The Power Pad is a vinyl mat with internal pressure-sensitive switches which is used as an input device to play special video games on the Nintendo Entertainment System. It was originally created and sold by Bandai as the Family Trainer in Japan and the Family Fun Fitness elsewhere, but later licensed by Nintendo. The original name was retained in Europe, but changed to the Power Pad in North America. To use the device, players would lie it flat on the ground and, without shoes, step on "buttons" marked on the mat where the switches were located. Games made for the Power Pad used themes involving running, dancing, and fitness. Although the controller didn't see much use during the 8-bit era, it did pave the way for Dance Dance Revolution.
My cousins received the NES Power Set as a gift which included the Power Pad. The only game they had for it was the multi-cart that came with the package, World Class Track Meet. I remember playing the game a little, but not being very impressed with it. Rather than run in place, we would cheat and slap the mat with our hands to race.
I do not own a Power Pad, but I have used it a little.
I haven't used the Power Pad enough to give a detailed review. Although, I can say that it's difficult to use. Because there is no tactile feedback on where you're stomping, it's easy to drift away from the buttons and your steps will cease registering. I also don't think any of the games made for the system are very enjoyable to play.
|1987-11-27||Super Team Games||Bandai|
|1988-12-20||Fuun! Takeshi Jo Two||Baindai|
|1988-??-??||World Class Track Meet||Bandai|
|1989-01-26||Rai Rai! Kyonshis: Baby Kyonshi no Amida Daiboken||Bandai|
|1989-12-??||Short Order / Eggsplode!||Tose|
|English||Family Fun Fitness|
|English (Licensed)||Power Pad|
|Japanese||ファミリートレーナー||Famiri Torena||Family Trainer|