UNITHOR: A BRAND NEW JOYSTICK FOR RETRO COMPUTERS
Plug and play before it was trendy
Yes, you’ve read it right – it’s a new joystick for the Amiga, Commodore, Atari, ZX Spectrum1 and an array of game consoles fitted with DE-9 ports (sometimes referred to as DB-9).2 No adapters, no tinkering, no workarounds of any kind – just pure elegance. If you don’t have any of these machines, but still would like to give it a try and relive the unique feeling of classic-style retro gaming, worry not: our retro joystick will also come in a USB version, perfect for PC-based emulators.
1) ZX Spectrum support via third-party adapters.
2) Please note that some devices beyond the Commodore and Atari realm – even though they use DE-9 connector – are incompatible with our joystick because of different electrical wiring in the plug.
Press play on tape again
There will be two joystick variants – standard (Basic) and customizable (Assembler).
Both share common characteristics:
- Top quality components. Compromise wasn’t an option in UNITHOR design process – we’ve used a forged head and carefully selected industry-grade microswitches capable of withstanding one million clicks. Countless tear and wear tests resulted in hundreds of design iterations covering both construction and materials used before the product matured enough to be ready for your grip.
- Equilibrium of massiveness and compact size. The materials and components that comprise our Hammer of Sprites tally up at the notable 500 grams (1.1 lbs), thus ensuring solidity, stability and durability – the exact characteristics of a retro gaming joystick we’ve been after. Saving space on the desk received a lot of attention as well – the resulting compact design even makes it possible to rest the joystick on your belly – yes, we’ve tried that too 🙂
- Two fire buttons comfortably positioned on the stick – just where they should be, i.e. under your thumb and index finger.
- The balance of looks and ergonomics. Hundreds of prototyping iterations and organic modelling have produced a device that – despite its classic look – feels truly handy. The new USB joystick is symmetrical by design, which should be good news for all the left-hander gamers out there. The device’s base has been shaped so that it’s possible to either hold the joystick resting on the desk or grab the thing and enjoy retrogaming while UNITHOR remains in your firm grip. The latter option makes the joystick a great solution for consoles.
Retro – future game changer
The stick has been conceived with different gaming styles and palm sizes in mind. Your hands may be small or (extra) large, you may prefer to make a full grab or use just your fingers for more precise joystick control in platform games or flight simulators.
- An elastic, 180 cm (71”) cable for both DE-9 and USB versions of the joystick to minimize the risk of Gordian knots and sight issues that could spoil your retrocomputing experience.
- No suction cups in the Basic version. Taking advantage of UNITHOR’s mass, we’ve used bump-ons instead, thus eliminating the cups and the downsides they brought. The joystick doesn’t slide uncontrollably during use while allowing instant repositioning on the table. That being said, the cups are planned as a customization option if you prefer such undercarriage. 🙂
Back to the Basics
UNITHOR Basic offers two popular colour schemes – Black Devil and Hyper Charge. It features two uniformly operating fire buttons.
Upgrade your vintage
For the Assembler version of UNITHOR joystick we envisage a selection of various colour schemes, finishing touches and additional features including soft touch. Going under the hood, we can customize microswitches, springs, lever characteristics, force, resistance and reaction time. Let’s not stop here and add bespoke fire button step distance for best retrogaming experience. Depending on your retro platform of choice, we can also provide two-fire button support that some games utilize – all this to cater for the needs of avid gamers. Such advanced customization is meant to give you a perfect joystick for emulators.
For those willing to venture even farther into the „future past”, we are going to add one more feature to the above-mentioned array of options: RGB LED. It will give UNITHOR a modern-looking design that is on par with contemporary peripherals. Just imagine a LED-lit joystick working with your faithful Amiga, Commodore or Atari!
Last but not least, Assembler version will come with a collector’s box showcasing UNITHOR’s strengths, making it a unique gift or an eye-catcher on your shelve.