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Author Topic: Why a 49-way?...?  (Read 1285 times)

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KillerArcades

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Why a 49-way?...?
« on: May 25, 2006, 03:16:53 am »
Ok, so I'm still a relative newbie, though I'm no longer lurking as much, and I finished my first cab last month and am very happy with it, however, i've begun to get that all too familiar itch again..... and I also  have a friend buildling one, and I've been helping him with planning out which stuff to use in his CP,  etc.

So, my question for all you guys is, should I use 49-ways in my next cab or not? (and my friend is curious as well).

I hear lots of talk of them, and I've read that many people feel that they're the best "All-around" stick - or at least I think that's kinda what I've been reading about them. But, I'm just not convinced yet. Are they really that much better than the HAPP Supers that I get for $5.99 each? And if so, for what games/game play, etc.. in what situations?
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DaveMMR

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2006, 07:49:54 am »
With the Gp-Wiz49, a 49-way can become a 4-way, 2-way, 4-way diagonal (Q*Bert), and an 8-way.   PowerMame has a setting that change the joystick setting automatically.  The stick can also act as a 'simple' analog stick (i.e. Road Runner) and Hall Effect Joystick.  It also works great with Gravitar Sinistar, I've heard. (edit: never post when tired).

They are worth it if you're trying to avoid a cluttered panel (or switching many panels) as they are quite versatile.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2006, 01:25:51 pm by DaveMMR »

KillerArcades

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2006, 09:13:47 am »
is powermame required to get the auto-switching benefit (auto from 4-way to 2-way to 8-way per game, etc?), or is the only thing needed there the GP-wiz49?
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ArtMAME

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2006, 09:39:35 am »
 :notworthy: SINISTAR!!!  :notworthy:

If you love Sinistar, you NEED a 49-way, there is no other way other than 49-way!!!

I have a Williams 49-way using a GPWIZ 49, it is smooth and it performs great for 2-way, 4-way, 8-way games, and QBert, even I, Robot.  So it can be used as an all-purpose joystick quite successfully.   :cheers:

I am not using PowerMAME but you can download an application from the GPWIZ 49 website that will change the mode of your 49-way joystick, but not automatically.  You can also wire up some kind of shifted keypress on the GPWIZ 49 to change the modes of the joystick.  You can download wiring diagrams and instructions at the GroovyGameGear site that sells the GPWIZ 49.

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markrvp

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2006, 10:04:49 am »
SirPoonga wrote a program called "Set49way" which will automatically set the mode based on the game's controls.dat information (or MAME controls info, I don't remember which) without having to use PowerMame, but there really isn't a compelling reason NOT to use PowerMAME.

mhermann

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2006, 12:55:25 pm »
I was hesitant to use them in a 4-way game until I actually tried it. And it works great. In the end it comes down to personal preference as the throw on them is much greater then a traditional 4-way controller.

Using them allowed me to remove the dedicated 4-way from my panel for a much cleaner look.

Havok

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2006, 01:09:16 pm »
It also works great with Gravitar, I've heard.

Ahhhh! Blasphemer!

 :angry:

Gravitar is to be played with 5 buttons only! No exceptions!

(One of my favorite games...)

 :)

DaveMMR

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2006, 01:24:45 pm »
 :banghead: Okay, I actually did mean to type "Sinistar".  I wrote the post while I was half asleep.  Duly corrected. 

Stingray

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2006, 01:31:35 pm »
Don't like the feel of them, myself. That's just a personal preference thing.

-S
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Timoe

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2006, 10:27:50 pm »
Don't like the feel of them, myself. That's just a personal preference thing.

-S

that statement is false.  They're really neat.  Buy one. 

Boz

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2006, 11:49:46 pm »
Stingray, what is it that you don't like about the feel of them? I'm very curious.

I get the fact that with the 300 or so *true* classics, each game requires a specific movement in the joystick. A joystick for Q-Bert doesn't move the same as one for Donkey Kong which doesn't move the same as one for Gauntlet which doesn't move the same as one for Joust. I have been very hesitant to buy a 49-way due to comments I've read about the "feel" of the joystick (not "functionality") against what my brain remembers from the original cabinet. For instance...

If I fire up Donkey Kong, I distinctly remember using the 4-way restriction of the original joystick as an aid to timing my climbing transitions. I wasn't "slamming" the joystick to each direction, but there was certainly a big help provided by the fact that my joystick would only move in a diagonal direction as I changed from right ---> to up ^. As a result, I was very good and quite confident in my gameplay. It made playing the game fun. If I were to get an expensive 49-way joy and found the movement to feel "sloppy" -- not that it would actually *be* sloppy, but my brain, recalling the original joystick feel, would *perceive* it as sloppy -- I would feel kind of ripped off.

Yeah... feel of a joystick is a subjective thing, and I probably won't know until I play DK on a 49-way at least once. But, if the result is anything like I suspect, seems like an awefully expensive test (time *and* money). The other thing we face as Mamers is the truly impossible task of building a single cabinet to mimic the hundreds or thousands of control panels we used as teenagers of the 80's

I'll probably end up giving one a try, spending a hundred hours installing and configuring all my games for it, then selling it on E-Bay when it doesn't suit me.

Just my $0.02

-Brian

buks

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2006, 08:07:51 am »
If I decided to switch my Ultimarc sticks for 49-ways do I assume that my Ipac will be replaced by the gp-wiz ? If so, will my opti-pac plug into the gpwiz board ?

Buks

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2006, 08:39:07 am »
If you have the 49-way stick you will need a GPwiz instead of the Ipac.

You'll still need an opti-pac for your spinner and trackball though.  Groovy Game Gear does have an Optipac alternative called the Optiwiz that is a bit less expensive  If you want to get all your gear from the same place.


buks

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2006, 08:45:07 am »
But does the opti-pac plug into the gpwiz ? Or do i have to go all GGG boards if I switch sticks ?

Duster72

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2006, 08:51:55 am »
I didn't like the feel of the 49-way, either, but to each his own.  It's worth trying.  I thought about keeping it just for the analog games, because it's great for those.

orbian

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #15 on: May 26, 2006, 12:50:11 pm »
Stingray, what is it that you don't like about the feel of them? I'm very curious.

-Brian

I tried the 49-Way sticks but they didn't really work out all that well for me. First there is no 4-way mode using the GPWiz-49. It's still an 8-way mode that's just more difficult to hit the diagonals. Plus the pseudo 4-way mode doesn't have a large enough dead zone in my opinion so when I swing the stick back and forth from left to right I occaicionally hit the up direction. This is a problem for me on maze games lic Pac-Man. For the 8-way mode I just didn't like throw. It seemed like way too much work to play Robotron with the 49-way. Also I found the the auto centering on the 49-ways to not always be perfect. This becomes pretty noticeable on Robotron when it happens. A simple tap on a regualr 8-way will fire off one round but the 49-way might fire off two before it recenters. That being said, they do work extremely well for games that need them like Sinistar. I-Robot plays much better as does Food Fight. However it will still be just a specialty stick on my control panel.

Orbian

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #16 on: May 26, 2006, 03:40:30 pm »
You got a bunk grommet then.  GGG offers replacement gromets that solve that issue.

As for the Opti-Pac Optiwiz issue.  The Opti- Pac is a stand alone interface.  It plugs directly into your computer.  Same thing with the Optiwiz.
You wont be limited here

I havent used the opti-pac.  But I do have an optiwiz.  It has a smaller foot print and is less expensive.  It works really well.

I really like a competition stick myself for 90% of games.  A physically restricted 4-way cannot be beat for games like pac-man, etc.  For the 4-way I really like the J-stick or if you can find it, the 4-way wico.


But if you want to have a cleaner looking panel and 1 stick to tackle everthing from Blaster to Sinistar to pacman to robotron the 49-way is pretty slick.

I used to have a panel similar to Markrvp's design that had a 49-way for the left hand and an 8-way Wico leafswitch for the right hand.

It felt and worked great for robotron.

But you dont need to swing the stick around all "willy-nilly"  if you get used to it it only requires the slightest of movements to register.

KillerArcades

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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #17 on: May 30, 2006, 11:23:28 am »
lots of great input here, I really appreciate it.

From what I've read, I think I'm leaning away from the 49-way. I am most interested in the following two things:

1.  Keeping a clean control panel (my current/only cab has a two tiered CP and I'm kinda tired of that idea and would like to get away from having P1 and P2 controls duplicated like I have them now, etc) - besides the 4-way supers I have just aren't good enough for Ms PacMan, etc.

2. Getting a joystick that really feels like the old Donkey Kong/Ms Pac Man sticks.

So, I was thinking of the Ultimarc t-stick (that what it's still called?) that allows you to pull up and switch it from 8way to 4way, but then I was thinking that maybe the 49 way would be simpler, etc.

In the end, it's the feel that I'm after more than anything, I really am tired of playing DK/MsPacMan without that old time joystick. I hate the long throws of the super/competition sticks, and I just can't seem to find an original. I'm most likey going to be trying out HAPP's replacement stick, but I'm not terribly excited about it. It looks like it has a longer throw than the originals as well, but only one way to find out.

Anyone here ever try the HAPPs pacman/galaga replacement stick ?
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Re: Why a 49-way?...?
« Reply #18 on: May 30, 2006, 01:06:21 pm »
The Ms. Pac replacement stick from Happ wll feel a lot like your Super, because it is a Super, just with 4-way restriction and a shorter balltop handle.  The shorter handle will help with the long throw, and the restriction goes a long way towards getting that feel you're missing.  Sadly, the only way to really, really get the feel of an original Pac stick is (big surprse) to get an original Pac stick.  But those are not available anymore, except on ebay, and it's pretty hit-n-miss what condition it'll be in when you get it.  The Happ stick is still being made, which is a plus.  The Ultimarc J-Stick can also be had in a balltop, and has a true 4-way mode.  I've never used one, so I dunno how it feels. 

I would not reccomend the T-Sticks/Mag-Sticks for you- the easy mode switching is cool, but they don't feel anything like an original Pac stick- so if the feel is what you're after, you won't like 'em.  Not to say they're not good sicks- the super-short throw and strong return-to-center makes them very quick and accurate, once you get used to them.  That's a good thing in games like Pac-Man.  But it's definately a very different feel from any stick you ever used back in the day.