M. Baldauf, P. Fröhlich, F. Adegeye, S. Suette:
"Investigating On-Screen Gamepad Designs for Smartphone-Controlled Video Games";
ACM Transactions on Multimedia Computing, Communications, and Applications,
On-screen gamepads are increasingly used as controllers for video games on distant screens, yet lack the typical tactile feedback known from hardware controllers. We conducted a comparative lab study to investigate four smartphone gamepads inspired by traditional game controllers and mobile game controls (directional buttons, directional pad, floating joystick, tilt control). The study consisted of both completing a formal control test as well as controlling two popular video games of different genres (Pac-Man and Super Mario Bros.). The results indicate that the directional buttons require the most attention of the user, however, work precisely for direction-restricted navigational tasks. Directional pad and joystick showed a similar performance, yet they encourage drifting and unintended operations when the user is focused on the remote screen. While currently unfamiliar to many users, the floating joystick can reduce the glances at the device. Tilt turned out to be not sufficiently precise and quick for the investigated tasks. The article concludes with derived design guidelines with easily realizable measures for typical contexts such as casual gaming at home or spontaneous gaming on public displays.
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