Paranoid Posted October 3, 2006 Share Posted October 3, 2006 (edited) I play SMB about equally well with a NES pad or the Advantage... but the stick really shines on Ms. Pac-Man, Tengen Pac-Man, and Marble Madness, none of which I can control at all with a D-pad. I don't insist that a joystick is inherently better than a D-pad... but they're better for me, whose gaming reflexes were developed at a young age with joysticks only (I was 17 or 18 before I ever even saw a NES-type pad). If I'd grown up with the NES, I'd probably be playing Atari with a Genny pad or the Euro pad... Couldn't agree with you more here. Also grew up with Joysticks, and prefer them, and I can certainly see how a joystick would help on the NES when playing a game originally designed for joystick. My argument would be, the best interface for a particular game is inevitably going to be the interface it was originally designed for. Therefore, SMB plays better with a d-pad, Ms. Pac Man, with a stick. ...Atari should have known better than to adopt a technology that wasn't ready for prime-time. (Yeah, I know, I'm looking at it with 20/20 hindsight, and I'm admittedly biased...) Actually, the flex circuit isn't the only annoyance for me. I hate the carbon dots (which corrode, or erode, or anyway need fixing constantly.) Yes, I know they can be replaced with aluminum or gold, but they should have had metal contacts in the first place... and I hate the major pain involved in taking them apart to fix them (which has to be done way too often, due to the carbon contacts). Also, they have to be taken apart to be calibrated (would it have killed them to include a couple of trim pots like my old Radio Shack analog sticks?), and they seem to need different calibration for different 5200s (though I only own two, so it might just be that one of mine's broken). Finally, the lack of proper self-centering drives me nuts (and it's even worse if the calibration is slightly off, so you have to consciously "center" the stick in a spot that's not actually the center). I do agree that, IF they're cleaned and adjusted, IF the game I want to play is properly coded to use them, and IF the rubber centering boot is in good shape, they're very usable... but that's a lot of IF's. And after all that tweaking, if I put the controller on a shelf for 6 months, it'll need tweaking again when I get ready to use it again. I end up playing 5200 games on an emulator more than I ever do on the real 5200 (Heh, and my other 5200 pet peeve is the lack of end labels on the carts. I had to buy a label maker just for this purpose...) I agree with you about everything here, as well (well, except for the end labels. I play multicart, and all my carts are in storage, so I don't *care* about the end label issue. ) You're right about the peculiar behavior of the 5200 joysticks with self-calibration not necessarily working. I think this issue is becoming more appearant as the machines age, and I think part of the problem is that the calibration actually happens in the console, not in the stick. At any rate, 3 different sticks, on 3 different 5200 systems, you'll get 3 different results. Even a digital conversion stick like the PMP RSI 5200 stick will exhibit different behaviors, because there is STILL a digital to analog conversion going on beneath the digital behavior. An EASY way around this is an 800XL. Almost the entire 5200 library is available for the 5200 system (plus thousands of 8 bit titles NOT available for the 5200, as well), and almost all of the games benefit from a TRUE digital stick (you can use whatever CX-40 compatible stick you want, actually). The thing you lose, of course, is two fire buttons. I've still got both, and have no plans on letting my 5200 every go... but, usually I'll turn to the 800XL first to play a particular game if it exists on both. I think the exception would be Countermeasure. Now that I've got a decent USB joystick, I play MOST games on most consoles on emulation as much or more often than on the actual consoles. It really makes a huge difference having a suitable stick for emulation. But you're right... it is the conditional IFs on the 5200 that make it a difficult console to deal with. It is still my favorite retro video game console system, and my favorite Atari console system. But, in retrospect, the 800xl makes a *better* 5200 console system than the 5200, in most ways. IF all the stars are together, there really is no substitute for a well written game on a 5200 in good condition with a joystick that is well tuned and maintained. Unfortunately, this is a rare occurance. Edited October 3, 2006 by Paranoid Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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