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The Logitech Wingman Interceptor: A Controller For All Occasions

This is an all digital joystick, which doesnít require any sort of calibration. As a result, no misalignments, jerks, or other abnormalities can arise when fragging your favorite opponent. The name is slightly misleading because just one model below this one is Logitechís very own Wingman Digital Exxtreme, which has the word "digital" in its title but alas, it is of the analog genre and requires periodic calibration. The Interceptor is a rather significant, sizeable piece, but not so large as the motorized joysticks. This is my new favorite gaming controller and I use it about 10-15 hours a week instead of hassling with a mouse.


Logitech recommends a Pentium 166 or better, Win95 or 98 and 16MB of RAM as minimum requirements. If youíre a serious gamer, these specs should present no problem as prices fall on the Athlon/Coppermine/GeForce systems. It goes without saying that you also need a joystick port, which is usually found on most sound cards. Logitech offers a one-year warranty.

Setup And Calibration

The procedure is simple; however, I recommend that you visit Logitechís website and download the latest online drivers. As of this writing, the current file was WS330ENU.EXE, but check periodically for newer versions. This file size is about 5.65MB and includes drivers for all of Logitechís joysticks (which is terribly convenient)

Download the file and run it. Partway through the process it will search for your joystick so at this point, plug it in. After the installation process completes, youíre done. Remember, since this is a true digital stick, no calibration is required. This is not to say that the Interceptor isnít configurable to your tastes-quite the contrary in fact. Below is a screenshot of all the goodies you can mess with to your heartís content.

How I Use The Interceptor

Iím keenly aware that many people choose to use a mouse (preferably 3-button) and a keyboard to play Q2, Half-Life, Unreal, etc. However, Iíve also noticed that these games include a feature to make aiming easier and as a result, having to look up or down becomes unnecessary. Thatís the kiddie way to play in my opinion. :-) A real gamer moves and aims in all three dimensions just like he/she would have to in real life. Yes, itís much harder. But, you should see how this joystick can help you precisely aim and run (a lot of running) around the game maps.

It all started in Quake 2, when the A and Z were the default commands to look up and down. It just didnít make sense to mess with a mouse, wheel or no wheel, for general movements. Now, for all the 3D games I play, I have the joystick set up to move left, right, forward, backward and fire. With this configuration, I rarely need to strafe because I can move so incredibly freely and quickly. The keyboard changes weapons, looks up or down as well as other, lesser used commands. If you havenít tried this config, give it a whirl. You just might like it!

Of course, two years ago, when Q2 was new, the Interceptor wasnít out. I began on a cheap Gravis stick, then graduated to Logitechís own Digital Exxtreme. That move alone made my wrist at least 50% less stiff after playing for 3 hours straight. While cruising around a Best Buy here in Columbus, I inadvertently grabbed a hold of the Interceptorís handle and pushed it around. WOW! Precision, and a light touch (and it wasnít $120 like the motorized ones were)-I knew I had to have one. So, I ordered one online of course (no offense to Best Buy but I got it for $39).

Final Remarks

If you are into joysticks and can appreciate their finer qualities, you will dearly love this one. After several 5-hour non-stop gaming sessions with no wrist crashes (lockups?), I can heartily report that this stick isnít going anywhere soon. Throw out your old analog stick and grab the Interceptor. Your wrist will thank you.

William Yaple
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