WC3 KS version joystick weirdness


So I actually have the GoG version of Wing Commander 3, but I'm using the "patch" posted here that turns it into the Kilrathi Saga version.

It's been running quite well for me except for some odd behavior with the joystick. Basically if the joystick is centered, moving slowly the center position for slight aim adjustments causes the ship to go in the opposite direction for a brief moment. I.e. pulling the stick back actually causes the ship to pitch down a tiny bit. Pushing right causes a tiny turn to the right. Once I'm sufficiently out of the deadzone area, the ship moves as expected. However, this problem makes small aim corrections extremely difficult.

My joystick is a Logitech Extreme 3D Pro and I would be willing to chalk it up to back behavior with the stick itself, but I downloaded a joystick test problem that graphs movement, and I see no such bad behavior when leaving the center position there. Nor have I experienced this problem in Freepsace 1 & 2 played on the same stick.

So I'm thinking it's something with either WC3 or the KS version specifically. Has anyone else encountered this? Know a fix?


I found that increasing the dead zone using the -dead_zone=2 command line argument removes the bad behavior, but obviously increases the deadzone. What's odd again is that increasing the deadzone through the Logitech profiler did not have this effect. It increased the deadzone, but when moving out of the deadzone, WC3 still had the problem where it very briefly move the opposite of the direction the stick was moved in.

I guess that just further supports it being a bug or oddity within the KS version of WC3 itself. In any case, I now have a Thrustmaster T.16000m on order, which I had planned on getting anyway. So we shall see if things are any different with that stick. For the time being, I can tolerate the larger deadzone more than I can the aim being unreliable.


Got my T.16000m and it exhibits the same behavior with the game's dead zone setting at 1 or 0, so that confirms is a game issue not a joystick issue. Oh well, I can live it the dead zone at 2.
I've also got an Extreme 3D pro, and experienced the same bug, but figured out on the last mission before the Kilrah system that if you switch to the alternate flight mode in the options (the one where turning causes you to bank like in the X-Wing games), the problem goes away. In my case it was overly sensitive in addition to having that weird partial inversion problem (which I only ever noticed while pulling up), and even cranking the sensitivity way down in the Logitech software didn't make it behave properly, but switching the flight mode did. Personally I like the alternate mode anyway, not sure if it's because I grew up on TIE Fighter or if it just confuses the AI, but I have a much easier time getting and staying on a fighter's tail when banking is enabled.


Vice Admiral
I found the "crude" movement to be annoying, the original dos version responded better. Tailing and aiming your guns at distance is bothersome then.

I always get red of whatever profiler software I encounter, and set everything up using "joy.cpl". you can use joy2key for the more exotic buttons, and If you have an oldschool throttle(PS/2 or DIN5 connector), you can actually have the controller map the keys physical.


I think this is a precision issue, I've seen similar behavior with the mouse when very close to the center of the screen.
I've always wondered why the DOS version handled better in this regard, did they increase the framerate for the KS version? That would do it. Or maybe the windows joystick drivers report smaller values when close to the deadzone?