Custom sticks are usually better bargains than off the shelf sticks

There’s a difference between a mass market joystick and a custom one. Probably most people who bought a custom joystick tried an off-the-shelf joystick and found they didn’t do as good at home with a pad vs at the arcade. So they researched parts and had it made to order. Because most custom stick owners want an advantage by using their choice parts, and are wiling to spend the money, they no longer buy off the shelf. Most (if not al) joystick tech is very similar between all generations and companies so I can splurge on parts, and make it connect to multiple consoles, making the per-console price as cheap as separate off-the-shelf stick for each console separately.

The off-the-shelf consumer usually only wants one console. That combined with licensing complications to having a multi-console stick, and consoles fighting over hypothetical split licensing if there were such a thing, necessitates single-console off-the-shelf sticks.

Plus, you have it your way.

I understand I would have different things done for my personal joystick vs a plan for an off the shelf stick. My stick costs a lot of money, but can be played with quite a few consoles. A retail stick is designed to be efficient.


Why is this relevant at all?..

Incorrect. A retail stick is designed make the company money and to cater to the broadest user-base to increase sales.
You seem to think that mass retail companies have a goal that their accessories will increase end-user performance. They don’t. They release these peripherals for replicating the EXPERIENCE, not for performance improvement. And people will pay money for the experience. And that in turn makes the companies money. And THAT is their primary goal.


My retail stick works on multiple consoles using a cheap dongle…

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I been building sticks for a long time, and the following line

Custom sticks are usually better bargains than off the shelf sticks

That is absolutely WRONG

Building a custom significantly costs more than a retail stick, even if you doing the work DIY.


Agreed 100%. No matter how hard I tried to piece it together, by the time I bought my components and paid shipping I was always paying more for a custom stick. Always. It gets worse when manufactured sticks go on sale!

I got a Madcatz TE2+ and an official Hitbox. Modded both. Zero regrets.

A good quality custom stick for less than retail price of popular brands is alchemy.

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Unless you get one of those first time wonders where the case is a box bought at good will, with eBay/Amazon bootleg parts and wiring salvaged from God knows where, maybe a used game pad hacked as the PCB.

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Right in abosulte dollars, worng in dolalrs per console it works with. I’ll probably spend $300-$400 for this system for parts and labor.

A single console joystick, if new is $200. You can find one used for $100 when the system is current, and $50 if considered retro.

My retro stick, when done, will play

(Atari 2600 not necessary because it works with 7800, Colecovision, and Genesis, unless I want a Booster Grip-compatible)
Atari 5200
Atari 7800
Genesis 6-button (which will work with most games, usially holding mode fixes it. But depending on my games I might need a 3-button, and I think I have the one SMS game than needs a real SMS controller, Montezumna’s revenge)
Xbox prime
Game Cube (also for certain Wii, and Switch stuff)
Xbox 360
Wii classic controller (also works with some Wii U)
Xbox One

If I bought used sticks for current systems, assuming I can the cheapest buy it now price now on ebay this is what I get if i buy fight sticks for these consoles, of course most of them have problemsd with me because right-stick is needed.

NES Retrobit $15
Switch Ipega $18 Subtotal $33
PS3/PS4/PC/Switch $49 (but you can subtract the Switch ipega if you don’t want to Street Fight on the road. Subtotal $64-82
Xbox One $37 subtotal $101-119
Wii Classic $35 subtotal $136-154
PS2/PS1/ Xbox/Gamecube: $50 subtotal $186-204
Dreamcast $60 subtotal $246-264
N64 $75 subtotal $321-349
SNES $33 subtotal $354-382
Genesis 6 button $40 subtotal $394-422
Turbo Grafx 16 $20 for a 2-button stick
Turbo Grafx 16 $40 fo a 6-button pad
There are only 2 ways to get a 6 button stick on Ebay buy-it-now right now. Hori TG16+SNES for $135 or Hori TG16+SNES+Genesis $185
If you have to have the TG16 6 button, need SNES and Genesis, and want to pay as little as possible add $135, subtract $33 for not getting the SNES net cost $102 subtotal $496-524
3DO stick $70 subtotal $566-594

If you own a Genesis game that needs a 3 button and glitches on 6, pay an extra $22. subtotal $566-616

If you have a game that doesn’t work with a 6 Button (w/ or w/o mode button) or 3 button, you have to buy a SMS joystick. The cheapest is a $17 joystick. But there are 2 problems. Judging by most of the comments on my posts, right hand is unacceptable. Plus if in most games, you want index-to-index mapping, this joystick gioves let-to-left mapping. One search for the cheapest left handed joystick at $107. But I remember the Sega Beeshu has the prporer left handed buton arrangement, so
that was $20. SInce I haven’t seen a game where left-to-left mapping is preferable on the SMS (then agin, I don’t have that many games) I assume al are better with index-to-index, and if your goal is to gsave money, byu the $20 beeshu. Subtotal 566-636

No Atari 7800, Jaguar,or digital 5200, but look what I found.

All the Atari optionsgot me that was interesting was $143 analog pad for the Atari 5200. It advertises self centering. I some games that is good, in other games it is bad. There is no such thing as a swiss army knife fo the 5200, arguable tyou have to get analog non-self centering (standard 5200, most of the alalog games were best non-centreing, like Kaboom, Star Wars. I’ve played Atari Paddle games on Atari Flashbacks by using an analog stick in absolute mode, which is closest to an actual paddle, and you ache your thumb when trying to instantly “dial-a-position” like you have to do in Star Wars and Kaboom, alternatign between fighting resistance both with you and againsg you, making it hard to hit your target exactly. But good 2600 paddle players can hit anywhere on the axis in the nick of time.), analog self-centering (if a game is a full analog game and you have to stop on a dime.) and digital (if a game is necessary to stop on a dime, but doesn’t need 8 bit x and 8 bit y and would be better as a fight stick game) There was no Jaguar, no 7800, and no digital 5200.

Currently, there is a Colecovision Fight stick auciton. Oy is ambodextrous, has a button on the side and a button on the thumb that might possibly be Coleco’s second button. You have to add a Y adapter to use the keypad on a regular Coleco controller. Also super aciton-required games won’t work. $43. Also the user is unsure if it’s a 2-button coleco stick or just a 1 button.

I thought the Colceo Super Action controller was the best controller for games that didn’t require a manual rapid fire in the Pre Crash era. Tankfully most game required buttons and either stick, keypad and roller. Nothing needed the roller, keypad, and stick simultaneously, excpert Mouse Trap, but you don’t need the action buttons for Mousse trap, so adjust your grip. Also I found bugs when playing Activision Decathlon and Q Berts Qubes with a super action controller.

Intellivision has many problems in terms of todays standards. The default controller is a 16-way, yet 1-intensity plus neutral thumb/finger pad. Another probe is tat the INYV sticks were hard wired into first version of the console, but there were a couple used for the second model, but if yuo’;re used to a Street Fighter stick this wll take a lot of getting used to. Ussually you have to snap a stick on the disc. If you want to make a street fighter stick that is 8-way (I don’t think a digital joystick can be made 16 way with 1 intensity plus neutral. And the fact you have 16 discrete direction inputs makes the normal joystick logic of “2 cardinals equals a diagonal” impossible You could get an analog stick and break it into regions, or you. The only options I see are using logic gates and hard wiring the stick so that only 1 of 8 ways are actuated singly , and is determined by NSEW.

There are no Astrocade joysticks, but if you have a 2600 stick, and Maybe a compatible, like 7800, Colecovision, and Genesis if a discrete-to-discrete remapping so you can either wire it directly, or take one of those other standards, or a genuine 2600 stick, by using a 9-pin remapper.

A Genesis, 7800, or Colecovioisn wired stick can be a standard Atari 2600 controller without modification.

So if you have my collection, like me, and you don’t have a PS4, and unlike me, don’t need 7800 or pre-crash systems you cost for finding the cheapest “off the shelf” combination on Ebay is $566-636.

If you can build one joystick, and add a NES-PS3 adapter a PS3/PS4/360/One/Wii U/Switch US adapter, and the appropriate connectoirs of the Cthulhu. I Paid about $70 for my completely assembled 360 joystick in 2008, Recently I paid for a Cthulhu cost $30, adapters cost $10-20 for NES, SNES, PC Engine, a PCE->TG16 converter, Saturn, Dreamcast, PS1/PS2, Xbox, Gamecube, PS3/USB I also bought a GC-> N64 converter for $25, and a Coleco circuit board for $25. I paid $200 in extra labor since I started this stage. Plus $20 each for PS2->Xbox 360, PS2->One PS2-> Wii and PS3>Switch

70+200+30+25+25+ (15x10) + (20x4) $530 so far. I got a little more to go, I need labor for a Genesis and 3DO pad hack to get an eqivalent joystick.

but remmer, you control the parts and layout in you custom joysticks. If I buy cheap randoms from ebay, I’d probably pay the same amount, and have less consistent quality.

In the absolute sense of the word price, as many systems as I have gets you to same price for all in one custom as separate random cheap ones. But in terms of value, you get better quality parts, and have it your way, for the same price of buying random cheap sticks if you have a collection like mine.

Where should I start, your math is wrong, your Part list for controller boards is going to cost over $1008 not $530, and I can replace 90% of the List with a Brooks Universal Fight board with ether a Brooks Retro Board or a MC Cthulhu for about 15% of the price ($150 max).

Also you failed to realize the 5200 does not use a " normal digital " Joystick, it uses an Analog Joystick.
If you want an Arcade Joystick thats analog, you are out of luck as the two manufactores that ever made Analog joysticks discontinued them. If you can find a Seimitsu LS-64, you looking at $80 at the least (not including overseas shipping)
Not to mention the n64, which uses an optical encoder rather than actual analog.

Also the other problem is if you Incorporate everything all those systems need,
You are going to have two Joysticks, one for Digital, one for Analog, 10 buttons on both sides, A Number Pad, Probability 5 Menu/System buttons if you dont include Turbo (Start, Select, Home, Touch pad, Screen Capture, I am sure there other I am forgetting).

You are looking at $180 in just joysticks and buttons, no mention of wiring, quick disconnects, terminal strips, Num pad, ect. For $180 I can buy a whole stick now.

So lets add it up $180 for controls, $150 for boards, $330.
Wow my total is lower than yours by alot.

And I can harvest a Keypad off a old touch tone phone for $10.

Where you getting your prices at? You can get a brand new officially licensed genesis 6 button game pad for $16. $7 if you are willing to deal with those cheap pads.

First thing on your Priorities list is focus on what project you want to do.
You want to make a Stick thats compatible with everything or you want an ambidextrous stick?


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Honestly if you trying to make this stick into a Do anything stick, its going to be over $1000 of waste.
My Hori VLX that supports only the PS3 and PS4 has more value than your stick will.

First off Drop this from your stick entirely if you want a shred of success
Drop Atari 2600, 5200, 7800 & Jaguar, drop Astrocade, Intelliviison, Colecovision, 3DO, Wii/ Wii U.
If you don’t feel like pad hacking Drop Genesis Support as well.

Actually Brooks make a Genesis/TG16 Adapter

Also you dont need both the 2 button and 6 button TG 16 pads as all 6 button TG controllers support 2 Button mode with a Physical switch. And there only 1 Game that actually Utilize the 6 button controller, and that is the PC Engine Port of Street Fighter II, there a few games that uses 4 buttons but they are usable with a 2 button controllers.

Shame you managed to skip Neo Geo and the Neo Geo Mini. For Shame.

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