Ultra Racer 64

Date: October 5th, 2020

Some people don't like the Nintendo 64's controller.

For some reason, they can't vibe with holding a literal space ship in their hands.

There are plenty of alternate designs, put out by third parties, that you can get if the default controller doesn't mash your potatoes. But this controller I have in my hands today is special: it's only for racing games.

This is the UltraRacer 64. It's got a steering wheel on it, and a lever underneath. The lever, which is like the trigger of a gun almost but it locks onto your finger from both sides, is mapped to the A&B buttons, with more resistance when you push up (which is the B button) because it's the brake in nearly every racing game ever. It was a safe bet.

There is no analog stick, so instead there's a switch on the side that changes the trigger on the bottom into your up and down (since the wheel is your left and right), so you have to do a little bit of fuckery to properly navigate the menus.

A problem I ran into is that one, the Up and Down are swapped. Down is up, up is down. Makes me feel like I'm gonna get abducted by some aliens from space who kinda look like Jamie Farr.

This takes a little getting used to, but as long as you're willing to carefully navigate the menus, it's a fair trade off... pending the controller actually works properly.

Does it?

I mean, yeah. Basically. I don't know how satisfying it is. It doesn't feel like driving, since it's not a literal steering wheel. It's like how we'll drive cars in the future or something. But unfortunately, I live in the past. So I'm not quite vibing with it.

The first game I tested it with was Star Wars Episode 1 Racer, since it's spaceshippy and made semi-sense. I don't know. I'm just winging it.

It controls fine enough. I feel like I'm making shitty turns that hurl me towards walls, but that might just be because I suck ass at the game.

So then I tried Diddy Kong Racing with it. It controlled a little better, but it's still awkward. It's hard to make precise turns with it, which is odd, since it makes it seem like it's perfect for it. But for whatever reason, the moves feel drastic. You get better control out of the regular N64 controller. Hell, the turns would be more precise if you put the entire middle handle of the controller inside your vagina and tried to hit your G spot with the Z button. For collection sake, if you find it cheap, pick it up. But it's not a great controller to use.