Elite Dangerous Joystick Setup (Important Info)

If you want the best experience playing Elite Dangerous, a flight simulator game, investing in a joystick is ideal for aiding your spaceship navigation. Therefore, you need to know how to set up a joystick in Elite Dangerous for an amazing gaming experience.

So, how do I set up a joystick in Elite Dangerous? To set up a joystick in Elite Dangerous, start by plugging it into your Windows device. Next, click on the Start tab, then on the popup, navigate to Devices and Printers. You will see your joystick on this tab, and you can right-click on it, then Game Controller Settings and Properties. Once set, you can start the game, go to Options, and then Controls to assign axes and buttons. The axes and buttons will move when you perform the above action.

Using a joystick to play Elite Dangerous is way better than the gamepads as they give you a similar experience to control sticks in a plane cockpit. Also, you will utilize both hands maximally for the best experience. I will give you a step-by-step process of setting up a joystick in Elite Dangerous.

To set up a joystick in Elite Dangerous, start by installing its latest drivers and DirectX. Next, connect these divers to your PC and open Controllers, Game Controllers, Devices, and Printers on your Windows Control Panel. After this, right-click on your joystick, select Game Controller Settings, and then Properties. Lastly, select Calibrate on the settings tab.

On the Calibrate tab, you will see a list of instructions that you should follow to calibrate your joystick and ensure each action you perform passes the tests. You can do the necessary calibration at this stage, and, when done, confirm the joystick status is Ok. Next, go to your game and select Options, then Controls.

You can remap your actions to your joystick and then manually remap those already mapped correctly on the Controls window. While remapping seems ambiguous at this point, it is advisable to ensure all the mappings are correct.

If you want to change an action to a different button on your joystick, click on the Event and the Change button. This button is at the bottom left of your screen. The above action will cause a dialog box to pop up. By pressing your choice button or moving the joystick axis towards the direction you want to assign it, you will cause the button or joystick axis to assign to the Event.

You can repeat this for all the events that you want to change. When making any of the above changes, ensure you click the Apply tab at the bottom of the Controls screen to save the changes before moving to the next screen.

If you want to know how to set up a joystick in Elite Dangerous, this is the guide for you. I will help you understand how to set up your joystick, how to enable it, and whether you can play Elite Dangerous with a joystick. Read through the rest of the sections to find out all the answers you need.

How Do I Enable My Joystick in Elite Dangerous?

When playing Elite, you will control ships, an action that requires more than the keyboard controls. I will help you know how you can enable your joystick in Elite Dangerous.

To enable your joystick in Elite Dangerous, start by connecting it to the USB port on your PC and insert the accompanying CD into your PC’s CD Drive. The CD will automatically start, but, if it does not, you should start the installation by opening My Computer, then double-click on the CD drive and Setup.exe. If you download the drivers, you should run the setup file and follow the wizard for a successful installation.

Upon successful installation of your joystick, open the software and customize the buttons. While doing this, select the Active joystick dropdown, and when you finish the calibration process, your joystick will be in Enabled status. After that, you can test its functionality by pressing the Windows button on your keyboard or click the Start button and navigate to the Control Panel.

From here, select the Game Controller option and Set up a USB controller. By clicking on the name of your joystick, you can test its functionality. You can view the functionality results in the Button or axis monitor on the General tab. At this point also, you can select the vehicle functions and flight modes that each joystick button will activate.

Another thing to note is that you may need advanced or additional settings for Elite Dangerous. Thus, you should check the game settings and navigate to the menu option to calibrate and customize your joystick buttons. Once you finish the above setup, click Ok and save the changes. Your joystick will now be ready to use to play Elite Dangerous.

Generally, USB sticks commonly used in computer games are Plug N Play. This implies that the PC will recognize them automatically when you plug in, making them ready to use. Hence, you will not need extra setup or downloads in such instances. However, if your USB does not feature this technology, you will need to configure and enable it using the steps above.

Once you finish the above setup, you can start enjoying your gaming. When playing flight-based games like Elite Dangerous, you will explore several options to control the ships. This is because controlling ships in Elite is a big obstacle to many players. Thus, before getting past this challenge, it is worth understanding the difference between Elite Dangerous and genre classics.

Unlike the genre classics, which feature three axes, the Elite Dangerous has six. Thus, you need the ability to fly on them to be effective without causing accidents. Players using the keyboard and mouse and those using joystick controllers have the least problem moving over these axes. While the keyboard and mouse will do well, they are tough to use in some contexts, such as controlling the machine at zero gravity.

One of the alternatives to controlling the ships is using the joystick and keyboard. A joystick and keyboard enable players to bypass most challenges since joysticks offer an obvious solution to flight simulators. On average, a joystick has four axes, namely, X, Y, Z, and the throttle.

It also has a mini joystick or a POV hat which is helpful to anyone who is a basic level pilot. You will place one hand on the joystick and the other one on the keyboard. While this combination solves most of the limitations of a keyboard and mouse, it still has some movement limitations. You have to place your second hand on the keyboard throughout the game to control the three basic axes and engine power.

A second alternative to bypass keyboard limitations is using two joysticks to play Elite Dangerous. Using two joysticks is becoming popular with Newton’s dynamics. The main challenge, in this case, is training yourself to get used to the left-hand joystick, as this joystick is readily available in the market at an affordable price.

Another challenge will be the limited number of buttons that you will use without a controller. Even then, the good news is that, with this combination, you can control the three primary axes, strafing and engine power.

Another effective combination is the joystick and mouse. While this combination requires some agility, it works well, and once you are used to it, you will experience fewer problems with this setting. Also, with this combination, you can control three basic axes using the mouse and the engine power and strafing with the joystick.

Finally, if none of the above options suits you best, you can settle for HOTAS, Hands On Throttle And Stick, combination when playing Elite Dangerous. This setup comprises a stick that manipulates the pitch and yaw and a throttle that controls the speed. HOTAS eliminates the cumbersomeness of using a mouse and keyboard or the gamepad.

A player can use the joystick to control the three axes and the throttle controls for strafing and engine power in this setting. This way, a player also improves their accuracy as they can program the buttons.

Despite being a valuable tool among veterans, HOTAS has some flaws. For instance, its price is too high for an average player, limiting its use to a few gamers who can afford it. Also, most HOTAS controllers lack analogs on the throttle, and their buttons are not better than those of a keyboard.

Can You Play Elite Dangerous With a Joystick?

Elite Dangerous, a flight simulator game, comprises open-end explorations where gamers fly their spaceships through numerous star systems. Thus, using the best gaming tools will give you the best experience.

Playing Elite Dangerous with a joystick is possible and immersive, giving you the best experience than using a mouse and keyboard. A mouse and keyboard are ideal for precision and control, while the gamepad is suitable if you want to play while relaxing on the sofa or your bed. With a joystick, your spaceship navigation will be more straightforward, and you will get a much better space and flight experience.

Given the above benefits of joysticks over gamepads and other controllers, you also need to know some of the best joysticks available in the market that you can buy for the best experience. They include T-Flight Hotas X, G X52, 200 571 CH Fighterstick, Logitech Flight X56 and Logitech Extreme 3D Pro.

If you are interested in a joystick that fits your tight budget, then the T Flight Hotas X is an ideal option. This joystick ranks among the top in the market and is a top pick for its fair price and amazing features. For instance, it has twelve programmable buttons that enable you to set control presets.

It also features dual aerodynamic control, useful in steering your spaceship. Unlike the mouse and keyboard, this joystick has internal storage that players can save their preset settings. Finally, to enhance spaceship control, this joystick has a detachable throttle control with extra buttons. However, compared to other top joysticks, the T Flight Hotas X has fewer buttons.

The G X52 is more advanced with unique features. These include illuminated buttons, a handle adjustment, and a spring-centering mechanism for advanced control. With this joystick, you can also set up game profiles, courtesy of its customization software.

This joystick also features a separate throttle comprising an LCD panel that shows the mode, profile, date, and time. This panel also displays the player button functions when you click the info button.

The 200-571 CH model is based on the F-16 plane control stick and has 24 buttons. Like the G X 52 joystick, it features software that enables players to program the buttons to have up to 128 functions, making this joystick very customizable. In addition, this joystick is durable given its high-quality material compared to those in the market. The underpins and throttle wheel on its base further enhance its durability.

Logitech Flight X56 joystick is ideal for simulation games such as Elite Dangerous. This joystick comprises mini analog sticks for more spacecraft control and has a 16-bit axis for precise controls. To adjust friction, the joystick features a separate double throttle unit. It also has an RGB backlighting effect that gives it a nice touch.

The Logitech Extreme 3D Pro is a popular joystick among gamers. It features twelve programmable buttons, a weighted base, a twist handle rudder, and a weighted base, ideal for stability. This joystick also has an 8-way hat switch effective in capturing particular game input. With a switch also, you can change your viewpoints or switch weapons.

Wrap Up

If you want the best gaming experience, especially for flight games, investing in a suitable controller is vital. Joysticks feature advancement in the industry that shifts players’ techniques from the mouse and keyboard. A player is likely to perform more controls with both hands and attain higher accuracy with a joystick.

When playing Elite Dangerous using a joystick, you will start by setting it up then enabling it. To set up your joystick, install the necessary drivers, plug the joystick into your device, and do the calibration in the Device and Printers settings. Finally, since joysticks improve your gaming experience, you should invest in one that matches your needs.

Despite their higher price compared to gamepads and keyboards, you can still find pocket-friendly brands. No matter your choice, comfort should be a priority when selecting a game controller to attain results and enjoy the experience.

Bal Kang

Bal Kang is a technology expert based in the UK, with experience across a number of technology areas from phones, tablets, computers to gaming.

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