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Dee Yun: (contact-deleteme[at]-deleteme-direman [dot] com) 2014-07-14 04:35:38
Wii U Pro Controller
Nintendo innovated just about every single controller feature we take for granted today: the d-pad, shoulder button, 4x face button formation, trigger, analog stick, rumble, and (boooo) motion control. Problem is, they'd invariably jumble these features together into awkward, clumsy combinations that would thwart both the hands and the mind.
And this current Wii U "GamePad" is the worst monstrosity yet. "Let's take a single touch tablet and slap controller buttons on it willy-nilly, so it's nigh useless for either purpose!"
The "Pro Controller" is a tacit admission to this shortcoming. It's essentially a repurposed Xbox controller, only with the face buttons swapped around. Yes, I understand that Nintendo introduced their layout first, way back with the SNES. However, in terms of gamer literacy, Microsoft firmly established the universal XYAB position.
If you're going to copy someone else's (superior) product, go all the way.
Or at least go with completely different iconography that doesn't cause confusion. Sony's hieroglyphs don't cause any issues, even though there's a shared X button. That's because the other three are symbols, which renders the X a shape as well: a diagonal cross. It's no longer a letter, and creates its own unique input interface.
These are basic principles of design, Nintendo.