Top Ten: Greatest Nintendo Peripherals

A look back at some of the greatest add-ons and peripherals to ever grace Nintendo systems.

By Kyle England. Posted 08/27/2013 10:00 3 Comments     ShareThis

Accessories, peripherals, or add-ons– call them what you want, but every console has had them. Not content to merely use new gameplay to push the envelope, many hardware and software manufacturers have created physical items to help augment our gaming experiences in ways both big and small. Nintendo, as a forerunner of the modern gaming industry, has had hundreds of first and third party peripherals grace all of its consoles. Most of these peripherals are superfluous, oddly-specific, or just downright idiotic– but there are a select few items that shine out among the rest. Here, we’ll cover some of the best and most useful peripherals to ever come out for Nintendo consoles. Perhaps some of your old friends made the cut?

(Peripherals here are considered to be any sort of physical item that is meant to augment gaming, be it a special controller or other device. Most peripherals are optional on most games.)

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3 Responses to “Top Ten: Greatest Nintendo Peripherals”

  • 1396 points
    penduin says...

    Technical nitpick: The NES Zapper doesn’t need a curved CRT, just a sufficiently bright and fast (fast being the sticking point with modern TVs) display. Pull the trigger and the screen goes black, with a bright box covering one “hit” zone, for one 60th of a second per on-screen target. Some games let you aim at a light bulb and win, if it wasn’t checking for dark during the surrounding frames.

    The Super Scope was even crazier; its hit or miss mechanism was actually based on the timing of when individual pixels were being lit on the screen within that 1/60th of a second timeslice. (Notice how no Super Scope game ever used very dark colors?)

    We might someday build a plasma or LCD bright and fast enough to work with the Zapper, but the Super Scope has almost no chance. :^)

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  • 696 points
    Matthew Tidman says...

    I’m kind of sad that the power pad for NES didn’t make the list even as an honorable mention. I remember hours spent playing World Class Track Meet with that thing and trying to figure out how long I could jump off the mat before jumping back on to get insane scores. Of course, it always ended up being me and my sister kneeling next to the mat slapping the run buttons as fast as we could… Good times.

    Also, where were the good peripherals for SNES. I honestly can’t think of any besides the Super Game Boy.

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  • 264 points
    decoupage says...

    The rumble pak was great for one reason… The video tape that Nintendo Power sent in the mail advertising Star Fox 64 and the rumble pak.

    Thumb up 0

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