Joystick/Gamepad/Trackball for 3d shooters?

Timon Russo

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
May 10, 2000
Messages
213
I played so much Half-Life that my wrists and fingers hurt. That and I've worked on computers all my life and I've done quite a bit of damage. Anyway, I figure I could play 3d shooters on my PC again someday if I can find a non-mouse controller that I was comfortable with.
Anyone using anything different? I was hoping I could find a gamepad type controller with an actual tiny joystick on it or something, or even a trackball on it. So I didn't need my hands on the mouse OR the keyboard.
Anyone? Hello?
 

Camp

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 3, 1999
Messages
2,301
I played so much Half-Life that my wrists and fingers hurt.
Yea, sure...you hurt your wrists "playing Half-Life"...sure.

There was a cool controller called the SpaceOrb 360. It was a bit expensive but was made specifically for 3D games. I don't know if it still exists. I think Dean mentioned having one.
 

Dean Cooper

Supporting Actor
Joined
Oct 23, 2000
Messages
972
If your looking for a controller that was made for FPS and Decent type games the very BEST is indeed the SpaceOrb 360. As Camp mentioned, I do have one myself and absolutely love it. Unfortunately they are not being made anymore, but you can still find them. These babies have a cult following and for good reason, once you make it through the learning curve you'll be running circles around the mousers

This is what it looks like:

The best way to describe how it works is like grabbing the head of the guy in the game and pushing or twisting it in the way that you would to move your own. Its fully analog so the harder you twist or push the faster you go ( as fast as mouse if you want ) The sensitivity is fully adjustable and somewhat requires a delicate touch to completely master.
The best site for this is: http://www.planethardware.com/spaceorb/
Dean
[Edited last by Dean Cooper on November 01, 2001 at 11:47 PM]
 

Michael St. Clair

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 3, 1999
Messages
6,001
Since from a driver standpoint, a trackball is basically a mouse, and pressing buttons or using a joystick to move your character is not really different from using a keyboard, this makes me wonder if FPS games for XBox are already being written with keyboard/mouse support...options that you may not see until a valid keyboard/mouse is connected.
Maybe, maybe not. Still interesting.
The "Panther" is definitely approaching what is needed for good FPS control.
 

James D S

Screenwriter
Joined
Nov 14, 2000
Messages
1,000
Dean,
Is it safe to assume that the SpaceOrb uses standard microswitches? If so, converting it should not be too hard. (Famous last words.)
 

Dean Cooper

Supporting Actor
Joined
Oct 23, 2000
Messages
972
It does, so yeah it would be pretty easy to convert. Another thing to mention about it is its a serial device. If you really want to get deep into these the site I linked even has the source for the drivers.
Dean
 

Camp

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 3, 1999
Messages
2,301
I almost forgot...
There's also the Microsoft Sidewinder Dual Strike controller. Think PS2 controller where the two sides are connected by a ball joint. Do a search at Microsoft.com for a picture.
I used one and really liked it once I got used to the odd movement. I purchased one myself but never got the damn thing to work. Bummer.
 

steveC

Grip
Joined
Feb 25, 1999
Messages
16
I too have the SpaceOrb but have not used it in some
time. It has a learning curve but is certainly a viable
alternative. I have hopes that it could resurface for
the Xbox.
 

Timon Russo

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
May 10, 2000
Messages
213
Hey Camp -

That sidewinder dual strike is exactly what I'm looking for. Seems like I will be able to control everything with fingers/thumbs/wrists - no arms extended and improperly supported which has been my problem.
Thanks all!
 

Leroy

Second Unit
Joined
Jun 30, 1997
Messages
305
With FPS's becoming more common on consoles, why on earth has someon not developed a controller with a small trackball instead of an analog stick. I've seen the panther, but I'm talking about a normal handheld controller.
My Marbleman mouse isn't much thicker than the X-box controller(just an example)and tha's realy the only thing I miss when playing console FPS, the accuaracy of my mouse for aiming.
 

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