If you are a gamer, you must either be using a controller or your keyboard and mouse. Not many people play with fight sticks unless they are professional e-sports players. People have long argued over the benefits of fight sticks and controllers. But do fight sticks really make your game better? We talk about the specifics along with some famous examples in this article.
Fight Sticks and Controllers: The Boom of E-sports Scene
We have been competing against one another for long before the technology was as advanced as it is now. Competition is a healthy way to show off your skill and move on the top of the ladder in games. Recently the e-sport scene has been booming everywhere. Earlier on, there weren’t many games on the e-sport platform which were globally famous. You could find Counter-Strike and such, but more fighting games are in the limelight now.
So many new games were added in the last few years in the competition. Some were sequels to the older famous titles like Street Fighter V and Tekken 7. New games like Dragon Ball FighterZ also started to gain popularity and foothold. More and more people started to show up with fight sticks instead of controllers, specifically from Asia. Then suddenly people started arguing about fight sticks and controllers, asking which is better suited?
With the popularity of e-sports, people from all over the country are coming to compete with each other. Western professionals usually prefer controllers during the tournament, take Aruu and Lil Majin for example. They both are famous Tekken 7 players, Lil Majin is one of the best King players on the scene. Aruu who is also a very famous female esports player and streamer. They both use controllers instead of fighting sticks.
But most of the Asian players, whether it is JCDR or Qudans, you see them using fighting sticks. The same is with other fighting games like Street Fighter V and Dragon Ball FighterZ. You can find people from the professional esports scene using both of them.
So which one is better than the other between fight sticks and controllers? We will first explain the basic differences between them separately and give a verdict.
Controllers are handheld, people who are familiar with console gaming have definitely held controllers. If you are a PC gamer on the other hand, then maybe you are not as familiar with controllers as keyboard and mouse. But still, you must have played games on a controller every now and then. The controller is usually used with your thumbs for movement and camera control along with buttons and you use your index fingers for the shoulders and triggers.
It is very portable and not limited to fighting games. You can play shooters, RPGs, and other genres on it as well. People who have grown up playing games on consoles are mostly used to controllers. As we all know that people in countries like the U.S. have grown up playing console games. Arcades are a thing of the past there with most kids just playing games on their consoles at home.
Arcades are still existent, but you will not see people spending most of their time there. But it is the same way with most countries now. Being used to handle controllers and play games like Tekken and Street Fighter on consoles is how most people learn competitive gaming. PlayStation and Xbox made online gaming very famous amongst people.
People are very proficient with the controller there. They are able to pull off extremely difficult combos on the controllers that seem impossible to most. But the softness of the analog and the control over the buttons which are cramped together on a small controller gives them better control.
If you have ever been in an arcade ever in your life, you have used a fight stick. The fight stick is basically the controller of the arcade on which you have played games on. Just fight sticks are more portable than a whole arcade machine. You can hook them up to a PC or console and game on it.
Usually used for fighting games, thus the name fight sticks, there are very limited controls available compared to a controller. The buttons are distanced and very big so hard to miss. The analog stick is also very big and has a good grip on it thanks to a ball top. It has all the buttons that you need to map on a fighting game.
Having fewer buttons gives you a more focused outlook on the game. But it also limits the genre of games you can play with it. You can play fighters, of course, you can also play beat em ups on them. Lately, you can see Asian players coming up with these fight sticks in e-sports competitions. And Koreans and Japanese have been dominating the Tekken and Street Fighter games for a while now.
Fight Sticks vs. Controllers: Verdict
Lately, more players are emerging and winning unbelievable matches against the dominating Japanese and Koreans. Arsalan Ash, a talent from Pakistan emerged for Tekken 7 and won the EVO Championship defeating legends like Qudans and Knee. An Asian himself, Arsalan has become a famous name in the e-sports scene.
The famous Daigo Umehara, the beast of Street Fighter IV is no longer even in the top 10. The first place belongs to Punk, who belongs to the states. Now fun fact, both Arsalan Ash and Punk use controllers. Does that end the argument once and for all with controllers as the winner? It is not that easy to judge.
Since people who are more familiar with controllers and have learned gaming on it use it, it does not make controllers better than fight sticks. Japanese and Koreans have used fight sticks for a long amount of time in arcades. That is where they first learn to play games mostly and that is why they prefer them.
So, in the end, it all depends on preference. Controllers are more handheld compared to fight sticks and fight sticks are more focused on fighting games than anything else. If you are better with a fight stick you can win against someone with a controller.
But if you are great with a controller, fight sticks do not matter. In our opinion, the controller or fight stick does not make a player great, but it’s their skill that does so.