TGM Input Method

Thread in 'Hardware' started by FreakyByte, 3 Mar 2015.

  1. Hi there!
    I'm pretty new to TGM, I have started playing a few weeks after AGDQ.
    For now I've played on a PC (Mame) with my keyboard. Now i may switch to another input device.
    What do you guys think is good for TGM? Some of my thougts:

    -Keyboard - Maybe a mechanical or a flat (like a laptop keyboard) one
    -Arcade Stick - Why do most of the TGM players prefer them?
    -Gamepad - would use the shoulder buttons (R1, L1...) for rotations

    Please also tell me why prefer/use it. Thanks!
  2. Keyboard is the easiest input method in terms of cost and convenience. If you're going to get a mechanical keyboard then obviously that ups the expenditure, but there's justification in that you'll tend to use a keyboard for various other things. Personally I own a mechanical keyboard, though for Tetris specifically I actually preferred it when I was playing on a laptop with scissor-switch keys.

    A lot of people play with arcade sticks for largely two reasons. Firstly that it's authentic - the games are designed to be played on an arcade stick, some aspects of the game lend themselves to that (zangi moves being just one) and people might feel their records are more legit when done on a stick. It also means that if you ever do get the opportunity to play on a real arcade version of TGM, you're not totally fucked by the entirely different input format. The second reason would be that playing on a joystick is largely just more interesting and more fun than playing on a keyboard, and if you can find a decent stick for a reasonable price then I'd say that alone is enough to justify it.

    For a gamepad I'd just flat out not recommend. There's a TGM clone for the Nintendo DS (it's a homebrew game, so has to be played via an R4 card or similar) and it's hard as shit because of the restriction in inputs. Maybe by using some funky control system with the shoulder buttons you could get to roughly the same sort of speed and skill you can get with a keyboard or joystick, but I don't know why you'd really bother using a gamepad when it doesn't offer a direct benefit to either of the other two options (it's not like TGM needs analogue input).
  3. I'd also recommend staying away from gamepad since there isn't any tangible benefit. As Rosti mentioned, arcade stick is the native input device for TGM and has a lot of smooth, fun motions like Zangis that it does better than the rest. Keyboard is also a fairly natural choice, and the "weapon of choice" for multiplayer Versus and other styles that primarily find their home on PC. Gamepad tends to feel limiting since the typical control schemes overload the thumbs. (It may be worth noting that the rules of console/handheld versions tend to impose significant speed caps. In a way, this de-emphasizes the limitations of the input device.)

    That said, I have figured out a suitable control scheme that works around most of the limitations. So, if you do decide to go that route for one reason or another, take solace in the fact that someone else has been crazy enough to forge a path for you. :p

    For one, make sure you put your drops on the shoulders (L2/L1); beyond a certain point, d-pad operation becomes too "heavy." I'd also say that you still want your main A/B on the face buttons, but R1/R2 can be useful as alternate A/C inputs.

    My final control scheme involved many alternative inputs that could be used to work around the constraints of the current situation:
    L2/L1 - main Up/Down (for drop-locking and Zangis)
    Up/Down - "menu" Up/Down (or for situations when it felt more natural to tap Down)
    Left/Right - Left/Right
    X/Square - main A & "drag" C
    O - B
    R2/R1 - "flick" A/C (preferred input for 180 rotations, though Square -> X also worked)

    Unfortunately, my control scheme leaves no desirable input open for Hold in TGM3-style -- a function usually mapped to one or all of the shoulder buttons. You have the oddball choice, Triangle, but that's far from optimal.
  4. Thank you for your answers!
    As you guys told me, I will not use a gamepad. I think I'll upgrade to an mechanical keyboard, of course not only for tetris.
    A flat keyboard is better for fastly hitting up and down to lock a piece instant, right? With that in mind I think I should change up or down to something i can hit with my thumb (I'm using WASD for movement, so the spacebar would be ideal), so that i dont have to move my middle finger from up to down. I dont know if that would solve the "problem". What do you guys think?

    Because of the joystick:
    I've found this stick in a old box...
    It's a old japanese potentiometer joystick for terminals and things like that. The serial number is
    "30JHK-ZT-30R3G" and it seems like it's maid by "Sakae".
    The problem is: I dont know how to use it (if you can use it).
    It has no USB connection or something like that, it has only 3 wires for the x-axis and 3 wires for the y-axis.
    Does anybody know what i can do with this stick?
  5. Muf


    Donate it to someone who can use it, or throw it away.

    When we talk about joysticks, we mean arcade sticks:


    These also come in convenient PC/console versions that connect to USB:

  6. Thanks for explaining! As I've said, I hardly know anything about TGM, thats why I ask.
  7. I played on a rubber dome keyboard for a while (one that came with a CRT iMac). I think alignment of the arrows is helpful (i.e., not staggered as in the letter keys) if you don't have flat keys. However, all the movement of the finger from up to down can take its toll -- over a period of aggressive play I started to develop a little bump on the joint of my middle finger and think I probably would have run into some sort of RSI problem eventually, if not for the switch to joystick. :p

    Moving your main Up key to something covered by the thumb is one way to go about it. However, I'd like to note that Space is often used for Hold. When playing TGM3 on an arcade stick, Hold is mapped to D -- the button covered by the thumb. Common keyboard configs for games with Hold include Arrows ZXC Space, WASD JKL Space, and so on. If you didn't mind using right-hand movement, using Numpad 0456 for movement could be one way to give yourself access to two convenient "thumb keys." Alternatively you could see if one hand feels comfortable on QWEC or UION or something of that sort.
  8. Muf


    C A L L U S B O Y S
    Mine finally went away after like 2 years or something, haha.
  9. I read this at least 10 times before I realized it didn't say casual boys
  10. Haha how on earth do you just have something like that lying around?

    As has been said, is pretty useless for Tetris, but looks like an awesome joystick! Would totally work as a proper model aeroplane or quadcopter stick if the potentiometers in it are still working.
  11. I don't think you call an internal bump or cyst on the bone/joint a callus? :p
  12. Muf


    Oh, for me it was just a (particularly stubborn) callus. What you're describing sounds a bit nastier.
  13. Sounds like a ganglion cyst :D I think I had one on the inside of one of my finger joints for a year or so, not sure what caused it, went away without me noticing.
  14. Am I the only one who just uses different fingers for up and down? lol.
  15. I know some fighting game players that do that, but not any keyboard Tetris players,

    It weirds me out when I see a fight stick with no stick
  16. Well, not exactly like a hitbox, haha. I just mean when I do R U D i use 4th finger, middle finger, and index finger, respectively. When I do L U D I use index, middle, and then index again...
  17. Zaphod77

    Zaphod77 Resident Misinformer

    i use thumb for down, middle for up, pinky for right and index for left (i use my right hand for movement on keyboard) i do zangi's qnd U/Ds just fine.

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