Video Game Controllers | Gamepads

Video game controllers, also known as gamepads, are handheld input accessories used to interact with video game consoles. Consisting of varied sets of buttons with specific functions and complexities suited for each generation of gaming, game controllers typically include a directional button (D-Pad) for the left thumb, buttons for the right thumb, shoulder buttons (bumpers or triggers) for additional fingers, and assistive ‘Start’, ‘Select’, and ‘Home’ buttons at the center of the input. Since the introduction of early video gaming joysticks and paddles, video game controllers have evolved over time with new features such as additional buttons, additional analog thumbsticks, wireless capabilities, and three-dimensional sensors and accelerometers for an increased level of interaction—as seen in the Wii Remote.

Who invented the video game controller?

The first appearance of video game control can be traced to the switches and toggles used in the 1962 game ‘Spacewar!’, which would lead to the development of arcade machines with similar button-based controls. The first home-based video game controller were the pair of dial controllers included with the 1972 Magnavox Odyssey.

How do you use a video game controller on PC?

While not all video game controllers are cross compatible with out-of-box use on the PC, more modern controllers, those with Bluetooth and wireless connectivity, can be paired to the PC device by accessing your operating systems ‘System Preferences’ and ‘Bluetooth Accessories’ and selecting the discovered controller to be paired.

What is the best video game controller?

Though there isn’t a ‘best’ controller, many gamers have preferences for their favorite gaming controllers. Sony’s most recent DualShock 4 is often considered to be the most comfortable video game controller to hold, while Microsoft’s Xbox One Elite controller may be preferred for their responsive triggers and joysticks. Other gaming controllers have famously helped change the industry by adding innovations like the freedom of the Wii Remote, joystick of the N64 Controller, and feedback of the original Dualshock Controller.

Video Game Controllers

Nintendo Switch
.547” | 13.9 mm; 1.13” | 28.7 mm (Total)
3D
Wii U GamePad
1.6” | 40.6 mm; 1.98” | 50.2 mm (Total)
3D

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GameCube Controller

The GameCube controller is the sixth generation gamepad manufactured by Nintendo and released in 2001 for the GameCube home video game console. The GameCube controller was released together with the GameCube console and as a successor of the Nintendo 64 controller.

Over its lifespan, the controller was available in various colors and revisions such as the WaveBird wireless controller, LodgeNet controller, and White controller, all targeted for different markets. The controller connects to the console via GameCube controller port and has a built-in rumble motor that provides haptic feedback. The only drawback is that it does not have expandable features like its predecessor, Nintendo 64 controller.

The GameCube Controller has a height of 4” (100 mm), width of 5.5” (140 mm), depth of 2.5” (65 mm), and approximate weight of 7.1 oz | (.2 kg).

Collection of drawings of the GameCube Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
The GameCube controller is the sixth generation gamepad manufactured by Nintendo and released in 2001 for the GameCube home video game console. The GameCube controller was released together with the GameCube console and as a successor of the Nintendo 64 controller.

The GameCube Controller has a height of 4” (100 mm), width of 5.5” (140 mm), depth of 2.5” (65 mm), and approximate weight of 7.1 oz | (.2 kg).

Collection of drawings of the GameCube Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
GameCube Controller
Height:
4” | 100 mm
Width:
5.5” | 140 mm
Length:
Depth:
2.5” | 65 mm
Weight:
7.1 oz | .2 kg
Area:
Designer
Nintendo
Released
2001

Drawings include:
GameCube Controller front elevation, top, side

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Dreamcast Controller

The Dreamcast Controller is a control pad made for the Sega Dreamcast video console and released in 1998, having support for every Dreamcast game. The Dreamcast controller spots two “expansion socket” at its tops, a sensitive thumb pad, and larger design, which made it receive lots of criticism for being uncomfortable in larger hands.

In addition, the Dreamcast controller lacked a second thumb pad and a vibration feature that was available in most standard game controllers. Many of its features were incremental ideas from Sega hardware and Saturn’s 3D control pad and came in a standard white color.

The Dreamcast Controller has a height of 6” (152 mm), width of 5.8” (147 mm), depth of 3.4” (86 mm), and approximate weight of 10.6 oz (.3 kg).

Collection of drawings of the Dreamcast Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
The Dreamcast Controller is a control pad made for the Sega Dreamcast video console and released in 1998, having support for every Dreamcast game. The Dreamcast controller spots two “expansion socket” at its tops, a sensitive thumb pad, and larger design, which made it receive lots of criticism.

The Dreamcast Controller has a height of 6” (152 mm), width of 5.8” (147 mm), depth of 3.4” (86 mm), and approximate weight of 10.6 oz (.3 kg).

Collection of drawings of the Dreamcast Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
Dreamcast Controller
Height:
6” | 152 mm
Width:
5.8” | 147 mm
Length:
Depth:
3.4” | 86 mm
Weight:
10.6 oz | .3 kg
Area:
Designer
Sega
Released
1999

Drawings include:
Dreamcast Controller front elevation, top, side

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Nintendo 64 Controller

The Nintendo 64 Controller is the fifth generation gamepad manufactured by Nintendo featuring an M shape with directional pads, control sticks, and ten buttons. The gamepad is the predecessor of the GameCube controller, designed for the Nintendo 64 home video game console, and released in 1996.

The M shape design enables users to hold the controller in three different positions: two outer grips that promote the use of the D-pad, center and right-hand grip promoting the use of the single control stick, and, at the center and left-hand grip. The Nintendo 64 controller became the first game controller to use the analog stick technology and also available in unique colors and variants such as the LodgeNet variant released for various hotel game-playing services.

The Nintendo 64 Controller has a height of 6.01” (152.6 mm), width of 6.3” (160 mm), depth of 2.625” (66.7 mm), and approximate weight of 10.6 oz (.3 kg).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the Nintendo 64 Controller measured with height, width, and depth
The Nintendo 64 Controller is the fifth generation gamepad manufactured by Nintendo featuring an M shape with directional pads, control sticks, and ten buttons. The gamepad is the predecessor of the GameCube controller, designed for the Nintendo 64 home video game console, and released in 1996.

The Nintendo 64 Controller has a height of 6.01” (152.6 mm), width of 6.3” (160 mm), depth of 2.625” (66.7 mm), and approximate weight of 10.6 oz (.3 kg).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the Nintendo 64 Controller measured with height, width, and depth
Nintendo 64 Controller
Height:
6.01” | 152.6 mm
Width:
6.3” | 160 mm
Length:
Depth:
2.625” | 66.7 mm
Weight:
10.6 oz | .3 kg
Area:
Designer
Nintendo
Released
1996

Drawings include:
Nintendo 64 Controller front elevation, top, side

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Wii U GamePad

The Wii U GamePad is a single-touch LCD gamepad designed by Shigeru Miyamoto for Nintendo’s Wii U home video game console. Unlike the original prototype which resembled a cellphone and had circular pads, the revised gamepad features ideas from tablets such as touchscreen controls, upfront facing cameras, and dual analog sticks.

The gamepad touchscreen provides users an option to play games on the Gamepad screen or supplement a game by using a second screen. Besides, the gamepad can work with other controllers such as the Wii Balance Board and Wii Remote Plus. The Wii U Gamepad can also function as a remote control for television with the Nintendo TVii app, provide other content or even send handwritten messages.

The Wii U GamePad has a height of 5.3” (13.5 cm), width of 10.2” (25.9 cm), total depth of 1.98” (50.2 mm), and approximate weight of 17.3 oz (.49 kg).

Collection of drawings of the Wii U GamePad with height, width, depth and screen resolution dimensions
The Wii U GamePad is a single-touch LCD gamepad designed by Shigeru Miyamoto for Nintendo’s Wii U home video game console. Unlike the original prototype, the revised gamepad features ideas from tablets such as touchscreen controls, upfront facing cameras, and dual analog sticks.

The Wii U GamePad has a height of 5.3” (13.5 cm), width of 10.2” (25.9 cm), total depth of 1.98” (50.2 mm), and approximate weight of 17.3 oz (.49 kg).

Collection of drawings of the Wii U GamePad with height, width, depth and screen resolution dimensions
Wii U GamePad
Height:
5.3” | 13.5 cm
Width:
10.2” | 25.9 cm
Length:
Depth:
1.6” | 40.6 mm; 1.98” | 50.2 mm (Total)
Weight:
17.3 oz | .49 kg
Area:

Display Size: 6.2” | 157.5 mm
Resolution: 854 x 480 px

Designer
Nintendo
Released
2012

Drawings include:
Wii U GamePad front elevation, top, side

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Sega Genesis Controller - 3 Button

The Sega Genesis Controller 3 Button is the official control pad made for Sega Mega Drive and released in 1988 for the Japanese market and 1989 for the North American market. It spots three control buttons on the left and D-pad on the right side.

The control pad evolved from the Master System control pad, replacing the numbers on the buttons with letters and including an extra two face buttons. The Sega Genesis Controller 3 Button was the first ergonomically designed control pad for the user’s hands, having a rounded structure and buttons placed in more comfortable to reach positions and in alphabetical order.

The Sega Genesis 3 Button Controller has a height of 3.86” (98 mm), width of 6.5” (165 mm), depth of 1.6” (40.6 mm), and approximate weight of 5.6 oz (.16 kg).

Dimensioned drawings of the Sega Genesis 3 Button Controller with height, width, and depth labeled in elevation views
The Sega Genesis Controller 3 Button is the official control pad made for Sega Mega Drive and released in 1988 for the Japanese market and 1989 for the North American market. It spots three control buttons on the left and D-pad on the right side.

The Sega Genesis 3 Button Controller has a height of 3.86” (98 mm), width of 6.5” (165 mm), depth of 1.6” (40.6 mm), and approximate weight of 5.6 oz (.16 kg).

Dimensioned drawings of the Sega Genesis 3 Button Controller with height, width, and depth labeled in elevation views
Sega Genesis Controller - 3 Button
Height:
3.86” | 98 mm
Width:
6.5” | 165 mm
Length:
Depth:
1.6” | 40.6 mm
Weight:
5.6 oz | .16 kg
Area:
Designer
Sega
Released
1988

Drawings include:
Sega Genesis 3 Button Controller front elevation, top, side

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