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8BitDo stuffed 16 buttons into its hand-crampingly small Micro controller

Arthritis can be yours for $25.


Measuring a mere 72 x 40.7 x 14.1 mm — just over half the length of the original NES controller — the 8BitDo Micro is a spiritual successor to the company’s Zero line of similarly minuscule gamepads. It also hurts my hands just to look at it.

The 8BitDo Micro pairs via Bluetooth with the Nintendo Switch, Android and Raspberry Pi. The wee little thing weighs 24.8 grams, includes a mode-switching button and supports button mapping via 8BitDo Ultimate Software. The company says it has a 180mAh battery that will last 10 hours of playtime and can fully recharge in one to two hours. However, it also works in wired mode (via USB-C) when you don’t mind being tethered to your gaming system.

Marketing photo of a person holding an 8BitDo Micro (tiny blue) controller in their left hand and an Apple Pencil in their right hand as they sketch in an illustration app on an iPad. It sits on a dark wooden table with a green 8BitDo Micro gamepad sitting to the left.

The controller skips analog sticks in favor of a lone D-Pad. It includes four standard action buttons (A, B, X, Y), face buttons (plus, minus, star and checkered flag) and shoulder bumpers / triggers. (The latter is one way it differs from 8BitDo’s Zero 2.) It can work in keyboard mode, which opens up some compatibility with macOS, Windows and iOS — and you can assign shortcuts to use it as a remote control for tasks like photo or video editing. It's an impressive amount of IO to cram into a form factor that makes Joy-Cons look like the front face of an arcade cabinet.

The 8BitDo Micro launches today in blue and green. It costs $25 and is available to order from Amazon.

Parody screenshot of an Amazon
8Bitdo / Aspercreme / Avery Menegus / Engadget