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.

Video Game Controllers Guides
Browse through our curated Video Game Controllers Guides for additional categorizations, tips, details, variations, styles, and histories of Video Game Controllers. Guides provide additional insights into the unique properties and shared relationships between elements.

Video Game Controllers

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5” | 127 mm
4” | 101.6 mm
4” | 101.6 mm
8.8 oz | .25 kg
1977
Atari CX40 Joystick
12.700
10.160
10.160
0.250
1977.00
1700
3D
Atari CX40 Joystick
6” | 152 mm
5.8” | 147 mm
3.4” | 86 mm
10.6 oz | .3 kg
1999
Dreamcast Controller
15.200
14.700
8.600
0.300
1999.00
9000
3D
Dreamcast Controller
4.2” | 106 mm
6.3" | 160 mm
2.6” | 66 mm
9.87 oz | 280 g
November 12, 2020
DualSense Controller
10.600
16.000
6.600
0.280
2020.00
18000
3D
DualSense Controller
3.74” | 95 mm
6.18” | 157 mm
2.16” | 54.9 mm
7.4 oz | .21 kg
2000
DualShock 2 Controller
9.500
15.700
5.490
0.210
2000.00
1400
3D
DualShock 2 Controller
3.78” | 97 mm
6.2” | 160 mm
2.2” | 55 mm
6.7 oz | .19 kg
2006
DualShock 3 Controller
9.700
16.000
5.500
0.190
2006.00
4100
3D
DualShock 3 Controller
3.94” | 100 mm
6.34” | 161 mm
2.24” | 57 mm
7.4 oz | .21 kg
2013
DualShock 4 Controller
10.000
16.100
5.700
0.210
2013.00
17000
3D
DualShock 4 Controller
4” | 100 mm
5.5” | 140 mm
2.5” | 65 mm
7.1 oz | .2 kg
2001
GameCube Controller
10.000
14.000
6.500
0.200
2001.00
82000
3D
GameCube Controller
2.096” | 53.2 mm
4.86” | 123.4 mm
.6875” | 17.5 mm
2.6 oz | .07 kg
1983
NES Controller
5.320
12.340
1.750
0.070
1983.00
18000
3D
NES Controller
6.01” | 152.6 mm
6.3” | 160 mm
2.625” | 66.7 mm
10.6 oz | .3 kg
1996
Nintendo 64 Controller
15.260
16.000
6.670
0.300
1996.00
10000
3D
Nintendo 64 Controller
4.01” | 102 mm
9.40” | 239 mm
.547” | 13.9 mm; 1.13” | 28.7 mm (Total)
.88 lb | .4 kg
2017
Nintendo Switch
10.200
23.900
2.870
0.400
2017.00
2100000
3D
Nintendo Switch
3.66” | 93 mm
5.83” | 148 mm
2.1” | 53.3 mm
4.7 oz | .13 kg
1994
PlayStation Controller
9.300
14.800
5.330
0.130
1994.00
19000
3D
PlayStation Controller
2.4” | 61 mm (Estimated)
5.67” | 144 mm (Estimated)
.6” | 15 mm (Estimated)
2.8 oz | .08 kg (Estimated)
1990
SNES Controller
6.100
14.400
1.500
0.080
1990.00
24000
3D
SNES Controller
3.86” | 98 mm (Estimated)
6.5” | 165 mm (Estimated)
1.6” | 40.6 mm (Estimated)
5.6 oz | .16 kg (Estimated)
1988
Sega Genesis Controller - 3 Button
9.800
16.500
4.060
0.160
1988.00
6200
3D
Sega Genesis Controller - 3 Button
3.39” | 86 mm
6.1” | 155 mm
1.8” | 45.7 mm
9.6 oz | .27 kg
1995
Sega Saturn Controller - Model 2
8.600
15.500
4.570
0.270
1995.00
3900
3D
Sega Saturn Controller - Model 2
6.3” | 160 mm
1.43” | 36.2 mm
1.21” | 30.8 mm
3.2 oz | .09 kg
2006
Wii Remote
16.000
3.620
3.080
0.090
2006.00
13000
3D
Wii Remote
5.3” | 13.5 cm
10.2” | 25.9 cm
1.6” | 40.6 mm; 1.98” | 50.2 mm (Total)
17.3 oz | .49 kg
2012
Wii U GamePad
13.500
25.900
5.020
0.490
2012.00
11000
3D
Wii U GamePad
4.13” | 105 mm
6.05” | 154 mm
2.41” | 61.3 mm
9.5 oz | .27 kg
2005
Xbox 360 Controller
10.500
15.400
6.130
0.270
2005.00
44000
3D
Xbox 360 Controller
5.5” | 139.7 mm
7” | 177.8 mm
2.7” | 68.6 mm
19.4 oz | .55 kg
2001
Xbox Controller
13.970
17.780
6.860
0.550
2001.00
90000
3D
Xbox Controller
4.01” | 101.9 mm
6.02” | 152.9 mm
2.4” | 61 mm
9.9 oz | .28 kg
2013
Xbox One Controller
10.190
15.290
6.100
0.280
2013.00
141000
3D
Xbox One Controller
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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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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GameCube Controller

The GameCube controller is the sixth generation gamepad manufactured by Nintendo and released in 2001 for the GameCube home video game console. The GameCube controller was released together with the GameCube console and as a successor of the Nintendo 64 controller.

Over its lifespan, the controller was available in various colors and revisions such as the WaveBird wireless controller, LodgeNet controller, and White controller, all targeted for different markets. The controller connects to the console via GameCube controller port and has a built-in rumble motor that provides haptic feedback. The only drawback is that it does not have expandable features like its predecessor, Nintendo 64 controller.

The GameCube Controller has a height of 4” (100 mm), width of 5.5” (140 mm), depth of 2.5” (65 mm), and approximate weight of 7.1 oz | (.2 kg).

Collection of drawings of the GameCube Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
The GameCube controller is the sixth generation gamepad manufactured by Nintendo and released in 2001 for the GameCube home video game console. The GameCube controller was released together with the GameCube console and as a successor of the Nintendo 64 controller.

The GameCube Controller has a height of 4” (100 mm), width of 5.5” (140 mm), depth of 2.5” (65 mm), and approximate weight of 7.1 oz | (.2 kg).

Collection of drawings of the GameCube Controller with height, width, and depth dimensions
GameCube Controller
Height:
4” | 100 mm
Width:
5.5” | 140 mm
Length:
Depth:
2.5” | 65 mm
Weight:
7.1 oz | .2 kg
Area:
Designer
Nintendo
Released
2001

Drawings include:
GameCube Controller front elevation, top, side

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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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Xbox Controller

The Xbox Controller is the sixth generation video game controller released by Microsoft in 2000, primarily for Microsoft’s Xbox home video game console. The original controller was called the “Duke” or “Fatty” and received lots of criticism for its bulky and oversized nature that made it feature in the Guinness World Records Gamer’s Edition 2008 for being the biggest controller.

Today, it spots a smaller and light structure ideal for smaller hands with Xbox systems available in all the territories it is sold and the larger controller being available as an optional accessory. Its features include two analog triggers, dual vibration motors, two analog sticks, back and start button, and digital directional pads.

The Xbox Controller has a height of 5.5” (139.7 mm), width of 7” (177.8 mm), depth of 2.7” (68.6 mm), and approximate weight of 19.4 oz (.55 kg).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the Xbox Controller measured with height, width, and depth
The Xbox Controller is the sixth generation video game controller released by Microsoft in 2000, primarily for Microsoft’s Xbox home video game console. The original controller was called the “Duke” or “Fatty” and received lots of criticism for its bulky and oversized nature.

The Xbox Controller has a height of 5.5” (139.7 mm), width of 7” (177.8 mm), depth of 2.7” (68.6 mm), and approximate weight of 19.4 oz (.55 kg).

Set of dimensioned elevation drawings of the Xbox Controller measured with height, width, and depth
Xbox Controller
Height:
5.5” | 139.7 mm
Width:
7” | 177.8 mm
Length:
Depth:
2.7” | 68.6 mm
Weight:
19.4 oz | .55 kg
Area:
Designer
Microsoft
Released
2001

Drawings include:
Xbox Controller front elevation, top, side

Details & Downloads

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