I wrote this back in 2006 for NerdBlurb when the Wii was released. Bare in mind this was before the better Classic Controller Pro came out. It was just weird at the time that Nintendo forced the GameCube controller to have it’s buttons A to A, B to B, etc-etc, when they were in the position compared to a SNES controller. So having a Classic controller helped. Though it felt really weird to play with one for N64 games.
So… you’ve downloaded a few games onto your Wii, and you want to get playing, you could use a GameCube Controller. However you can buy a Wii Classic controller for £15/$20. So why should you buy it when you can use a GameCube controller?
First off, playing SNES games with the GCN controller is awkward, back then, the “B” button became the new “A” button to jump, and the new “Y” button became the new “B”. The thing is, Nintendo has been literal about what the buttons, so A on the GCN is A on the SNES pad, which mean if you’re playing Super Mario World, you’ll be spin jumping instead of normal jumping, plus have you ever tried pressing B and Y together on a GCN pad? It’s quite awkward to pull off unless you’re holding the controller in an odd way.
The Controller itself is very comfortable, think of it as a SNES pad, but a tad thicker. Just like the SNES pad, it features the Dpad, A, B, X and Y face buttons and the L and R buttons; however an additional Z buttons (ZL and ZR), two analogue sticks and a home button are available on the pad for N64 and Wii Home options. The L and R buttons are sprung just like the GCN pad’s triggers, including the digital click. This could be used for original download games for the Wii. There’s a button in between the ZL and ZR buttons that controls a sort of lock on the back of the pad; there are two slots that looks like something can be attached to the back of the Classic controller.
So, why should you buy a Wii Classic controller? Well it really depends on what games you’re going to get, the GCN pad feels OK for all the other consoles (NES, N64, MD/Gen and TG-16), and it’s just a pain for SNES games. I’d say buy it if you’re going to get a lot of SNES games from the Wii Shop, if not, you might not really need it. Otherwise it’s a very nice controller that guarantees to work on all VC games, although the GCN controller at the moment works on all VC games, Sega and Hudson have mentioned that the GCN may not work on up coming MegaDrive/Genesis and TurboGrafix-16 games.
Guarantees to work on all VC games.
Button layout matches SNES pad.
Wireless (connected to the Wii Remote).
Isn’t necessary for other VC games (NES, N64, MD/Gen and TG16).
The two sticks a little too close to each other.
Requires a Wii remote to work.
So… That was my review and analysis of the Wii Classic controller in 2006. As I said above, Nintendo later on would release the Classic controller Pro that would be bigger and a lot more comfortable than the original classic controller. Shame it didn’t come with rumble or made better for N64 games, but it was a good controller for virtual console, and Wii disc based games that used it. I’ll review the Classic Controller Pro later on…