Author Topic: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?  (Read 7733 times)

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Offline Sintpinty

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What are the worst controls you've ever used for a video game? It can be a physical controller, or the way it's mapped, or touch controls.
Personally my least favorite controller to use would be by far the n64. Confusing layout that just ain't work for small hands.

Offline mta

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The original Tomb Raider for the PC was a bit difficult in terms of overall control. Lots of camera/lining-up issues.

Goldeneye on the N64 is one of those games almost best left to nostalgia -- you try playing it again with the N64 controller and it feels really weird compared to how FPS controls have evolved over two decades.

The Dreamcast controller was also a bit large, clunky, and awkward.
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Offline smarmar

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OMG you're right about the original Tomb Raider! I played it on PS1. I don't think the gaming platform mattered so much as the way the game was coded. I remember it having sluggish response time and infuriating camera views.

The Mattel Intellivisions I and II have the absolute worst controller I've ever used. They're like plasticy cell phones with buttons on the sides and a gods-awful analog directional disc.

Xbox controllers make my hands hurt after prolonged usage. I don't notice the discomfort until I turn my wrists to put the controller down and then AAAARGH!
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Offline Findecanor

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I think that the original Tomb Raider was such an early 3D game that developers didn't know yet how to do the camera well.

The control disc on the Intellivision controller was not analogue. But it had sixteen directions as opposed to most digital sticks and D-pads that have only eight.
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Offline Sintpinty

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OMG you're right about the original Tomb Raider! I played it on PS1. I don't think the gaming platform mattered so much as the way the game was coded. I remember it having sluggish response time and infuriating camera views.

The Mattel Intellivisions I and II have the absolute worst controller I've ever used. They're like plasticy cell phones with buttons on the sides and a gods-awful analog directional disc.

Xbox controllers make my hands hurt after prolonged usage. I don't notice the discomfort until I turn my wrists to put the controller down and then AAAARGH!
I can agree with xbox controllers making my hands hurt. They are not comfortable to hold. The clickiness of the dpad isn't good at all.

Offline csmertx

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Yea Tomb Raider (1996) paired with the original PS1 controller was iirc a pita.  Of all the controllers I've used over the years the original PS1 (dpad) is my least favorite.
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Offline killiah

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PS1, Dendy

Offline fanpeople

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NES controllers. Cannot stand them.

Offline Sintpinty

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Probably because of the sharp edges. NES dogbone is a more better and improved design which has curved grips like the snes to prevent your hands hurting.

Offline csmertx

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I liked the chonky NES controller.  At least part of the dpad isn't hiding underneath the frame of the controller like the original PS1 controller. 
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Offline Nerd

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Mad Cat's controls are HORRIBLE. The grips are too hard, and it doesn't work at all. Generally known as the second hand controller The grips also leave marks in your hands. Wonder if they made keyboards.

In fact, i'll search that up right now.
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Offline romevi

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The square NES controllers definitely are uncomfortable. I much prefer the dogbone or Famicom ones.

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Everyone h8d' the G cube , but then after smashbros hype, people thought it was best ever.

N64 controller was terribad too, buh, at the time, it didn't matter, because games weren't built around responsiveness.

Offline Sintpinty

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Mad Cat's controls are HORRIBLE. The grips are too hard, and it doesn't work at all. Generally known as the second hand controller The grips also leave marks in your hands. Wonder if they made keyboards.

In fact, i'll search that up right now.
Yes they did Nerd. They made the membrane strike which is known to have issues.

Offline porkchops

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Registered to reply here. Hands down Red Dead Redemption 2/Grand Theft Auto 5.

They win the worst controls award because they lead you to believe you have a handle on them and then surprise you by no longer working as expected-usually at incredibly inopportune times. Bit like trying to push a puck around an ice rink with a piece of semi-rigid twine.

Offline noisyturtle

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Registered to reply here. Hands down Red Dead Redemption 2/Grand Theft Auto 5.

They win the worst controls award because they lead you to believe you have a handle on them and then surprise you by no longer working as expected-usually at incredibly inopportune times. Bit like trying to push a puck around an ice rink with a piece of semi-rigid twine.

That is 100% just the real-motion Rockstar uses. Most games you can turn around on a dime, stop walking when you stop walking etc - but Rockstar is insistent on implementing that annoying inertia that makes otherwise simple things like walking through a door or going up stairs a huge pain in the ass. It's style over playability, since the only reason to implement that kind of inertia is to get realistic animation. Otherwise it detracts from the game in every way.

Offline smarmar

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OMG you're right about the original Tomb Raider! I played it on PS1. I don't think the gaming platform mattered so much as the way the game was coded. I remember it having sluggish response time and infuriating camera views.

The Mattel Intellivisions I and II have the absolute worst controller I've ever used. They're like plasticy cell phones with buttons on the sides and a gods-awful analog directional disc.

Xbox controllers make my hands hurt after prolonged usage. I don't notice the discomfort until I turn my wrists to put the controller down and then AAAARGH!
I can agree with xbox controllers making my hands hurt. They are not comfortable to hold. The clickiness of the dpad isn't good at all.
Yes, the clickiness! I didn't realize how clicky the Xbox 1 controller was until I started using headphone per my wife's suggestion. She used to complain about the gunfire, now she complains about the clicking  :))

NES controllers. Cannot stand them.
Oh man, the NES controller is a minimalist work of art. The only one better is the Atari 2600 joystick.
Hmmm...but now that I think about it...maybe those two controllers are the reasons why I have less range-of-motion in my right wrist  :eek:

Registered to reply here. Hands down Red Dead Redemption 2/Grand Theft Auto 5.

They win the worst controls award because they lead you to believe you have a handle on them and then surprise you by no longer working as expected-usually at incredibly inopportune times. Bit like trying to push a puck around an ice rink with a piece of semi-rigid twine.
So, it's not just me that loathes RDR2 control responses. I attributed it to the controller, itself, since I have issues while playing other games too. Maybe it's just my old, withered gaming thumbs.

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Offline csmertx

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Oh man, Xbox One controller is the best controller I've used--mind I've never mine with an Xbox.
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Offline noisyturtle

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For controllers I use often, I really hate the gigantic deadzone on Playstation sticks. The amount of deadzone needed to travel the stick before it begins moving is ridiculous, it's basically an entire 3/4 in. taking up the center, and it's been an issue since the PS2. Pair that with the near-useless chicklet-style dpad and mushy shoulder buttons, and honestly I think Sony has some of the worst first-party controllers.

and lately I've been really annoyed with how slippery the Switch Pro controller's sticks are. It's like they are almost designed to deflect your thumbs.

Offline smarmar

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For controllers I use often, I really hate the gigantic deadzone on Playstation sticks. The amount of deadzone needed to travel the stick before it begins moving is ridiculous, it's basically an entire 3/4 in. taking up the center, and it's been an issue since the PS2. Pair that with the near-useless chicklet-style dpad and mushy shoulder buttons, and honestly I think Sony has some of the worst first-party controllers.

and lately I've been really annoyed with how slippery the Switch Pro controller's sticks are. It's like they are almost designed to deflect your thumbs.
I forgot all about the PS1's chicklet dpad - GAHH! I've never used any of its successors but I can imagine how awful those might be too.
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Gamers Nexus - Playstation Classic Controller vs. PS1 Controller (because teardowns videos are neat)

It's odd that people say dpad chicklet buttons when the dpad itself is one solid piece.  But I digress.. ;) Still an uncomfortable dpad regardless of internal nicknames
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Offline TacticalCoder

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What are the worst controls you've ever used for a video game?

Worst I don't remember atm. The Atari 2600's joystick wasn't particularly great.

But the best I not only remember but sometimes still play once in a while: the arcade "Robotron 2084" and it's twin joystick controller. No buttons (you use buttons to put credits / start but no buttons during the game). One joystick to move the player in the eight direction, the other joystick to fire in any of the eight direction. This game is still amazing to play today (on a real arcade cab of course: you need the full weight of the arcade cab for the true arcade feeling). Playing the original Robotron 2084 PCB is hard though: it's rare but also notoriously buggy and hard to have a fully working one. But it's amazing on RetroPie in a full-sized cab. Sanwa joysticks do work for me: click click click ^ ^
 
« Last Edit: Wed, 08 May 2019, 14:15:54 by TacticalCoder »
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Offline smarmar

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What are the worst controls you've ever used for a video game?

Worst I don't remember atm. The Atari 2600's joystick wasn't particularly great.

But the best I not only remember but sometimes still play once in a while: the arcade "Robotron 2084" and it's twin joystick controller. No buttons (you use buttons to put credits / start but no buttons during the game). One joystick to move the player in the eight direction, the other joystick to fire in any of the eight direction. This game is still amazing to play today (on a real arcade cab of course: you need the full weight of the arcade cab for the true arcade feeling). Playing the original Robotron 2084 PCB is hard though: it's rare but also notoriously buggy and hard to have a fully working one. But it's amazing on RetroPie in a full-sized cab. Sanwa joysticks do work for me: click click click ^ ^
Oh man, Robotron! -- the heart-attack-in-a-cabinet game! I wasn't a fan of the two-stick combo back in the day but that all changed when it hit the home consoles.

Space Dungeon for the Atari 5200 was my introduction to the two-stick controller genre. There was a tray that held both controllers in line but it wasn't very stable. But it was all we had available so we loved it!
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I am a huge fan of shmups. Geometry Wars is a fantastic shoot'em up available on Steam. It captures the look and essence of the old particle sprite and vector games really well while taking the genre to another level.
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This guy...





Way too big
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Offline romevi

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This guy...


Show Image



Way too big


I've got the Hyperkin version:




It's not that bad. It's definitely more of a fookin' novelty controller, but it's useable.

Offline Shapey Fiend

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Definitely didn't like the PS1 d-pad. Loooved the Dual Analog (not the Dual Shock) I wish they had stuck with the large palm grips and concave analog sticks.

I liked the shape of The Duke, cos I've got big hands, but the excessively convex buttons were really uncomfortable. Why not make them concave?

Thought the N64 pad was great. Don't get the hate other than maybe the analog wearing out over time.

Least favourite controllers were probably all that bad 3rd party ones from the 16 bit era. I had a Quickshot 6 button pad though and it was pretty good.

Find it hard to go back to those wobbly joysticks from the Atari 2600/Microcomputer era as well. Again I had a bigger Quickshot stick for my C64 that was relatively stable so I was happy enough.
« Last Edit: Fri, 10 May 2019, 15:49:01 by Shapey Fiend »

Offline TacticalCoder

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Geometry Wars is a fantastic shoot'em up available on Steam. It captures the look and essence of the old particle sprite and vector games really well while taking the genre to another level.

I don't play on anything but my old vintage arcade cab, on which I play only old games but... I remember seeing YouTube vids about Geometry wars: not just any shmups... It uses the original dual-stick / no-buttons Robotron input!
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Offline Sintpinty

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New definition of "bad" controllers: Guitar hero controller
The problem is, my hands width isn't enough to hold the proper way, just like you would with a regular controller.
Also, i've been noticing that the red button is worn out making me miss notes. And it is hard to press.
Apparantly in the new game they introduced "keyboard"(like piano) and i've been playing that for over 7 years so i think i've got it. Even better that it can be pressed on a flat surface so my hands don't get tired, and can be played with one hand!

Offline captainkai

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N64 was awesome!  Was just awkward and not intuitive to hold the middle instead of the right.
Across every system, the worst ones were always the off-brand ones.  If you're playing with others, NOBODY wants to use the one crappy off-brand controller  ^-^

Offline Sintpinty

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N64 was awesome!  Was just awkward and not intuitive to hold the middle instead of the right.
Across every system, the worst ones were always the off-brand ones.  If you're playing with others, NOBODY wants to use the one crappy off-brand controller  ^-^

mm hmm

Offline noisyturtle

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the N64 was just a terrible design for a controller period, but it set the tone for the Gamecube controller which is amazing.

Offline rowdy

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I've just recalled that the old Lode Runner game on the Apple ][ used UIOJKL as controls.

IJKL was equivalent to today's WASD, and U and O dug down to the left and right respectively.

You'd kind of have to intertwine and lock your fingers across that side of the keyboard to operate the controls properly.

And kids today think they've got it tough 'cause their ergonomic themed bluetooth controller doesn't have force-feedback or only has a dozen buttons :p
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Offline csmertx

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I cut my proverbial fingers with an Atari 2600 joystick.  Most brutal controll unless placed on a flat surface.  Good luck trying to reach a flat surface with that cord length..
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Offline HungerMechanic

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I guess only a few of you suffered through the cheap plastic numpad / thermostat dial of the Intellivision controller?


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I guess only a few of you suffered through the cheap plastic numpad / thermostat dial of the Intellivision controller?

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Been wanting to try this controller.

Offline rowdy

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I cut my proverbial fingers with an Atari 2600 joystick.  Most brutal controll unless placed on a flat surface.  Good luck trying to reach a flat surface with that cord length..

I had an Atari 2600 joystick, but not an Atari console/computer.

I made an interface to connect the joystick to my computer at the time.  It worked well.

I seem to recall the stem was rubber - lucky it was only your proverbial fingers.
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I cut my proverbial fingers with an Atari 2600 joystick.  Most brutal controll unless placed on a flat surface.  Good luck trying to reach a flat surface with that cord length..

I had an Atari 2600 joystick, but not an Atari console/computer.

I made an interface to connect the joystick to my computer at the time.  It worked well.

I seem to recall the stem was rubber - lucky it was only your proverbial fingers.

I have a 2600 console that I use on occasion.  Re-visiting some of those games while using the joystick on a desk is pretty neat.  Also my wrists are fully developed now so I guess that helps too.

IIRC, Intellivision controllers are awkward but stable in the hand.
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Offline HungerMechanic

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They were indeed stable, but even as a little kid I could tell that they were cheaply made.

In that context, the original NES controller was a revelation for me. People are dunking on it here for being too blocky, which is a valid complaint. But it felt so slick and intuitive when I first used it. The colour scheme was space-age '80s beige with red accents. The two simple buttons, relatively smooth and solid-feeling plastic case, and the almighty D-pad made it feel premium compared to what came before it.

In fact, I found the SNES controller to be annoyingly complicated. In games like Castlevania, it felt as if they were mapping different functions to different buttons 'just because.'

You could control a relatively sophisticated platformer like River City Ransom with just a NES controller, using two-button and D-pad combinations to perform jump-kicks, slides, and various combos. If it's good enough to control RCR, maybe it doesn't need to be much more sophisticated!

[You need a $%%$ 360 controller to play River City Ransom: Underground. Is that really progress?]



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Offline smarmar

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #38 on: Mon, 05 August 2019, 10:36:36 »
I guess only a few of you suffered through the cheap plastic numpad / thermostat dial of the Intellivision controller?

Show Image

Thermostat lol! That was one nasty interface.
The Intellivision controller worked like a champ with games that didn't require a lot of movement, games like B17 Bomber and Bomb Squad. One the other hand, with games like Tron Deadly Discs and any sports game -- fugitaboutit!
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Offline jacethesaltsculptor

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #39 on: Mon, 30 December 2019, 14:04:40 »
Mad Cat's controllers in the 90's and 00's were horrific. I couldn't stand them, and yet somehow, I always wound up with one, because even though it was terrible, it was an extra controller for when a friend was over.

The roughest controls go to Dwarf Fortress, I love that game to pieces, but teaching it to someone is an exercise in patience, and this is assuming they understand computers fine, and are REALLY interested in learning.

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Offline noisyturtle

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #40 on: Mon, 30 December 2019, 16:05:04 »
So I got a Steam Controller, and as it turns out not having two sticks makes it unusable for like 70% of games. And the ones it does work with, it works with poorly.

It's strange because it works perfectly on the desktop, but once you try to use it in a game it gets all wonkey. Also not having a right stick - HUGE drawback. Most games don't know what to make of the touchpad.

Offline Leslieann

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #41 on: Mon, 30 December 2019, 17:57:41 »
Saints Row 2.

While it was actually a pretty good game, it's legendary for how bad the controls were.
It was ported from console (one of the earlier ports) and whoever decided the controls had clearly never played PC before and no one bothered to test it, they just slapped whatever sounded good on paper.

Aiming was the biggest gripe.
You couldn't just right click, aiming was done with V. Scopes were brought up with V but then zoomed with H to zoom in and N to zoom out, which you were always doing. This meant one of your hands was being removed from primary controls when doing so. When finished you had to hit V again to shop aiming. The same happened with member interactions where recruiting was done with up/down arrows and taunts and compliments were left/right.

It was a mess.
« Last Edit: Mon, 30 December 2019, 18:26:14 by Leslieann »
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Offline 1391401

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #42 on: Tue, 31 December 2019, 03:04:53 »
Mad Katz everything was terrible.  Most notable were their "multi paged" memory cards which even if you followed the directions to a T would lose saves. 

I got one of their controllers for Playstation and it was terrible.  Buttons would stick and the d pad was terrible.  The shape was super awkward (think: original xbox).  It also had these features like turbo which wouldn't seem to do anything and most certainly did NOT fool psycho mantis much to the chagrin of me and my friends.
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Offline jacethesaltsculptor

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #43 on: Tue, 31 December 2019, 09:08:12 »
Mad Katz everything was terrible.  Most notable were their "multi paged" memory cards which even if you followed the directions to a T would lose saves. 

I got one of their controllers for Playstation and it was terrible.  Buttons would stick and the d pad was terrible.  The shape was super awkward (think: original xbox).  It also had these features like turbo which wouldn't seem to do anything and most certainly did NOT fool psycho mantis much to the chagrin of me and my friends.

I'd never heard of these memory cards until now, I'm guessing the gimmick was that they would have twice or triple the space and you could select new "cards" to save data on?

That already sounds awkward on an OG Playstation especially.

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Offline gipetto

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #44 on: Tue, 31 December 2019, 10:31:12 »
there was a hardware bug on the OG playstation that corrupted saves, that may not have been madcats fault. i read a blog post from a game dev who discovered it and all the games afterwards had a workaround. can't recall where i saw it.

I got a midi joystick for playing an early flight sim. it didn't realise how unresponsive it would be, since you could move the top eight inches or so. i barely used it.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #45 on: Sun, 12 January 2020, 00:23:29 »
Saints Row 2.

While it was actually a pretty good game, it's legendary for how bad the controls were.
It was ported from console (one of the earlier ports) and whoever decided the controls had clearly never played PC before and no one bothered to test it, they just slapped whatever sounded good on paper.

Aiming was the biggest gripe.
You couldn't just right click, aiming was done with V. Scopes were brought up with V but then zoomed with H to zoom in and N to zoom out, which you were always doing. This meant one of your hands was being removed from primary controls when doing so. When finished you had to hit V again to shop aiming. The same happened with member interactions where recruiting was done with up/down arrows and taunts and compliments were left/right.

It was a mess.

Saints Row 2's controls were perfectly fine on console though, at least on Xbox 360 where I first played it. (I couldn't afford PC gaming then)

Most shoddy PC ports control horribly, like Dark Souls, and the Attack on Titan games. Someone I know always quips that Japanese developers only care about console.

The only problem I've had with Rockstar games on PC vs console is the weapon wheel. The whole mechanic is designed around analogue sticks. I don't mind the realistic animations at all, realism is one of the major appeals of their games.

Mad Cat's controllers in the 90's and 00's were horrific. I couldn't stand them, and yet somehow, I always wound up with one, because even though it was terrible, it was an extra controller for when a friend was over.

The roughest controls go to Dwarf Fortress, I love that game to pieces, but teaching it to someone is an exercise in patience, and this is assuming they understand computers fine, and are REALLY interested in learning.

Yeah, Mad Catz made some of the worst controllers around, along with Pelican. It is a miracle that company survived as long as it did. I'm surprised they even bothered coming back now under the same name.

I'm not comprehending all of the hate for Xbox controllers here. It seems to me that the lineage of the modern controller stems from the Dreamcast, and continues through the iterations of Xbox controllers. It was the first, to my knowledge, somewhat ergonomic general-purpose controller. The analogue, spring-equipped triggers were the real clincher, but the analogue stick being above the d-pad made more sense in 3D titles as well. The Playstation's dual analogue sticks were certainly important, and the controller was infinitely better than the N64 controller even if it had only had one of them, but the layout always seems to me to be more oriented towards traditional JRPGs, or something, vs anything that wasn't turn-based or heavy on menus. The 4 bumpers were also, of course, ahead of their time. The original Xbox, even with The Duke seemed to finally get the the layout almost just right. I didn't seem to really mind The Duke at all other than the placement of the white and black buttons, and the s type was far and away the best controller of that generation. Perfect for FPS and driving alike. 360 and XB1 seem to have just refined the ergonomics, which is certainly still an improvement. The PS4 controller, by comparison, seems like a step back from the PS3 controller, which itself seemed like a remnant of the mid 1990s.

I'll preface this with the fact that I loved the Nintendo 64 in its entirety. Some of the best games, especially shooters, ever made were released on that console.

I consider the N64 controller to be the worst controller I have ever used, possibly tied with the GC controller. Physically limiting the directions of movement on the analogue stick (and later c stick) with abrupt corners was beyond infuriating, the 64's layout was confused, nonsensical. The GC's giant marshmallow buttons were awkward and even often got stuck, even on the official Nintendo controllers. The layout, while improved, was easily the worst of that generation. The Wii's bizarre nunchuk and wand setup wasn't much better, I may have even preferred a crappy old GC controller if I had bothered to play that console enough to care. I find it ironically indicative of Nintendo's reputation for gimmicks to have the gall to call the most usable controller they had ever produced to that date the "classic" controller. I haven't used the Wii U at all, or the Switch, but those new bluetooth controllers that they slapped on a 1st gen Nvidia Shield don't look too usable to me either.

I, unlike some others, quite liked the NES controller. I would agree that the 2600 joystick wasn't great. We have some sort of red and black knockoff joystick with a white button on top of the joystick that feels much less stiff, and allows greater leverage. I would say the Sega Genesis controller was probably the best of the ones I have tried from the 80s.

On a side note, have you guys ever seen one of these? They have turbo buttons, and a more ergonomic design. I can tell that that slider ... thing is basically useless. I have one, it just flops around. I have never tried to play anything using it yet though, just another one of those Goodwill, "What the hell is that? That's cool." Moments.


Offline Sintpinty

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #46 on: Mon, 20 January 2020, 12:31:53 »
Saints Row 2.

While it was actually a pretty good game, it's legendary for how bad the controls were.
It was ported from console (one of the earlier ports) and whoever decided the controls had clearly never played PC before and no one bothered to test it, they just slapped whatever sounded good on paper.

Aiming was the biggest gripe.
You couldn't just right click, aiming was done with V. Scopes were brought up with V but then zoomed with H to zoom in and N to zoom out, which you were always doing. This meant one of your hands was being removed from primary controls when doing so. When finished you had to hit V again to shop aiming. The same happened with member interactions where recruiting was done with up/down arrows and taunts and compliments were left/right.

It was a mess.

Saints Row 2's controls were perfectly fine on console though, at least on Xbox 360 where I first played it. (I couldn't afford PC gaming then)

Most shoddy PC ports control horribly, like Dark Souls, and the Attack on Titan games. Someone I know always quips that Japanese developers only care about console.

The only problem I've had with Rockstar games on PC vs console is the weapon wheel. The whole mechanic is designed around analogue sticks. I don't mind the realistic animations at all, realism is one of the major appeals of their games.

Mad Cat's controllers in the 90's and 00's were horrific. I couldn't stand them, and yet somehow, I always wound up with one, because even though it was terrible, it was an extra controller for when a friend was over.

The roughest controls go to Dwarf Fortress, I love that game to pieces, but teaching it to someone is an exercise in patience, and this is assuming they understand computers fine, and are REALLY interested in learning.

Yeah, Mad Catz made some of the worst controllers around, along with Pelican. It is a miracle that company survived as long as it did. I'm surprised they even bothered coming back now under the same name.

I'm not comprehending all of the hate for Xbox controllers here. It seems to me that the lineage of the modern controller stems from the Dreamcast, and continues through the iterations of Xbox controllers. It was the first, to my knowledge, somewhat ergonomic general-purpose controller. The analogue, spring-equipped triggers were the real clincher, but the analogue stick being above the d-pad made more sense in 3D titles as well. The Playstation's dual analogue sticks were certainly important, and the controller was infinitely better than the N64 controller even if it had only had one of them, but the layout always seems to me to be more oriented towards traditional JRPGs, or something, vs anything that wasn't turn-based or heavy on menus. The 4 bumpers were also, of course, ahead of their time. The original Xbox, even with The Duke seemed to finally get the the layout almost just right. I didn't seem to really mind The Duke at all other than the placement of the white and black buttons, and the s type was far and away the best controller of that generation. Perfect for FPS and driving alike. 360 and XB1 seem to have just refined the ergonomics, which is certainly still an improvement. The PS4 controller, by comparison, seems like a step back from the PS3 controller, which itself seemed like a remnant of the mid 1990s.

I'll preface this with the fact that I loved the Nintendo 64 in its entirety. Some of the best games, especially shooters, ever made were released on that console.

I consider the N64 controller to be the worst controller I have ever used, possibly tied with the GC controller. Physically limiting the directions of movement on the analogue stick (and later c stick) with abrupt corners was beyond infuriating, the 64's layout was confused, nonsensical. The GC's giant marshmallow buttons were awkward and even often got stuck, even on the official Nintendo controllers. The layout, while improved, was easily the worst of that generation. The Wii's bizarre nunchuk and wand setup wasn't much better, I may have even preferred a crappy old GC controller if I had bothered to play that console enough to care. I find it ironically indicative of Nintendo's reputation for gimmicks to have the gall to call the most usable controller they had ever produced to that date the "classic" controller. I haven't used the Wii U at all, or the Switch, but those new bluetooth controllers that they slapped on a 1st gen Nvidia Shield don't look too usable to me either.

I, unlike some others, quite liked the NES controller. I would agree that the 2600 joystick wasn't great. We have some sort of red and black knockoff joystick with a white button on top of the joystick that feels much less stiff, and allows greater leverage. I would say the Sega Genesis controller was probably the best of the ones I have tried from the 80s.

On a side note, have you guys ever seen one of these? They have turbo buttons, and a more ergonomic design. I can tell that that slider ... thing is basically useless. I have one, it just flops around. I have never tried to play anything using it yet though, just another one of those Goodwill, "What the hell is that? That's cool." Moments.

Show Image


Nes max not my thing tbh

Offline noisyturtle

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #47 on: Mon, 20 January 2020, 16:25:29 »
There's a mobile fishing game that I swear is just ****ing with people.

You click 'Cancel' and the game proceeds. You click the menu and it puts you in a PVP match. You click 'Next' and the game exits. It's as if they put all the button actions through a randomizer.

Offline wholypantalones

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #48 on: Mon, 20 January 2020, 17:53:53 »
So I got a Steam Controller, and as it turns out not having two sticks makes it unusable for like 70% of games. And the ones it does work with, it works with poorly.

It's strange because it works perfectly on the desktop, but once you try to use it in a game it gets all wonkey. Also not having a right stick - HUGE drawback. Most games don't know what to make of the touchpad.

ctrl + f "steam controller".

Same here, good idea in theory but terrible for games. Having to turn up the sensitivity and not having it do anything and then "flinging" your right thumb to turn is really, really fun.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: What are the worst controls/controllers you've ever used for a video game?
« Reply #49 on: Mon, 20 January 2020, 18:11:52 »
Nes max not my thing tbh

I don't think it is anybody's thing. People have modded them with modern analogue sticks, sans the proper mechanical bits of course, to make them somewhat usable, otherwise they're basically gimmicky garbage.

So I got a Steam Controller, and as it turns out not having two sticks makes it unusable for like 70% of games. And the ones it does work with, it works with poorly.

It's strange because it works perfectly on the desktop, but once you try to use it in a game it gets all wonkey. Also not having a right stick - HUGE drawback. Most games don't know what to make of the touchpad.

ctrl + f "steam controller".

Same here, good idea in theory but terrible for games. Having to turn up the sensitivity and not having it do anything and then "flinging" your right thumb to turn is really, really fun.



I haven't used a Steam controller long, although I have one brand new in the box still, but while awkward at first, I did feel like I could get accustomed to it. Whether or not it could ever compete with just a regular controller I couldn't be sure of. It does sort of boggle the mind that Valve would take trackpads, one of the single most hated computer peripherals for gaming, and slap them onto a controller, but I imagine they felt they needed something to try to stand out instead of just being another Xbox clone controller.