seriously this first part. Where's the controller with buttons all over the bottom, for your other fingers? It really could work.
As for the D-stick vs mouse thing, yes I agree if we're talking standard issue mouse, but a trackball puts all that movement right back in your thumb again. That and that alone is what allowed me to play SWTOR for as long as I did. And even then, it was really only the PvP/friends that kept me playing. Tbh, SWTOR was the closest to XI in terms of community that I've seen so far. Probably because all the SWG vets came out of their coldsleep capsules to play it, for like a year. Now they're all playing SWG-EMU haha.
edit: GODDAMNIT I just had the best idea ever! A trackball controller! Replace the right stick with a trackball and it solves a lot of these issues. Then I had to go google it and ruin everything. http://trackballcontroller.com/
of course several individuals have been working on their own versions of this for years. Bleh. Well good news is the product exists, albeit in prototype formats. But you can buy it. So thats good news. But im depressed now because for a split second i thought i actually had something new come out of my brain. moooooving on.
edit asgain: there's also this: http://www.razerzone.com/minisite/onza
Trackball is definitely better than D-pad just because you don't have to keep your thumb on it to maintain the cursor placement, but I was just using it to illustrate how a basic feature can work. Anyway, what I want is one of these bad boys (you can see some similar models in one of the pictures on the top row)... with a trackball (or two, for good measure) and of course, more buttons, along the backside and all. Now that's a peripheral I can learn to love.
For me, the problem with a controller is that it doesn't resolve the chat issues at all. You have to pick it up and put it down every time you have something to say. And those text-pads you can snap on? Feh. Nothing breaks game immersion for me like having to send my party a text message.
I know a lot of what keeps us down with new peripherals is that people are afraid to try new things. Remember the reception that the N64 controller got? Meanwhile, the PS3 is essentially using the same model as the PS1, and no one has Bob to say about it. But there are better peripherals than what we've got available, for sure, for all the people who are actually willing to take 5 minutes to learn how to use them. Which of the people I know, is actually a pretty robust group of techies. I mean, how many gamers already buy keyboards that look like a spaceship dashboard?
Edited, Dec 9th 2012 5:05pm by Kachi