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Author Topic: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!  (Read 6191 times)

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rCadeGaming

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The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« on: May 17, 2012, 12:19:22 am »
**I hope that the community enjoys this mod. If you disagree with my reasoning about why a JLF can be better than a Seimitsu, we can discuss in another thread. Let's please keep this one about the mod itself. Don't knock it until you try it. You might be amazed by how well it plays.**

If you're reading this, you probably already know that although a Sanwa JLF joystick is fantastic for fighting games
(the best in my opinion), it's pretty awful for shmups/space shooters/etc., as well as some other genres. 

I've created a fairly simple mod that significantly reduces the engage and throw of the JLF, to make it more suitable for shmups; and it can be done in an evening, for under $10.  IMHO, a JLF with this mod is not only the best option for shmups, but also one of the best all around joysticks.  It especially stands out for difficult platformers, like Megaman, or Hagane.

I've written a how-to, as well as an explanation of the advantages of doing so instead of just using a Seimitsu. 

I posted it on the shmups.com forums, as that seemed the most appropriate place for it, but I thought I'd share it here with a thread for comments, for anyone who doesn't have an account there.

It can be found here:

http://shmups.system11.org/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=41451&start=0
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 05:08:10 pm by rCadeGaming »

Mental

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2012, 09:21:37 am »
This seems a bit over the top to me. Why not just buy a JLW? It would be a much simpler compromise, no?
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Vigo

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2012, 12:48:35 pm »
This seems a bit over the top to me. Why not just buy a JLW? It would be a much simpler compromise, no?

I have never tried a JLW, but I thought that JLF fan often didn't like the stiffness with the JLW, and that they are a bit bulkier. I think he is trying to keep the elegant precision that the JLF has.


DCsegaDH

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2012, 05:13:55 pm »
Why not go with a Seimitsu joystick? Shmup guys love them, I personally have never owned one, but I'm not too picky about joysticks.

ark_ader

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2012, 05:25:02 pm »
I like my generic X Arcade joys for shmups. 

Yeah they are not great but they do the job well enough.

Especially for the casual gamer.
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Vigo

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2012, 05:33:17 pm »
Yeah, this definitely seems like a mod for a control picky player. I have no doubt that it works well. What can I say, I am use to sub par controls. Might partially explain why I don't get too any spectacular scores on shmups.

boardjunkie

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2012, 06:31:43 pm »
PC board mounted switches? Mahn...thats a *bad* idea....

rCadeGaming

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2012, 06:32:56 pm »
JLW's have an engage distance of 5.5mm, which is almost as bad as a stock JLF (6mm).  Supposedly some JLW-TM-8's in Japan are only 3.5mm, but I don't know where to find one of those.  Anyhow, the JLF feels better, and after my mod it's down to 3.25mm.

For shmups, the Seimitsu LS-40 or LS-56 is much better than the stock JLF; but after my mod, the JLF is even better than the Seimitsu's.  The first few paragraphs in the link explain it pretty definitively.

To me it doesn't make any sense not to be picky about controls.  If you are going to be playing these games at all, even casually, why not take a little time to remove the barriers between yourself and the optimal game experience, like bad controls and lag.  It becomes much more enjoyable at any level of play.  Some people don't realize what they're missing.  It's like a kid who thinks his Scion is fast, until he gets into a real car.

PC board mounted switches? Mahn...thats a *bad* idea....

Huh?

boardjunkie

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2012, 08:03:11 am »
The stick you are talking about has the switches soldered to a board. With use/abuse the solder will crack...switch will stop working until you resolder the cracked joint.

rCadeGaming

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2012, 08:15:52 am »
Not sure what abuse you're talking about.  Resting it on a flat piece of wood and drilling straight down keeps it from flexing during that process.  Once the stick is back together, the PCB is not under more stress than it is in a stock JLF.

Do you mean modding a PCB like this is a bad idea, or that it's a poor design from Sanwa to begin with?  I don't think either is the case.  JLF's are extremely durable, and don't commonly have the problem you're described.  By design they don't put pressure on the solder joints (stock or in my mod).

JoeB

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2012, 09:52:09 pm »
I have drilled holes into PCBs many times before. It should be no issue. It's important to have the right drill bit (think about it, if you can drill into something as britle as a ceramic tile, a pcb is no issue)

OP: how do other games feel with mod? (fighters? Neo geo puzzle games? Classic games?)

rCadeGaming

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Re: The Best Joystick for Shmups, a JLF!? New Mod!
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2013, 05:14:11 pm »
Wow, really missed this one.

It works great for fighting games, it takes a few rounds to acclimate to the shortened throw, but once you do quarter circles, half circles, dragon punch movement, etc., are as effortless as ever.  The shorter throw doesn't hinder you in fighters the way that the longer throw does in shmups; in fact, I think it may help in execution speed.  It's also a big improvement for quick inputs in difficult platformers like Ghosts and Goblins, Mega Man, etc.  Puzzle games work well.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 07:12:09 pm by rCadeGaming »

  
 

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