Hori to release licensed Switch Gamecube controllers

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Mario Gamecube controller

One of the big questions ever since Nintendo announced the launch of  Super Smash Bros Ultimate earlier this year was what they’d do with the controller situation.

For all their innovative brilliance, the Joy-Cons – the detachable controllers than come with every Switch console as standard – aren’t exactly designed for fighting games. During the white knuckle action of an all-out Nintendo character brawl, the Joy-Cons’ size could prove cramp-inducing, while the small buttons aren’t ideal for the precision required to pull off special moves and combos.

For many in the competitive Super Smash Bros scene, the go-to controller is still the classic Gamecube controller. Long since discontinued, Smash players are so dependent on the iconic controller, with its kidney-shaped buttons and analogue shoulder buttons, that stocks are running low.

At E3, Nintendo announced that they would be supporting the Gamecube controller on the Switch, with an adaptor and a new version of the controller. Now, Hori have announced that they’ll too be getting in on the action, with three Gamecube-style controllers.

All three boast at least partially transparent bodies, a nice nod to some of the original designs for the Gamecube’s pad. A Mario controller comes in red and blue, the Pikachu design is all yellow with a see-through back and the Zelda version is black.

They’re all nice designs, and they’ll certainly find some popularity among Smash aficionados. Interestingly, unlike the Nintendo version, which features the classic two shoulder button and one Z button configuration, the Hori pads instead copy the Joy-Con layout, with two buttons on either shoulder. One thing we’re not yet clear on is whether the Nintendo pad will feature analogue shoulder buttons or digital ones, as most modern controllers do. Analogue shoulder buttons require more internal parts to work, however they have the advantage of responding to different amounts of pressure, a feature utilised in games like Super Mario Sunshine.

What is a bit disappointing, however, is that neither the Nintendo or the Hori pads are wireless. We’re hoping to see a wireless Gamecube pad at some point, but for the time being the Pro Controller is the best option.

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Matt Clough

Matt is one of the writers for the Console Deals blog. His favourite console ever is the GameCube, and he will not have a bad word said against Just Dance.