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Recommend me a controller!
whizse 6 April 2020 at 5:49 pm UTC

I was hoping to get some advice on what controller to buy in 2020.

From looking at the helpful statistics, and the fact that I'm looking to buy new not used, it looks like my main alternatives are the Xbox One and the Dualshock 4. Or are there any other contenders worth considering?

The plan is to use it mostly for racing games, as an alternative for the wheel when I don't feel like digging it out of the linen closet (which is most of the time).

Is one preferential to the other in terms of supported features and ease of setup? The Dualshock have gyroscope and accelerometer, I don't know it that's a plus for racing games?

All suggestions welcome, preferably on topic, but if someone wants to share advice on how to get blueberry stains out of satin jammies I won't complain.

Julius 6 April 2020 at 11:27 pm UTC

Hmm, using the Steamcontroller as a "floating wheel" with the gyro etc. actually works surprisingly well. Not sure if that's the same with other controllers though.

whizse 8 April 2020 at 3:05 pm UTC

JuliusHmm, using the Steamcontroller as a "floating wheel" with the gyro etc. actually works surprisingly well. Not sure if that's the same with other controllers though.

Thanks for the feedback!

The gyro does sound like it's worth a try, so I went with the Dualshock, at least for now. If it turns out to be incompatible with my lumberjack appendages I'll return it and try the Xbox one next.

razing32 8 April 2020 at 10:07 pm UTC

I was going to recommend the Ps4 Dualshock one but seems it is a no go
Have you thought about the Logitech F510 maybe ? (or F310)

damarrin 9 April 2020 at 6:15 am UTC

The dualshock's touchpad works as a regular touchpad with two-finger scrolling and left/right clicks, so it can be useful if you need to do something with the desktop. Like when you exit the game and Steam big picture is minimized in Gnome.

whizse 12 April 2020 at 9:41 am UTC

Thanks guys, I received the DS4 yesterday and it seems to be a winner. Setup was easy. It took longer finding a Bluetooth adapter in my junk drawer than setting up the controller.

Almost everything seems to be working, wired-, wireless, analog/digital controls, sound jack, touchpad, reading battery level. The only exception is the motion stuff.

It shows up as a separate input device, "Wireless Controller Motion Sensors" and I can read events with evtest. Clearly the hardware and driver is working, but no games let me use motion as an input source. Possibly it only works with games that explicitly supports a motion sensor and not as a general controller?

The Logitech devices I must admit to have failed to even consider. Its sometimes a little bit hard to figure out how well a device is supported. Maybe a GOL buyers guide for controllers past the Steam Controller era would be a good idea?

damarrin 12 April 2020 at 10:58 am UTC

Try SC-Controller, it has a myriad of options and is generally great, though I don’t remember if it lets you configure the gyro stuff.

It creates a virtual XBOX 360 controller for the system and games to see though, so games which automatically enable PS controller icons might not show them, which is annoying.

damarrin 12 April 2020 at 11:42 am UTC

I just checked in SC-Controller and apart from being kind of hard to setup in Ubuntu 20.04 (no more python package you see...) AND requiring the DS4 to be connected via usb cable (from my 5 minute testing, maybe with some fiddling it'd see it connected via bluetooth), setting up gyro is as simple as clicking the gyro button and then choosing one of the 2 quick settings. The 2nd one (trigger is pushed) says right trigger, but it sets up the left trigger, which is more sensible and actually very clever.

whizse 13 April 2020 at 5:37 pm UTC

Thank you! I had no idea SC-Controller supported anything other than the Steam controller.

I set it up to control the left stick using gyro yaw and it seems to work nicely for racing games. Now for the learning curve. Back to the Miss Daisy driving style.

damarrin 14 April 2020 at 3:07 pm UTC

For posterity: the best way to install SC Controller on Ubuntu 20.04 right now is getting the AppImage from "Running with non distro-specific package" at the bottom of SC Controller's github page and NOT via Ubuntu package. Packages are outdated and have problems with dependencies.

You also need to add yourself to the input group if you want to use the DS4 via Bluetooth. Run sudo usermod -a -G input yourUserName. I needed to restart the system for the group to take, logging out and back in was not enough.

whizse 14 April 2020 at 4:37 pm UTC

I was just about to post the same thing. In my case I used uaccess:

/etc/udev/rules.d/ds4.rules:
SUBSYSTEM=="input", KERNEL=="event*", ATTRS{name}=="*Motion Sensors", TAG+="uaccess"
SUBSYSTEM=="input", KERNEL=="event*", ATTRS{name}=="*Controller Touchpad", TAG+="uaccess"


The commands "udevadm control --reload-rules && udevadm trigger" - should be enough to trigger the change, if you restart the controller.

Unfortunately now my trigger buttons are no longer analog, and I haven't been able use the gyro as a stick. Though it still works for aiming.

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