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Xbox One controllers now work with PC games
Xbox One controllers now work with PC games
June 5, 2014 | By Mike Rose

June 5, 2014 | By Mike Rose
Comments
    16 comments
More: Console/PC, Business/Marketing



Newsbrief: Microsoft today released PC drivers for its Xbox One controller, allowing users to connect the controller up to a PC device and use it to play games, much in the same way you can with an Xbox 360 controller.

The company says that the controller can be used with any game that features gamepad support for the Xbox 360 controller. You'll need to download the drivers and plug the controller in via micro USB.

If you don't want to download the drivers now, they will be come as part of an upcoming Windows update.


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Comments


George Menhal III
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Nice!

I've been waiting for this. I don't like the Xbox One, but the controller has the best triggers I've ever used on any gamepad. I've had a Titanfall controller sitting in its packaging waiting for this news. Time to get rid of my 360 controller.

Matthew Fairchild
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I really like the Xbox One Controller, so I'm glad it's finally usable on PC.
But I'd still prefer to have it wireless ( like with the little adapter you had to use for the wireless 360 Controllers on PC ). Hope something similar to that will be an option soon ^^

Ron Dippold
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I've actually worn the rubber completely off the top of the left thumbstick on the X360 controller... down to slick plastic, which makes it a bit hard for some games, especially Luftrausers. Guess it's time.

Bart Stewart
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Speaking as (apparently) one of the last living PC gamers, I'm probably the only person who greets this announcement with less than pleasure.

From my perspective, making console controllers work on a PC does two things:

1. It excuses developers from spending any meaningful time (or money) porting the control interface of their game to the PC's mouse+keyboard interface standard. If PC gamers object, now you can just tell them: "This game is optimized for controllers."

2. It hides the fact that the design of games -- the very nature of computer games themselves -- has been simplified since 2000 down to only what can be activated by the relatively small number of inputs on a console controller. Persuading PC gamers to use controllers, rather than the much more expressive mouse+keyboard input, allows the simplified nature of games to be covered up when they're ported to the PC.

The obvious rejoinder is that letting controllers work on PCs is good because it allows console gamers to use their existing hardware and interface manipulation skills to use their PC to play games. I'd be willing to agree that that is, to some extent, nice... if you happen to primarily be a console gamer.

But for the two reasons I've given above, I'm not seeing how the announcement of another expressively-limited input device is much cause for rejoicing by the possibly one or two other PC gamers left in the world besides myself.

I return now to my dinosaur-infested PC cave. :)

Mike Griffin
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PC gaming is extremely popular. Steam, Origin, GoG -- tons and tons of players.
There are tens of millions of PC gamers.

Very often a game type simply plays better using a special controller, whether it's a high quality analog stick controller like the DualShock 4 or Xbox One for third-person action games, an arcade stick for fighters, a wheel and pedals for racers, etc.

And those game types exist on the PC format as well. They have for years, and people have been playing them using those control interfaces for years, while using their mouse and keyboard in parallel to play games that traditionally kick ass with M+K.

It's not about simplified design. There are still many very complex PC games that need to be played (and excel) using the mouse and keyboard, and many simpler, more streamlined PC game experiences that also work best with mouse and keyboard.

That's the beauty of PC gaming: So many different input devices and accessories are available, with so many different games to play them with.

I'm an avid, longtime PC gamer, and I've never had to be persuaded to use a great controller over mouse + keyboard when the game experience clearly benefits from being played with a certain interface/input type. Nor have I ever shied away from strong arguments extolling the virtues of mouse and keyboard for certain genres and game types -- because it's clear when it's an advantage.

Curtis Turner - IceIYIaN
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The only problem with a keyboard and mouse is you cannot hook up four of them for four player same screen or split-screen gameplay. Or as far as I'm aware you cannot. If there was one request I could make to Valve, it would be that.

I don't even think I could name five, let alone ten four player split screen games on PC.

Andreas Ahlborn
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@Bart: Applying your train of thought I would have to conclude that there is a evolutionary armsrace between spoon-users and fork&knive users.

And the current fear among fork&knive users is that because its more complicated to use fork&knive than a spoon the very nature of eating is endangered because nasa invented space food. Soon all food will be "simplified" to pulp.

Relax. Soups are better eaten with spoons and spaghetti are not endangered to be pulverized any time soon.

Mike Kasprzak
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@Andreas I see you've played Knifey Spooney before.

Dane MacMahon
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As a 20+ year long PC gamer I understand where Bart is coming from here.

Not saying I am opposed to controllers, and I like the fact the Xbox pads have become the default, makes them easier to use and configure. However there is certainly a danger that developers will stop focusing on adapting games to mouse and keyboard if they know Xbox pads are popular.

I have run into this many times already. For example every Ubisoft game outside of Far Cry 3 plays terrible with mouse. I'm not even just talking interface design, I mean the mouse control itself feels terrible. In a game like Watch Dogs, where I am aiming and shooting a lot, this is a significant problem. I hate aiming a gun with a pad, I literally can't do it.

Ubisoft developers have previously said "we don't optimize for mouse and keyboard, we recommend a pad." That's fine for Assassin's Creed to some extent, less fine with a game with aiming.

Dark Souls and numerous indies fall down this hole as well, along with many games I am sure I'm not remembering off the top of my head. Skyrim launched with some significant mouse issues but luckily they patched it quickly.

In short there is a danger of the mouse and keyboard being phased out for many genres if developers keep leaning on the Xbox pad. Makes sense to me.

Andreas Ahlborn
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Its a generation conflict, we 40+ gamers are simply to lazy or unflexible to adapt to the new controller-pardigm in gaming. Its pure habit. I played 15 years of my gamer-life exclusively with MKB and never would have touched a controller, if I hadn`t gotten an xbox that forced a controller on me.

Even then I tried to cling to my stereotyoe that controllers were inferior, even when I saw that my 12 year old son did better in every shooter on the xbox (cod, halo, bf) than I did with MKB.

Controllers are the standard of the younger generation, and either we adapt or go extinct ;-)

Dane MacMahon
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I'm 34, not 40, and I disagree with pretty much everything you just said. :)

Andreas Ahlborn
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IŽll have to live with that, even if it hurts :))

Tanner Brackett
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As part of a generation(I am 20) that grew up with controllers being standard for people around my age, its not that the controller is preferred, it's a combination of 2 things.

1. Most people around my age did not even know you could really play games on computer. The thought to play with MKB has not even occurred to most people under 16. I cannot tell you how many times I had someone tell me consoles have better graphics than ANY pc in grade school and even high school.

2. They are not advertised to play PC plain and simple. Kids eat up advertisements, in fact when your little its how you find things you want. Consoles advertise alot, and when a game is coming out for consoles and PC it is advertised as a console game. This in turn creates a popularity in the consoles because the kids see the consoles but not the PC, and when your young want to get the things everyone else around your age has, which is what is advertised to them.

I do not think it is necessarily the standard of a younger generation, its just that mouse and keyboard is not pushed onto them like consoles and controllers are.

Curtis Turner - IceIYIaN
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I've been planning on "mounting" my X-BoX 360 GamePad onto my mouse for a while now. Simply because I cannot afford a real mouse with multiple left mouse buttons and thumb buttons. Doubtful I'll like playing in a "Gun" position rather than the "Claw" position. But whatever.

Hakim Boukellif
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"The company says that the controller can be used with any game that features gamepad support for the Xbox 360 controller."
So XInput is going to continue to be a thing, huh? Sigh...

Ujn Hunter
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Cool. Now make it wireless and I might just upgrade the Xbox 360 controller that I'm using for my PC.


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