Meet the official Turrican II joystick

Don’t be surprised if you’ve never seen one of these before in the wild; they are extremely rare. Not eBay l@@k l@@k super-mega rare, I mean really-properly rare. They were bundled with copies of Turrican II for the Amiga and Commodore 64 and only ever sold in Germany from what I can gather. “Double fun” guaranteed!

Regrettably, the joystick itself isn’t actually an exclusive product made for the release. Rather it’s a Commodore branded model CBM 1399, also known as the ‘Challenger’ in Germany according to the Amiga Joker magazine I saw it featured in as part of a joystick review round-up article.

Made in Hong Kong, it boasts “high precision” and is fully micro-switched for durability, much like the Competition Pros and Zipsticks that the majority of Amiga gamers favour.

 

I typed up the German review in Google Translate (and even included the umlauts and Eszett, which I believe equates to ‘ss’ in English), and while mostly what it spat back out is gibberish, I can decipher a few keywords that make sense. It seems to be suggesting the joystick is challenging by nature as well as by name since it’s a real workout for the nerves, shaft motion is loose and inaccurate. It has measly (?) fire buttons and squeegees (I think it means suction cups) and an auto-fire switch.

Germans, feel free to correct me.

This is the far more common, boxed Commodore-branded version. At the time of writing there are three listed on eBay, all located in Italy, and hiked up at ‘buy it now’ prices from £15.43 to £38.69.

Typically, unpopular 9 pin joysticks sell for less than a fiver, to put things in perspective.

On your marks… get set… eBay!

3 thoughts on “Meet the official Turrican II joystick

  • April 28, 2016 at 8:29 pm
    Permalink

    "Made in Hong Kong, it boasts 'high precision' and is fully micro-switched for durability…"

    Nice.

    "…much like the Competition Pros"

    Oh. So it was flimsy and needed replacing every few months.

  • April 29, 2016 at 10:16 am
    Permalink

    LOLsies! I hadn't considered the space-saving benefits of a multifunction device. 😉

    Lots of different manufacturers created joysticks using the Comp Pro name so I suppose your mileage may vary.

    For a while now I've been using a NOS Sega Mega Drive joypad, despite being a joystick junkie all my life. They live up to their reputation.

    I also have a stumpy little Cheetah BolliStick joypad which is surprisingly robust and comfortable to use.

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