Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous’ Category

Wico Command Control joystick – Atari 2600   2 comments

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Stylish, functional, high quality, sturdy and comfortable. Simply the best Atari 2600 controller out there.

Recently I broke my left thumb in an accident at work, and I thought my video game playing was done for a while.  That was until I saw that I have the Wico Command Control joystick for the Atari 2600, or the Atari 7800 in my case.  Most Atari 2600 games use just one button, and on the standard Atari 2600 controller, this button is to be pressed by your left thumb or finger.  The Wico Command Control places an alternative button on top of it’s joystick, and now I am able to control both the joystick, and firing button using my one good hand.

The controller itself is very tall, and feels very solid.  The shaft is made from steel, and everything surrounding it is made out of very hard plastic.  It feels nearly like an arcade controller.  For those lucky ones with two good hands, the button on the base is very large, and easy to use as well.  This controller was made in the early 80’s (presumably), back in a time where stuff was expected to last.  The controller does gets tiresome if you hold it for a while, because more force than usual is required to move the joystick, and it’s a bit heavier than average.  However if you place it on a smooth surface like a coffee table, the wide sturdy base, and rubber feet make so that only a minimal amount of force from your left hand is required to hold it in place.  Some suction cups on the bottom would have been ideal, but that is my only gripe with it.  That and auto-fire would have been nice too.

Until my thumb heals, you can expect lots of Atari 2600, and Atari 7800 reviews, along with any games that I come across for other systems that do not require the use of my left hand.  For those Atari reviews, I’ll be using the Wico Command Control joystick, which is the highest quality joystick I have ever used for the Atari 2600, and is highly recommended for any Atari fans.

Posted January 15, 2014 by thebandit2006 in Atari 2600, Miscellaneous

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Namco Plug It In and Play 5 in 1   Leave a comment

Namco’s Plug It In and Play 5 in 1 is one of those things that I bought as an impulse buy.  It was only $4 used at the local Value Village.  It’s a compilation of 5 of Namco’s early 1980’s classic arcade games that are contained in a compact little console.

This is awesome!

This is awesome!

The games included are Pac-Man, Galaxian, Dig Dug, Bosconian, and Rally-X.  Rather than being emulated, these games seem to be written specifically for this hardware.  They are very close to the arcade versions, and the only real noticeable differences on most games are the sound quality, and the placement of the scores to the right of the screen rather than the top.  All games keep their hard arcade difficulty, and speed, which will come as a joy to those who’ve played these games in the arcade, and a shock to those who have only played the other easier console versions.  The Pac-Man game however is very unfair in it’s collision detection when you are trying to eat the ghosts.  Merely touching the ghosts is not enough, and it seems like you have eat the entire ghost in order for it to register.

The console itself is very well made.  It plugs into your TV using the attached A/V cables, and is powered by 4 AA batteries.  The battery life is pretty good.  You won’t be putting the time into these games as you would a game like Skyrim, so it may be a few months before you have to change the batteries.

The absolute best thing about this console by a mile is the joystick.  The joystick is a 4-way joystick just like the arcade machines have.  That means it is physically impossible to move the joystick in a diagonal direction, and that means when you means to press the joystick to the left, it goes exactly to the left, with no chance of hitting a diagonal direction instead.  The other Namco compilations for other consoles can emulate the sights, and the sounds of the arcade, but this takes it a step further and emulates the sensation of an arcade joystick as well, and therefore is my preferred way of playing these old school games.