Question for Star Citizen pilots

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Twist vs. Rudder

Poll ended at Wed May 24, 2017 4:27

I prefer a grip with twist axis for ONE hand (left hand) (please explain use-case)
9
10%
I prefer a grip with twist axis for ONE hand (right hand) (please explain use-case)
14
16%
I prefer two grips with twist axes for BOTH hands (please explain use-case)
23
26%
I prefer a set of rudder pedals and NO twist grips (please explain use-case)
24
27%
I prefer a set of rudder pedals, but still like ONE twist grip as well (please explain use-case)
14
16%
I prefer a set of rudder pedals, but still like TWO twist grips as well (please explain use-case)
6
7%
 
Total votes: 90

Enkrow
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby Enkrow » Thu Jan 26, 2017 21:42

Andy L wrote:I fly twin sticks in Space Sims with an analogue thumb wheel for vertical strafe on my left thumb.

Image

My ergonomics aren't very good because of what I had available but something like this in a natural position would be great.


Something like this is exactly what I'm looking for in a left stick. No twist, and an easily accessible up/down slider which I could use for up/down strafing. Ideally for my application, it would be nice if such a slider automatically returned to center as well.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, but is there anywhere I can read more about this modified CH stick?

kemikos
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby kemikos » Thu Jan 26, 2017 22:12

pretagonist wrote:Another dream would be to have the left hand translation control as a horizontally mounted handle like the apollo TC

Image

but with buttons and hats on the handle of course.


I built a prototype TC based on the NASA concept out of a T.16000 a couple of years ago:
Image
Image
Image

Here's what I found out:

1. Even considering the hacked-up, janky nature of my setup and the relative lack of structural strength in the T.16000, it quickly becomes apparent that a horizontally-oriented translation stick with a quality traditional right-hand stick is by far the most intuitive control scheme for a 6dof sim. Every control input corresponds precisely to the actual movement of the ship. I gave the above setup to my brother, since I'm working on v2.0; within five minutes of setting it up, his six-year-old daughter (who'd never played a sim before) was bobbing and weaving through the asteroid field like an old pro.

2. When you try to tell a regular SC player about the concept, the response is usually "Well, if it's so great, all the top players would be using it..." My response to that is that I'd be willing to bet that most of them haven't tried a horizontally-oriented stick, because nobody sells one yet, at least not at the consumer/prosumer level. Industrial-grade solutions exist but cost in the thousands of dollars, and would still require custom wiring (because industrial controls don't use the USB interface). I'm sure that in the early days of the automobile, when cars were controlled by hand throttles and tillers, there were drivers who thought that no one needed steering wheels and pedals, too. I will say that I have yet to find a single person who's spent a significant amount of time with my setup in SC who wants to go back to HOTAS.

3. It definitely needs refinements (hence v2.0). Even with the 90 degree "kink" in the grip, it's still awkward to use the buttons. A true, ergonomically-designed grip is a must.

4. Even with the drawbacks of the prototype, I don't plan on ever flying a 6dof sim with HOTAS again. I'm spoiled now.


I realize that it's a risky concept for a manufacturer to attempt to produce, because true 6dof sims are still kind of a small niche. I will say without reservation that even though I have the controls I built, if a high-quality manufacturer like VKB were to build one, I'd buy it immediately.

I'll go further: if any manufacturer with a reputation for good build quality were to offer a 4-axis (L/R, U/D, in/out, and twist - see the above pic of the NASA controller for the layout), horizontally-oriented controller with a decent grip, I would immediately pay just about any 3-figure price they care to name.

If that's too risky, then consider this: VKB's offerings are already modular enough to allow detachment of the grips from the control shaft and installation of an extension for between-the-knees use, for example; if building a specific controller isn't feasible, would they consider a 90-degree shaft adapter, so that we could mount, say, a Gunfighter base with the shaft horizontal, and attach their upcoming left-hand grip to it in a vertical position?

I know at least three people besides myself who would jump on that; all SC players who have tried my layout but don't have the knowledge/time/patience to build one for themselves.

Edit: I just realized that I specified my use case but didn't relate it to my poll answer. I answered "pedals plus twist on one stick". I prefer not having twist on the right hand stick. Since yaw and pitch are what you use for aiming (at least until head tracking comes back), I would rather have those two axes as precise as possible; trying to twist while aiming tends to make me less precise. If that's due to hardware limitations, I'm willing to keep an open mind for future products.

My ideal control setup would be as follows:
Right hand: pitch/yaw on X/Y
Left hand (again, see the NASA diagram for axis orientation): Forward/Back strafe on +/-X
Left/right strafe on +/-Y
Up/down strafe on +/-Z
Roll on twist

This isn't currently possible since no existing device has four axes on a single control, so I've been mapping one of the four to pedals (I've experimented with roll on the pedals, but find that I prefer forward/reverse thrust there).
Last edited by kemikos on Fri Jan 27, 2017 1:44, edited 1 time in total.

pretagonist
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby pretagonist » Fri Jan 27, 2017 1:17

This was more or less exactly what I wanted to hear. It felt like a good idea to me on the surface but I've never actually tried anything like it for real.

For me the optimal design would be a D-handle with the axis in the center: like so D---(|
The push/pull would have a slight detent and no return to center force. Twist might be useful but I'd rather separate translation and direction controls.

One thing I wanted to ask you about though is fatigue. As I see it you either need a good armrest or a heavy spring gimbal that can take you resting your hand on the stick without moving or perhaps a rather heavy center detent. What are your feelings or experiences on this? The issues wouldn't have existed of course on the actual space ships due to zero grav.

kemikos
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby kemikos » Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:31

pretagonist wrote:For me the optimal design would be a D-handle with the axis in the center: like so D---(|
The push/pull would have a slight detent and no return to center force. Twist might be useful but I'd rather separate translation and direction controls.


I completely agree about the handle. I understand wanting to keep rotation on one hand and translation on the other; on the other hand (ha!), I prefer limiting the right hand control to pitch and yaw. Since they took head tracking support out, pitch and yaw are how you aim, and I find that trying to roll while aiming messes with my precision. 4-axis left and 2-axis right would be my Holy Grail. Until then I'll map one axis to the pedals.

pretagonist wrote:One thing I wanted to ask you about though is fatigue. As I see it you either need a good armrest or a heavy spring gimbal that can take you resting your hand on the stick without moving or perhaps a rather heavy center detent. What are your feelings or experiences on this? The issues wouldn't have existed of course on the actual space ships due to zero grav.


That is definitely a concern. You can't just set it on the table and rest your hand on it like you can with a vertical stick. I built a pair of adjustable-height mounts that clamp to the desk, and hold the controls just at the height of my hands when resting on the armrests of my chair. There's a guy on the SC forums whose company sells modular mounts that do the same thing and are much nicer looking than mine. You could also mount platforms to the chair frame in front of the armrests that would hold the controls in the right position.

prainx
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby prainx » Fri Jan 27, 2017 7:49

Twist on the stick would be a way to kill siatec. that's the main reason people choose it over the vkb or the warthog hotas. if there was a lockout on the grip to disable twist on the grip for those who do not want it I would be happy as I am sure a lot of other people would be happy with. I prefer rudder pedels on sc. but battlefield I prefer yaw on the stick.

Magniankh
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby Magniankh » Fri Jan 27, 2017 22:57

I like to play Star Citizen with two sticks, both with twist. Main hand twist is roll, offhand twist is throttle.

I did experience some wrist fatigue with the X55, but I sold it due to their spring technology being inaccurate as all hell, plus it felt cheap. My T16000 is far superior and it was 1/4 of the price.

I now want a VKB product, the Gladiator is looking excellent, but I am worried about the limited amount of thumb buttons, and I'm afraid I wouldn't make use of all of the other switches and buttons on the base of the stick to quite justify the cost. If nothing else comes along, or if I see a limited stock on Amazon, I'll be buying one anyway.

I'd say for a spacesim such as SC, a twist with a low-degree of range would be nice, since players likely twist more than in atmo sims. This would reduce wrist fatigue. As usual, accuracy and quality is preferred, which is a hallmark of VKB, thank god this company exists.

If I had pedals I would use them, but it seems excessive to purchase pedals when I would only map them to roll. If I did have pedals they would be roll, and my main hand would not twist. I would still prefer a twist axis on the off-hand for throttle.

Thanks for poll, I'm glad I could provide a vote and a comment!

Andy L
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby Andy L » Sat Jan 28, 2017 3:15

Enkrow wrote: Something like this is exactly what I'm looking for in a left stick. No twist, and an easily accessible up/down slider which I could use for up/down strafing. Ideally for my application, it would be nice if such a slider automatically returned to center as well.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, but is there anywhere I can read more about this modified CH stick?


I've got a thread on the RSI Simpits forum with some details about the conversion, my RSI forum name is Andre Lockhart

Magniankh
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby Magniankh » Sat Jan 28, 2017 5:21

Macross wrote:
Like this?
Image

Got full ch hotas and t16000, going to make this mod someday..
2axis on stick +ch throttle mini joystick..

Ps: this kind of throttle from vkb, would buy in a heartbeat ;)


This is incredible. I would absolutely love a dedicated offhand stick/throttle hybrid.

I like to play SC with dual sticks. Main hand is pitch, yaw, and roll. Offhand is strafe vertical, lateral, and twist is throttle.
If I had pedals I would bind them to roll, but they seem like quite the investment for a single input, I think I'll stick with two twist sticks.

amak1
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby amak1 » Sat Jan 28, 2017 8:56

I actually have a set of rudder pedals i havnt used for 5 years or so. I like them for when playing fsx or other sims but for space sim like elite dangerous i dont think they are necessary. Currently Im using a standard gladiator paired with a ch pro throttle and use the twist axis on the gladiator for yaw. It really just comes down to one less peripheral to plug in and less space taken up. Also i think for a lot of casual players like myself twist is important to not discourage someone from buying by telling them they need another peripheral.


Edit: Sorry guys didnt realise that this was for hosas users when i posted. Ill leave it here for now though, if a mod wants to delete it go ahead.
Last edited by amak1 on Sat Jan 28, 2017 15:08, edited 1 time in total.

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PatMan33
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby PatMan33 » Sat Jan 28, 2017 9:51

For Star Citizen I'm doing HOTAS (no twist) and pedals.

That thing Macross posted though. Want.

zenmonkey
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby zenmonkey » Wed Feb 01, 2017 9:01

I prefer dual twist or at least no rudder pedals. My current setup is right stick x = yaw y = picth and z = roll for SC. The ship handling characteristic lend themselves to much more yaw focused gameplay. The left stick is x = lateral translation y = forward/back z = up/down. On the left the twist isn't ideal beacue it take much longer to train muscle memory for which direction is and which is down. Another analog control instead of the twist on that stick out be better. An annalog single axis lever/paddle mounted on the stick may be useful.

I experiment with mounting analog triggers (from and xbox 360 controller) to the the stick, but the circumfernce of the T16 made positioning the triggers difficult. Though mentally the setup worked better. In ED, I also experimented with switchting y on the left stick to vertical strafe in landing mode, with the hat as forward and reverse. But the mode switch just made traingin the vertical twist muscle memory more difficult

If my current desk setup allowed pedal use I'd likey experiment with using racing pedals or the tow breaks for vertical strafe, but I'd probably still leave roll on the stick. Unforuantly I'm using a stand desk so pedals are out of the question.

ariley1984
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby ariley1984 » Tue Feb 07, 2017 4:05

I would prefair to have no twist on my hosas and peddle setup to stop axis bleed in heavy dog fighting. But think it would be a good idea to have twist as a added unit that you can choose to buy or not. I'm also running a throttle for the bigger ships like the caterpillar and up. I'm really looking forward to your throttle offering and hope you could add a analogue stick to the thumb side for thruster use
Due to the way combat in star citizen works I feel the dead zone you would have to setup would be quite big not to mention when your playing for any length of time twisting your wrists like that adds more strain on the wrists.

nyvn
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby nyvn » Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:49

I probably fly one of the less common setups.

Main-hand (Gladiator) is pitch, yaw, and roll.
Off-hand (T16000M) is vertical and lateral strafe.
Pedals (Saitek pro flight) are forward/reverse strafe.

I don't use roll on my pedals because it's very difficult to use the pedals and not introduce unintended roll. The stiffness of the Gladiator's roll spring makes it difficult to have unintended roll.

pretagonist
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby pretagonist » Wed Mar 08, 2017 12:10

nyvn wrote:I probably fly one of the less common setups.


I fly the exact same setup in Elite. Although i have a cobra m5 instead of the gladiator. I find it wonderfully intuitive.

Longtree
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Re: Question for Star Citizen pilots

Postby Longtree » Thu Mar 09, 2017 1:32

Hi,

For six degrees of freedom we need the twist axes as well. For me it's an essential feature in a dual joystick configuration.

Cheers


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