Knock-off wii remote OK?
February 23, 2010 3:20 AM   Subscribe

Can someone confirm that the knock-off wii remotes available on ebay or deal extreme work as well as a nintendo one?
posted by pompomtom to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (12 answers total)
There's plenty of reviews on Dealextreme stating that they work fine, occasionally there are build issues, such as the A-button being harder to push, or a clicking noise on the B-button or what have you. I am going to pick up one or two as guest extras. The reviews and product discussions tend to have some work-arounds for the various problems.
posted by Iteki at 3:42 AM on February 23, 2010

FWIW I bought a new, knockoff PS2 controller on ebay. It worked fine for a few hours, after which one of the joysticks broke.

Again FWIW you may find out it works fine, but reliability may not be there.

Personally for my next controller I'm planning on finding a used, Sony one.

yes you're asking about Wii, apologies if this is off-topic
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey at 6:14 AM on February 23, 2010

One of my personal rules is never to buy third party controllers. Almost always the company that makes the system makes the best controllers. Specifically with Nintendo. I wouldn't risk it. Even with good reviews.
posted by lakerk at 6:50 AM on February 23, 2010

in 20 years of gaming, I don't think I've ever seen a 3rd party controller as good as the original OEM part.
posted by Frasermoo at 6:54 AM on February 23, 2010 [2 favorites]

Don't bother. Controller prices are ridiculous these days but third-party controllers have always been universally bad.
posted by richrad at 7:26 AM on February 23, 2010

Best answer: I bought one from DealExtreme, and while I haven't actually used it yet, it feels exactly like the original, if not more solid. All the buttons are perfectly aligned with perfect resistance, the molding is flawless, and the parts fit together perfectly. I might go so far as to conjecture that they could have been made in the same factory by the same machines.

Of course, I haven't actually used it yet – it might not work at all. But the build quality is very high.
posted by espire at 7:38 AM on February 23, 2010

Gizmodo took a look at a few third-party Wii controllers. They ended up recommending you stick with the official hardware.
posted by permafrost at 7:38 AM on February 23, 2010

in 20 years of gaming, I don't think I've ever seen a 3rd party controller as good as the original OEM part.

20 years ... so that's since 1990? Well, back in the 1980's the Wico joysticks were *way* better than the standard Atari joysticks.

Ah, memories ...

posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey at 9:37 AM on February 23, 2010

never buy third party hardware.

this goes triple for third party memory cards. i lost a few hundred hours of gaming in one swoop. everything worked wonderfully until it didn't.
posted by nadawi at 11:23 AM on February 23, 2010

Yeah, I too have never seen a third-party device that didn't feel like a waste of money and an annoyance. Better to drop the extra cash and be satisfied than to save $20 and spend the next however many years of gaming swinging around a regret.
posted by dervish at 3:01 PM on February 23, 2010

Frasermoo: "in 20 years of gaming, I don't think I've ever seen a 3rd party controller as good as the original OEM part."

I've only seen one, and it was more expensive than the original controller. But a fine specimen it was. One of our two genuine controllers suffered a failure of the L-button, but this thing held up fine.

But this is back when Nintendo controllers were little more than spring mounted buttons. Since then Nintendo and other companies have invented substantially better patents that ward off people from making substantial engineering investments and building a brand of quality. And Nintendo controllers are now substantially more complex, requiring image processing algorithms be applied to the IR camera before being sent out over bluetooth. A friend of mine did an EE senior project to develop an alternative n64 controller and the conclusion they made was that it was very hard to make the ridiculously fast timings without ASIC. Worst of all, nobody tests on anything but official controllers. If their terrible software works with hard coded timings that match official hardware, your controller better be identical or cause bugs.

Add up the fly-by-night nature of unlicensed controllers, the rapid increase in complexity and the testing problem and you have a recipe for mostly inferior quality Wii controllers. The most likely source of quality 3rd party controllers is going to be ghost shifts at official factories.
posted by pwnguin at 3:57 PM on February 23, 2010

Best answer: I bought some of the Wii controllers (2 Wii motes and 2 nunchucks) from Deal Extreme. The Wiimotes are not great, but they work. One has aiming issues. The nunchucks both have sticky joysticks. One of them has buttons that don't work well.

I still think it was worth the savings for backup or party controllers. But I wouldn't use them as my primary controllers.
posted by monkeystronghold at 5:48 PM on February 23, 2010

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