Game Reviews for PC, PS2, X-Box, Playstation, CCGs, Pen and Paper Role Playing and Table Top Games, plus Movies, DVDs, and Anime!

     " [I have to find something bad to say?] ...UmÖ the box it comes in is kinda big, so if you are planning on keeping it, you wonít just be able to toss it under your bed. "

   Title: Saitek X36

   Format: PC Flight system

   Reviewing Monkey: Simi N.

   The Hype: "The worlds most popular PC Flight Control System." " The Saitek X36 Control Stick and Throttle/Rudder combination represents the ultimate in precision, full programmability and comfort in a Flight Simulation Controller. The sculptured design and fingertip control allow hours of fatigue-free gameplay" (Saitek on the Box).

      What This Monkey Thought...


   Ergonomics: The ergonomics of this system are great. From the perfectly molded plastic to the easily accessible buttons, Saitek did everything right here. The joystick has a nice ledge near the base to rest your hand, and the plastic feels nice and smooth but is also easy to grip. The motion of the throttle has good tension, making it very easy to control. The joystick is a little loose for my taste, but I was able to get used to it fairly quickly. And the joystick and the throttle both come with optional suction cups to use on the bottom so you wonít have to keep repositioning anything. The pinky switch, though odd looking, is easy to use. The trigger feels good, and the response is great. 5 out of 5

   Performance: This controller performs awesomely (is that a real word?). The button response is good the entire analog dials and such are great, and using just feels nice. This controller gives you the impression that you have a huge degree of control over whatever game you are playing. I have used this controller in many, many games. And while I prefer using the keyboard for those first person shooters, I kept walking off ledges, this system has so many options that it can pretty much replace whatever you are using for almost any game. It certainly has for me. 5 out of 5

   Features: This flight system comes with a joystick and a separate throttle control. The joystick has tons of buttons. There is a trigger and a button at the ready for your pointer finger, and two hats, two push buttons, and a launch button with a safety are positioned nicely for your thumb. There is also a picky switch, which is always nice to have. On the throttle stick, there is a rudder switch for your ring, and middle finger, a hat and a dial for your pointer finger. Two buttons, one dial, two, three-way switches, and a mouse cursor are there for your thumb. And the system come with the "Saitek Gaming Extensions" program with allows you to set up your controller to you own specifications for all of you games. The program is a bit hard to figure out, but the controller comes with a manual to help you, or you can get online help at 5 out of 5

   Installation: The installation is very simple. The instructions are short and easy to follow. You should be able to play with this controller within ten minutes after youíve opened the box. All you need is a CD-ROM drive and a USB port or standard fifteen pin connector., I donít think that should be a problem for anyone out there. 5 out of 5

   System Compatibility: This device is compatible with, and requires, Windows 95 with direct X 6 ( for connection through standard gameport. And it requires windows 98 and direct X 7 for connection through USB. Just install, plug in, and play I had no problems on my crappy computer, so itís pretty safe to say it wonít have problems on your system either. 5 out of 5

   How it Compares: I personally have not played with many other complete flight systems, but compared to the flight systems, and all other controllers I have used, this one is better than them all for many reasons. It feels good to use, it responds great, and has almost unlimited programmability (with the Saitek Gaming Extensions software). 5 out of 5

   The Verdict:

       DAMN this is a NICE controller. This is one heck of a thing to own. Itís great for most of the games I own, but now I feel like I should go out and buy more flying games just so I can use it more often. 5 out of 5

   The Good: Great response, good feel, looks, ultimate programmability, and easy hookup and installation make this flight system the on to have.

   The Bad: UmÖ the box it comes in is kinda big, so if you are planning on keeping it, you wonít just be able to toss it under your bed.

   The Overall Ugly: You can use this controller for almost any game you own. I personally have and do use it for flight simulation, driving, overhead shooters, some strategy (piloting the robots in Machines), and much more.

   What it's Worth: I would pay $100.00 to $120.00 for this system.

Buy it now from

Copyright © Game Monkey Press, Game Monkeys Magazine. All Rights Reserved.
Game Monkeys(tm) 1999 Game Monkey Press