will adequately replace D-pad functionality and add enhancements.

So I got to thinking about it and came up with analog thumbpits. The current analog game pad controls sit up like bumps on the controller and are a bit awkward to use as D-pad replacements. But imagine a soft rubber thumbsized pit. Your thumb would sit in this comfortably allowing you to naturally nudge it in a way analogous to moving the D-pad, but now you can do a lot more than the cross pattern such as pushing straight down and down at angles. So games could be developed where it makes a difference how fast or how far down you push with more freedom than the current analog sticks and buttons give.

I would also expect some kind of touch pad to be included on the controller as well. No strike that, it's not necessary. In typical Nintendo fashion, the new console would have a port/ports for connecting the DS. Then you would just use the DS touch pad. They may still put a pad on the controller though since the DS scheme may be too awkward for the next Mario game. The touch pad has some interesting possibilities. For one thing, as a program configurable control I could see it becoming a keyboard for online chat. Not as good as a real keyboard, but much between than onscreen keyboards. (They might throw in a built-in mike like the DS has as well.)

Finally, perhaps the next controller will have pressure sensitive grips. These grips would replace the buttons. Now each finger can provide input in what should be a more comfortable way, if engineered right. If even half of the above comes to pass, I'd expect the new controllers to be rather difficult to emulate by 3rd parties, which of course will mean more money for Nintendo.

Heh heh, if even part of this is true, there may be a knock at the do...

Re:Why Mario Thumbpits Of Course! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11173103)

just to let you know the DS only has a EXT2 port so if it was going to connect it would have to be wireless through the 802.11b there is no other ports other than EXT2 and the headset/headphone port on the DS.....

Re:Why Mario Thumbpits Of Course! (1)

Firehawke (50498) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174531)

They kindasorta did that already-- it's called the NES Max. I thought it sucked horribly, though at least one of my friends loved the thing.

Re:Why Mario Thumbpits Of Course! (1)

computertheque (823940) | more than 9 years ago | (#11175251)

I still think that the analog controller for the Sega Saturn was the most comfortable. It more or less is what you describe in the first two paragraphs.

Controller Speculation (1)

mothlos (832302) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169859)

This page [n-sider.com] has some speculation on Revolution controller possibilities and is a good, if somewhat old, look at what Nintendo has been doing for a while.

I personally like the idea of gyro-enabled motion sensing controllers. Lots of possibilities there for increased gameplay if they do it right.

Oops my wife just stopped playing games with me (1)

Johnny2Bags (713404) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169927)

The D-pad is the only thing that keeps my wife playing games with me. She is a less-than-casual gamer, and has never embrassed the analog controls.

I agree with the other comments, some game genres like puzzles are just much better to handle with a D-pad.

I hope Nintendo doesn't make any mistakes in haste with getting this new system out and trying to break any misconceptions of their system being only for kids.

I can see the big N trying to change "too much" just to overcome the critics.

There is nother wrong with labeling the buttons "A" and "B" - so I have no clue as to why they would drop those labels, but I do have to say that when "coaching" people new to a game, I just say the "green" and "red" buttons because it's easier for them to catch on.

I personally hate the symbols used by the Playstation.

What about the idea of a controller with interchangable parts? You want dual-analog, you snap in the 2 analog controls. You want d-pad on the left, and analog on the right, you just snap in the controls into place. Or vice-versa... its up to you. That would be an interesting concept.

And on one last note: The controller ?has? to have some sorta of up,down,left,right input device, I can't see Nintendo breaking completely away from standard gaming logic. So if Nintendo doesn't come out with a controller with a d-pad, 3rd party controller suppliers will.

Re:Oops my wife just stopped playing games with me (1)

-kertrats- (718219) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174294)

What about the idea of a controller with interchangable parts? You want dual-analog, you snap in the 2 analog controls. You want d-pad on the left, and analog on the right, you just snap in the controls into place. Or vice-versa... its up to you. That would be an interesting concept. nice idea in concept, except the wiring for digital or analog controls would be far too different to allow you to move things around without the controller being gargantuan, possibly even approaching the size of the original Xbox pack-in controller.

What on earth are they planning? (1)

Kamalot (674654) | more than 9 years ago | (#11169930)

You knew the D-Pad was being evolved out. It went from the primary position in the old controllers to secondary status on recent controllers; Dreamcast, Xbox and GameCube. Most games only use it as a means of selecting weapons or menu items these days. Only the PS2 keeps the D-Pad (or D buttons) in the primary gaming position and that is simply because it is more important to Sony that the controller "look good" rather than arranging the elements based on frequency of use and usability. It is a carryover from the PS1 controller, with the analog sticks slapped on as an afterthought. Even more impressive news would be is Sony decides to bring the PS3 controller into the modern age by putting the analog stick in the primary thumb position. After looking at the analog nub on the PSP, I highly doubt it will happen.

Re:What on earth are they planning? (1)

Firehawke (50498) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174548)

Let's sure as hell hope not, considering how much I still use the d-pad on my PS2. Analog is fine for many games, but I've got more than a few where precise movement means d-pad only.

Maybe their patent expired (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11169934)

Nintendo has a patent on the D-pad. No other manufacturer was permitted to copy this control design (which is why the Playstation has the stupid 4 button design which makes doing "diagonals" very difficult, and back in the day, the Sega Genesis had a ROUND dpad with raised + on top.

It's still unfortunate though, as I have always preferred this control for navigating menus.

Nintendo wouldn't be happy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11170321)

... as it's not called a "D-PAD" but a "+ Control Pad" (shared by all Nintendo controllers since the NES days).

The D-PAD is the thingy that's on the Xbox Controller.

Re:Nintendo wouldn't be happy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11171589)

That's right. Nintendo, the inventor of the d-pad, has never called it a d-pad.

But the term evolved from two sources. One, Sega referred to it as the "d button" in their early console days. Two, it is also considered an abbreviation of the term "directional pad," which was used in magazines and game documentation.

This is obviously a decoy (1)

incom (570967) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170550)

to mess with the competitions head, maybe it'll make sony or MS follow suit, only to be screwed over after nintendo releases thier console *with* a d-pad. Apple should start doing this, leak some screenshots of something that looks and sounds cool, but sucks ass in useability, and hope that the competition copies it while they ditch in before release. I'm hoping the nintendo revolution will have 802.11b/g wireless networking, maybe 5 gigs of internal storage, and a VR PORT, so that my dream of VR mmog's will come true.

Re:This is obviously a decoy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11174193)

Yes, I'm sure MS and Sony are going to take their cues from the #3 console manufacturer...

Re:This is obviously a decoy (1)

incom (570967) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174961)

Have you soon xbox sales in japan? It's irrelevant there, I'd be surprised if nintendo isn't #2 worldwide.

Large Grain of Salt (3, Informative)

mushroom blue (8836) | more than 9 years ago | (#11170635)

so Computer and Video Games is known to post not only rumors, but blatantly false information. they've had their asses nailed to the wall before for things like this, and I'm pretty sure this is simply another case of trying to get hits on their website.

so yeah. until you see something more official (at least more official than this rag), take this story with a HUGE grain of salt.

Re:Large Grain of Salt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11172586)

...until you see something more official (at least more official than this rag), take this story with a HUGE grain of salt.
What are you saying?

Take this story with TWO huge grains of salt. =P

Re:Large Grain of Salt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11172614)

Computer and Video Games is known to post not only rumors, but blatantly false information.
Sounds a lot like Slashdot, doesn't it?

Re:Large Grain of Salt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11172851)

Yeah, and you know what the typical gaming jorunalist will write up?

"Well, the Revolution is out and it's not as bad as we told you it was going to be. Turns out Nintendo flip-flopped on their previous promise to remove the d-pad and a and b buttons, and have put them back in. Those old fashioned Jap jerks just don't know how to let go, do they?"

The fact is, it's cheap and easy to fabricate bullshit and pass it off as exclusive news. And that's why the gaming press is worthless.

I'm waiting for a press release. The concept of unofficial speculative pre-release hype and FUD is so early 1990s that it's not even funny any more.

What about trackballs/mice? (2, Insightful)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 9 years ago | (#11171009)

Certain types of games are better-suited to touchpads, trackballs, mice, cameras, etc. I am surprised that no aftermarket trackball controllers are available for home game consoles. Two types of games suffer from this limitation, and they are both types of games that do better on PCs than consoles:

1) Resource management / icon-based / menu-based games
- It is easier to move and click a mouse/trackball than with a joystick or d-pad.
- Examples: The Sims, Black and White, Warcraft, etc.

2) FPS games
- The ability to quickly aim and
- The ability to move with a different hand than the aiming hand
- Examples: Doom, Quake, Half-life, Unreal, and probably 50% of PC games

In general, a mouse/trackball offers higher-precision, greater feedback, and an infinite range of speeds over a d-pad or trackball. But it is bad with simple forward, backward, left, and right. But fewer games today use that model. Why do we continue to use these old-style inputs?

FYI: This is called multimodal [informit.com] input, where each device complements the abilities of the other. The keyboard/mouse paradigm is the most generally powerful multimodal combination discovered thus far.

Bah (1)

aztektum (170569) | more than 9 years ago | (#11171051)

I hate this new controllers for every console. It's one reason why PC game accessories don't sell for crap. They keyboard/mouse works for almost anything except flight sims. Just another way to make money each time around, "Now you get to buy 3 more controllers to play with your friends!" I like the way the Gamecube controller works. The button layout is weird to look at, but puts the focus on the "A+B" gameplay type. Simple? Yes. Effective? Indeed. Oh well, I'm just curious where that Zelda game they showed clips of at E3-04 are?

Re:Bah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11171609)

That new Zelda game will be released for the GameCube in 2005, just like it says in the trailer video.

HOORAY! (1)

Devil's Avocado (73913) | more than 9 years ago | (#11171218)

Ding, dong, the d-pad's gone,
wicked pad,
stupid pad,
Ding, dong, the dumb-ass d-pad's dead!

Gosh, and it only took what, 20 years for Nintendo, the original perpetrators, to abandon this atrocity. The d-pad is a sadist's exercise in reverse ergonomics. You make the player hit four buttons instead of using one stick, then you put it under his left thumb when he's probably right-handed. Brilliant!

If you want a glimpse of how game controllers should look, go back in time and check out the epyx joystick: http://www.cedmagic.com/tech-info/remote-control/e pyx-500xj-joystick.html [cedmagic.com]

These things were incredibly comfortable to use. Unfortunately they weren't manufactured very well and would break all the time, but the ergonomics were fantastic.

Now if only Sony and MS would follow suit...

Re:HOORAY! (1)

belg4mit (152620) | more than 9 years ago | (#11171426)

You put it under the left thumb because while you typically do not need to change direction rapid-fire, you need to jump/shoot/fly that way.

Re:HOORAY! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11172653)

You're severely underexperienced with console gaming, and it shows.

Who knows, maybe you are an old-school PC gamer who can't stand consoles, but seriously, the last thing an actual console gamer would argue about is the handed-ness of the traditional controller layout, or the d-pad's inadequacy compared to a right-handed digital microswitch joystick with no travel (like the crap Epyx joystick that you posted). I've used that thing before, and it would be a poor substitute for a d-pad with almost any of the best console games over the past 20 years, save few.

Basically, the d-pad/analog thumb pad combo is great. I doubt this unconfirmed rumor about Nintendo is true, although the possibilities for new types of games that don't require the d-pad may also be exciting.

Just like GameCube (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11171311)

They were going to drop the d-pad from the GameCube controller too. Too many developers complained though, and they slapped on a GBA d-pad to make them happy. As long as they have something new to replace it with, I'm perfectly fine with this. Getting rid of face buttons though? That's certainly odd.

Glad to see the D-pad go because (1)

NeMon'ess (160583) | more than 9 years ago | (#11171400)

On the current gamepads both the d-pad and analog stick aren't in the most ergonomic position. One is too too high up. The other is too low and to the right of where my thumb naturally rests. With only an analog stick, the placement can be optimal again.

Now if they would just shape the pad more ergonomically. Hold your hands and arms like they're holding a gamepad. The back of your hand and forearm ought to be a straight line because bending the wrist is terrible ergonomics. The current batch of gamepads all make my wrist and hands bend upwards, which leads to discomfort after an hour.

Down with left handed controllers! (1)

megalomaniacs4u (199468) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172002)

Cool!

Maybe I can have the controller on the righthand side for a change.

I'm righthanded like most of the population, and it really sucks all consoles have that dumb lefthanded control system. I mean my left hand is great for mashing buttons, and holding stuff but is all but useless otherwise.

Re:Down with left handed controllers! (1)

Kamalot (674654) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172744)

You should try playing Metroid Prime: First Hunt on the Nintendo DS. You can use your right hand on the touch screen, just like you would use a mouse. Your left hand does a WASD dance on the D-Pad and the left trigger shoots. Brilliant! Try the thumb-strap thing to. Your right-thumb acts JUST like a mouse!

Riot in the streets (1)

ShawnMcCool42 (557138) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172045)

Yes, let's all riot because they're analyzing their perspective and altering to fit a new set of goals.

Eliminating console parity (1)

MilenCent (219397) | more than 9 years ago | (#11172623)

That's what Nintendo is probably doing here.

I just got Midway Arcade Treasures 2, a game in which the dpad is a preferred control scheme for most of the included classic arcade titles. The package was also released for PS2 and Xbox however. It plays roughly the same across all of them, because the controllers are all capable of the same things.

By doing this, Nintendo is striking a blow against easy portability across consoles. I'd say this will work against them, although after the brilliant additions made to the DS, I now thing it MAY be possible they have something much better in the works to replace the pad with.

It's going to be an interesting E3, in any case.

Well that's a little annoying (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174758)

This is just a rumor. What kinda bugs me is that Slashdot rejected another rumor that was far more interesting. That rumor was that the next Nintendo system may come with a VGA port. That may or may not be true, but I think most of us here would appreciate how cool that'd be.

Hrmm (1)

TheBot (806046) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174915)

I do not believe this to be a good thing, except for 3rd party controllers. Example, you want to play a fighting game of an old school caliber, but the analog stick just doesn't feel right...Use the D-Pad, it's probably what you used when you first played anyway(Street Fighter II-Super Nintendo). I believe the D-pad on the Gamecube controller was way too small, and thus gamers didn't use it much. It's as big as my thumb, and that just doesn't work when I want to hit the right d-pad, not top, bottom, right all at the same time. If they adopted the d-pad from SNES they would've had no problem with people using it more. It's a sad day when Nintendo takes away something so...so perfect.

OENOES (2, Funny)

m3g4t0ky0 (658410) | more than 9 years ago | (#11174928)

How will we live without the D-pad and A & B buttons? What's next, Nintendo? The E-pad and C & D buttons?
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