Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The greatest secondary game peripherals ever

Games have been around for many, many years, and additional peripherals have been around for just about as long. But which of these add-ons are the best of the best? Which of them deserve to be immortalized in gaming history? Here are a few secondary game peripherals I really think are the best of the best.

The Wii Zapper
Debut: November 2007

When people first saw the Wii remote, many immediately thought "Wow! I can't wait to play a first-person shooter on that baby!". And since November 2006, plenty of FPS games have been released, but few felt like what the gaming public had imagined.

Then along comes the Wii Zapper. Built for comfort and immersion, Nintendo's upcoming gun shell for the Wii remote has been built to draw the players into the game like never before. Gripping the stock with one hand and the barrel with the other, we'll soon be able to fire away at zombies, Nazis and Moblins in a way we could previously only dream of. With many upcoming game releases incorporating Zapper support, this is one peripheral that's quite unlikely to simply fizzle out. Come November 19th, you can bet your Nunchuks I'll be happily shooting away in Link's Crossbow Training with the brand new Wii Zapper.

DK Bongos

Debut: December 2003

Whoever thought that such a simple concept could become such an engrossing experience? The premise is simple: Just hit the bongos with the beat of the music to build up combos. The experience, however, is frantic and insanely fun! With beats coming at you like bats outta hell and randomly having to clap (Recognizable by the Bongos' built-in microphone), this is one of those games that are simple to grasp, hard to master.

There's actually one other title that makes use of the Bongos beyond simply playing music. Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat is a side-scrolling platformer based not on defeating enemies, but stringing together combos and gathering bananas. Sure, you'll stomp on a Klaptrap or two every now and then, but the real point of the game is to accumulate as many points as possible by the end of the stage. An incredibly unique game for an incredibly unique peripheral!

The dance pad

Debut: October 1998

Perhaps the most popular of all secondary game peripherals, the dance pad has revolutionized the rhytym-based game world. Think of it as the DK Bongos, but add two buttons, subract the microphone and substitute hands for feet. That's right, feet. The dance pad is placed on the floor and, as hinted by the name, is danced on. Players must step on each arrow as it reaches a certain point on the TV screen, building up points and possibly combos. If a player misses too many steps, it's game over.

Just like the DK Bongos, this is a game that's easy to grasp, yet very hard to master. In some situations you'll be stamping, hopping, jumping and stumbling in a frantic effort to hit all the steps. Needless to say, this is extremely fun to play, as well as watch.

As an added bonus, the dance pad is compatible with most every video game on the system it was made for. So go ahead, play some Final Fantasy on that baby! Good luck getting past the first hour without falling down.

So then, those are some secondary peripherals I really felt stood out from the rest. An honorable mention is the NES Zapper, but I felt that was pretty much covered by the Wii Zapper. So, what secondary peripherals can't you get enough of?

The Duck Has Spoken.

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