Retro-Bit have just pulled back the curtain on the newest development of their partnership with Sega, this time being a completely new style of Sega Genesis controller merging features of the 3-button original and 6-button Arcade Pad.
The Big6 features the same extra wide body shape of the original 3-Button Genesis/Mega-Drive controller, but with the X, Y, Z, and Mode buttons introduced with the Sega 6-button Arcade Pad. It’s perfect for anyone who is nostalgic for that old controller shape, but not for pressing Start to switch between punches and kicks instead of pausing in Street Fighter II or pressing C to slowly cycle through all 3 extra items and then again to use one in Comix Zone, for example.
Like with their other Sega controllers, this one will be available in an original port model, for use with original Genesis/Mega-Drive consoles and clones, a USB model for computers, Nintendo Switch, Sega Genesis Mini, and other devices like Raspberry Pi or PlayStation 3, and a 2.4 Ghz Wireless model with adaptors for USB-enabled devices and Genesis consoles. All three are now up for pre-order in North America exclusively through Castlemania Games and are expected to ship in October 2022. Given the global health crisis and electronic parts shortages we are in at the time of this writing, however, expect to have to wait another month or two. A Mega-Drive branded equivalent model for European markets will be available at a later date.
Retro-Bit’s controllers from recent years have been lauded for their surprisingly exceptional build quality. Some retro gaming enthusiasts have noticed a few incredibly minute differences from genuine Sega-built controllers, but rest assured that they are still worthy of this writer’s personal recommendation, and the Big6 should no different.
More info can be found on Retro-Bit’s Big6 website, along with a look at early mock-up designs for the Big6. Be sure to read through their FAQ for extra info.