Gamepad or Joystick?

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#1 Posted by funkyzoom (1426 posts) -

I've been a PC gamer exclusively since 1998, and I've also played all sorts of games only using keyboard and mouse. The last time i held a controller in my hands, was during the SNES days when I actually played games on my SNES. But now, I feel that its high time I bought a controller, because most of today's games are console ports which are not optimized for playing with keyboard/mouse. Of course, for first/third person shooters, RPGs etc. I'll still continue using keyboard/mouse, but for the others, I have a confusion. I'm considering either an XBox 360 controller (because it is supported by almost all modern games) or a high end Logitech joystick (I don't remember the model). A few years ago, Joysticks were the norm, but now, I hardly see anyone using Joysticks because most prefer gamepads. So, i want to know the following:-

1) Which of these would be better for general purpose gaming on the PC, considering I don't play Flight sims (which almost always require a Joystick)?

2) Do all games which support a Gamepad, also support a Joystick?

3) What are the pros and cons of using a Joystick vs a Gamepad? Also, which one is more comfortable to use fo long hours of gaming?

4) Suppose you suggest a gamepad, would a PS3 gamepad also work with a PC? Although I haven't personally used any Gamepad, I feel that the placement of thumbsticks on the XBox 360 controller is really weird, and I'd prefer a symmetric layout like that of a PS3 controller.

Please help me out with this. Thank you.

P.S. Mods, please don't lock this thread if you feel this belongs in the PC hardware forum. I'm posting it in this forum because it is also related to games, and these aren't exactly 'PC hardware' because they aren't an integral part of a PC.

#2 Edited by funkyzoom (1426 posts) -

Hmmmm.....nobody online to respond? Please be quick, guys! There is a certain online discount offer in my country, which ends in the next few hours! So I'd like to place an order before that, based on the feedback and suggestions I get here.

#3 Posted by ZombieKiller7 (6248 posts) -

I use a wired 360 controller, I find it very useful for many "consolized" games whose kb/m controls are not that great.

It's a perfect "joystick lite" solution unless you are hardcore sim guy who wants full stick and throttle setup.

I haven't used a joystick since the 90's.

I was surprised that MechWarrior Online does not support a gamepad but supports Joysticks, but I think MOST new games (at least %80 of them) support gamepad, and even if they don't there's third-party software to map it.

Joysticks are more advanced for fine-control, for example turning a plane 5 degrees left, you can't really do that with a gamepad.

Gamepads are "joystick lite" which offer some rough approximation of joystick control, but they have a shit-ton of buttons, which makes them perfect for games like Assassin's Creed and what have you.

Long story short, unless you're a hardcore simmer, I recommend a wired 360 controller.

#4 Posted by funkyzoom (1426 posts) -

I use a wired 360 controller, I find it very useful for many "consolized" games whose kb/m controls are not that great.

It's a perfect "joystick lite" solution unless you are hardcore sim guy who wants full stick and throttle setup.

I haven't used a joystick since the 90's.

I was surprised that MechWarrior Online does not support a gamepad but supports Joysticks, but I think MOST new games (at least %80 of them) support gamepad, and even if they don't there's third-party software to map it.

Joysticks are more advanced for fine-control, for example turning a plane 5 degrees left, you can't really do that with a gamepad.

Gamepads are "joystick lite" which offer some rough approximation of joystick control, but they have a shit-ton of buttons, which makes them perfect for games like Assassin's Creed and what have you.

Long story short, unless you're a hardcore simmer, I recommend a wired 360 controller.

Thanks for the info. I have decided to go for a controller, because I'm by no means a hardcore simmer. Anyway, like i mentioned in my original post, I want to know if a PS3 controller works with a PC. Although I've never used a controller, just by looking a the placement of the thumbsticks on an XBox 360 controller gives me the impression that it might be uncomfortable or cumbersome to use. I'd rather prefer a controller with symmetrically placed thumbsticks, such as on the PS3 controller.

#5 Posted by danten81 (129 posts) -

Get a Dualshock 4, as it works natively with micro-usb cable and bluetooth. Also, xinput games need x360ce files placed in the folder with the main exe.

#6 Posted by jun_aka_pekto (15918 posts) -

Go by feel. Each person's reflexes are different. You'll have to try each control device for yourself to find out what's best for you.