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Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: March 3rd, 2020, 7:54 am
by MSR1701
CaptainCruch wrote:
VideoGameCritic wrote:Intellivision control "phones" wires - could they make these any shorter? You practically need to keep the console on your lap to play it!
PS4 "sliver" buttons - too skinny to read the symbols; nobody knows what they do. Tapping one is different from holding it in for 5.24 seconds. WTF
Atari 5200 non-centering joysticks - this just may be #1.


Instead of 'Console Design Blunders' maybe you can narrow it down to 'Controller Design Blunders', since a lot of blunders since to to focus on the controllers! The wires of the Intellivision, the fragility of the Atari 5200 controller, the uselessness of the original CD-i remote controller, the gigantic Xbox 1 'Duke' controller.... (for good measure, you could throw in some third-party controllers too... PowerGlove like...)


As play control is a significant part of the gaming experience, I would have to agree.

For Console issues, we could list systems like the Sega Saturn, Sega CD and Atari Jaguar for being complex programming beasts, though as the industry was in a transition from machine code programming to the libraries such as the PSX offered, not sure if the blame can be put on the hardware itself. I have read many interviews where seasoned 80s machine code programmers loved the Jaguar, but anyone who was not familiar with multi-core processing could not wrap their heads around it...

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: March 3rd, 2020, 7:55 am
by MSR1701
Oh, and for 3rd Party Controllers, MadCatz and any PS2/Xbox wireless controller that was not made by Logitech

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 14th, 2020, 7:43 am
by VideoGameCritic
I was thinking about making an alteration to the list. There has been some discussion about how the lack of a DVD player in the Dreamcast probably should not apply.

I'm thinking about replacing that with the whole N64 controller pak/rumble pak swapping thing. They only put one slot in the controller, so it can be a headache when using memory packs. Thoughts?

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 14th, 2020, 9:04 am
by Retro STrife
VideoGameCritic wrote:I was thinking about making an alteration to the list. There has been some discussion about how the lack of a DVD player in the Dreamcast probably should not apply.

I'm thinking about replacing that with the whole N64 controller pak/rumble pak swapping thing. They only put one slot in the controller, so it can be a headache when using memory packs. Thoughts?


I think swapping that one out makes sense. I also thought the VMU one was actually a good design - I love the VMUs screens and they didn't need batteries unless you used them separately from the controller (which few people did).

The single slot on the N64 controller was an annoyance, but there's a few I'd put over it:

-In my opinion one of the biggest console design blunders ever was Nintendo choosing cartridges over CDs for the N64. To me, that's top 5. N64 diehards would tout the lack of load times, but the reality is that PS1 CD's had a huge advantage over N64 carts in every other way (storage space, sound, cutscenes, cost to produce, etc.). It played a large role in developers and consumers jumping ship and going to Sony.. Nintendo is still paying for that design flaw to this day, as they never recaptured their big market share lead.

-Another one: the Playstation 2 "disc read error". Before the Red Rings of Death came along and wiped out every Xbox 360 on the planet, the most infamous hardware failure defect was probably the PS2 disc read error. Many early PS2's were prone to it, and it was virtually unrepairable, thus killing the system. And unlike Microsoft, Sony had awful customer service and refused to fix your system if the warranty had expired.

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 14th, 2020, 9:48 am
by CharlieR
Not exactly sure what model PSP I have, I know it's a later slim system, but the power slider is right under your right index finger while playing. I have actually inadvertently put the system to sleep during intense moments of gameplay.

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 14th, 2020, 4:11 pm
by Alucard1191
You know, I just read the whole 'controllers should have their own entry' idea, and I think that is a good idea. From the power glove to the utterly monstrous steel battalion set up, (My friend loved it... I didn't) there have been a lot of strange controller designs over the years. Especially if you dive into third party peripherals.

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 14th, 2020, 5:42 pm
by Retro STrife
That's a pretty good point Alucard. Tons of bad controllers.. the massive original Xbox controllers are worth a mention too. He could even expand it more generally to "console accessories", to easily hit 20 entries.

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 17th, 2020, 2:17 pm
by VideoGameCritic
Another possible item are the wires that attached to the Wii-mote. Here you have a perfectly good wireless controller, and you were going to mess it up by running a wire between that and the nunchuck? My friends complained about that all the time.

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 17th, 2020, 2:32 pm
by Alucard1191
Complete agreement on the wii-mote set up. To be honest I'm not overly in love with the Switch's controller set up, but I think it is worlds better than the wii-nunchuck. I hate how much those things chew through batteries too.

Re: Console Design Blunders

Posted: April 19th, 2020, 8:06 pm
by Voor
What was the point of the spring loading in the original NES? Why not go with the classic “stick a cartridge in” and be done with it? Why the extra step?