You may not think of a game controller as an input device, but it is. Personal
computers are widely used as gaming platforms, challenging dedicated video
game units like the Sony PlayStation and others (see Fig. 1
). Because PCs offer higher graphics resolution than standard televisions, many gamers believe a
well-equipped PC provides a better game-playing experience. If your computer is
connected to the Internet, you can play games with people around the world.
Fig. 1: With their fast processors and high quality graphics, PCs are great for playing games.
A game controller can be considered an input device because a computer game
is a program, much like a word processor.
A game accepts input from the user;
processes data, and produces output in the form of graphics and sound.
As computer games become more detailed and elaborate, more specialized game controllers are being developed to take advantage of their features.
Game controllers generally fall into
two broad categories: game pads
. (see Fig. 2
Fig. 2: Game Pad and Joystick
been around for a long time and can be
used with applications other than games.
(Some joystick users actually prefer using
a joystick rather than a mouse with some
the user to “ fly” or “drive” through a
game, directing a vehicle or character.
They are popular in racing and flying
A variant of the joystick is the racing game controller, which includes an actual steering wheel; some racing game
controllers even include foot pedals and
If you have ever used a video gaming
system, you are familiar with game pads.
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