Super Advantage

The other day, I kind of gushed about the best controller ever made, the NES Advantage. So, it kind of stood to reason that when there was an Advantage controller that was for the Super NES, that I would have to have it. I mean, an updated version of my favorite controller ever for what was then my current favorite video game system? It’s got Super NES styling? Insta-sale!

Super Advantage

But, somehow, this controller ranks near the bottom for any controller I’ve ever used. How? Well, let’s see here.

The button layout is terrible. The two grey buttons on the stick are for the L and R buttons, a.k.a. the ‘shoulder buttons’, that are on the top of the controller. So, naturally, these were moved to the bottom of the control panel.

Even more aggravating is that fighting games were pretty popular around that time, and I would have loved to use this thing to replicate the arcade experience, but the buttons weren’t laid out in the classic ‘two rows of three’ layout that made fighting games work. I tried to make the ‘two rows of three’ happen by assigning the ‘L’ button to the top row and the ‘R’ button to the bottom row, but it was a fairly poor substitute.

The buttons themselves also seemed to stick in the ‘depressed’ position if you didn’t hit them dead-center, and since the controller is so huge, there’s a lot of travel between the buttons, and a lot of mis-hits.

The slowmo button is relocated to a giant button in the center of the controller where it’s super-easy to accidentally hit.

The LED’s that show how fast the autofire is firing have been removed, so it’s kind of a guess now. Sure, there are sliders, but they’re not particularly easy to gauge.

And, at least on mine, the stick doesn’t always recenter itself properly. Mine liked to hang out in the down-left position. That’s probably a defect in my controller, but I was so disappointed in every other aspect of this thing that I never bothered to replace it, and I wouldn’t buy another joystick until 2011, which we’ll get into another day.

About the only good thing I have to say about this controller is that it helped be to finish Battletoads in Battlemaniacs. Mostly because whoever made that game reversed the most common assignments for buttons, and I could only make anything resembling progress by using the stick’s bizarro layout.

Still, it’s a bad controller, one that I wouldn’t even wish on someone I didn’t like.