Earlier this week, Guinness World Records unveiled the world's Largest Videogame Controller at London's Liverpool St. Station for the launch of the latest edition of our best-selling videogames series; Guinness World Records 2012 Gamer's Edition.
The record-breaking device measures 30 times the size of a standard NES controller and is featured in the new book which recognises the greatest, and strangest, achievements in video gaming.
Creator of the device, British Engineering student Ben Allen (23), who studies at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, was present at the event with co-creators Stephen van 't Hof and Michel Verhulst. They invited commuters to have a go on the joypad that measures an enormous 366 cm x 159 cm x 51 cm (12ft x 5ft 3 in x 1ft 8 in), and weighs an estimated 265 pounds (18 stone). Such is the size of the controller that it requires at least two gamers to press the buttons - or jump on them--which communicates with a standard console.
The device, created as part of a university project, took five months to create at an estimated cost of £4,000. Ben said: "This is really a labour of love. We're passionate about gaming and wanted to honour its most iconic device; the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) joypad. We put our heads together in the pub and decided to create this absurdly large working version! It's such a rush to know we've made history and are being included in the Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition."
Also present at the London event, and featured in the new book, were British record holders Ryan Hart (Most International Street Fighter Competition Wins: over 450) and Sami Cetin, a Super Mario Kart professional player that holds the record for the Fastest Lap on Mario Kart (56.45 seconds).
Standout records celebrated this year include the Longest Videogame Marathon. Tony Desmet, Jesse Rebmann and Jeffrey Gammon (all Belgium) played Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood for an eye-watering 109 hours.
In another feat of endurance 6ft 5in 265lb Jesse Moerkerk from The Netherlands set a new record for the Longest Gaming Session in Free-Fall. Suspended in a wind-tunnel, Jesse managed to play Super Mario Galaxy 2 on the Nintendo Wii for 18 minutes and 52 seconds. The Dutchman described the feeling as "like doing one continuous push-up while trying to stomp goombas at the same time!"
Women are well represented in the new book. Britain's Helen Mirren is recognised for the Highest Fee Paid for a Videogame Advert Appearance. In 2010 the famous actress was paid £500,000 ($800,000) to appear in a series of television adverts for Wii Fit. While across the pond Marie-Laure Norindr (France) is crowned the First Woman to Win a Pro-Street Fighter Event. Best known among pro-gamers under her tag of "Kayane", Marie-Laure became the first woman to win a pro-Street Fighter event at the Evolution Championship Series in 2010.
Demonstrating the overall popularity of gaming, the FIFA Interactive World Cup broke its own record for the Largest Videogame Tournament. 869,453 gamers from across the world entered the competition last year. 16 year-old Francisco Cruz from Portugal won the tournament and walked away with the $20,000 prize money.
Guinness World Records Gaming Editor, Gaz Deaves, says: "We've been burning the midnight oil like ninjas for the 2012 Gamer's Edition: witnessing record attempts, talking to developers and playing as many videogames as we could handle. Gamers all over the world can finally get their hands on the result of our hard labour, and this year's book packed with all the amazing records, facts and feats that they have a right to expect from Guinness World Records."
As well as records, Gamer's Edition 2012 is full of interesting features such the as the Top 50 Videogame Endings Of All Time as voted by over 13,000 readers; Gaming Fail, a fun look at the greatest 'Epic Failures' in gaming history; Star Wars, a guide to the spin-off games that have come from the iconic movie; and of course, a comprehensive Twin Galaxies Scoreboard that allows you to see how you compare with the best in the gaming world.
Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition 2012 is out now in the UK, US and Australia. Click here for more details.