How to Choose a Controller

For a lot of people, gaming is a way of life. It’s a way of forgetting all about the daily stresses and a way of escaping reality for a while, immersing themselves in their favourite games. In order to do this in the most effective way, however, you need to make sure that you have the right equipment to get the most out of the game.

To do this you need to make sure that you’ve got a controller capable of providing the fast responses needed to move your character, take out your opponent, land your plane or score that last minute winner.

While you can buy a generic controller along with the game or your chosen console, there are people out there who spend a great deal of time researching the best controllers out there to maximise the potential of their chosen game; and here we’ll tell you how to do just that.

The questions you need to ask yourself:

When it comes to picking out your new controller, your best option is to sit and consider the most important things about your gaming habits. These include your favourite genre, the platform you enjoy playing on, the frequency and whether you’ll be playing online or offline.

Having given this some thought it’s time to answer some questions. We’ve compiled a list of six key questions that you need to provide answers to, all of which will help you to pinpoint exactly which type of controller is the best one for you.

Of course, we could just say “X is the best controller, go and buy it” but some people might play completely different games on completely different consoles. At least by considering your response to each of these questions, you can focus your buying decision onto a particular type of controller.

  • What platform am I going to play on? Make the decision on whether you’re going to play on a console, laptop or gaming PC first and foremost, as you can then narrow down your options accordingly. A gaming PC, for example, will require a keyboard, mouse and series of drivers if you wish to connect a joystick or additional gamepad; while a console will simply require a handheld controller.
  • What genre of games do I enjoy playing the most? Make your decision based on the type of game you play the most. There is no need to go out and buy a steering wheel controller for a new driving simulator if you’ve never played a driving game before and possibly won’t ever again. Base your decision around experience and preference rather than impulse.
  • Which game am I thinking of when buying this controller? If you have a particular game in mind, why do you think you need a specific controller? Sometimes you need little more than basic controls; sometimes the shape and response of the controller can enhance the experience. Just like with the genre consideration, think about a specific game or series of games.
  • Which controller(s) do I already own and which is the best? If you’re thinking about a new controller for a console, think about the ones you already own. Are they up to the challenge and simply worn out, or have you heard about a new controller than will help you to do more with your favourite games? Work out which is your favourite controller because at least then you know the shape and size that suits you best. People with smaller hands, for example, might not be able to get from one side of the controller to the other as easily on a larger device.
  • How long is the wireless connection (battery life)? Of your available controllers, and those on the market, which has the longest battery life without needing to be connected to the PC or console? There’s nothing worse than the controller biting the dust when you’re in the middle of the action, so picking one with excellent battery life is key to your gameplay experience.
  • How many buttons do I need to play the game? Do you need a controller that has a large number of buttons, or do you essentially need a directional stick and a trigger? Again, establish the type of game you’ll be playing and work out by playing on the standard controls which buttons you need. If the game could be even better with additional buttons or different, more suitable controls then you can investigate your options.

The best controllers on the market

When you’ve worked out the answers to all of the above, you can start thinking about buying a new controller. Here at BT Shop we’ve got a range of high quality controllers for you to choose from, and we’ve listed some of the most popular for each platform and genre for you here that you can buy in our online store today:

Microsoft Xbox One Controller + Wireless Adaptor

Xbox One Controller + Wireless Adaptor
Xbox One Controller + Wireless Adaptor – shop.bt.com

If you’re wanting to bring the familiarity of console gaming to the PC then the Xbox One Controller + Wireless Adaptor will surely fit the bill. The adaptor can recognise up to eight Xbox One controllers for multiplayer modes, up to 4 chat headsets and two stereo headsets.

This is everything you’ll need to elevate your gameplay.

Shop now. 

Thrustmaster TMX Racing Wheel – Xbox One

Thrustmaster TMX Racing Wheel
Thrustmaster TMX Racing Wheel – shop.bt.com

Equipped with a high-performance force feedback motor offering adjustable intensity and a rotation angle ranging from 270° to 900°, the TMX Force Feedback delivers a realistic and versatile racing experience. The controller’s versatility benefits all players, whether beginners or seasoned pilots, with all types of tracks, cars and races. Another example of this racing wheel’s versatility is its force feedback motor, designed by Thrustmaster’s development teams to offer performance suited to demanding players, while also remaining accessible to less experienced drivers. The motor features a mixed belt-pulley and gears system with metal ball-bearing axle. The result is a balanced combination of performance, robustness and precision. With 12-bit resolution – i.e. 4096 values on the wheel’s steering axis – provided by an optical sensor, this racing wheel also offers extreme precision, delivering highly realistic racing sensations. The racing wheel features a robust and adjustable attachment system, compatible with all mounts (desks, tables, cockpits, etc.).

Shop now. 

Thrustmaster T-Flight Hotas X PC 

Thrustmaster T-Flight Hotas X PC
Thrustmaster T-Flight Hotas X PC – shop.bt.com

The joystick with detachable throttle control and direct configuration for immediate takeoff!! Entirely Programmable PC and PS3™!

Unique: Plug & Play for ultra-simple and fast installation with all functions pre-configured for immediate takeoff (without worrying about configuration)

  • Weighted base for greater stability
  • Exclusive “PRESET” button”: to switch, while playing, instantly from one programme to another
  • Detachable, real-size, ergonomically-designed throttle control
  • Internal memory: to save all of your programming, even with the joystick disconnected
  • Dual-system aerodynamic control: by rotating handle (with integrated blocking system) or by progressive tilting lever
  • Exclusive “MAPPING” button: all functions may be instantly switched around between each other
  • High-precision joystick with adjustable resistance
  • Programmable: the 12 buttons and 5 axles are entirely programmable.
  • Wide hand-rest for optimal comfort
  • Trigger for brakes (civil flight) or for rapid fire (military flight) + multi-directional hat (panoramic view)

So now the decision is yours. Ask yourself the important questions, work out a budget and then it’s down to personal preference between controllers, steering wheels and guns for your chosen titles. Browse the collection available to buy right now at BT Shop.

One thought on “How to Choose a Controller”

  1. I would also add the XBOX one Elite controller to this list, works great on windows 10. Its excellent, great weight , switchable thumbsticks etc.

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