A truly huge array of controllers has been released for Nintendo’s Famicon system, many of which have never been seen outside Japan, perhaps something to be thankful for. You are doubtless wondering what on earth the above controller is for; it is a specialised pachinko controller for such famous games as “Pachinko Daisakusen Series”, on the NES. Below is the terrifying JoyBall, as well as the frankly awe-inspiring Meijin-kun, amongst others.
The dread JoyBall; apparently an unmanageable beast, however innovative the design.
The Urutech 3 Meijin-kun.
The reviewer says it better than I could: “I don’t really understand the setup, but the white switch on top of the D-pad lever performs the function of the A/B button. Who on earth designed this thing I don’t know, but what’s even more amazing is that somebody thought this thing would sell (anyone who bought it is pretty amazing too).”
“To me, it’s a rare gem”. Indeed. Astonishingly, he still sees it on sale from time to time. In case you are wondering, it is a completely uncontrollable controller. He gives it a deserved 5 (of 5) for design, and 0 for control.
The Ascii Stick L5 is a specialised one handed controller for use with RPGs. Somehow it never caught on.
The erstwhile Power Glove did actually attain some fame, so you may be familiar with it already.
The excellent rogue’s gallery of NES controllers, Controller Hell, has many more, complete with reviews, some of which actually look quite usable. I am particularly curious about the yet unreviewed “Climber Stick”, which you can see at the base of the page.