Home Gaming The original Xbox controller was “embarrassingly enormous” says its co-creator

The original Xbox controller was “embarrassingly enormous” says its co-creator

2 min read


To say that the original Xbox controller was big, would be an understatement. Here’s a far more accurate summary as to its size:

  • F-14 jets were landed on it during the Gulf War.
  • King Kong climbed to the top of it as he swatted away machine-gun fire from pesky aircraft.
  • The original Xbox controller was the prototype for the first series of Jaegers in Pacific Rim.
  • Even your mom isn’t as big as the original Xbox controller.
  • It’s regularly mistaken for a moon in Star Wars movies.
  • The original Xbox controller kicked off the extinction event that killed the dinosaurs when it crashed into our planet during the late Cretaceous era.
  • In Hollywood, the original Xbox controller is referred to as “Kanye West’s ego”.

Get the picture? The OG controller, which happens to be known as “the Duke” these days, would soon give way to a more modern and ergonomic design that wouldn’t require you to dislocate your fingers to properly hold it. But even before the first Xbox console launched, the people behind the development of it were looking to have a very different input device bundled with it.

That’s according to Xbox co-creator Seamus Blackley who was quizzed about the beastly peripheral on Twitter via GameSpot, who said that Microsoft completely ignored focus group testing over the unwieldy size of the controller. “It was embarrassingly enormous; politically I had no juice to fix it,” Blackley tweeted.

They ignored focus tests; I understand you can land a helicopter on it.

The early 2000s were an odd era for video game controllers. Nintendo had just come out of the N64 era which introduced a peripheral which was seemingly designed to stab penises with during a round of Donkey Kong, while the Dreamcast set the tone for a round device that also included an underrated VMU piece of hardware. Man, what a time to be alive.

Last Updated: October 4, 2016


  1. I can only think of one thing bigger.

    “Look at the size of that boy’s cranium!”



  2. Batman vs. a Banana

    October 4, 2016 at 14:18

    Apparently one of those controllers fell into the sea and the resultant tsunami killed millions….


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