Dual Strike - Page 2
I must admit that I've not seen anything like the Dual Strike
before. The design of it is such that it emulates the control
methods of a keyboard/mouse combination.
The Dual Strike is essentially
a two-handed controller that consists of two handles or grips
connected by a ball-and-socket joint. I will name the left
grip the "Movement Control" (MC) and the right grip, the "Perspective
Control" (PC) for convenience sake. The MC houses an 8-way
hat switch (directional pad) that is used for forward movement,
back pedalling and left and right strafing. The PC is able
to swivel and rotate about the axes. This is mainly used for
perspective control and aiming.The
ergonomics of the controller is pretty good and one can easily
get a firm and comfortable grip on it.
A Closeup of the Ball and
Socket joint and the Accompanying Label
There are altogether 8 configurable
buttons on the Dual Strike. Two of these are usually reserved
for primary and secondary trigger controls and are located
to the front of the controller where your index fingers will
rest. Out of the remaining six, four buttons are located on
the PC and two on the MC. The four on the PC are arranged
in the form of a diamond and will map your controls for jumping,
weapons changing, crouching, et cetera. The two on
the MC will require you to lift your thumb off the directional
hat switch to reach them and will probably map non-essential
miscellaneous controls. In addition, there is a Shift button
that toggles between two possible controls mapped onto each
button. Therefore, there are theoretically 16 possible useful
control mappings allowed on the Dual Strike.
Four Members of the Microsoft Game Controller
Family. Clockwise from Top Left : Freestyle Pro, Sidewinder
Precision Pro, Gampad Pro, Dual Strike
Installation is quite simple and straightforward. The Windows
98 CD must be kept handy because some additional files from
it are required. The new Microsoft Sidewinder 4.0 Game Controller
software is first installed from the given CD. The next step
involves plugging the Dual Strike into a vacant USB port.
Windows 98 will then automatically detech the controller.
Following that, the drivers will then be correspondingly installed.
note that version 4.0 of the Sidewinder software works only
with Sidewinder USB-only game controllers. You will still
need to use version 3.02 or earlier to customise version 3.02-compatible
game controllers. This means that gameport-only controllers
like the Sidewinder Precision Pro will not work with this
Sidewinder Central Ver 4.0
there is a minor gripe in the setting up of the Dual Strike.
There is some problem with the Dual Strike coexisting with
my venerable Sidewinder Freestyle Pro. With the existing Sidewinder
Freestyle Pro connected to the PC, the Dual Strike cannot
be detected during bootup. The workaround is to disconnect
the Dual Strike and plug it in again. To ease things, I disconnected
the Freestyle Pro for the duration of the review.