N64 Controller Pak
Used Nintendo 64 Controller Pak
Memory card for the Nintendo 64 console. Japanese import. Region free, works with any Nintendo 64 console worldwide. Tested, works. In good condition. Inner plastic tray is creased. Please refer to pictures for details of condition and contents.
Genre: memory cards
The Controller Pak (コントローラパック Kontorōra Pakku) is the console's memory card, comparable to those seen in the PlayStation and other CD-ROM-based video game consoles. Certain games allowed saving of game files to the Controller Pak, which plugged into the back of the Nintendo 64 controller (as did the Rumble and Transfer Paks). The Controller Pak was marketed as a way to exchange data with other Nintendo 64 owners, since information saved on the game cartridge could not be transferred to another cartridge.
It is plugged into the controller and allowed the player to save game progress and configuration. The original models from Nintendo offered 256 kilobits (32KB) battery backed SRAM, split into 123 pages with a limitation of 16 save files, but third party models had much more, often in the form of 4 selectable memory bank of 256kbits. The number of pages that a game occupied varied (sometimes, it used the entire card). It is powered by a common CR2032 battery.
A Controller Pak is initially useful, and even necessary for the earlier N64 games. Over time, the Controller Pak lost ground to the convenience of a battery backed SRAM (or EEPROM) found in some cartridges. Because the Nintendo 64 used a game cartridge format that allows saving data on the cartridges themselves, few first party and second party games used the Controller Pak. The vast majority are from third-party developers. This is most likely due to the increased production and retail costs which would have been caused by including self-contained data on the cartridge. Some games use it to save optional data that is too large for the cartridge, such as Mario Kart 64, which uses 121 pages (virtually the entire cartridge) for storing ghost data. Another game is Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, which uses 11 pages. Quest 64 and Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon used the Controller Pak exclusively for saved data. The Japan-only game Animal Forest used the Controller Pak to travel to other towns.