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F1 2013 Joypad/Gamepad -vs- Wheel

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Apologies if this has been covered in the past, please post me a link if there is info on this topic.

I only recently switched to F1 2013 on PC after my scratched F1 2011 PC disc finally gave up the ghost. I really like most things on F1 2013, its a huge step up on F1 2011, but the only thing I am sad about is the lack of feeling/sensitivity of my gamepad joysticks compared to F1 2011.

I dont have a budget for a steering wheel, nor do I have the room for one. I am using a Saitek Cyborg Rumble, known as a P3600. It is almost identical to the P3200 except I can swap the position of the joystick so it is positioned like the PlayStation controller would be. As my controller is not on the official list, I have to create a customised profile and map out each button. No problem, the game recognises it when I do this, and so did F1 2011.

I have been watching Youtube videos of F1 2013 and have been amazed at the precision steering I have seen some people experience while using the wheel, giving them outstanding laptimes. Its fair to say that in F1 2011, I felt I had this precision too, it was terrific. I felt I could hold the steering angle wherever I liked and balance myself through tricky oversteer/understeer corners by using throttle/brake finesse. I have tried some F1 2013 wheel user's car setups and when I drive the car it just understeers like a shopping trolley, nowhere near the grip levels that I have witnessed in the videos.

I have messed about with steering linearity, deadzones, saturation, override controller type etc and have found my controller settings to be too jumpy, and I can't figure it out. I wish I could pop in a negative value for saturation as this might help me. Its as if the application of steering/throttle input from my joysticks does not linearly correlate with what is happening to the car- it really jumps at some points and it's very hard to find the sweet spot, even with all saturation set to 0. If I set the controller type to Steering Wheel (which was my ideal perfect setting in F1 2011), the steering is too sensitive and the car lurches into corners too early, this is where negative saturation would really help me out. If I set to "gamepad", the steering reaction speed is way too slow, even with some saturation added back in to compensate. I guess this "gamepad" setting is aimed at D-pad users. So, I set the controller type to "off" and its the best I can get, but still not great.

If I was to plot the steering/throttle rates out on a spreadsheet graph it would be like this: (I hope they appear properly in nice columns!)

Throttle Input Desired RPM in Game Apparent RPM in Game
0% 0 0
10% 1800 1000
20% 3600 2500
30% 5400 6500
40% 7200 10000
50% 9000 13500
60% 10800 16000
70% 12600 17000
80% 14400 17500
90% 16200 18000
100% 18000 18000

Steering Input Actual Game Steering Input
0% 0%
10% 10%
20% 20%
30% 45%
40% 65%
50% 80%
60% 90%
70% 97%
80% 100%
90% 100%
100% 100%

I am not having a whinge, I am just asking if anyone out there knows is there a way to modify an XML file with these values or something? I see all the official controllers have XML actionmap files, but mine obviously doesnt relate to any of them... or does it?! I even tried copying the P3200 XML actionmap file, renamed it to P3600, modifed the deviceType & schemeType to match my P3600 [very similar numbers!], but still no joy. Do joypads have a lesser physics/grip model? Or is my P3600 simply doomed for F1 2013? I am happy to buy another joypad if this would solve my problem. Or, am I stuck with the fact that F1 2013 PC version is really only for wheel users, and that joypad/gamepad users should exit stage left?

Any help/input/feedback of your own experience would be greatly appreciated, I adored playing F1 2011 and really want to feel this in F1 2013 but I just can't so far.

Thanks everyone.

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remember the videos you are watching MIGHT be people using mods/hacks for extra grip, kers, tyre wear etc


every year there is a debate about pad vrs wheel and how 1 has an advantage over the other, 2012 game the wheel users complained about how easy pad users could get quick lap times this year or should I say last year its the opposite.

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Thats true. I don't think the guy I watch (Tiametmarduk) uses mods, seems like a pretty decent guy but I guess theres no way to know...?

I have experimented a lot more and have had some better luck with the gamepads own deadzones, helps dampen out the jerky steering/throttle delivery. Not perfect but much better. I'm still 2 seconds off that guys times with exact same car/setup/mode. Can see all his time made up purely from smooth solid steering/grip. I'm just not sure if I'll ever get that amount of grip with a gamepad.

Anyway if anyone is interested:
  • Device Type: GamePad
  • Steering Deadzone: 1%
  • Steering Saturation: 40%
  • Steering Linearity: 100%
  • Throttle Deadzone: 0%
  • Throttle Saturation: 0%
  • Brake Deadzone: 0%
  • Brake Saturation: 0%
Saitek Deadzones:

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I might be wrong I will go check this right now, im sure I watched 1 of his vids of him doing time trial and am sure just at the start before he shows the setup you can hear "hacks engaged". I shall check now.

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blackMamba99 said:

I might be wrong I will go check this right now, im sure I watched 1 of his vids of him doing time trial and am sure just at the start before he shows the setup you can hear "hacks engaged". I shall check now.

He might have said that, but if he did I’m pretty sure he was joking. He’s a pretty well respected league racer, and they certainly don’t allow hacks.

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That's what I thought @scottishwildcat , didn't think he would be running a hack. I'm just amazed at the grip level upon turn in his hot laps, and the only difference I can assume between my computer and his would be the controller, nothing else.

Oh well perhaps I'll just have to get a wheel and see for myself :| 
Or has anyone else had success with a different gamepad?
  • Microsoft Xbox 360 Controller
  • Logitech Dual Action Gamepad
  • Saitek P380 Dual Analog Gamepad
  • Saitek P480 dual Analog Rumble Gamepad
  • Saitek PS1000 Dual Analog Pad
  • Thrustmaster Dual Trigger Rumble Force
  • Thrustmaster Firestorm Dual Analog 3
  • Thrustmaster Run N Drive 3-in-1
  • Thrustmaster Run N Drive Wireless Rumble Force
  • Thrustmaster T-Wireless 3 in 1 Rumble Force
  • Logitech Gamepad F510
  • Logitech Wireless Gamepad F710

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I don't have the setup anymore (though I still have my DFGT) but I really miss playing with the wheel. The amount of control you have over the cars...the 360 controller just cannot compare. Hoping to get a PlaySeat one day, or something cheaper preferably.

I've gotten my 360 controller *close*, but not quite there. I lose most of my time in the slower sweeping turns where having a wheel is literally like night and day.

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does anybody from codemasters use a gamepad? or just all steering wheel?
I am NOT a Codemasters employee, but I am 100% positive they use both wheels and gamepads.

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I disagree, clearly the game wasn't tested for control pads or if it was it wasn't done very good. its like online, does anybody from cm play in public lobbies and see whats going on in there? cynically the forums were pulled down when the 2013 went global and they realised what a mess they made of it. look at the sales, the game is aimed at the majority of console players who use pads yet its a disadvantage using the pad. for me the use of assists should assist you not put you at a disadvantage right?? wrong. roll on 2014 I cant wait to waste another 40 quid, oh yeah its next gen so probably will cost about 60 quid.


people will just say im moaning and being bitter but when you release a game to the paying public you should at least not just pull the curtains down and hide from the world when the going gets tough, shame on you codies. thought you would have more pride than that.

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does anybody from codemasters use a gamepad? or just all steering wheel?
Both, I primarily use a pad.

I think a lot of the time pad vs wheel can ultimately come down to preference. Some people are faster with the pad, some are faster with the wheel. Although I 100% appreciate that a wheel can potentially deliver more control, but that's just the nature of the device. I'm confident the car's physical grip is not influenced by the choice of controller/wheel. One thing we can definitely look at is your F1 2011 vs F1 2013 comparison, that's something I'm sure the team will be interested in. :)

What did you like about F1 2011's handing on the pad compared to F1 2013's? 
Do you feel like you could set faster laps in F1 2011 compared to F1 2013?
Did you change any of the controller settings when playing F1 2011?
Did you use the P3600 when playing F1 2011?
Did you experience any of the issues on F1 2012?

I think it's also worth mentioning that we don't officially support the P3600, so testing may have been limited.

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the thing is i don't think 2011 was the best, that was 2010. 2011 with the 11-11 setup was a joke, 2012 almost had a grasp of what we wanted then it got patched and destroyed. every good part about the handling of the car was dumbed down majorly. yes we could post faster laptimes on 2011 as the physics were shot and the lap times insane, nowhere near real life times. in 2013 its closer to real lap times for some yet for others (wheel users) its 3-4 sometimes 5-6 secs quicker than in real life. when you said handing do you mean the position of your hand? or the handling? the latter makes more sense lol :)

you say you are confident but not sure so maybe just maybe there may be some investigating for you to do.


you know yet again its a real shame the old forum was wiped clean for the 2nd time

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