I am developing a mobile game, for fun, and am adding an analogue stick to control the main character. It looks something like this:

enter image description here

I am hoping to get some advice on the appropriate size and position.

Key considerations:

  1. When the user scrolls the analogue stick the centre portion moves outside its bounding circle meaning that the larger the stick the further it could potentially run off the screen.

enter image description here

  1. If the user's finger runs off the screen by mistake then the analogue stick will return to centre stopping the players motion - this could be crucial in a tense part of the game.

  2. The larger the analogue stick the more fine control the user has but also the more real estate the stick takes up.

  3. For older devices we have much less pixel space. An 100 pixel analogue stick suddenly takes up over a third of the screen once we factor in padding.

Ideally there will be an additional analogue stick on the bottom right corner but this might be more of an action button to interact with item, object etc.

I know that touch screen devices are not as tactile as a real controller but this is why I want to ensure my controls feel as natural as possible. Primarily looking at size of the analogue stick (diameter) and position in the bottom left corner.

  • Hi @simon_smiley, thanks for your contribution to UXSE. I think you have already answered most of your questions because there are a number of different factors that have to be weighed up to work out the optimal size. I have to say that I haven't seen it positioned in the corner with the games I have tried myself, and also that often an alternative control style (e.g. tilt and wipe) is also provided. Is this game also for tablets or only smart phones?
    – Michael Lai
    Aug 1 '19 at 7:04
  • You will have to draw a line on what devices, what OS and which versions for full gaming experience.
    – Ren
    Aug 1 '19 at 10:38
  • This is currently only planned for smartphones. But on a tablet I would assume the position would need to be similar as the device would be held in the same configuration. Devices would be from iPhone 5 onwards. Objectively this means we get less space but with the game being screen centred it should work almost as well. OS - 11 onwards to capture the majority of devices
    – sam_smith
    Aug 1 '19 at 23:19

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