|And to think, so many people were complaining about how huge the standard Xbox gamepad was.|
It's obvious that Capcom was very serious about creating a proper mech simulator. This incredibly complex controller had 40 buttons, which performed in-game actions such as starting the mech's engine, firing the weapons, and even washing the windshield. Let's not forget the almighty eject button; if your mech was on the brink of destruction, you had a limited amount of time to hit the eject button, or else your saved game would be automatically erased. Brutal.
This controller was required to play Steel Battalion, so those of us who couldn't afford the $200 price tag were left out of the party. Out of curiosity I did a quick Ebay search to see what these controllers were going for these days, and the price range seems to be $70-$100. Not bad if you want to see what you missed back in the days of the original Xbox (I for one have always wanted to try this game out).
For the newest installment in the Steel Battalion series it looks like Capcom is doing away with monstrously complicated controllers. The game will use Kinect to allow you to interact with all the controls in the mech's cockpit. The Kinect is still a bit pricey at $150, but on the bright side it can be used with multiple games, as opposed to paying $200 for the original Steel Battalion setup where the controller was only good for Steel Battalion.
This concludes an installment of Crazy Controllers, hope this brought up some nostalgia!