Can't we all just agree that Intellivision is the peak evolution of controller technology?
Sorry to bust your bubble but I found the Intellivision controllers a bit of a disappointment. The fire buttons were way too small for me to use and the controllers would cause my hands to hurt after about half-an-hour's worth of play time. I would have to stop playing after that. On the plus side...I really liked the INTV's port of Lock N Chase. It's my favorite on the system. Auto Race is good, too. Those controllers are just not for me.
I've been playing a lot of both systems...and let me say...for all the crap we give the 5200 controller...the Colecovision gets off easy. It's controller is equally bad.
My opinion follows:
The CV controller has nice side buttons. They work well. And the numeric keypad also works quite well. I also like that the controllers don't break very easily. That being said, the joystick "knob" on this thing is just awful. I find it really hard to use with precision. The response on the knob really reminds me of the historically bad TI 99/4A joysticks. It has that same spongy/creaky feeling to it. Also, the controller itself just does not fit the hands well. Finger grooves or not. It slips around during long game sessions.
The 5200 controller has some quality issues. They tend to break. That rubber boot will eventually rip. But given a fully working controller, it's actually not too bad. With a intact boot, it does self-center ok. I don't have any trouble with control. Just played a long game of Mario Bros with no issues. The controller is smaller than the CV, and it fits my hand better. The buttons work well and are easy to press.
I guess the point is that both controllers have issues. I don't know why we always single out the 5200 for this problem when both systems suffer. I guess with the CV, there were more options available, which is good.
What do you all think?
I had a CV for a short while in 2011 or 2012 that came with the original controllers and one Super Action controller. I used that thing on all the games I could! It really was an improvement over the original issue controllers. It wasn't a bad system but the original controllers could have been designed better for comfort reasons. They responded well I will give them that.
The 5200 was my console when I was a kid. It was a Christmas gift and being a kid begging for an Atari for a long time to get a 5200 you didn't complain. Instead I took to the system, sat down and read the manual front to back to the system, and then played a game of Super Breakout. I learned the system and it's controls first ... not the games I was playing or going to play. Being a 5200 owner, even then, meant learning how the controls worked the games before learning how to play the games. It's still that way today and will be no matter how old the 5200 gets.
From experience both competing consoles are good systems. The CV and 5200 actually need each other because each got games, great games, that the other competing console didn't get. For example; CV got Pepper II, Turbo, Time Pilot while the 5200 got Star Raiders, Vanguard, Space Dungeon. To fully see what arcade games got ported to home consoles, these two belong together. For me, though, I would have to lean more for the 5200 controller over the CV controller. I can deal with the controller issues over hand cramps any day. Mine is still going so that ought to count for something. No boot tears yet either...at least that I am aware of.