In this paper, a genetic algorithm (GA) based optimal fuzzy controller design is proposed. The design procedure is accomplished by establishing an index function as the consequent part of the fuzzy control rule. The inputs of the controller, after scaling, are utilized by the index function for computing the output linguistic value. This linguistic value can then be used to map the suitable fuzzy control actions. This proposed novel fuzzy control rule has crisp input and fuzzified output characteristics. The index function plays a role in mapping the desired fuzzy sets for defuzzification resulting in a controlled hypersurface in the linguistic space formed by the input fuzzy variables. Two types of index functions, both linear and nonlinear, are introduced for controlling systems with different degrees of nonlinearity. The parameters of the index function are obtained by applying a simple GA with a suitable fitness function. Various controlled systems result in various parameter sets depending on their dynamics. Under the acquired optimal parameter set the optimal index function can be used to generate the desired control actions. Several simulation examples are given to verify the performance of the proposed GA-based fuzzy controller.