What Happens When A SNES Controller Is Eaten By A Wii U Controller

A few months back, I gasped in horror at the sight of a third-party Wii U pad that, from the hideous Photoshop promotional image, looked to be a sin against everything Nintendo held dear about controllers.

Well, for the past week I've been using the thing. It's called the Controller Pro U. And...there's not much hideous about it. In the flesh, it looks a lot better than it did in that mock-up.


It's Good! - Surprisingly, for a third-party controller that doesn't even ship with a brand name on it, this thing is pretty well made. It's got a great, rough finish that feels good in the hand (no doubt helped by the fact it copies the already-comfortable Wii U Pro/Xbox 360 design), the face buttons felt responsive and the thumbsticks were great, with a nice "tightness" to them that allowed for a lot of precision.

Versatile - The pad works on the Wii U, Wii and even Android systems (via Bluetooth). What's really neat about that, though, is that the controller can trick the Wii U into thinking it's either a Pro pad or a Wii Remote. Meaning, yes, you can play New Super Mario Bros. Wii U with it (the official Pro controller won't work with the game).

D-Pad - I'm going to give a special shout-out to the d-pad, which manages to get a proper Nintendo design on the thing. I'm not sure how they got away with that, but it doesn't matter, it's a nice thing to have, especially on Virtual Console titles and Wii games designed for the Wii Remote's d-pad.


Shoulders - Disappointingly, the shoulder buttons weren't quite up to scratch, especially the triggers, which felt a little "floppy". The bumpers also felt a little loose, with pressure having to be applied right in the middle, or you might not register a press.


Were it not for the shoulder buttons, I'd recommend the Controller Pro U as a must-buy for Wii U owners, both for the quality of the rest of the pad and the sneaky versatility it offers. With that slight disappointment, though, I'm just going to recommend it as a good third-party option, one that gets upgraded to "very good" if you're still playing Wii games or really want to play New Super Mario Bros. Wii U with a proper pad.

The Controller Pro U will be available soon and priced between $US35-$US40. It'll come in five colour schemes: white, gold, North American SNES, PAL/Japanese SNES and black. I'd say go for the SNES ones if you can; the gold looks a little garish, and I was also sent a black model, which with its glossy finish looks a little cheaper, and also attracts fingerprints just by looking at it.


    I was going to get the snes version, Then I noticed the shape looks different than the normal pro ones. And its cheaper aswell so I think its not made as well.

    My final word: Video Not Found.

    Powerful, Luke.

      It sure does bring a tear to your eye.

    Bah American controllers. Our PAL-type European ones had coloured buttons instead of rampant purple.

      The Aus retail version has our coloured buttons: https://www.ebgames.com.au/wiiu-159832-Pro-Controller-U-for-Wii-U--Retro-Grey-Wii-U

        Wow, it even has that horrible grey colour that the controllers were made in. Well done Nintendo.

    This is a fantastic controller. I got one at launch and was going to do a review for it for Vooks.net. Got it home and it felt quite good in the hand, comfortable, solid, ergnomic (+500 points), except for the fact that the sticker that has the "XYAB" on it has the letters on some weird angle to barely squeeze them in and looks unsightly (-5 points). I was able to load up NSMBU, switch it to "Side-ways-wii-remote" mode, and successfully play it, even if it did default to using Y as shoot/runfast and X as jump (ew, -5 points). So i jumped into the Wii Menu inside the Wii U to try out the "Classic Controller" mode as i was so excited to have a single controller for all my Wii U and Wii needs at the same time, especially for stuff like Xenoblade Chronicle and other JRPGs on the Wii. As soon as the Wii menu loaded, this 'snes' controller, desynced itself (-5 points). Ok thats cool i said, probably needs a resync since it technically just became a Wii. The controller wouldn't resync to the Wii U while it was in Wii mode, not after half a dozen attempts (-500 points). It just wouldn't work. So i plugged in my actual Wii console, thinking that maybe it just wouldn't pick up the Wii mode inside the Wii U. Again, wouldn't sync at all to my normal black Wii console (-1000 points). So by this stage i was not impressed, this thing wouldn't sync to anything Wii related whatsoever. So i thought i'd try out some ZombiU multiplayer, and i'd give it a go as a Wii U Pro Controller. By this stage, it wouldn't turn on, at all (-1,000,000 points), and was totally dead except for the charging light (as it was plugged in to charge at the time). I tried everything all over again while it wasn't plugged in when i knew it was fully 100% charged, and still nothing (- 1,000,000 points again). So the controller lasted about 35 mins, i got about 5 mins worth of NSMBU out of it, and it was totally dead and wouldn't turn back on.

    Oh did i start this with "This is a fantastic controller"? I meant to put in #sarcasm.

    So. I'm wondering if Kotaku was on a fantastic acid trip while trying out this controller. I took it back the next day of course, full refund. The controller is a pile of crap, don't waste your time and money.

    Actually, now that i think about it, you guys have the American one? The Australian retail one has our coloured buttons and the ugly angled letters you see here: https://www.ebgames.com.au/wiiu-159832-Pro-Controller-U-for-Wii-U--Retro-Grey-Wii-U Maybe since i got this version from EB Games, its completely crap compared to one ordered in from the US?

      Bugger, I just ordered one from EB, wish I had ready your review first. I had my eye on them for ages, thinking "seems to good to be true" - read a few less than stellar reviews, and then Plunkett's came down and allayed my fears so I popped down the cash. Here's hoping I have better luck than you, though if mine breaks I think I'll open her up and have a tinker.

      hah, i saw that video. sounded painful. what can I say, I could only review the unit I got, and the one I got didn't have any sync issues :(

      Also, you didn't miss much with ZombiU. I couldn't get it working as a pro controller either, and it technically doesn't say anywhere that it works as a pro controller, they just word everything so you THINK it is. That's of course mentioned a lot more clearly in the actual final copy of the review, which even has a video that works :\


      Last edited 21/12/12 11:08 pm

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