Video Game Controllers | Gamepads

Video game controllers, also known as gamepads, are handheld input accessories used to interact with video game consoles. Consisting of varied sets of buttons with specific functions and complexities suited for each generation of gaming, game controllers typically include a directional button (D-Pad) for the left thumb, buttons for the right thumb, shoulder buttons (bumpers or triggers) for additional fingers, and assistive ‘Start’, ‘Select’, and ‘Home’ buttons at the center of the input. Since the introduction of early video gaming joysticks and paddles, video game controllers have evolved over time with new features such as additional buttons, additional analog thumbsticks, wireless capabilities, and three-dimensional sensors and accelerometers for an increased level of interaction—as seen in the Wii Remote.

Who invented the video game controller?

The first appearance of video game control can be traced to the switches and toggles used in the 1962 game ‘Spacewar!’, which would lead to the development of arcade machines with similar button-based controls. The first home-based video game controller were the pair of dial controllers included with the 1972 Magnavox Odyssey.

How do you use a video game controller on PC?

While not all video game controllers are cross compatible with out-of-box use on the PC, more modern controllers, those with Bluetooth and wireless connectivity, can be paired to the PC device by accessing your operating systems ‘System Preferences’ and ‘Bluetooth Accessories’ and selecting the discovered controller to be paired.

What is the best video game controller?

Though there isn’t a ‘best’ controller, many gamers have preferences for their favorite gaming controllers. Sony’s most recent DualShock 4 is often considered to be the most comfortable video game controller to hold, while Microsoft’s Xbox One Elite controller may be preferred for their responsive triggers and joysticks. Other gaming controllers have famously helped change the industry by adding innovations like the freedom of the Wii Remote, joystick of the N64 Controller, and feedback of the original Dualshock Controller.

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Xbox 360 Controller

The Xbox 360 Controller is a seventh-generation controller and successor of the Xbox controller, primarily for Microsoft’s Xbox 360 home video game console. The Xbox 360 Controller was released in 2005 and is available either in wireless or wired version, all of which are compatible with various Microsoft PC operating systems.

The video game controller also comes in various colors for retail and non-retail and accessories such as play and charge kit, wireless gaming receiver, and Messenger kit. The Xbox 360 Controller is not just for gaming use but also non-gaming use, such as controlling periscopes on new Virginia-class submarines.

The Xbox 360 Controller has a height of 4.13” (105 mm), width of 6.05” (154 mm), depth of 2.41” (61.3 mm), and approximate weight of 9.5 oz (.27 kg).

Dimensioned drawings of the Xbox 360 Controller with height, width, and depth labeled in elevation views
The Xbox 360 Controller is a seventh-generation controller and successor of the Xbox controller, primarily for Microsoft’s Xbox 360 home video game console. The Xbox 360 Controller was released in 2005 and is available either in wireless or wired version, all of which are compatible various PCs.

The Xbox 360 Controller has a height of 4.13” (105 mm), width of 6.05” (154 mm), depth of 2.41” (61.3 mm), and approximate weight of 9.5 oz (.27 kg).

Dimensioned drawings of the Xbox 360 Controller with height, width, and depth labeled in elevation views
Xbox 360 Controller
Height:
4.13” | 105 mm
Width:
6.05” | 154 mm
Length:
Depth:
2.41” | 61.3 mm
Weight:
9.5 oz | .27 kg
Area:
Designer
Microsoft
Released
2005

Drawings include:
Xbox 360 Controller front elevation, top, side

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Nintendo Switch
Dimensioned drawings of the Nintendo Switch Dock with height, width, and depth labeled in elevation

The Nintendo Switch is a video game console released by Nintendo on March of 2017.  Its design features a hybrid console that can be a home console or portable device. It is runs on the Nintendo Switch Operating system and is an eight-generation gaming console. Nintendo Switch games and software are available on both physical and digital forms. The Nintendo Switch incorporates three different gaming modes in 1 device – tv mode, tabletop mode, and handheld mode. Through the different modes of use Nintendo aimed for the Nintendo Switch to reach a wider demographic of video game players. The Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons are available in a wide range of colors.

The Nintendo Switch has a height of 4.01” (102 mm), width of 9.40” (239 mm), and total depth of 1.13” (28.7 mm). The Nintendo Switch Dock has a height of 4..09” (104 mm), width of 6.81” (173 mm), and depth of 2.12” (53.8 mm) resulting in a total docked height of 4.88" (124 mm).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the Nintendo Switch measured with height, width, depth and screen resolution
The Nintendo Switch is a video game console released by Nintendo on March of 2017. Its design features a hybrid console that can be a home console or portable device. It is runs on the Nintendo Switch Operating system and is an eight-generation gaming console.

The Nintendo Switch has a height of 4.01” (102 mm), width of 9.40” (239 mm), and total depth of 1.13” (28.7 mm). The Nintendo Switch Dock has a height of 4..09” (104 mm), width of 6.81” (173 mm), and depth of 2.12” (53.8 mm) resulting in a total docked height of 4.88" (124 mm).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the Nintendo Switch measured with height, width, depth and screen resolution
Nintendo Switch
Height:
4.01” | 102 mm
Width:
9.40” | 239 mm
Length:
Depth:
.547” | 13.9 mm; 1.13” | 28.7 mm (Total)
Resolution (Max)
1920 x 1080 px
Weight:
.88 lb | .4 kg
Area:

Screen Resolution: 1280 x 720 px
Screen Size: 6.2” | 15.7 cm

Dock Height: 4.09” | 104 mm
Dock Width: 6.81” | 173 mm
Dock Depth: 2.12” | 53.8 mm

Designer
Nintendo
Release
2017

Drawings include:
Nintendo Switch front elevation, top, side, front (dock), side (dock), top (dock)

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DualShock 3 Controller

The DualShock 3 Controller is a seventh-generation gamepad compatible with PlayStation 3 and the successor of the DualShock 2 controller, and the Six-axis announced at the Tokyo games show in 2007.

The DualShock 3 Controller has identical features to the Six-axis but with a force feedback capability and the ability to communicate with the console via USB cable when connected to a USB and not via Bluetooth. There were two public releases of the DualShock 3, slim model PS3 and DualShock 3 (A1), which removed the additional plastic brackets and included slightly revised color schemes.

The DualShock 3 Controller has a height of 3.78” (97 mm), width of 6.2” (160 mm), depth of 2.2” (55 mm), and approximate weight of 6.7 oz (.19 kg).

Collection of drawings of the DualShock 3 Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
The DualShock 3 Controller is a seventh-generation gamepad compatible with PlayStation 3 and the successor of the DualShock 2 controller. The DualShock 3 Controller has identical features to the Six-axis but with a force feedback capability and the ability to communicate via USB cable.

The DualShock 3 Controller has a height of 3.78” (97 mm), width of 6.2” (160 mm), depth of 2.2” (55 mm), and approximate weight of 6.7 oz (.19 kg).

Collection of drawings of the DualShock 3 Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
DualShock 3 Controller
Height:
3.78” | 97 mm
Width:
6.2” | 160 mm
Length:
Depth:
2.2” | 55 mm
Weight:
6.7 oz | .19 kg
Area:
Designer
Sony
Released
2006

Drawings include:
DualShock 3 Controller front elevation, top, side

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SNES Controller

The SNES Controller, also called Super Nintendo Entertainment System controller, is a gamepad designed for SNES console and subscribers to Nintendo Switch Online. It succeeded the NES Controller. The SNES controller for Nintendo Switch is wireless, added two shoulder buttons, AB and XY, and is extremely sensitive for precise control.

Since the controller is plug and play, it requires no extra drivers, and perfect for playing retro games. The only drawback is that it works only with classic Nintendo titles. There are other versions like the 8Bitdo SF30 Pro Controller and 8Bitdo SN30 Pro Controller that you can pair with Windows, Mac, and Android systems.

The SNES Controller has a height of 2.4” (61 mm), width of 5.67” (144 mm), depth of .6” (15 mm), and approximate weight of 2.8 oz (.08 kg).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the SNES Controller measured with height, width, and depth
The SNES Controller, also called Super Nintendo Entertainment System controller, is a gamepad designed for SNES console and subscribers to Nintendo Switch Online. It succeeded the NES Controller. The SNES controller for Nintendo Switch is wireless, added two shoulder buttons, AB and XY.

The SNES Controller has a height of 2.4” (61 mm), width of 5.67” (144 mm), depth of .6” (15 mm), and approximate weight of 2.8 oz (.08 kg).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the SNES Controller measured with height, width, and depth
SNES Controller
Height:
2.4” | 61 mm
Width:
5.67” | 144 mm
Length:
Depth:
.6” | 15 mm
Weight:
2.8 oz | .08 kg
Area:
Designer
Nintendo
Released
1990

Drawings include:
SNES Controller front elevation, top, side

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Dreamcast Controller

The Dreamcast Controller is a control pad made for the Sega Dreamcast video console and released in 1998, having support for every Dreamcast game. The Dreamcast controller spots two “expansion socket” at its tops, a sensitive thumb pad, and larger design, which made it receive lots of criticism for being uncomfortable in larger hands.

In addition, the Dreamcast controller lacked a second thumb pad and a vibration feature that was available in most standard game controllers. Many of its features were incremental ideas from Sega hardware and Saturn’s 3D control pad and came in a standard white color.

The Dreamcast Controller has a height of 6” (152 mm), width of 5.8” (147 mm), depth of 3.4” (86 mm), and approximate weight of 10.6 oz (.3 kg).

Collection of drawings of the Dreamcast Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
The Dreamcast Controller is a control pad made for the Sega Dreamcast video console and released in 1998, having support for every Dreamcast game. The Dreamcast controller spots two “expansion socket” at its tops, a sensitive thumb pad, and larger design, which made it receive lots of criticism.

The Dreamcast Controller has a height of 6” (152 mm), width of 5.8” (147 mm), depth of 3.4” (86 mm), and approximate weight of 10.6 oz (.3 kg).

Collection of drawings of the Dreamcast Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
Dreamcast Controller
Height:
6” | 152 mm
Width:
5.8” | 147 mm
Length:
Depth:
3.4” | 86 mm
Weight:
10.6 oz | .3 kg
Area:
Designer
Sega
Released
1999

Drawings include:
Dreamcast Controller front elevation, top, side

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