What MSX games use analog stick?

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By Shinobi

Expert (69)

Shinobi's picture

19-12-2018, 00:20

Hi

I have a big analog stick joystick connected to rapberry pi running openMSX, it works on all games, except that these games use normal joytick so no analog effect. Any MSX games with analog control??

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By hamlet

Scribe (2277)

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19-12-2018, 09:03

Arkanoid 2 and its predecessor take use of some kind of analog controller: The paddle.
The A1 Spirit controller, called Joyhandle don't give analog output.

By gdx

Prophet (2708)

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19-12-2018, 09:42

I think MSX analog joysticks do not exist, else it's a joystick that converts its values directly into digital itself.
MSXs can support analog joysticks but because any standard protocol is not available, we have to do the routines ourselves to use them.

By NYYRIKKI

Enlighted (5270)

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19-12-2018, 13:34

Indeed there is no analog joystick games or even even analog joystick standard for MSX...

I believe analog joysticks were introduced to gamers by PC platform and when they came out they were so horrible piece of crap (Required calibration, but yet it was newer on center, they were wobbling around, CPU speed affected calibration, bad ergonomics etc.) that no gamer wanted to see such controllers again before MSX standard commercially died.

The MSX standard does define paddles, that technically work pretty much identical to PC analog joysticks but are considered more like "Pong controllers". How ever I don't think any company ever produced MSX standard paddles (Arkanoid 2 paddles do not follow any standard) and since the standard does not actually define things like what axis should be connected to what pin on MSX joystick port, it can't be really considered as analog joystick standard.
Also it should be noted that since paddles were newer produced the support for paddles was silently removed on MSX tR.

If today I would implement analog joystick for MSX I would use the "MSX touchpad/graphic tablet" standard instead... Not because it is so good, but because it allows using of BIOS standard routines and it does not have such big problems with variable timing & CPU speed like MSX paddle reading has.

By tvalenca

Paladin (728)

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20-12-2018, 13:48

NYYRIKKI wrote:

I believe analog joysticks were introduced to gamers by PC platform and when they came out they were so horrible piece of crap (Required calibration, but yet it was newer on center, they were wobbling around, CPU speed affected calibration, bad ergonomics etc.) that no gamer wanted to see such controllers again before MSX standard commercially died

just a bit earlier: The Apple II Joysticks were analog.

By TomH

Champion (325)

TomH's picture

05-01-2019, 18:17

By coincidence, today I was reading about the XE-1 AP, which is an analogue joypad, startlingly ahead of its time, primarily sold for the Mega Drive from 1989.

It's not just for the Mega Drive though, check out the box:

It advertises MSX compatibility right there in the lower left. It'd be interesting to know what signalling mechanism is at work and to what extent, if any, analogue input could have been used were any MSX software to support the thing.

By Manuel

Ascended (15362)

Manuel's picture

05-01-2019, 18:22

I guess it has a digital mode (as it says: Analog/Digital) for the MSX.

By TomH

Champion (325)

TomH's picture

05-01-2019, 19:05

A tiny bit more research suggests that it is compatible with the Sharp Cyber Stick, and looking for information on that I found the manual with a pinout that suggests (on page 13) that the only thing the stick takes as input is pin 8. Which is available as an output on the MSX.

So my feeling is: a hypothetical piece of MSX software could hypothetically have used this thing.

But, yeah, probably they just chucked 'MSX' onto the box to increase the potential audience, intending it to be used in some sort of digital mode, and it has exactly zero supporting MSX titles.

By hamlet

Scribe (2277)

hamlet's picture

05-01-2019, 20:41

Of course, it is certainly possible to write special software that can query analog sticks like paddles, trackballs. The user base alone is quite small I guess. But this is possible.

By edoz

Prophet (2131)

edoz's picture

05-01-2019, 21:13

Maybe bit off topic, but the 8 bit guy did a movie about game controllers. Was very nice to watch. I love his videos.
8 bit guy game controllers

By tvalenca

Paladin (728)

tvalenca's picture

06-01-2019, 03:27

To any joystick/joypad work on MSX, it needs to have digital output because MSX GPIO ports (a.k.a. joystick ports) ARE DIGITAL. One can use an analog joystick who sends data digitally to the computer, but is up to the programmer to read it, since there's also no support for "analog joysticks". that's what Arkanoid games do.

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