Evolution of the Console Controller – ASCIIWARE Super Advantage (1992)
The Super Advantage is a joystick for the SNES which was made and sold by ASCIIWARE under a license from Nintendo. It was intended for players who wanted an arcade-like controller in their homes. The Super Advantage was based on the earlier Nintendo-built NES Advantage and reproduces almost all of its functionality. It uses a stick in place of a D-Pad and has large action buttons with Turbo functionality. Turbo allows the controller to rapidly activate an action button’s function without the player having to actually press the button. Turbo can be set to activate a button at speeds and for lengths of time impossible to achieve with human reflexes. Nintendo did not release a first-party SNES Advantage and it was left to third-party manufacturers to fill the gap.
Throughout the history of video games there has been a back and forth between games on home consoles and on arcade machines. Controls, graphics, and even the gameplay itself often differs between the two. Dedicated arcade players often try to reproduce the arcade “feel.” Arcade sticks like the Super Advantage cater to this group. Some genres, like fighting games, are arguably better controlled by arcade sticks than D-Pads.
Gift of Ray Merkler, 2012.011.066