Aqua Duo Advanced Control Pad: Compatible with SNES & Megadrive

Aqua Duo Advanced Control Pad compatible with SNES/Megadrive
Aqua Duo control pad for Super Nintendo & Sega Megadrive

As the Nintendo vs Sega console war heated up during the 1990s, independent manufacturers produced products that were compatible for both consoles. One example is the Aqua Duo Advanced Control Pad. While the aesthetic of the controller was a reason to buy it, it also offered capabilities beyond that of an original Nintendo or Sega gamepad. The Aqua Pad had “Independent Turbo/Auto Fire”.

The Turbo/Auto Fire function had 3 options, which could be adjusted via the toggles in the centre of the controller:

  • Off: If the toggle was kept to the left, the function would be off.
  • Turbo: If the toggle was set in the middle, it would be on ‘turbo’ mode. This meant if you set the X button to ‘turbo’ mode, it would do nothing in itself, however if you held down the X button, it would be as if someone was repeatedly pressing the X button in quick succession.
  • Auto: If the toggle was set to the right, it would be on ‘auto fire’ mode. It would have the same effect as ‘turbo’ mode except you wouldn’t need to hold down any button.

Understandably using ‘turbo’ and ‘auto’ fire modes were considered cheating, especially when playing games in which you’d get an advantage if you could press buttons quickly. For example, in wrestling games the wrestlers would often initiate a contest via a grapple. Who got the advantage in the grapple depended on how quickly a player could press a button repeatedly. Using ‘turbo’ or ‘auto’ fire functions would give you a distinct advantage, particularly in the case of a long match where a player using a regular pad would likely have experienced some fatigue from repeatedly bashing buttons on his controller.

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