13. Birch Wood Hit Box
The Handcrafted Birch Wood Hit Box, a Super Smash Bros. controller, lets you choose the button colors as well as one of the following wood stains:
- Black cherry
- Danish oil
- Dark walnut
- Navy blue
- Sedona red
The controller ships with instructions on what the buttons do, suggestions to get comfortable with the controller, and a wiring diagram for customization purposes and more.
Available to order from Etsy
12. Smash Box
Also compatible with the Nintendo Nunchuk, this trendsetter takes pride in its Sanwa parts, which up the performance. Designer software is attached to map the buttons wherever. Once difficult techniques such as pivot attacks and wave dashes become easier. The Smash Box feels less strenuous than other controllers. In fact, Hit Box Arcade designed it with the disabled in mind.
The Smash Box brings back the brand’s signature minimalistic design albeit the inclusion of more colors this time around. The added colors are there for color coding purposes. Buying a new piece of plexiglass would allow you to change the top panel’s artwork.
Available to order from Hit Box Arcade
11. Smash Stick
This honorable mention is the Smash Stick, which is currently in development hell, but with the right effort and contacts, you may be able to get your hands on one.
The Smash Stick uses a 100% analog joystick designed by Alt Lab Controllers that is not limited in angles or values that it can hit. It packs an octagonal gate with the bottom two corner notches aligned to perform Axe-style shield drops in Super Smash Bros. Melee. The joystick’s range is smaller than what is found in most arcade sticks. As a result, dash dancing feels comfortable. As for snapback or input deflection, the Smash Stick does not suffer from it.
The Smash Stick improves on the dash-back issue with the GameCube analog stick. As for empty or perfect pivoting, it is possible with the Smash Stick. This arcade stick works excellently with guest characters in Smash like Terry Bogard.
This arcade stick has a solid build. The unit was designed to be mod friendly with a modular construction that allows nearly all parts to be maintained or replaced. Also, the silhouette is quite unique, providing a fresh take on ergonomics.
Learn more from Alt Lab Controllers
10. Cubic Controller
Although Joey from Cubic Controllers has retired, you may be able to get a Cubic Controller if you are lucky. Cubic Controllers are made of natural materials. Joey takes his time choosing wood such as maple, mahogany, walnut, and cherry, and he also takes his time with the finish to minimize imperfections.
The undercoat is different per controller, but it is always urethane-based hard coating, which is used on countertops, so durability is guaranteed. The controllers are sometimes comprised of acrylic. As for the top finish, it is furniture paste wax, which is known for its toughness and ease of maintenance.
The keycaps can be translucent black or white, and cord ends can be black or white as well. You can take out the keycaps or switches with a wire cap puller if needed. The switches are Gateron Clear mechanical ones, and they have hot swaps so that you can change them into other switches that you may prefer. Those run on Haystack’s firmware. It is remappable, and it comes with several game modes you can toggle between easily.
Cubic Controllers use a HTangl PCB, and PC connectivity is recommended through USB.
Available to order from Cubic Controllers
The Prism is an ergonomic 3D-printed case with a reinterpretation of the Smash community’s favorite layout that eliminates the need for forearm prontation and ulnar deviation.
The idle stance of your fingers can be in a naturally curled state, improving reaction time, and the tighter distance between the keys allows you to use your whole thumb to trigger the five-button action cluster with minimum movement.
The case is made of laser-cut cast acrylic or aluminum bottom panels with a grip pad for stability purposes while placing the Prism on your lap.
Available to order from WunVzn
The Bubblebox runs on a modified version of the Haybox firmware. If you opt for the DIY kit, you get:
- 3D-printed body in your selected color & layout
- 3D-printed bottom panel in your selected color
- 3D-printed keycaps in your desired selected & style
- Hardware & screws
- Model BirdD USB-C breakout board
As for the keycaps, you may be able to get bubblegum, hexagon, round, or square styles in colors like black, light gray, light blue, and purple.
Available to order from Etsy
HOBORG from BorgTech presents the BoogieBoard, which is made out of a case by Hardwood Arcade. The buttons are Crown/Samducksa SDB-202 MX with Cherry MX Speed Silver switches, and the BoogieBoard runs on the Raspberry Pi Pico printed circuit board (PCB) with firmware by Arte. Needless to say, Crown and Cherry MX are state-of-the-art brands with parts known for their responsivity and excellent travel distance/actuation.
The Hardwood Arcade case is generally made of oak with 24 mm button holes and four corner screws to provide support while keeping it easy to access the interior. Keith from Hardwood Arcade often smooths out the hardwood grain to prevent jagged edges.
Available to order from BorgTech and Etsy:
BorgTech brings you the TypeCaster, a Super Smash Bros. box controller that is handmade. As this controller is custom made, the parts may very depending on your preference. The controllers often come in a dark mahogany or gunstock finish with keycap colors that include:
This button layout is currently the preferred layout for the Smash box controller community. As for the switches, they can be Kailh Speed Bronze for low actuation distance and tactile clicky feedback or Gateron Silver Pro switches.
Available to order from BorgTech
5. SYG Kraken
The Kraken is 3D-printed, customizable, and available in different colors. It features the Smash community’s favorite button layout. The cherry on top is the Cherry switches. The weight of the Kraken is probably around two pounds. You are also able to choose the colors of the buttons, cable, and so on.
Available to order from SaveYourGames
The HTangl Rectangle Controller has a custom-designed layout that minimizes hand movement. Essentially, your right hand would rest on the top row of keys instead of the bottom one. That way, you can move between rows by curling you fingers inwards to press the bottom keys because the HTangl moves the right hand rows further down to bring them closer to the C-Stick cluster.
Thanks to the open source firmware it uses, Haystack’s HayBox fork, the HTangl is fully remappable. The free Visual Studio Code program can be utilized to change button assignments. All of the HTangl’s design files are on GitHub, allowing one to see how everything works and even utilize the files to make one’s own box controller.
Although packed with Gateron Clear mechanical switches and DSA profile keycaps, you can also modify the feeling and weight of the keys as the HTangl is compatible with any MX mechanical switch or keycap of the standard size without soldering, thanks to the hot swap PCB.
The case is 3D printed in one piece using PETG filament, which has a higher heat tolerance than standard PLA filament that is use more often when 3D printing. As for the switch plate, it is made of aluminum and laser cut by SendCutSend, a service that can also be used to cut the top acrylic panels.
To customize the appearance of the HTangl, you can place an art decal between the metal switch plate and acrylic top panel. For that, we have a custom art service.
Available to order from HTangl
The LBX ships with Junkfood Custom Arcades’ proprietary open-source GCC software, which is available to download and customize, but the LBX is compatible with other open source firmware as well. The LBX has SOCD cleaning, preventing opposite directions from being registered simultaneously. You can flash Melee, ProjectM, and Ultimate modes right onto your LBX.
The LBX has the layout that Smashers have preferred as of recently. It comes standard with Kailh low-profile red switches but is also compatible with other Kailh Choc switches like the red pro or white. The custom black concave keycaps come standard on the LBX in addition to silencing pads being available on the store. The keycaps feel good and should not need an upgrade to be tournament viable, and switches can be replaced.
As the LBX is customizable, it can look as good as you want it to be. The LBX has plastic up top and metal at the bottom combined with an anti-slip pad. The weight is perfect for play on a table without compromising portability, especially if you buy the pouch.
The custom PCB utilizes hot-swap sockets to make changing switches as easy as possible. You are six screws away from opening up the LBX. The USB port can be found on the back. Included is a braided USB-C to GCC cable that is six feet long, and there is also a six foot USB-C to A cable for PC usage.
Available to order from Junkfood Custom Arcades
Tournament legal at Melee events from Genesis to The Big House, the B0XX comes with twenty Sanwa buttons. It is latency free and up to a frame faster than other box controllers. It allows you to piano aerials, wave dashes, and multi shines with two fingers instead of just one. With a thickness of 1.4 inches and weight of 3.8 lbs, the B0XX is thin, portable, and comfortable for the wrists. The two additional buttons improve light shielding, and angling recovery moves like Firefox can be mastered within minutes.
There are three profiles to be chosen from using a side toggle to simultaneously activate multiple layouts, and attached is designer software to freely map the buttons. No Wii U adapter is necessary, and the included USB-C cables allow GameCube, Nintendo 64, and PC connectivity. The Wii Nunchuk is compatible as well. Also, no switches are needed: functionality is automatically swapped based on the game being played.
Available to order from 20XX
The Frame1 is an improvement over the B0XX, such as by having a 0.8 ms advantage. Also, it is thinner, smaller, and comes with PBT button caps with minor texture. The keycaps are thick too. The switches have a short actuation and travel distance, and there is some anti-slip rubber-like material at the bottom. The Frame1 feels sturdy despite its lightness, and the edges are almost perfect. The finish does not show fingerprints.
Some of the Frame1’s features include hot-swappable Gateron optical yellow switches, a steel switch plate, a machined aluminum unibody, and a 72 MHz ARM Cortex processor. Included are a carrying case, switch removal tool, and braided GameCube USB-A to C cables.