How-To Geek

DIY Keyboard Controller Built for Serious Online Gaming

This build is a Frankensteinish mixture of parts from computer mice, game controllers, and more–but the end result is a polished and plug-and-play controller suitable for a wide range of games.

The build comes to us courtesy of DIYer Gabe and his quest to build the ultimate controller for playing MMO and other computer games. Here’s his list of noteworthy features on the second version of his project:

  • USB plug and play. Universally works with any PC game.
  • Optical 1600 DPI trackball mouse, with backlit scroll wheel.
  • Screw in detachable analog stick for the D-pad. Great for games like WoW or anything where all you do is hold forward (W) for hours.
  • D-pad uses mouse micro switches for a quick, light, tactile response. I love this D-pad. Every D-pad should use these switches.
  • Both triggers, as well as the left and right bumpers use mouse micro switches as well.
  • Keyboard has all PC functions, and is backlit for playing at night.
  • 10 foot long braided USB cord. Long enough for using in the living room to play games with a huge TV. It also doesn’t tangle which is sweet.
  • No hot glue! Everything has it’s own custom made board with screwposts. This way it is easily serviceable should someone get nacho bits in the buttons.

For more information about the build including plenty of pictures and a parts list, hit up the link below.

Keyboard Controller V2 [via Hack A Day]

Jason Fitzpatrick is a warranty-voiding DIYer who spends his days cracking opening cases and wrestling with code so you don't have to. If it can be modded, optimized, repurposed, or torn apart for fun he's interested (and probably already at the workbench taking it apart). You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 07/27/12

Comments (11)

  1. bobro

    where are the sticks?

  2. Cody

    If I am not mistaken, the wired Xbox 360 controller with keyboard attachment works on a Windows 7 machine, right?

  3. afuhnk

    Cody, I don’t know about the KB attachment but I do use the wireless 360 controller on my x64 Win7 and it works.
    It is better to use the wired controller tho. Some games (NFS THE RUN to name one) have compatibility issue with the wireless one and/or some simply do not support it (the wireless one, that is)

  4. afuhnk

    @Cody I use the wireless X360 controller on my Win7 x64 and it works. I’m not sure about the KB attachment as I don’t have one.
    It is better to use the wired controller, though, as the wireless one is not always supported (NFS: The Run, to name one. My controller is detected and recognized as a Logitech Racing Wheel !).

  5. Jon

    Serious gamers use a mouse and keyboard…

  6. afuhnk

    @Jon Serious gamers play games with whatever feels comfortable.
    Would you play NHL or FIFA with KB / Mouse? Not I. Hence the Controller.
    Would you play Battlefield 3 with a controller? Not I. Hence the Mouse + KB. (although I fly jets with controller but Choppers I’m a master with Mouse KB.)

  7. r

    Serious gamers eat nails for breakfast

  8. Dark Reality

    Sorry, that thing is ugly besides being an ergonomic nightmare, but I commend the individual or team who made it. I’m sure it’s what they wanted.

    For me, $29.99 wired Xbox 360 controller works in Windows. Most games I’ve played support it, and it works great with emulators, too. But you know what’s real fun? Get a Rockband drum set or a Rockband or Guitar Hero guitar (wired) and adapt it to work with a game. Unconventional controls but it will be interesting. Best I’ve found is Tetris with drums. Outer pads move, inner pads rotate, and the kick pedal drops the piece. Works brilliantly with the NES Tetris.

  9. George

    In response to the keyboard that plugs into the 360 controller working with windows, last i checked there was a group trying to make drivers for it to work, but it won’t work just by pluging it in, Microsoft hasn’t released any drivers.

  10. Notorious_DIE

    You should be selling these! I’m sure people would pick it up!

  11. Chris

    Reminds me of the Atari Jaguar controller….

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