X-Gaming’s X-Arcade Dual Joystick
Being an older gamer, I sometimes pine for the simplicity of the old days when my younger self would spend hours in the arcade playing things like Defender, Pac-Man, etc. And I kind of miss those days now. Sure we got the cool handheld gamepads, but I’ve often thought how cool would it be to have a joystick that was just like those I’d played earlier in life. X-Gamer X-Arcade Dual Joystick is that thought fulfilled.
First of all, this thing is built like a truck, which is important, because as many of you know, joysticks tend to break in the heat of jumping over those barrels in Donkey Kong, especially when you are moments away from saving the Princess. But with this board, you won’t have to worry about it. It’s not made with cheap plastic that is just waiting to snap like a twig when you get going, but instead is made of industrial strength materials that are guaranteed to last even under the roughest conditions.
For controls, it has eight push buttons just like the kind you would find on a regular arcade machine and the same sort of joysticks, so gamers that enjoyed those machines will feel right at home. Especially since great pain was endured to make sure that these buttons actually worked a lot like those game consoles, though with much better construction, so that the buttons don’t break after someone gets particularly mad at being chased down by Inky in Pac-Man. The only thing I missed, and it wasn’t the coin slot they mention on their site, was that it would have been cool if it had included a rotary wheel for driving games such as OutRun and others, available through MAME, but what it does have should cover just about every configuration short of that.
The X-Gaming X-Arcade Dual Joystick works with all manner of computers and game consoles including the PC, Mac, Xbox, Playstation 1,2,3, the Wii, GameCube, and for those who still keep their DreamCast around to play stuff like Hydro Thunder, you are covered too. But, there is a catch. It only comes with a USB and PS/2 connector, which offers some compatibility with older game consoles, the PC and the Mac, but others that it does not work with right out of the box will have to get an adapter, which runs for around $25-30.
The Standard Version ($99) doesn’t come with any come with any games, but is compatible with most joystick driven games, and for those who love the old arcade titles, would do well to look into MAME for the PC/Mac and Linux computers. The Tankstick version (which adds a built in trackball) for $99 and is said to be indestructible, does come with 18 games for the PC such as Asteroids (and Deluxe), Battlezone, Defender, Centipede, Crystal Castles, Gravitar, Millipede, Missile Command, Pong, Super Breakout, Tempest, Warlords, Gauntlet, Joust, Defender, Smash, Robotron, and Rampage.
Both have a lifetime warranty and the company promises easy returns. You can purchase these at their website at X-Gaming.com.