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A Guide to Different Types of Game Controllers

As technology and video games are growing, so is the need to develop different game controllers that will ease the game itself. From racing wheels and flight joysticks to Xbox controllers and gamepads, every type comes with different settings and usage.

For this article, 5-Minute Crafts has prepared a quick guide that will help you learn about the different types of game controllers.


The gamepad is primarily used for controlling the characters in the video game. It is held in both hands and the input is provided by controlling the buttons with the thumbs and fingers. The action buttons on these controllers are generally handled with the fingers of the right hand, and the directional buttons are handled with the left hand.

PC racing wheels and pedals

A racing wheel is used in most racing arcade games. They provide the same feedback that is experienced when driving a real car. It usually comes with pedals to control the gas and brake, which are used for driving or flight simulations. The realism of the experience depends on the type of game. For example, F1 steering wheels provide you with a chance to race like a professional and mimic the effects as close as possible to what’s happening on the race track itself.


paddle is a video game controller that contains a round wheel and fire buttons. The wheel is typically used to control the movement of the player. When the user turns the wheel further from the default position, the control speed in the game increases.

Flight joysticks

joystick consists of a handheld stick. It’s often used for flight simulators. The stick can be tilted around either one of the 2 axes and twisted around a third. Most of them are designed to be operated with the user’s primary hand, with the base either held in the opposite hand or mounted on a desk.

Arcade sticks

Arcade controllers consist of joysticks that feature a shaft with a ball or drop-shaped handle and buttons for in-game actions. The layout of these controllers has the joystick on the left and the buttons on the right.

Dance pads

Dance pads are controllers that are used for dance games. They are flat surfaces divided into a 3×3 matrix of square panels on where the player stands. The panels respond to the directions or actions that control the game when the user steps on the squares.


The computer keyboard is a controller device modeled after the typewriter keyboard. It has arranged buttons or keys that perform the needed action. Each button has printed characters on them and with each press, they correspond with a single written symbol.


The mouse is a pointing device that detects 2-dimensional motion that is translated into the motion of a pointer on a screen. It allows the user to control the display of a computer. This device comes with 2 buttons, left and right, and a scroll wheel that functions as a button too.

Wii remote

A Wii remote is a wireless controller with motion sensors and controls that allow you to point to the TV screen and features gesture recognition. It is used for the Nintendo Wii gaming console. The Wii remote recognizes its orientation when being moved from the resting position into movement, translating the gestures on the screen. Additional controllers that are used for this type of game are Wii balance boards that measure the user’s balance.

5-Minute Crafts/Tech/A Guide to Different Types of Game Controllers
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