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Using your Spaceorb 360

Here are some tips and hints on getting the most out of your orb.  
First, you need to configure it properly. These settings reflect the usage of version 4.81 with the customizer software. I suggest Horizontal orientation but you can use whatever you want. Horizontal seems more natural to me and it's less stress on your arms. Now you want to set your button settings. Your button config is entirely up to you but for example this is what I use:
A=afterburner    B=bombs    C=change primary    D=fire primary    E=change secondary    F=fire secondary
Now you'll want to set up the motion controls. You HAVE to have the settings this way in horizontal orientation in order for your pyro to fly correctly and for any of the movements to make sense.  
From top to bottom in the list it should look like this:
1=Move up/down
2=Roll left/right
3=Strafe right/left
4=Turn right/left
5=Look up/down
6=Move back/forward
Now the fun part, sensitivity values. These we will call (SV). These values determine how quickly your orb reacts to your touch. Experimentation is the only way to adjust these but I will provide some guidelines and hints.
1---First you should try the Full Freedom setting at bottom left. This will set all values to halfway. Now practice flying for awhile.
2---If you notice yourself spinning out of wack and hitting walls alot try turning down the roll SV. That should stabilize you for more level flight.
3---Also try turning the Look up/down SV a bit this will help you keep your reticle straight.
4---First thing you need to learn is how to fly. Don't even bother shooting at this point.
5---Practice ALOT and don't get discouraged. It took me 3 weeks just to learn how to control it properly. It took me 3 months before I considered myself decent enough to run with the big boys and even then I still hadn't mastered it. So be patient you won't regret it.
6---If it seems too stressful on your wrists to twist and turn the ball try jacking the SV values to the max. You will fly out of control at first but when you get used to it you will notice some things. First at higher SV's you don't have to use much force on the ball to move. Your arms and hands will thank you. Also higher SV's enable you to move quicker.
Notice I said QUICKER. An orb doesn't make you faster it just increases your acceleration to full throttle in any direction. So your top speed is still the same but you get to that top speed faster than anyone.
For example: the typical housefly. Ever try to swat a housefly? You simply can't. How come you can't swat a housefly when it can only fly a maximum of 5 mph? The answer is acceleration. That fly reaches 5mph faster than you can blink. This principal applies with an orb. So for everyone out there that thinks it's a cheating tool they are dead wrong. How could using a specific controller be cheating??
 Some people complain about this "instant 180 flip" thingy. Old versions of the orb software which rarely anyone has, used to have a setting where you could press a button and you would do an instant 180. This was taken out in later versions of the software(ie 4.81) because of complaints from Parallax to Spacetec or so I'm told. That was a form of cheating cuz it just isn't possible in the real world or the descent world. But with high enough SV you can achieve spins just as fast so that should satisfy you, and it's done the manly way. By actually twisting the ball to turn.
The orb software actually takes full advantage of the Descent steering engine as no other controller can. You have 6DOF, or 6 directions of freedom. You can move in any direction at any angle on any axis at any time in a single movement and utilizing ZERO buttons. THAT is the way Descent was MADE to be played. You simply do not understand this until you've used an orb and have mastered it. So now I will show you how.
Imagine a joystick. You want to move from the bottom right hand corner of a room to the top left hand corner at the opposite end of it. With joy what do you do? Press forward, Slide up, Slide left and Turn left to keep yourself facing that spot. That's 4 buttons or movements you have to use and remember.
Now imagine the same move but with an orb. All you have to do is move there, that's it! Just do it! After a while there is no thinking whatsoever, you just do it. No buttons to press, just one vertex to apply force to. How does one push compared to four grab you?? It's like the pyro is directly wired to your brain. All you seasoned orbers know what I'm talking about.  
 You'll want to gradually as you get better, turn the SV's up. It's kinda cool being able to play 3-4 hrs straight and not have a single sore muscle when all those 3dpro'ers are complaining about sore hat thumbs and crap :) "But it's so confusing trying to fly with this thing." If that's what you're saying LISTEN UP. This is by far the easiest way to learn how to use an orb. Many an orber have thanked me for explaining it this way. Here's what you have to do in big letters: IMAGINE THAT THE POWERSENSOR, THE RUBBER BALL THINGY, IS YOUR SHIP. THE TRAINER SAYS TO IMAGINE IT'S YOUR HEAD, BUT I BELIEVE THIS MIGHT BE EASIER TO COMPREHEND. IMAGINE THE BALL IS YOUR SHIP AND ASSUMING YOU ARE USING HORIZONTAL CONTROL, THE FRONT OF THE BALL WHERE YOUR MIDDLE AND INDEX FINGER ARE, IS THE NOSE OF YOUR SHIP. THE TOP OF THE BALL IS THE TOP OF YOUR SHIP, SO ON AND SO FORTH. MOVE THE BALL IN THE DIRECTION YOU WANT YOUR SHIP TO MOVE. AS IF YOU WERE ACTUALLY HOLDING THE PYRO IN YOUR HAND AND MOVING IT WITH YOUR FINGERS. NOW YOU SEE THE POSSIBLITIES.
 You won't even have to think about what to press and when, or how to control your ship.   And yes no matter how good you are you still end up "planning" your each move seconds ahead of time, especially chording moves.
Some advanced info follows here. Fly at a 45 degree angle all the time. This not only gives you a slight speed boost similar to doublechording but you get better shot coverage especially in smaller corridors. Check out the Firing Patterns and Shot Placement section of this site for further explanation of that concept.
Keep in mind that as an orber you can instantly change direction or change your line of fire. This is very handy when coupled with a weapon such as guass( see the Swing Fire demo). You can move your reticle to wherever you want to shoot in half the time anyone else can. If you ponder that thought you will find out ways to use that to your advantage.


Not satisfied with the maximum SV values? Wanna tweak it a little?
Here's how:
Make sure you have the orb customizer set to Game Master first then save it and completely close the software utility in your task bar. NOTE: ANY CHANGES YOU MAKE TO THE ACTUAL FILE GET RESET IF YOU USE THE SOFTWARE CUSTOMIZER AND HIT THE SAVE BUTTON BEFORE EXITING IT!
Find the folder called C:\Program Files\Spcware\config\default\dos. Then locate the scg file called spwdcnt2. Open the file by clicking on it. Scroll down to the line that reads like this:
SENS_EXP_USER = { 3.80, 3.00, 3.80, 3.00, 3.80, 3.80, 3.80 }
Here is what each of those values represent in order from left to right:
Strafe left/right, Move up/down, Move forward/back, Look up/down, Turn left/right, Roll left/right, Master.

Slowly change these values to get used to the effect they make. The maximum value you can set is, well I'm not sure but you'll never get that high trust me. I tried it at 9.00 before and it was so quick I practically puked. Settings that high are not really useable unless you are getting a real low framerate. Keep in mind that your framerate has alot to do with these settings. I went from settings around 5.8 on a p2 400mhz, to settings of 3.8 on an Athlon 1.2ghz. Because of the faster computer I had to bring them back down to keep my pyro under control. Keep the Master setting at the same value as your highest setting on the other 6 ones.

A couple words on flying with your orb:

Use the fact that you can move quickly in all rotational directions to your advantage. Rotational directions or axis are turning, pitch(look up/down), and rolling. If some guy is tailgating you shoot a smart at the wall to the side of you or to thr ceiling or floor. You can do this so quickly they will probably not even see it. Check out the demos with the *after them. These are moves especially tailored for orbers. Some nice signature moves of mine are The Pipeline, The 360 smartrap, The Curl, I.R.D. and others. These demonstrate the power of an orb in the hands of a pro. If you have any questions on using this controller don't hesitate to ask me in chat or email me by clicking this link and put in the subject line "descent".