Best wireless controllers for retro gaming CrackBerry 2024

If you love playing retro games on your PC, Raspberry Pi, or emulator, you know how important it is to have a good controller. A keyboard just won't cut it when you want to relive the glory days of Super Mario, Street Fighter, or Sonic.

But with so many options out there, how do you choose the best wireless controller for retro gaming?

In this article, we'll review some of the best wireless controllers for retro gaming, from modern gamepads to classic replicas.

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Staff Pick 8bitdo Sn

Nostalgic design with modern features: 8BitDo SN30

8BitDo is a big name in the retro gaming scene, and they're killing it with their accessories. Their latest SN30 controller, the 2023 edition, is a real gem for retro gamers. It's got all the modern bells and whistles: clickable joysticks, rumble vibration, motion controls, wireless Bluetooth, a rechargeable battery, a home button, and even a screenshot button.

Plus, it works with the Switch, Windows, macOS, Android, and Steam, so pretty much any gamer can dive into their favorite retro titles with it. The design of this gamepad takes a few cues from the classic SNES controller, with its rounded sides and snappy bumpers.

8BitDo has rolled out the SN30 in five cool colors, and the transparent purple and green options are just awesome. But heads up to Xbox and PlayStation fans – this controller isn't compatible with those consoles, so keep that in mind before you decide to grab one.

$30 at Amazon
Hori Gamecube

Optimized layout and ergonomics: Hori Gamecube style controller

The Hori GameCube style controller is a fantastic option for gamers looking to recapture the nostalgic feel of the GameCube era with a modern twist. This controller nails the classic GameCube layout, making it an instant hit for those familiar with the iconic design.

The analog sticks are smooth and responsive, and the button layout is super comfortable, especially for long gaming sessions. What I particularly appreciate is the addition of extra shoulder buttons and the remappable functions, giving it a fresh, contemporary edge.

It's also worth mentioning that the build quality is solid – it feels durable and well-made, not like some cheap knock-off. The controller connects seamlessly to the Switch, making it a great choice for titles like 'Super Smash Bros. Ultimate'.

However, hardcore gamers might miss rumble features and NFC support. Overall, the Hori GameCube Style Controller is a superb blend of nostalgia and modern functionality, making it a top pick for GameCube enthusiasts and Switch gamers alike.

$38 at Amazon

Three-pronged gamepad with an innovative design: N64 style controller

The Nintendo 64 controller for the Switch is a real game-changer, especially for those N64 enhanced games. It's like stepping back in time – no messing around with button mapping or tweaks needed.

It's built tough and feels just like the old N64 controller we all loved. Plus, it's got built-in rumble! No more fiddling with those bulky Rumble Paks from back in the day.

Sure, there are third-party versions out there, but if you can, always go for the official Nintendo gear. The only snag? It's pretty much a one-trick pony, ideal mainly for those N64 emulator games.

$37 at Amazon
Hori Gamepad

Compact and portable arcade-style controller: HORI switch fighting stick mini

The HORI Switch Fighting Stick Mini is a game-changer for Switch enthusiasts craving a compact, yet fully-functional arcade experience. Despite its small size, it punches above its weight with responsive buttons and a sturdy joystick, providing a satisfying click with every move.

The design is sleek and it's surprisingly comfortable to use, even during those marathon gaming sessions. It's perfect for fighting games, giving you that authentic arcade feel. The price point is a huge win, offering great value without breaking the bank. While it's not as feature-rich as larger, more expensive sticks, it's a top pick for casual and traveling gamers.

$50 at Amazon
8bitdo Turbografx

Retro-styled controller designed for modern gaming: 8Bitdo TurboGrafx wireless gamepad

The 8Bitdo TurboGrafx wireless gamepad is a total blast from the past, perfectly capturing the retro vibe with modern functionality. This controller nails it with its classic design and ergonomic feel, making those long gaming sessions comfortable.

The 2.4G wireless tech is spot-on, offering smooth, lag-free gameplay which is a game-changer for any retro enthusiast. Battery life is impressive, easily lasting through marathon gaming sessions.

However, it's a bit of a bummer that it's mainly geared for PC Engine and TurboGrafx-16 systems, limiting its versatility. Still, for pure retro gaming on these systems, it's an absolute winner.

$25 at Amazon

Wireless NES controller: KIWITATA wireless controller

The Kiwitata NES Style Wireless Controller is a delightful throwback for any retro gaming enthusiast. It's a wireless rendition of the classic NES controller, embodying a perfect blend of nostalgia and modern convenience. The build quality is surprisingly solid, retaining the iconic rectangular shape and button layout. The tactile feel of the buttons and D-pad offers a satisfyingly authentic experience, reminiscent of the original NES controller. Connectivity is a breeze with its straightforward pairing process, making it compatible with a variety of devices beyond just the NES. Its wireless range is impressive, ensuring comfortable play from a considerable distance. The battery life is another strong point, lasting for numerous gaming sessions on a single charge.

$29 at Amazon

Top wireless controllers for retro gaming mastery

Sn30 Gamepad
Source: 8bitdo

When it comes to wireless controllers for retro gaming, there's a lot to consider: compatibility, design, and performance.

Among the contenders, the 8Bitdo SN30 stands out as a top pick, brilliantly bridging the gap between classic design and modern features.

It's a fantastic choice for gamers looking to dive into retro titles with a contemporary twist. Its compatibility with multiple platforms adds to its appeal.

So, if you're looking to elevate your retro gaming experience with a reliable, versatile, and stylish controller, the 8Bitdo SN30 should definitely be on your radar.

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