At E3 2011 Memorex announced a new line of family friendly gaming accessories. Part of that announcement included the Memorex Game Controller Plus for Wii, a standard sized Wii remote with the functionality of Motion Plus built in. Offered in black, blue, pink and a black and white combo finish – each with blue LED accents, the Wii Controller Plus retails for $29.95 US. The street price is about $25 or $50 with the wireless nunchuck included.
Included in the package is the controller, wrist-strap and instructions for syncing the controller with your Wii; the two required AA batteries are not included. Missing is the protective silicone cover that comes standard with Nintendo brand controllers.
Setup of this remote is identical to its Nintendo counterpart. The sync button is located in the same place under the battery cover. In fact, nearly everything compares exactly to a Nintendo brand controller. All the buttons are in the same locations, the dimensions are the same, even the battery covers are interchangeable between the two. This means that proprietary rechargeable batteries for the Nintendo controller will fit the Memorex Game Controller Plus for Wii as will any silicone cover for standard size Wii controllers.
In the hand, the Memorex controller feels about the same weight as a standard Nintendo controller without the MotionPlus attachment. Adding the MotionPlus module to a Nintendo Wii controller shifts the center of gravity, making the controller balance differently. The Memorex controller’s center of gravity is undistinguishable from the standard Nintendo controller – meaning that the MotionPlus tech has been truly integrated into the controller instead of just tacked on.
Aside from the color of the controller and the integration of MotionPlus, there are a few additional differences between the two. Memorex has replaced the cross shaped D-pad with a circular, rubbery one. To me it didn’t make much difference but other members of my family did not like it, mainly because they could not feel the cross shape and be able to accurately select a direction. The addition of the light ring around the D-pad is a nice touch that my kids thought highly of. All of the other buttons (A, 1 & 2) are concave on top, making them easy to center your finger onto. The tops of the Nintendo buttons are rounded – which I had never really noticed until using the Memorex controller.
The controller “feels” like a budget controller. Cheaper plastic quality combined with a rubberized battery cover that becomes dingy looking quickly is part of the reason, but the loose buttons complete the low-budget picture. The B trigger actually rattles when the controller is moved – and when it vibrates the entire thing buzzes. Keeping in mind that this is an affordable controller aimed at “family” use – none of this is a deal breaker.
In the end, this controller is exactly what it says it is. It is an affordable controller for families interested in adding additional controllers for “family members” – code for children. My kids have grabbed this controller first when playing the Wii, so it is certainly popular with them, but my wife opts for the traditional Nintendo controller. At a street price of $25, the Memorex Game Controller Plus is a good deal for those wanting additional controllers for the kids or just wanting replace the standard controllers with new ones of the same size with MotionPlus.
- Built-In MotionPlus
- $25 Street Price
- Functions as Well As Nintendo’s
- Buttons Tend To Rattle
Final Score: 7 out of 10
Checkout the entire line of Family Gaming Accessories from Memorex HERE.