The ThinkGeek 8-Bitty is a retro-style gamepad designed for use with Android or iOS devices. It resembles a classic Nintendo controller, but it has a few extra buttons which should let you play SNES-style games, or plenty of other games that requires more than A/B buttons.

ThinkGeek plans to start selling the 8-Bitty for $29.99. While the official product page simply says it’s coming “later this year,” the game controller passed through the FCC this week, which is a step any wireless device has to take before it can be sold in the US. So it certainly looks like the 8-Bitty is on the way.


The 8-Bitty connects to a mobile device wirelessly, and it’s small enough to fit in your pocket. It has a D-pad plus 4 buttons on the front, select and start buttons, and right and left shoulder buttons.

It can run the Atari Greatest Hits app on the iPad, which includes a free version of Missile Command. Or you can buy 100 games for $15.

I suspect most folks interested in this type of controller have their eye on Nintendo, Sega, or even PlayStation emulators though.

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2 replies on “ThinkGeek 8-Bitty retro-style game controller for tablets hits the FCC”

  1. This seems like a pretty cool idea, but considering I can sync a Wii or PS3 remote with my Android phone, the price of this would have to drop considerably before I’d consider buying it. Then again, maybe I’m not part of the intended target market, considering it seems like maybe they’re aiming more at the iPad crowd.

    1. Yeah, but compared to a Wii or PS3 controller, this thing is actually much more pocketable. It’s also got more available buttons than a Wiimote, great for playing any system newer than NES or GBC, is thinner, and is just smaller/lighter all around than a Sixaxis. Plus, it has perfect colored dish-shaped NES face buttons, how can you not love that. 😀

      There are a few Bluetooth controllers out there now, and quite a few more coming out soon, but this thing is cheap, small, functional, and I absolutely love the parent company. (This is the same company that literally re-opened a factory and gave people jobs making slide rules when they wanted to sell them last year and found no one still producing them. <3)

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