A question concerning D-Pads and the Responsiveness of Joysticks

Hello there!

I’ve recently gotten into using arcade sticks and decided to buy an X-arcade. To make a relatively long story short however, I was not satisfied with my purchase. Button placement aside, and the slight feeling of lag when I used it with my ps3 or computer, my main issue was that it did not feel nearly as responsive as when I was using the D-Pad on my ps2/3 controller of old.

I tend to play a lot of guilty gear (as chipp, not any good), and this is where part of the problem stems…

Are there any joysticks out there that are as responsive as a D-Pad in terms of being able to execute certain moves quickly (such as dashing and the like), or was the problem due to my inexperience with using arcade parts? I’m liable to think that it was merely an issue with my own ability and not the fault of the stick itself (though from reading what you guys say…the x-arcade is a POS).

Anyhow, I still intend to use arcade parts as I find it easier to execute certain combinations of moves, and the callouses on my thumb (the pride of most gamers) need to go.

If I get lucky from play-asia, I’m going to get the HRAP2:SA…if I get lucky (apparently the HRAP3 lags or doesn’t work on certain PS2 games on the PS3)

it might just feel that way because an arcade stick is much larger than a d-pad. and it requires you to use your whole hand as opposed to just your thumb, making it feel more “sluggish”. i’ve never played on an x-arcade, so i cant say for sure if it is the stick being the problem. you can try playing on another stick, like an hrap or something known to be reliable. if another stick feels the same way, then its just you. but eventually no matter what stick you’re using you will get used to it.

Like you said, buying an X-Arcade was your first mistake even though SRK advertises them on here. They’re generally considered poorly made and the parts break down easily.

If you want to do really small motions, you might wanna get a custom made with a Seimitsu LS-32 balltop joystick. They have smaller throws than the Sanwas, so you don’t have to move your wrist/arm around as much. Balltops in general are much more responsive and require smaller/lighter motions than bat tops do. It’s a huge difference in feel.

It takes a long time to get used to stick if you’ve never played on one for substantial periods of time. It took months until I was semi-comfortable moving around, and I still have trouble dashing left repeatedly and comboing supers from a standing position in games where the cancel window is short, and it’s been almost 6 months. It really depends what level you were at in the first place though.

The way you hold the stick is important too. Generally, people say use whatever’s comfortable, but there are definite advantages to certain holds over others.

Everything you need to know about sticks is here:

It pays to check stickied topics.

Almost any Japanese stick will feel more responsive than an American stick. I actually laughed when I was using an P360 at the arcade and tried to super jump only to realize that I was underestimating the throw so bad that not only did I fail to super jump but go down or even jump for that matter. It boils down to preference though, something that you’ll find to be a recurring theme when weighing up joystick decisions.

As for your lag issues, I have a couple questions. Are you playing PS2 games on your PS3 because if thats the case that would most likely be the cause of your lag. That and from what I hear the X-Arcade sticks themselves have a tendency to lag.

I play Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus on a PS3 with a HRAP1 (PS2) plugged in to a “Cyber Gadget” controller adapter.


It works perfectly fine.

I believe you have 3 problems here:

  1. You are not used to play on a stick
  2. Guilty Gear is just not designed to be played on anything else than a japanese stick IMO…
  3. I have never tried the x-arcade, but according to all the reviews on gaming site, it sucks big time if not modded.

If I were you, I would get that HRAP (if you can afford it), and try with that.

If it doesn’t feel any better, than I guess you’ll just have to practice more.

Either sell the X-Arcade or replace all parts with Happ Competition Stick & Buttons and replace the PCB when you’re at it.

I can tell you from experience that an American style stick should NOT be used to play guilty gear. I play GGXXAC (faust) and i recommend Sanwa or Seimitsu simply for the responsiveness required of a joystick in that game

I have a question, my buddy has an X-Arcade, I was wondering if I could replace all of the parts with sanwa or do I have to replace the pcb.

PCB: You should replace the PCB anyway. X-Arcade PCBs suck

Joystick: You can install a Sanwa JLW (You will have to use the battop version or the longer Ultimarc version) in an american stick case without extensive modification if the control panel is 1/2 inch or thinner.

Buttons: Sanwa buttons are too much trouble to install in an X-Arcade. Just use Happ Competition/Convex buttons.

I did an x-arcade mod for a customer a little while back.


It has a Sanwa JLF with Bat handle. It was a lot of work. Filling old holes, and replacing the artwork. But yes, it can be done. I left the x-arcade buttons in there to the customers request.

It has a madcatz micron 360 pad. I think it would be tough to fit a full size pad in there.

My guess is that the PCB in the X-Arcade is just lagging. I’ve read some stuff here and there about their boards not being “the best”, I can’t seem to find it now, but I saw a reference to them being slow/laggy.

I had the same issue with one of the SFAC control pad boards I used in a joystick build for my Xbox… Drove me crazy, turned out the board was either defective or the underlying design itself was defective. I replaced that board with the old official Microsoft “bear claw” Xbox controller board, and all was well. I thought either I was going crazy, or the stick just felt different, or I was suddenly a lot worse at the games… Nope, it was the board. The way I figured out that it was the board was to get a second opinion, not via another person, but I finally won one of the official Capcom SFAC Sticks on eBay, and it was WORLDS better than the one I had built using the SFAC Pad board. That night I replaced the board, and never looked back.

If it’s any consolation, it seems that the X-Arcade stuff really holds its value, they sell for some coin on eBay.