Wico Command Control


Source: Video Games – January 1983

Once upon a time, Wico was one of the biggest names in controllers. The people most familiar with them are probably owners of the Atari 2600 and 5200, Commodore 64 and Atari 8-bit computers though they made controllers for other systems too. This particular ad from the January 1983 issue of Video Games magazine features two of their most recognizable products.

First is the “bat handle” joystick. Obviously it gets its nickname from the shape of the stick. They also produced a joystick with a straight stick and a ball on top. The unique feature of both of these was the second button on the top of the stick. Buttons in that location are common with more complicated flight sticks but it was pretty unique for an arcade style joystick like this.

The other featured item is their trackball. Trackballs have since faded away in favor of mouse or other control methods but they used to be highly desirable in order to play home versions of arcade games that used them (e.g. Centipede). The Wico model was one of the better ones.