# Saturday, 24 November 2012

So... after the device quality disaster that was the Razer Onza (The thumbsticks would go out of whack after awhile) I can't believe I decided to go ahead and buy yet another specialty joypad, this time it's the Hori FPS Assault Pad EX.

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First of all.. like the Razer Onza, this thing feels a bit big for my small Asian hands, was cramping about 10 mins after using it. (need to add more insight)

Like the Razer Onza, the Hori Assault Pad gives you 2 additional remappable shoulder buttons.

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The original bumper is the higher one, like with the Razer Onza, you'll need a while before you can get use to the extra button.

Unlike the Onza, not only can you remap the 2 additional shoulder buttons to the face buttons or bumpers you can also remap the TRIGGERS as well. But it surprises me that you can remap the original bumpers as well.

Also unlike the Onza is the fact that there's no way to see WHAT button something is mapped to, and also there's no way to remap it quickly on the fly. Because remapping a button involves holding the PROGRAM button until a green light pops up.

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Press the button you want to remap, and then press the button you want to map to.

The controller also includes a freaking bright blue brag light, which changes to red whenever the rumble motors engage.

The blinding light is easy enough to disable, all you have to do is hold down the back button for a few seconds and it'll turn off.

And now we move on to the other specialty of the Assault Pad, the sensitivity wheel located below the D-Pad

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This wheel controls the sensitivity of the right thumbstick, although it's a bit wrong to say it's a sensitivity control due to how a joystick works compared to a mouse. While a different DPI rating for a mouse would influence how many pixels would be cross when you move the mouse by a centimeter, a joystick doesn't do that.

Joysticks basically just report how far away they are from the center of the stick, where the center is 0% and the edge is 100%, So how would you implement a sensitivity dial for a joystick then? The dial basically changes how soon the stick reports that it's at the edge, the setting of 1 is normal, and the max setting of 7 means you just have to push the stick ever so slightly and it'll report as if it's been fully pushed.

I don't find this sensitivity dial of any particular usefulness though.

The next important feature of the Assault Pad is the Target button. Located underneath the controller near where the D-Pad is

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When you hold down the target button, The right thumbstick's motion will be limited to about 25%, so you can push the stick very quick and fast but it'll result in slow movements.

While this sounds GREAT on paper (and it was what made me decided to buy it) when used in Halo 4, this works like an emergency brake button for the right stick, when held down the reticle moves painfully slowly. I wished there was a dial to customize exactly what is the limit when you hold down the button, but there isn't one, so it feels like a wasted opportunity.

One more thing about the Assault Pad is that you can screw in taller sticks for the thumbsticks.

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That's the tallest stick, how useful is this? Well, when I use the medium sized one my hand feels like dying after only 1 minute instead of the usual 5 when I'm using the default height. Extremely NOT useful for small hands.

And that's the gist of it, like the Razer Onza, the Hori FPS Assault Pad is just TOO big for my hands, the distance between the edge of the controller and the right thumbstick really hurts my hands, that and the fact that the 2 main selling points of controlling joystick sensitivity doesn't really work well practically serves will serve as a reminder for me that I should not buy any more 3rd party controllers which everyone has mentioned that it's a bit big.


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