8bitdo m30 - Overview of My New Favourite Controller


It shouldn't be a secret to anyone that 8bitdo makes some incredible retro-style controller, and while looking for something that would satisfy my needs of "perfect for retro", I came across the m30.


It's easy to say the m30 is a modern 6 button Genesis controller, but it's not quite so simple. This is a lot close to the Japanese Saturn controller in its shape and most importantly - buttons. As it has L and R triggers.


And talking about buttons, they feel outright incredible here. I've never experienced a recreation of a classic controller that is so faithful to the original, in the besy way possible. I've always loved the concave buttons of the Genesis and how they contrast so well with the convex ones. The clickiness here feels incredible, as good as playing on the controllers I did as a child or using an arcade stick. The L and R buttons also feel very response and nice to press, I have absolutely no qualms about the buttons at all.

The shape itself is also very comfortable, it's a tiny controller, but that doesn't mean it's bad. It fits in my huge hands snuggly and never gets too tiring after extended play sessions.


The dpad itself also feels very nice and is second only to the precision of arcade sticks, being absolutely perfect for SHMUPs and fighting games. Doing combos or special moves has never been easier on a controller for me, and this has turned into my main pad for Tekken 7 and The King of Fighters.

It was a little finicky to get it working on Tekken at first, as Tekken works best when using dpad only inputs and the dpad was set as the left analog stick. However a key combo fixed that (Minus + Up for 5 seconds) and when using via USB on the PC it's recognised as an Xinput controller. However I'm using it in Dinput mode so I can have more control over it whilst keeping it separate in my games (via Steam and Retroarch) from my Xbox One pads.
About modes too, it has an Xinput mode which I could only get working wired (and does not support the Xbox One), Dinput, a Nintendo Switch mode and a MacOS mode. It's very customizable and easy to use on whatever device you please.

It also has a version for the Mega Drive itself which works via a WLAN connection, much like other controllers, but I have no need for that seeing as how I don't currently own a Mega Drive (sacrilege, I know).

Screenshot from my phone, where it says Pro Controller is it running in Switch mode and 8bitdo is Dinput mode

One thing I was having issues with was the dpad sticking to the left, but fortunately taking the dpad off and cleaning it was very easy.


All I needed was a thin screwdriver and very little force. I also noticed the inside of the dpad works a lot more like an analog stick, which is quite interesting. I'm not opening it because I don't want to screw anything up but I don't think it's a conventional dpad down there.


You might have noticed that mine came with an extra goodie - a clip for using it on my phone. And also the fact it says TecToy everywhere alongside 8bitdo.
I bought this from TecToy's store for cheaper than the cost of one from 8bitdo itself, but this is the same version, just has a TecToy branding and comes with the clip.

TecToy has been SEGA's official reseller and manufacturer since the 1990's, so it does feel a little nice to have something with their logo on it, specially since the Mega Drive I played on as a kid was a TecToy Mega Drive as well!

The clip holds the controller and the phone extremely well, it's very firm and I have no complaints. It's quite odd that I ended up paying about R$70 less and getting more.
From what I know, the phone clip is a separate purchase if you decide to get it from 8bitdo.

Overall, this is a great controller and this bundle was incredible value. I highly recommend it if you have any sort of nostalgia for SEGA. Not to mention this also works great on newer PC titles (such as the forementioned Tekken 7, but also Sonic Mania) and I've had no problems at all playing all sorts of emulators with it on my phone. From NES, SNES, to PS1 and PSP even.

An easy 10/10 from me.


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