You don’t have to be an ambitious gamer to want to improve your gameplay. Casual gamers make up the majority of the market. So, in this article, when we are discussing whether or not joystick extenders actually help, it is important to remember that this article is for you whether you are a casual gamer or somebody who wants to go pro.
Joystick extenders help in certain types of games. These games are mostly first-person shooters and racing games. You can also include third-person shooters like Fortnite in that list. They help because they improve your accuracy and decrease controller sensitivity, not crosshair sensitivity.
In this article, we will take an in-depth look at whether or not joystick extenders are for you. We will discuss how they help, and we will also talk about the different types of joystick extenders you get. Finally, we will take a look at two of my favorite joystick extenders. So, for everything you need to know, keep reading.
What Are Thumbstick Extenders?
Most gamers use controllers, even if you are on a PC. I am sure there are a few games, maybe racing games, that you use a controller for. You might have noticed that they aren’t very well optimized for competitive gaming. So this is where things like thumbstick extenders come in to play.
Thumbstick extenders are basically little analog sticks that clip onto the top of the analogs on a controller. While these analog sticks will not instantly turn you into the next Nickmercs, they will definitely help you in a few key areas.
That leads us straight into the next section.
The Benefits Of Joystick/Thumbstick Extenders
You don’t have to be a gamer who wants to have a competitive Edge to look at things like thumbstick extenders and think they are worth it for you. These extenders can be good for both competitive and casual gamers. Here is a list of benefits that you will receive when using joystick extenders
- It will decrease the sensitivity of the analog stick.
- It should improve your accuracy in FPS games.
- The extender might prevent and alleviate stick drift.
- Add comfort
Now, let’s look at each of these benefits in a little more detail because it is never good to simply state something and not explain why or how.
Makes The Analog Less Sensitive
If you have ever been playing a game like Fortnite, Rainbow Six Siege, and warzone, you might have found that controllers are a little bit too sensitive, I just want to clarify that this type of sensitivity is different from your crosshair sensitivity.
Your controller’s sensitivity could make it harder for you to properly aim for headshots in these types of games. In theory, you could just turn up the dead-zone of your controller. Ultimately, what this does is give you less space to move the analog. So, it actually has a negative impact in most cases.
With the joystick extender, you can basically see it as you are increasing your controller’s dead-zone while actually increasing the amount of room you have to move the analog.
This section will be brief because it basically leads off of the previous section. Having more space and less sensitivity to improve accuracy is incredible. You can only explain it to a certain extent, but it is something that you need to experience for yourself.
May Help Prevent Analog Drift
This is a hit or miss situation. A joystick extender can alleviate analog drift in some instances. Normally when you have an analog drift, you are forced to increase your controller’s dead-zone, but as we have discussed, increasing the dead-zone might be a bad thing. That being said, a joystick extender might help, and it might not.
We first need to start by saying that it is unlikely that it would help because analog drift is due to dirt on the motherboard of the controller most of the time. If your analog drift is due to the controller’s motherboard, then, unfortunately, you have to open the controller and clean it up. Nothing else will really help.
The joystick extender might alleviate analog drift because you are most likely going to keep your thumb on that analog stick and because you have more room to wiggle the thumbstick without impacting the amount of space you have, you could alleviate stick drift.
The main reason it might help is that the extender might help the analog move out of position due to the added weight.
Types Of Analog Extenders
Not many people know this but you get different types of analog sticks and some people prefer using one above the other. These two types of analog sticks are concave and convex.
When getting an analog extender you need to choose the one that you prefer. In this section, we are going to discuss the difference between concave and convex analog extenders.
it is important to remember that both the Xbox One/Series and PlayStation 4/5 controllers are convex controllers so if you are used to that then that is what you should stick with.
Concave basically means “caved in”. So, the middle of the analog stick will be lower than the outer rims of the analog.
If you ask 100 gamers which they prefer, 99 would say that concave is the best. It is best for accuracy and for comfort because your thumbs don’t slip off the analog stick.
I think the only time somebody would prefer convex extenders is if they have large hands and can rest the entire top part of their thumb on the analog stick. Other than that, if you don’t play with the tips of your thumbs then maybe convex is good for you.
Most controllers, however, have steered away from convex completely. The last time we saw it done was on the Playstation 3 controller.
Best Joystick Extenders
In the section, we are going to take a look at two controller extenders, one for the PS4/PS5 and then one for the Xbox One/Xbox series lineup of consoles.
For both, we are going to take a look at Kontrolfreek and I love these extenders. This is because they have proven to produce quality products for controllers. So, let’s get into it.
The Galaxy purple for PS4 and PS5 comes with two extenders. One is high-rise and the other is mid-rise meaning, you have a choice of how high your extenders go.
Using these extenders will give you all the benefits we discussed above but these ones, in particular, will also improve comfort, grip, and accuracy especially in first-person shooter titles.
KontrolFreek FPS Freek Inferno for Xbox One and Xbox Series X Controller | Performance Thumbsticks: $14
Unlike the extenders we discussed for the PS4/PS5, the Kontrol Freek Inferno only comes with high-rise extenders. It is designed for maximum comfort with a spiral grip that starts from the center of the analog stick all the way out.
These extenders will improve comfort and increase accuracy, especially in first-person shooters. Also, racing games will benefit from these extenders.
That brings us to the end of this article and I hope that we have helped you make a decision on whether or not joystick extenders are worth it for you. At the end of the day, if something is more comfortable and it helps you enjoy gaming more then in my opinion, it is always worth it.