Can you play CS:GO with a controller?

Doing it the hard way (Image via Valve)
Doing it the hard way (Image via Valve)
Joshua McCoy

CS:GO remains one of the most competitive first-person shooters in gaming history, even a decade after its groundbreaking release. The game is a must-have for most PC gamers, but some players might prefer an unorthodox strategy.

While the mouse and keyboard are typically the best case scenario for most FPS experiences, some players are die-hard for the controller. Whether they're longtime console gamers or just fond of holding their interface in their hands, controllers are a viable strategy.

Controller support on CS:GO


CS:GO was released with controller support, meaning that any Windows-supported controller can be used to play the game. But just because a player could plug the peripherals in and switch it on, doesn't mean they should.

Though one could always use a controller on CS:GO, most players rarely use them. This is because the game makes no effort to balance the mechanically inferior option.

Placing a crosshair over a target and clicking is typically easier than moving to the target and shooting with the controller stick. Most games that allow for both add some form of aim-assist to keep both sides even.

While the controller is technically an option for the game, it places a significant handicap on the average player. While this is true, some tactics can slightly affect this change.

Using a controller in CS:GO

CSGO is, as far as I know, the second ever live game to have flick stick built-in. This means no need to carefully calibrate it. It just works.It still needs to be bound to the right stick in Steam's controller menu (2nd pic), since that's how all rebinding works in CSGO.

It has been a decade since the initial release of this hit FPS, and with that time comes a variety of unique updates. While it is debatable whether these updates make the two control methods comparable, it has improved the controller players' experience somewhat.

There is still nothing on the level of aim-assist or any other form of benefit that could confer unfair benefits onto the controller player. Instead, fixes and updates have changed the controller experience into something unique and different.

The default layout of the controller has been changed several times, turning the button mapping into its best possible form. Remap the jump to the front left bumper and the crouch to the left stick to get the best possible scenario.

The biggest change to the controller support for Valve's FPS was added in early 2022, and it revolutionized the system. CS:GO recently added a feature called flick stick aiming, which makes things much easier.

Flick stick allows the controller's gyroscope to serve as the aiming control for vertical movement. The right stick still controls horizontal aiming while the left still controls movement. This separates horizontal, vertical and movement controls enough to completely revolutionize the controller experience.

CS:GO's flick stick aiming could be the silver bullet that allows controller players to compete with ease. The controller has always been an option in the game, but now it could be a better one.

Edited by Sijo Samuel Paul


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