Retro-Bit has been upping there game over the last few years and show no sign of stopping now! At E3 2019 last week, I had the chance to go over and hands on with the upcoming products in Retro-Bits catalog. From new products to controller prototypes there is plenty to look forward to for the rest of 2019 and beyond!
First stop on my tour of the booth were the near finalized versions of the Retro-Bit X Sega wireless 2.4 GHz and Bluetooth controllers! The 2.4 GHz controllers are planned to include an adapter for both PC and original consoles (Genesis and Saturn on show). Genesis controllers will ship in black, smoke and clear blue and Saturn will be releasing in slate grey and clear blue. The Bluetooth controllers are interesting as they will be including rumble motors and work directly with the Nintendo Switch and PC’s.
The 2.4 GHz wireless controllers are anticipated for a September release with Bluetooth to follow soon after (I was informed dates are subject to change to ensure quality). Both versions of the controller are slightly thicker than the original models Retro-Bit released earlier this year but felt good in the hands. I also like the added weight the small rumble motors added for the Bluetooth variants! Speaking of the Retro-Bit X Sega collaboration, Retro-Bit has also released an updated version of their USB Genesis controllers that now support the Nintendo Switch!
I was then introduced to a variety of pre-production controller prototypes, including a 6 face button Dreamcast controller! The concept is stunning and would include a Saturn style D-pad and redesigned thumbstick. To further excite all my Sega fans out there, I also got to check out a 6 button model 1 Genesis controller. For those of you out there who prefer the larger size of the original model 1 controller but bemoan the fact that it is missing the extra 3 buttons for fighters, you will soon have the best of both worlds! Both controllers are still awaiting approval from Sega so no dates have been given on launch windows.
Moving on to the Nintendo side of the console wars, there were 3 really exciting prototypes on display. Retro-Bit’s new line of DigiCon controllers look like they take inspiration from the old Hori Gameboy Player controller. Both a GameCube, which featured both analog sticks, and N64 version, which had a dual Z trigger setup, were on display. Both DigiCon controllers are in early prototyping so I look forward to seeing how they evolve over the course of production! A prototype that was a little further along in production is a remake of Nintendo’s flawed NES Max controller dubbed the Turbo Max. The biggest improvement so far over the original is the inclusion of a 3DS style thumbstick, thank goodness! An updated version of the wireless Tribute 64 was also on display and showcased a few refinements including a re-positioned D-pad and the inclusion of a home and select button. The Dual Z shoulder buttons have also been re-positioned and look similar to those found on the Wii U Gamepad.
The collectors edition of Metal Storm also appeared in its near final form and the include figurine is looking nice! New pixel-art displays and plushies from Retro-Bit’s sister companies Pixel Frames and Stubbins were also on display. I will definitely be picking up that frame of Mega Man X when they launch later this year!