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Author Topic: 8-Way Joystick for controlling Crosshairs  (Read 221 times)

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jonbenderr

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8-Way Joystick for controlling Crosshairs
« on: April 04, 2019, 06:25:03 am »
Hello all!

So I've been experimenting with playing games like Star Wars Trilogy and Starblade as of late that require control of a crosshair. 

I have 8-way sticks with flight stick style handles, top fire button and trigger button.

The initial problem I ran into is when trying to control cross hairs in games like these, if I just mapped as a joystick, the crosshair would just shoot to the corners and than snap back to center.  This actually makes sense since the games are looking for analog controls and instead are just getting a button/switch press and then release.

The solution I came up with is to use joytokey to map the directions of the joystick to mouse directions.  Than in game map the X and Y axis controls to mouse.

This actually works pretty well, but I can't seem to get sensitivity settings and things of that sort quite right.  No matter what it still seems kind of finicky and either to jumpy or to slow.

So I was curious if anyone has messed around with a technique like this?  Has anyone found something that works really well?

I know the obvious answer is to maybe buy real analogue controls but I have to admit I suffered a bit of sticker shock when looking into these things.

I was also thinking of maybe modding these eight ways to somehow reduce the amount of throw needed to hit the microswitches in the joysticks internals.  Maybe by making the base of the stick wider to decrease distance needed to strike the microswitches.  (These sticks will only be used for flight sim style games, so I'm not concerned about proper controls for other games).

Any takers on this topic?  And thoughts?

« Last Edit: April 04, 2019, 06:28:22 am by jonbenderr »

daywane

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Re: 8-Way Joystick for controlling Crosshairs
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2019, 06:58:28 am »
Track ball.
Joysticks a the worst for what your wanting to do

BadMouth

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Re: 8-Way Joystick for controlling Crosshairs
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2019, 07:23:43 am »
MAME has settings to make digital joysticks work better on analog games.

It's been years since I messed with it, so I might not have all the option names correct.

Map the controls only to the options that say INC and DEC.

Then in MAME's in game menu (TAB), navigate to the analog options.

Digital speed adjusts how fast the virtual analog controller moves from center to full direction when the microswitch in your digital joysticks is tripped

Digital Center adjusts how fast the virtual joysticks returns to center when the digital joystick returns to center.

Adjusting the timing on these can make  the games more playable.  I've mostly used this to control gas pedals with a button.  You can keep the virtual pedal depressed in a certain range by tapping faster or slower...or just hold down for full blast.

jonbenderr

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Re: 8-Way Joystick for controlling Crosshairs
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2019, 08:24:40 am »
Thank you for that BadMouth.

I've actually been wanting to ask for a better definition of those settings so that clears things up very nicely.

As far as using a track ball this is for a sit down/simulator cab so a trackball is no fun!  :)

It's actually working pretty well as it is, but now I'm itching to get home and play with those analog settings.