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Editorial: The 5 Worst Nintendo Peripherals

Posted on Fri, Jul 30, 2004

Nintendo, as they’ve always stressed over recent years, is a company that demands and provides innovation. While other companies sit back and release the same old thing over and over again, not even thinking about coming out with a product that could change gaming, Nintendo has always strived to do something different. Some revolutionary ideas have come out of this way of thinking, such as the Power Pad, an NES pad that allowed players to use their feet in games like Track and Field, and the Nintendo Zapper, a light gun for the NES that paved the way for light gun gaming in the home and the arcade as we know it.

But we’re not here today to talk about the good ones. Everyone knows that for every one good invention, there have been about 10,000 bad ones. While the good ones are the ones we think are so cool for whatever they do, it’s the crap ideas that come from people that make us laugh and wonder what the hell we were thinking when we bought them. I present to you, ladies, gentlemen, and totally cool cyborgs the 5 Worst Nintendo Peripherals.

#5 – The Super Scope 6 (SNES)

While the NES had the coolest light gun on the planet with the Zapper (even the orange version is alright), the Super Scope 6 for the Super Nintendo just plain sucked. Badly. All of the things that made the Zapper cool, from the awesome Duck Hunt game to the infamous “P-KANG!” noise that was emitted by the spring trigger, was gone. Not only was it gone, but it was replaced by this big, bulky piece of plastic turd that just plain looked like no fun.

The main reason that the Super Scope failed was because Nintendo tried too hard to improve on the excellent formula of the Zapper. The Zapper was cool because it was handheld. It was the kind of thing that made you feel like you had control because it was so small. But the Super Scope…it was like someone took a sniper rifle, a rocket launcher and a septic system, threw them all together, stuck a wire in it and out came the Super Scope. It was the Super Nintendo’s way of crapping on heritage.

#4 – The Virtual Boy

At a time where the idea of 3D gaming was starting to become a reality, Nintendo had a great idea - Make a semi-portable console that’s 2D, but use depth perception to mess with the player's heads. Oh, and make sure it’s really, really red. In case you never had the honor of seeing a screenshot of a Virtual Boy game, this is what it looked like.

Looks pretty cool, doesn’t it? Now, take that, make it darker. Don’t forget that the games suck, for the most part. Needless to say, this thing reeked of failure since day one. As a matter of fact, it kinda makes my stomach sting just writing about it, so let’s just go on to the next piece of crap…

#3 – The Power Glove (NES)

The only way people know about this thing still is probably because of the Nintendo-laced movie “The Wizard.” How would people remember this from a movie? All because of a kid named Lucas…

Now, the movie was basically about this young adventurer known only as Corey (played by the ever-so-awesome Fred Savage from Wonder Years fame) and his autistic friend Jimmy. They want to run away from home, so Fred Savage sits there and throws darts at a map. They decide to run away to (and I quote Jimmy here) Cali-FORN-ia. Somewhere in between, Jimmy scores 50,000 in Double Dragon, they meet a girl who gets her breast grabbed by an old guy, and meet the ever-mighty Lucas Barton. They walk in on Lucas, who has this crazy glove on his hand. He then turns to them after finishing his game and says, "I love the Power Glove. It's so bad."

In case you’re thinking I’m making this up…trust me, I don’t have the sense of humor/stupidity/lack of brain capacity to make this kind of stuff up. You can even go buy it on VHS, if you feel inclined. Anyway, enough about the movie, let’s get back to the device at hand.

This thing had all of the promise to be the most kickass gaming peripheral ever, changing the way games are played almost 20 years ago. But, it sucked. Plain and simple. No matter what Lucas thought of it, it just didn’t work out as well as planned. What a shame…

#2 – R.O.B. The Robot (NES)

Before I even talk about this device, what it did (or tried to do), or how much it completely stinks, I want you to look at that picture again. Doesn’t it just look like something that wouldn’t work? It’s one of those things that screams “useless.” There are certain things in the world that automatically trigger the word “failure” in people’s minds, and this is definitely one of them.

Now that you’ve studied the picture pretty well, I’m sure you wonder what it does. Does it give you free hugs whenever you score 50,000 points in Double Dragon? I’m sure that Autistic Jimmy would’ve liked that, but no, it doesn’t. When you score a touchdown in Tecmo Bowl, does it throw its arms up in the air in celebration and scream wildly like a pack of drunken sports fans? Nope, doesn’t do that either. Believe it or not, this thing plays games with you. By reading with his “eyes” what commands flashed on the screen, R.O.B. would pick up these disc things and place them on the correct buttons on the second controller. It only came with one game, Gyromite, and it sucked at the game horribly. Doesn’t R.O.B. sound cool? If he does, get your ears checked, because the thing sucked.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for…

#1 – The UForce (NES)

Yes, the NES had some huge stinkers for peripherals. But none sucked more than the UForce, yet another idea that failed ridiculously because it didn’t work. Toted as the world’s first “hands-free” controller, the thing sure as hell wasn’t crap-free. While the commercial made it seem pretty amazing before purchase, once you got it home, you wanted to cry after 30 seconds of play. Here’s how a standard purchase of one of these things went in America.

So, a kid walks into a store and sees the TOTALLY AWESOME BRAND NEW UFORCE CONTROLLER! He then freaks out, has about 12 seizures inspired by all of the awesomeness, then gathers up the courage to actually buy such a radical object. It almost jumps back from the young child’s grasp, due to the fact that the kid just plain isn’t cool enough. After toting it around and getting glanced at by all of the ladies because he immediately looks 10 times sexier than he did without it in his possession, he brings it home and hooks it up to his NES, ready to play his copy of Mike Tyson’s Punch Out! He starts up the game, ready to fight like a champion. First round, Glass Joe…5 seconds later, he looks at the device, as he was just served by the worst boxer on the face of the planet. After smacking it around for a moment and getting his !@# kicked by Glass Joe 13 times in a row, he finally throws it across the room as it shatters on the wall into a million pieces. Tears stream down his face as he realizes he just picked up…THE WORST NINTENDO PERIPHERAL EVER!

Yeah, Nintendo HAS had some good ideas since they stopped making cards and started doing video games. But when it comes to good laughs, how could you not think of the horrible ideas like R.O.B. and the Power Glove? I guess our friend Lucas was right when he said that the Glove was "so bad" -- he just didn't know how bad.

Image Credits: Super Scope, Virtual Boy Screen, The Wizard Still, R.O.B., UForce

Posted By: Matt Hack - 53356 Reads

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