The NES Classic Edition is quickly shooting up to the top of holiday wish lists everywhere. It’s clear that Nintendo has struck gold with their reproduction of the classic console. Anyone who is able to find one (which is proving to be a very difficult task) is jumping at the opportunity to play classic, expertly emulated NES games in their living room once again.
It all sounds great. Most of it is. The problems start the moment that you sit down and realize just how short the Classic Edition’s controllers’ cords are.
The cords on the NES Classic Edition’s controllers check in at about 30 inches in length. If you’re having a hard time imagining how short that is practically speaking…well, that’s because we’ve been using wireless controllers for years and haven’t had a reason to burden ourselves again with this antiquated technology until now.
In practice, you’re either going to be sitting really close to the TV or putting your console in the middle of the floor in order to compensate for the cord length. That’s not good. While Nintendo should have made some kind of alternative available, the fact that they did not means that you are going to need to pursue one of these other options.
This isn’t the most elegant option, but it’s certainly the simplest. Third-party manufacturers such as Insignia, Nyko, and MyArcade have heeded the call of fans and decided to release official extension cables for the NES Classic Edition. They plug right in, they extend the length of the cord by 6-10 feet depending on the model you buy, and the average retail price for one is about $9.99.
That’s not a bad deal so long as you are still comfortable playing with cords.
My Arcade GamePad Classic Controller
MyArcade strikes again with a plug-and-play wireless controller for the NES Classic Edition. This controller works as well as you would expect it to work (the range is up to 30 feet), goes for $14.99 (or $24.99 for a bundle that includes an extension cable), and it can be set up in seconds. You can even use it for the Wii and Wii U.
The biggest problem with these controllers is their design. You bought an NES Classic Edition to replicate the feel of playing an NES, and the this controller’s design (while practical) doesn’t help complete the illusion.
Nyko Miniboss Wireless Controller
Here we go. While slightly more expensive than the My Arcade model (this one goes for $19.99), the Nyko sports a better overall design that feels more like a proper NES controller. It’s not quite the same as holding a proper NES controller in your hands, but it’s a well-made, practical alternative.
Much like the NES Classic, however, you’ll have some trouble finding one.
Wii Classic Controller
As it turns out, the wired Wii Classic Controller is plug-and-play compatible with the NES Classic Edition. Sure its cord is only six inches longer, but the analog stick is fully-functional and ti’s quite possible that might have one laying around.
Admittedly, this isn’t the best option, but it’s still superior to the packaged NES Classic Edition controller from a convenience standpoint.