HOTAS Support for Star Wars Squadrons on Console Remains a Question Mark

HOTAS Support for Star Wars Squadrons on Console Remains a Question Mark

Don't put money down on a joystick and throttle for PS4 or Xbox One just yet.

EA's Star Wars: Squadrons looks like it may be the shiny new galactic dogfighting simulator that X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter fans have wanted for years, but it seems like the limits of your experience with it may depend on which platform you pick it up for. New comments from an EA community manager suggest that the console versions of Squadrons currently aren't planned to support special HOTAS (hands on throttle and stick) flight controllers.

Shortly after Squadrons was officially unveiled, Creative Director Ian S. Frazier confirmed that it would include joystick and HOTAS support on PC. At the time, we noted that EA's information didn't clarify whether or not HOTAS support would also come to PS4 and Xbox One.

For whatever reason, if such support is in the works, EA isn't ready to confirm it just yet. Yesterday, it initially seemed like EA's Jay "Charlemagne" Ingram had told folks to "expect it not to happen" when asked about HOTAS support on console, but Ingram later clarified his response on Reddit. "[R]ight now we've only confirmed HOTAS support on PC," Ingram says. "We have nothing to share beyond that at this time, but I've raised that feedback to the team. Sorry for any confusion! We'll keep you posted."

Special controller or no, you'll be looking out of the same iconic cockpits. | EA Motive

Manufacturers do make joysticks and full HOTAS rigs for both consoles even though their main use cases—serious flight sims—are typically more of a PC gaming affair. Still, there's a passionate fan base on consoles for games like Ace Combat who may be hoping to use those same controllers for Squadrons.

If Squadrons does indeed launch without support for other controllers on consoles, then your choice of platform will determine a lot of what you can and can't do in the game. Players on Xbox One will only be able to play on regular screens, the PS4 version will support PSVR, and so far the PC is the only version that's definitely going to support both virtual reality and joystick or HOTAS flight controls.

At the end of the day, plenty of people will play Squadrons with regular controllers and do just fine, surely. If, on the other hand, you're really angling to make Squadrons an immersive and accurate Star Wars piloting experience for yourself, you'd do well to keep an eye out for more details on controller support from EA. Squadrons will launch on October 2 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

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Mathew Olson


Mathew Olson is a writer formerly of Digg, where he blogged and reported about all things under the umbrella of internet culture (including games, of course). He lives in New York, grew up under rain clouds and the influence of numerous games studios in the Pacific Northwest, and will talk your ear off about Half-Life mods, Talking Heads or Twin Peaks if you let him.

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