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From a pure conceptual perspective, which is the better "Gimmick controller", Wii U Gamepad, or Joy-Con?

Forums - Nintendo Discussion - From a pure conceptual perspective, which is the better "Gimmick controller", Wii U Gamepad, or Joy-Con?

zorg1000 said:
Joy-Cons are an evolution of the Wii Remote which makes them 100x than the Wii U gamepad which was a half-baked idea from the start.

 

This x1000

 

The WiiU Gamepad was horrible, stopped using it when I got my pro controller - only time I had to actually use it was for Zelda BotW when some of the shrines required me to do so.



    

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Wii U gamepad. It offered more opportunity. It offered dual screen gaming. It offered off-tv co-op in lieu of split screen. It offered 5 player multiplayer instead of limiting to 4 players. I was able to use it as a television remote. I was able to use Wii remote's pointer controls on it. It provided the best web browser in gaming history solely on the strength of the dual screen (individuality) concept. And it offered asymmetrical game play. I could skype with my children (who live with their mother but also have a Wii U) using Wii U gamepad while Switch as a whole console has no camera... huge mistake.

The joycon's greatest addition is that you have two controllers right out of the box; something gaming has been lacking for decades now. But the rest of the controller set is simple and the additions are marginal (outside it being split into two functional controllers). While I love the split controller philosophy, the fact that pointer controls are completely removed from the equation really hurts the concept for me. I like pointer controls specifically more than motion controls (I honestly dislike motion controls) so the fact that Wii U gamepad offers me the ability to use pointer controls while Switch controllers do not is a deal breaker.

The concept of Switch itself is better overall but purely speaking on the controllers themselves, Wii U gamepad is the superior concept.

Last edited by GhaudePhaede010 - on 03 December 2018

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GhaudePhaede010 said:
The joycon's greatest addition is that you have two controllers right out of the box; something gaming has been lacking for decades now. But the rest of the controller set is simple and the additions are marginal (outside it being split into two functional controllers). While I love the split controller philosophy, the fact that pointer controls are completely removed from the equation really hurts the concept for me. I like pointer controls specifically more than motion controls (I honestly dislike motion controls) so the fact that Wii U gamepad offers me the ability to use motion controls while Switch controllers do not is a deal breaker.

The concept of Switch itself is better overall but purely speaking on the controllers themselves, Wii U gamepad is the superior concept.

Not necessarily. Several games use the Joy-Con's gyroscope as a sort-of Wiimote like pointer such as TWEWY and the Tomorrow Corp. games. It's not perfect (the cursor can occasionally drift due to no IR, necessitating the use of a recenter button) but it works fine in games that do use it.



The problem with the Wii U gamepad is that while you can make an argument that its concept of asymmetrical gameplay is more innovative, the number of opportunities for it to be practically utilized were so limited that it made the entire concept nothing but a quaint novelty.

TheMisterManGuy said:
GhaudePhaede010 said:
The joycon's greatest addition is that you have two controllers right out of the box; something gaming has been lacking for decades now. But the rest of the controller set is simple and the additions are marginal (outside it being split into two functional controllers). While I love the split controller philosophy, the fact that pointer controls are completely removed from the equation really hurts the concept for me. I like pointer controls specifically more than motion controls (I honestly dislike motion controls) so the fact that Wii U gamepad offers me the ability to use motion controls while Switch controllers do not is a deal breaker.

The concept of Switch itself is better overall but purely speaking on the controllers themselves, Wii U gamepad is the superior concept.

Not necessarily. Several games use the Joy-Con's gyroscope as a sort-of Wiimote like pointer such as TWEWY and the Tomorrow Corp. games. It's not perfect (the cursor can occasionally drift due to no IR, necessitating the use of a recenter button) but it works fine in games that do use it.

As I stated, I dislike motion controls. Motion controls are not pointer controls. That is all there is to it. If you like those controls, good for you. But those are not pointer controls, they are motion controls which I am firmly against.



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TheMisterManGuy said:

The Wii U GamePad had some nice ideas, but most games didn't bother using half of what it offered, and instead just used it for Off TV play, or in the case of shooters and action games, a map. I think the main problem with the gamepad, is that the concept of dual screen gaming in a living room console setting really doesn't work. With a DS, you have both screens in your field of view, but you can only focus on one screen at a time with the Wii U, so that made games like Star Fox Zero an absolute nightmare to play, because now you have to juggle your focus between two de-synced displays in a fast-paced setting. On top of that, you can only use one gamepad at a time, and you couldn't even buy one in stores. I will give the gamepad this though, asymmetrical multiplayer is one of the better uses of it's potential, and is a concept that deserves to be explored more. The ability to play games off TV is also nice, though the range is rather limited.

And all these issues were apparent from Day 1. I always failed to see value vs alternative approaches to same problems, such as "auxiliary info display". How does 2nd screen (requiring shifting visual focus) solve that any better than having modal window/view on main screen triggered by button or gyro tilt? The only potential value is in shared-screen local multiplayer re: "hidden info" but multiple WiiU 2nd displays were not well supported, making it moot. All this is at cost of hardware budget & draining system performance to drive 2nd screen. For... being able to play tethered to WiFI while you sit on toilet? OK.

TheMisterManGuy said:

The Joy-Con meanwhile is a far more appealing controller. If you're familiar with the Wii Remote and Nunchuck, you'll feel at home with the Joy-Con. Ignoring all it's tricks, it's as conventional of a controller as you want it to be. And their detachable nature allows for a lot of flexibility and comfort in gameplay, and since many Switch games allow for at least gyro controls, they actually feel useful in most games. The main thing I like about the Joy-Con though is that although it has a lot of tech, all of it feels useful. The Gamepad had so much useless garbage stuffed into it from a camera, to a sensor bar for the Wiimote, a TV button, an unused expansion port and a Mic. Almost none of it was necessary. With the Joy-Con, everything feels like it has a reason for being there. From passing a Joy-Con to a friend for Mario Kart in Tabletop mode, to feeling the texture of the different actions with HD Rumble, and even the IR camera has its purpose with Nintendo Labo. It's also a much more intuitive and less intimidating controller than the GamePad. A single Joy-Con is very easy for even people who don't play console games to grasp, while the Gamepad was a daunting and confusing nightmare for some.

Basically it is about 3 in 1. Normal modern controller. Twin Remote/Nunchuk. Instant extra controller for local multiplayer (simple NES-style + gyro). EDIT: The last really probably makes it more like 2.5 in 1. None of those is especially noteworthy on it's own (gyro is hardly unique), but they all fulfill specific niche/mode, and are all portable, which is point of system. (if you never use it's portable functionality, all those could probably be equally/better fulfilled by discrete controls at same price point minus battery/screen/etc) So ultimately it's about a very space efficient "packing" of 3 distinct control modes into portable/handheld compatible package. That's it.

I don't think that's really conceptually amazing, it just accomplishes it's very humble goals well.  In all honesty, not all that many people probably place high value on ALL of it's design goals, which is why similar implementations on smartphone gaming have not been especially popular on their own without Nintendo brand marketing. But as platform that can 'demand' attention, it appeals to broader audience. It's pretty easy to fundamentally question WiiU's value re: apparent goals. It's pretty hard to imagine alternate scheme that accomplishes what Switch does out of box re: it's 2.5 in 1 approach, in context of dual handheld portability and home console application.

Last edited by mutantsushi - on 03 December 2018

I'd say Wii U pad. At least the damn thing works, and is great for some games, like Mario Maker. My buddy bought a Switch and Mario w/ Rabbids not too long ago. We can't get through a single co-op mission without the Joycons disconnecting at least 3 or 4 times. And he's only sitting like 5 feet away from the console dock. I thought Nintendo fixed that problem, but I guess not.

thismeintiel said:
I'd say Wii U pad. At least the damn thing works, and is great for some games, like Mario Maker. My buddy bought a Switch and Mario w/ Rabbids not too long ago. We can't get through a single co-op mission without the Joycons disconnecting at least 3 or 4 times. And he's only sitting like 5 feet away from the console dock. I thought Nintendo fixed that problem, but I guess not.

Never had any problems myself TBH. I guess it's case dependent since your's might be an early version. 



TheMisterManGuy said:
thismeintiel said:
I'd say Wii U pad. At least the damn thing works, and is great for some games, like Mario Maker. My buddy bought a Switch and Mario w/ Rabbids not too long ago. We can't get through a single co-op mission without the Joycons disconnecting at least 3 or 4 times. And he's only sitting like 5 feet away from the console dock. I thought Nintendo fixed that problem, but I guess not.

Never had any problems myself TBH. I guess it's case dependent since your's might be an early version. 

I don't think so. He bought it brand new just a month or so ago.



mutantsushi said:
TheMisterManGuy said:

The Wii U GamePad had some nice ideas, but most games didn't bother using half of what it offered, and instead just used it for Off TV play, or in the case of shooters and action games, a map. I think the main problem with the gamepad, is that the concept of dual screen gaming in a living room console setting really doesn't work. With a DS, you have both screens in your field of view, but you can only focus on one screen at a time with the Wii U, so that made games like Star Fox Zero an absolute nightmare to play, because now you have to juggle your focus between two de-synced displays in a fast-paced setting. On top of that, you can only use one gamepad at a time, and you couldn't even buy one in stores. I will give the gamepad this though, asymmetrical multiplayer is one of the better uses of it's potential, and is a concept that deserves to be explored more. The ability to play games off TV is also nice, though the range is rather limited.

And all these issues were apparent from Day 1. I always failed to see value vs alternative approaches to same problems, such as "auxiliary info display". How does 2nd screen (requiring shifting visual focus) solve that any better than having modal window/view on main screen triggered by button or gyro tilt? The only potential value is in shared-screen local multiplayer re: "hidden info" but multiple WiiU 2nd displays were not well supported, making it moot. All this is at cost of hardware budget & draining system performance to drive 2nd screen. For... being able to play tethered to WiFI while you sit on toilet? OK.

The conversation here is not about execution; rather, it was made clear this conversation is about concept. Both of your paragraphs are about execution . The first paragraph starts off talking about concept, "The Wii U gamepad had some nice ideas" but ultimately breaks down to a conversation about execution which, in this case, is off the topic.



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