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Old 26 February 2019, 19:22   #1
edge-records
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Survey: With which hand do you hold the Joystick?

Hi all



I've got a question for y'all: Which hand do you put the Joystick in when playing?

Recently, when I had a C64/Amiga game night with a friend who spent his formative years on Nintendo Consoles, I've noticed he used his left for the Joystick. So I asked him whether he's left-handed, he said No, he always steers with his left and operates buttons with his left. I assume because of the d-pad being on the left.


Until then I've always assumed that right handed people would put the joystick into their right, and left handed people into their left. So what I would consider a left-handed Joystick actually would have a much larger market, because many right-handed people who grew up with consoles and d-pads would use it as well.



Also there could be the option that people would say that a Quickshot-like Joysticks they operate with their right, and Competition Pro like Joysticks they operate with the left.


So here's my question to you:

1) Are you Left- or Right handed?
2) CP-style Joystick in which hand?
3) Quickshot-style Joystick in which hand?


My answers:



RRR

This is partly out of curiosity, and partly for research, because I'm thinking about giving my own joystick build project proper 2 logical buttons as well (Joystick for both Atari 9-pin port and USB, see https://gitlab.com/edge-records/joyweiler). Right now it is one logical button, because I've never really come across games back in the day where I would have missed a second logical button, but I am realizing now that on the Amiga the 2nd button is used a lot more often than on the C64. So if I should make it 2 buttons, I wonder how many people would actually benefit from having the left and right button's functions swappable from one to the other side.
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Old 26 February 2019, 19:36   #2
Retro-Nerd
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Joystick (CP style): Holding the stick in the left hand and steering with the right hand, buttons left thumb.

Arcade Board and Joypads = Left hand for the stick/dpad, right for the buttons. Feels naturally to me as a right-hander.

Last edited by Retro-Nerd; 26 February 2019 at 19:59.
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Old 26 February 2019, 19:57   #3
Dastardly
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I'm right handed.

CP style joystick base held in the left hand with left thumb for fire and right hand for controlling the shaft.

Same goes for QS style, although I haven't used one of those forever.

[/innuendo]
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:05   #4
meynaf
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Right-handed.
Regardless of joystick type, holding it with right hand, buttons with right hand, but steering with left hand.
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:07   #5
Foebane
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I'm left-handed for most things, like writing and tapping my phone which is in my right hand, but I could also be ambidextrous as I learnt to use computer mice with my right hand, like almost everyone does (except for one individual in my first workplace who used the mouse in his left hand, and everyone else was annoyed by it as we had to switch it back to the right afterwards).

As for joysticks, I've used joysticks with the fire button on the stick itself in my left hand whilst the stick is suckered onto a thin large hardback book (!) but for the Konix Speedking (the best stick I ever used IMHO), I held the body in my left hand and waggled the stick with my right, as it was meant to be, but I adapted quickly. Same for the Cheetah Bug that I got later on.

It depends on what the stick is: some are designed for either hand, some are designed for one hand for the stick in particular.
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:08   #6
PortuguesePilot
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Here's a right-handed dude.

For Competition Pro joysticks (and alikes): I tend to use the left hand for the stick and the right index finger for the button but I change to the opposite (i.e.: right hand for the stick and left index for the button) from time to time to "rest". The Competition Pro type of joysticks allows for this ambidexterity.

With arcade-like joysticks: the classic stance. Left-hand for the stick and the right index for the buttons. Even if presented with a chance of having a reversed joystick (like the Amiga Kit Arcade Evolution Joystick does), I'd still prefer the classic layout. One of the reasons why I love my QuickShot Maverick 1M QS-138F and would probably loath the QuickJoy Superstar SV-131.
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:09   #7
Daedalus
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I'm right-handed, generally control the stick with my right hand regardless of type. I've no problem with dual stick controllers and D-pads with the left hand though...
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:11   #8
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All joysticks: I control the stick with the right hand (and usually keep the whole thing on my left hand if it isn't too huge so that it'd need to be on table).

And I'm right handed.. so I guess it'd be: RRR

And personally I just can't understand why right handed people would want to control the joystick with their left hand. At least for me my left hand is so weak for accurate controlling, that it's just quite impossible use it even for joypads. The left hand is just fine to push button(s), but absolutely not for controlling directions in fast paced action.

We once came up with a theory that coin-op games were originally designed for the "left-handed" because they wanted to make it more difficult for the majority (right-handed) so that they'd put more money on the machines when they fail in games because of the controls And unfortunately that tradition then continued on consoles...

I've lately been trying to learn those left-handed pads by playing old games on SNES mini, but argh.. I've been stuck in one level in Super Mario 3 for a while now, and I'm sure that if I'd have a proper right-handed joystick connected to the machine, it would be piece of cake....
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:17   #9
Retro-Nerd
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Left hand stick on Arcade machines makes totally sense for me as a right-hander. It's a mounted stick, so no problems with that. And the right hand, the important one for me, has a wide operation range for hitting 2-x buttons. This is much easier for me to coordiate with the right hand. Tried this with left, doesn't work at all for me.

Last edited by Retro-Nerd; 26 February 2019 at 20:49.
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Old 26 February 2019, 20:48   #10
jurassicman
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I'm right-handed, I play always holding the stick in the left hand and steering with the right hand, to push the buttons I use the left thumb.
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Old 27 February 2019, 09:06   #11
Phantasm
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I'm left handed and I hold the sick steady in my right hand, use the left to control direction and right thumb for fire if the button is on the base of the stick.

I use my right hand to control the mouse and it feels natural to me although I presume if I would learn to use the mouse left handed I might actually be better that way but I think back on the day when I first started using a mouse there was no option to switch the buttons.

It also brings up a point that I have always considered strange as a left hander. When right handed people eat they typically use a different hand for the fork than they do a spoon which is a very similar action whereas I use my left for both.

I also struggle to use left handed scissors as we never really had such things when I was growing up so I always just used my right hand for scissors.
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Old 27 February 2019, 09:49   #12
meynaf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantasm View Post
It also brings up a point that I have always considered strange as a left hander. When right handed people eat they typically use a different hand for the fork than they do a spoon which is a very similar action whereas I use my left for both.
Seems strange to me as well, and i'm no left hander.
I use my right hand for fork and spoon, always. Which makes me use my left hand for the knife instead of switching like i've seen other people do.
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Old 27 February 2019, 09:52   #13
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Not this can of worms again. On 99% of arcade games the joystick is on the left. I believe this was done because you can fire much faster with your primary hand.

My answer is therefore, if the button is on the stick, and you are right handed, you should hold it with your right hand. However, if the button is on the base of the joystick, you should hold the joystick with your left hand and fire with your right.

If you're right handed, try shooting really fast with your left hand. It's very uncomfortable.
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Old 27 February 2019, 09:57   #14
jPV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meynaf View Post
Seems strange to me as well, and i'm no left hander.
I use my right hand for fork and spoon, always. Which makes me use my left hand for the knife instead of switching like i've seen other people do.
It depends if you have a knife in other hand or not. If you're eating without knife, I bet about everyone keeps the fork in the right hand then.

With the knife it's just some aristocratic eating etiquette to do it with fork in the left hand and knife in the right hand Just a tradition of "good manners".
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Old 27 February 2019, 09:58   #15
jurassicman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meynaf View Post
Seems strange to me as well, and i'm no left hander.
I use my right hand for fork and spoon, always. Which makes me use my left hand for the knife instead of switching like i've seen other people do.

I think we are a bit OT... but as said I'm right handed but when I eat meat I swap hand and I use the knife with the right and the fork with the left. To be honest I've always seen people doing so and I think that our parents tought us this when we were children.


Going back OT... many right-handed I know,as opposed to me, use the stick of the joystick with the left hand and push the buttons with the fingers of the right hand
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Old 27 February 2019, 10:10   #16
meynaf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jPV View Post
It depends if you have a knife in other hand or not. If you're eating without knife, I bet about everyone keeps the fork in the right hand then.

With the knife it's just some aristocratic eating etiquette to do it with fork in the left hand and knife in the right hand Just a tradition of "good manners".
I've seen this as well, but what i can't see is a practical reason for doing so.
Switching the fork takes time.
Always using the same hand for the same action seems more logical.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jurassicman View Post
I think we are a bit OT... but as said I'm right handed but when I eat meat I swap hand and I use the knife with the right and the fork with the left. To be honest I've always seen people doing so and I think that our parents tought us this when we were children.
Yeah, i'm kinda feeling alone...
But this tells me more of why it is so.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jurassicman View Post
Going back OT... many right-handed I know,as opposed to me, use the stick of the joystick with the left hand and push the buttons with the fingers of the right hand
Perhaps because holding the joystick firmly requires the main hand, and shooting is uncomfortable with the other - while it's impossible to do everything with only 1 hand so steering is done with the remaining one.

Anyway, lefter or righter, isn't a strict state.
It's the same when playing on keyboard : some (like me) will prefer the numeric pad, when others prefer QWE/ASD area.
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Old 27 February 2019, 10:15   #17
jayminer
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I'm right handed, I steer with my right and push the buttons with my left if I'm using a Tac-2 or similiar.
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Old 27 February 2019, 10:15   #18
Gordon
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Right handed on joysticks with button on stick. Left hand rested on base. I cant play any other way
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Old 27 February 2019, 10:17   #19
Phantasm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meynaf View Post

Anyway, lefter or righter, isn't a strict state.

It's the same when playing on keyboard : some (like me) will prefer the numeric pad, when others prefer QWE/ASD area.
That was what I was getting at. Being a left hander that's gotten so used to doing certain things right handed that it feels wrong to do them left handed it's clear that being left or right handed is only a small factor compared to the muscle memory of repeating an action over and over

Also back in the 8bit days I remember spectrum keys were often Q A O P and the Acorn machines standard keyboard controls were Z X * and ? I always preferred the Z X layout
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Old 27 February 2019, 11:42   #20
gimbal
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Lefter, holding the stick with my left hand. I really can't do it with the right hand, I get disoriented.
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