• BlackBerry Z10 Now Compatible With Wireless Game Controllers

    I'm always amazed at how hard and fast the gaming team at BlackBerry are bringing all the awesome gaming perks to BlackBerry 10. Not only does BlackBerry 10 have tons of the hottest game titles, we now have video demoing various gamepads now being able to pair via bluetooth to the BlackBerry Z10 smartphone! We all know that high content action games can be difficult to play with the controls being on the touchscreen. The gamepad alleviates that by bringing the controls to a physical controller.

    My favorite is the Gametel gamepad (pictured above) that allows you to attach your Z10 device directly to the controller above the game controls. This controller is touted to have 9 hours of battery life.

    Here are a few common question answered by Sean Paul Taylor via the BBDevBlog, for those developers who are interested in gamepad integration:

    Before you get started implementing this in your own game, I want to answer a few of the most common questions people ask me about the API.

    1. What gamepads are supported right now?

    1. The SteelSeries Free.
    2. The Gametel.
    3. The Wii Remote. Note that currently only the core buttons on the remote itself are supported – that means no attachments and no motion controls, just the D-Pad and other buttons.

    2. If new gamepads come out, do I have to update my game to support them?

    • No, you don’t! When new controllers become available, we’ll update the mappings in a system update and your game will start receiving gamepad inputs from the new hardware. Because the Gamepad API is an abstraction above HID, and because we map each gamepad’s unique HID report format to the Gamepad API, you don’t need to write any code that’s specific to a single controller.

    3. Do users need to install anything to set up or configure their gamepads?

    • No. The Gamepad API is integrated into the Screen library, the same library you are already using to handle touch, keyboard, and other input events. All users have to do is pair their device through the Bluetooth settings screen for it to start sending inputs to your game.

    Video showing gamepad support now being added in upcoming Unity 4 for BlackBerry 10:

    Here is another video showcasing gamepad pairing instructions and a racer sample on GamePlay3D that now supports not only desktop gamepad support but also BlackBerry 10:

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