Gamer Koala

10 Video Game Accessories That We Forgot About

Gimmick or feature? That’s the question most gamers ask when a new peripheral lands. Sometimes, the peripheral is so outlandish it’s hard to take it seriously. Sometimes, it is ahead of its time and doesn’t latch on. But occasionally, the peripheral really enhances the game, and you can’t imagine playing without it!

Any way you shake it, these specialized peripherals tend to fade away with time. So, without further ado, let’s get into it. Here are ten gaming accessories that have been lost in the annals of time.

10. Wii Wheel

Wii Wheel
Wikipedia | Nintendo

Coming up with an accessory like the Wii Wheel is a no-brainer for driving and racing games. The steering wheel was initially shipped with Mario Kart Wii. The standard Wii remote popped right into a slot where most steering wheel horns are located. While not as accurate or realistic as an actual steering well, nonetheless, the fun it added to racing was worth the cost.

9. DK Bongos

Donkey Kong Bongos
Wikipedia | Nintendo

DK Bongos definitely seems like a silly and gimmicky peripheral. They were first bundled with Donkey Konga and several games that followed on GameCube. Players have to play the bongos correctly to progress in the game. Goofy or not, the bongos are a testament to how innovative gaming accessories can be used in creative ways.

8. R.O.B.

ROB - Robotic Operating Buddy
Wikipedia | Nintendo

Part-toy, part peripheral, R.O.B. (Robotic Operating Body) was created in the hopes of revolutionizing gaming. Released for NES in 1985, this friendly robot companion was only compatible with two games: Gyromite and Stack-Up. The fun to be had completing games by using the robot’s claws to grab things was limited, as was the lifespan of this peripheral.

7. Game Boy Camera

Gameboy Camera and Printer
Wikipedia | Ashley Pomeroy | Nintendo

The Game Boy Camera was ahead of its time when released in 1998. Sure, the digital images were grainy and the 8-bit grayscale camera might seem like a toy now. But it was years ahead in providing a way to create user-generated content then. It also featured a timer, time-lapse, trick lenses, montage, and panorama.

6. N64 Expansion Pak

Nintendo 64 Expansion Pak
Wikipedia | Nintendo

The N64 Expansion Pak made a world of difference for providing the ability to expand your Nintendo 64’s memory from 4 MB of RAM to 8 MB. It made numerous games more playable. Developers took advantage of the expansion pack, making it a requirement for games such as Donkey Kong 64 and The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask.

5. PlayStation Buzzers

Playstation Buzzers
Wikipedia | Sony

This accessory turned the experience of playing the Buzz! quiz game series into an immersive one. It made players feel like real contestants on a TV game show. The Buzz! Buzzer is a special controller specifically designed for the Buzz! game series on PlayStation 2 and 3. They came both wired and wireless.

4. Wii Fit Balance Board

Wii Balance Board
Wikipedia | Nintendo

Released in 2007, the Wii Fit Balance Board was designed to bring exercise and fitness together in a single experience. The board was shaped like a household body scale, but wider. It was powered by 4 AA batteries and communicated via Bluetooth. The Board was super-smart, measuring weight, determining the user’s center of gravity, and more. It definitely made exercising fun!

3. Power Glove

Power Glove
Wikipedia | Evan-Amos | Nintendo

The NES-licensed Power Glove released in 1989 delivered a futuristic appearance. With traditional controller buttons and 10 programmable ones, it promised to allow gamers to “play with power.” In reality, its motion controls were very limited and it was just not fun to use. The device did not sell well.

2. Reel Fishing Rod 

Sega Fishing Rod
SegaRetro | Sega

In 1996, Natsume Inc. released the Reel Fishing series of fishing video games and bundled a special controller with the first game that was compatible with the sequels. The controller blended gaming controls, the hand-crank of a fishing reel, and the handle of a fishing rod in one unit. Sega would do the same with a fishing series for Dreamcast in 1997.

1. Seaman Microphone

Seaman Microphone peripheral for Dreamcast
Wikipedia | Consolevariations | Sega

Dipping into the future with voice command, the Seaman Microphone allowed players to vocally interact with the game. The microphone was bundled with 1999’s Seaman, a virtual pet videogame. It’s been described as “the gentle art of conversation meets Resident Evil.” The game has garnered a cult following due to its innovative gameplay, bizarre aesthetics, and dark humor.