JAPAN ONLY 6 Button Mega Drive/Genesis Controller | Gallery & Impressions - TheFamicast.com: Japan-based Nintendo Podcasts, Videos & Reviews!


Wednesday, October 27, 2021

JAPAN ONLY 6 Button Mega Drive/Genesis Controller | Gallery & Impressions

The addition of Sega Genesis/Mega Drive titles to the Nintendo Switch Online service via the Expansion Pack took me, and I’m sure many of you, by surprise. While the value of the additional service is up for debate, there was one other cool thing came out of the announcement that I also didn’t expect - a wireless Genesis/Mega Drive Controller. NSO members in Japan got an extra cherry on top with a 6 button variation of the controller that is available right now on the My Nintendo Store online in Japan. We got our hands on one and we’re here to tell you all about it. Let’s take a look. 

Like you already know, this 6-button controller, dubbed in Japan as the Mega Drive Fighting Pad 6B, is currently ONLY available to Nintendo Switch Online members in Japan. The controllers are on par with pricing worldwide, coming in at ¥5,478 (roughly $48 USD). This isn’t the first time that Japan lucked out with Sega controllers either. This happened with the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Mini back in 2019 as well. While gamers in the west were limited to the three button controllers, Sega fans in Japan got 6-button controllers. Obviously these were wired, but there was still a disparity there. 

The Controller
As for the controller offered via the My Nintendo Store here in Japan, build quality is on par with what can be found with the other wireless controllers on offer. Things are solid, responsive and feel great. On the top of the controller, you can find the capture button on the left side, the home button on the right and a USB C slot right in the middle. There are also no compatibility issues with any of the games with the launch lineup of titles, so you won’t have to worry about using the mode button or anything like that. Right now, it's solely used for accessing the menu and rewinding the games (holding it). At the same time, there are no games in the current lineup that make use of the six buttons at the moment. This could obviously change over time. Be sure to check back with us later if/when that happens.

In terms of functionality, this controller can be used (obviously) with the Japanese Mega Drive app and western Genesis/Mega Drive apps. As with the Famicom, Super Famicom and Nintendo 64 controllers, the 6B controller will appear at the top left hand side of the screen under your icon. It doesn’t appear JUST here, but also appears in the other classic game apps offered on Nintendo Switch Online.


Missed Opportunity
It does seem like a real missed opportunity that Nintendo and Sega aren’t providing a six button controller to the West. Nintendo of America did respond to Polygon on the matter by saying, “Different regions make different decisions based on a variety of factors. For the U.S. and Canada, a replica of the original SEGA Genesis controller is the available model. This was by far the more widely used and well known SEGA Genesis controller in these regions.” That may be true, but I think it’s a real disservice that Nintendo isn’t giving gamers a choice here. The same could be said about the Famicom and Super Famicom controllers as well. Hardcore Nintendo fans, the fans that want to drop cash on everything Nintendo has to offer. Sure, it might be hard to fulfill this kind of things on a worldwide level, but I don’t think it would be impossible.

If you grew up playing Genesis/Mega Drive games, this controller is something that you should definitely try to get your hands on. The only caveat here is that unless Nintendo outside of Japan doesn’t do something special here (and it really doesn’t seem like they will), you’re probably going to be stuck paying for the thing via scalpers on the internet.


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