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How To Dominate Shooting Games With a Controller

on Jun 13, 2017
How To Dominate Shooting Games With a Controller

Practice always makes perfect; the more often you do something, the better you’ll eventually become. That’s just basic common sense.

However, to dominate shooting games with a controller, you need more than just basic practice. You need to establish good habits, and you need to break bad ones. Using professional tools will majorly help but you still need to use them correctly.

Choose The Right Sensitivity
Learn The Art of Pre-Aiming
Don’t Run Around Needlessly. Positioning is Key.
Warm-Up Before Getting Into Competitive Games
Use Good Hardware (Probably the most important part of playing well)
Get To Know Your Weapons
Play Smart
Watch Informative Videos
Communication Is More Important Than You Think
Practice, Practice, Practice

Choose The Right Sensitivity

Learning to aim effectively starts with finding out what kind of sensitivity settings fits best with your playstyle.

It’s not rocket science to work out that a fast-paced gaming style is better suited to a faster setting. When you’re running around the map at 100mph and smashing through doors left, right, and center then you’ll need a fast setting.

If you can perfect a fast setting then you’d be an absolute machine. Why so? Well, for starters, higher sensitivity settings give you faster turnaround speeds. This makes it easier to turn corners and retaliate if you find yourself flanked, which you inevitably will.

Slower settings make aiming and weapon handling much easier

So its better suited to the slower, more cautious gamer. The negative with a slower setting is that it’ll make turning on the enemy more difficult. It will also kill your trickshot career. Forget them 360-degree noscopes! That’s not a bad thing though, they weren’t even cool in 2010.

The overwhelming majority of pro gamers use a slower setting.

A highly skilled gamer shouldn’t need to turn on enemies too often. Most good players have a good understanding of where an enemy might be, so you shouldn’t find yourself in a situation where you have to turn on an enemy too often. And even if you did, it’s possible even with a slightly slower setting.

Here is an example of NickMercs’ controller settings for Fortnite and COD:

NICKMERCS Fortnite Controller Settings
Sensitivity X: 0.7
Sensitivity Y: 0.6
Zoom/Scope Sensitivity: 0.5
ADS/targeting: 0.5
Building Sensitivity: 1.25

NICKMERCS CODMW Controller Settings
ADS Sensitivity Multiplier: 1.00
Vertical Sensitivity: 7
Horizontal Sensitivity: 8
Aim Assist: Standard

As you can see, these are not high settings at all.

Looking around the scene, this looks to be about the average settings used by many players, including Formal, Scumpie, and Clayster.

If you’re playing in a good team then this highlights the above point even more. Good teams pin enemies into a corner of a map and don’t let them out, not even for a second. This would give you less reason to be frantically running around, and even less reason for a faster setting.

Playing at a new sensitivity will take some time getting used to, so you might want to play alone or against some bots for the time being.

A good way to way practice is to try to keep your aim at a certain spot while you’re moving around and strafing. Like, say, shooting at signage. Try to practice keeping the recoil under control when firing.


Your goal is simply to develop muscle memory.

There are also programs out there like Kovaaks and Aim Hero with the specific purpose of improving your aim. However, I wouldn’t recommend using them because it’s better to practice in the actual game.

Ultimately, however, the ideal sensitivity will depend on your play style.

Learn The Art of Pre-Aiming

After you’ve found the sensitivity you’re most comfortable playing with, you can work on your pre-aiming technique next. This again suits the slower sensitivity.

Pre-aiming is the term used when someone is already aimed-in at a position you are about to run to. And the best players know when and where you will be before you do! Incall of duty, I’ve died many times to this, sometimes before I’ve even had a chance to think.

A good way to start is by studying the game’s map and learning where the busiest areas are and finding a head glitch nearby.

By knowing where and when to point your gun even without any opponent insight, you give yourself a better chance of doing a pre-emptive strike whenever they do appear.

So, even if your reaction time isn’t all that great yet, you can get a few shots off before they even know what hit them. Here is a good example:

Don’t Run Around Needlessly. Positioning is Key

Most players first-starting out in shooter games think that the best way to play is to keep on running. Sure, the spray and pray mentality will inevitably get you a kill or two, but that is no way to dominate in shooting games. Running makes noise, and noise gets you killed. We will talk about that later.

Remember, Its easier to defend than it is to attack
Shoot your way to a good position and then defend from there. Stand there a while and wait. Pre aim. Annoy a few people. Rattle them up and get them raging. …and when its safe to move forward, move forward. But not too much or the spawns will swap… and you’ll be hated, And sworn at by your teammates. And rightly so.

The bottom line, don’t make needless movements. Doing so, will not only get you killed but also your team. Just look at professional players, every move they make serves a purpose. They can hold a position down so that their teammates can flank. Or they can push as a team, together through a certain position.

Warm-Up Before Getting Into Competitive Games

Most shooter games like Fortnite, Apex, Call of Duty, and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds come with a competitive or ranked game mode which allows the player to understand where their current skill stand is and how they are they compare to other players.
However, before you go in all-guns-blazing, take this advice. Warm-up!


Every professional whether involved in sports or esports warms up before getting on the field. This is because, on the field, you only have the one chance to prove, and if you fail there, it’s all over. Warming up gives you that extra space to practice and perfect your aim and movements before heading into the match.

So, if you are planning on playing ranked FPS games on your console, remember to have a few casual practices matches before you get into the real stuff.

Use Good Hardware

Probably the most important part of playing well

Contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t matter whether you’re using a wired or wireless controller. Although there may be some slight lag, it wouldn’t be noticeable or relevant at all.

What does matter though, is the type of display you’re using, the overall comfort of your controller and the headset on your ears. These three pieces of hardware will catapult your gaming level to another dimension.

Gaming Monitor
Gaming on a 1ms Gaming Monitor will result in no input lag while playing. This means that when you move left on your controller, you’ll move left on your screen. Instantly. This will put you at a distinct advantage against players who’re using a regular TV as these have input lag. Only milliseconds but that could make the difference between living and dying.

Gaming Headphones
The type of headphones you use for FPS games matters a lot too. More often than not, with a good headset, you’ll hear an enemy before you see them. Most cheap headphones come with poor sound quality and this makes it really hard to take advantage of the in-game aural cues that we discussed earlier. So, get yourself decent headphones and see… or in this case, hear the difference for yourself.

Competition Controllers
Your controller plays the most important part of them all. Think of it like anything else, you wouldn’t catch a good barber cutting hair with paper scissors. Gaming is the same. I’m not saying the standard PS4 controller is bad by any means, it’s not. It’s probably the best controller out there… But it can be made better with mods and features.

A rubberized grip would help with longer periods of gameplay. Trigger stops or SSTs will help you fire your gun quicker. Extra buttons on the back of your controller will make jumping and sliding more convenient. Different analog heights will help with accuracy. These are just some of the main features you would find on a pro controller, and once you use them, you’ll never go back. Check out these pro controllers to help you bring your gaming to the next level:

You can also check out our tournament controllers in our shop. We have free worldwide delivery on orders of over ÂŁ100 and our controllers are described as the most ergonomic controllers out there.

Get To Know Your Weapons

Every shooter game, whether its FPS or Third-Person has an entire list of different weapons and utilities. There are good things and bad things. Get to know each item well and work out the best time to use them.

Every gun has a different shooting pattern.
Some might be good at spraying, some might be better-used conservatively. As a result, it is always a good idea to try out of all of the different guns available in the game and then see which one suits your style the most.

Adding to this point, you should also understand that not every gun is made for every map. Close quarter matches require you to have a close-ranged weapon like a shotgun or an SMG. While in larger maps, it is a good idea to have a sniper or an assault rifle equipped. Having said that, you can adapt your playstyle in any map.

Play Smart

There are some fights you just aren’t going to win.
One of the most important tips for getting better at shooter games is to learn when to disengage. It’s a skill that comes from experience. If you find yourself stranded out of position and getting shot, sometimes it’s just better to carry on running. Your KD will thank you later.

Learn to shoot at the right time.
If you’re aiming at someone who is running around the corner, make sure you can drop him before he makes the bend or else you leave yourself vulnerable to getting turned on. This is a practice that is very common with esports players.

Learn to reload at the right time.
One of the biggest mistakes people make in shooter games is reloading prematurely. When you kill someone in the game, they usually call it out (referring to our communication point later). When this happens, their teammates come running in, seeking revenge. If you are sitting there reloading your gun, then you’re dead meat. This happens more times than I can count.

Always wait a few seconds and make sure that no one else is coming in, then reload. Or a better yet, hide in a corner and wait for the teammate, and kill them too.

Watch Informative Videos

With websites such as Twitch, YouTube, and Facebook, you now have access to some of the best professional players.

Check out these guys below for a mix of Fornite and Cod videos. Let us know if you feel there are better YouTubers/Streamers.

NickEh30 (He has fun youtube videos about playing Fortnite. Often analyses his mistakes)
SypherPK (a very solid Fortnite gamer on PC. The tips will be helpful nonetheless)
drift0r (weapon analysis and in-depth statistics)
NickMercs (a PC player who uses a ps4 controller. Very level headed)

Use this to your advantage. Every day, take an hour or two out of your day and go online. Watching these players play is pure gold. You can watch at all hours of the day and you don’t even have to be at home to do so. Open your mobile app while on the way to school, or work, or wherever it is you like going and just watch.

Doing so will not only give you an idea of how to aim and move but most professional esports players know which weapons and setups to use. Learn this meta and adapt it to your own game.

Communication Is More Important Than You Think

As soon as you log into an online game, you’ll soon hear the whiny voices of your teammates. Fight the urge to instantly mute them.

A good teammate should alert you of danger many times during a match. A good team should communicate well and plan strategy together. Let your teammates know if you are being flanked and also listen out to anything meaningful from your teammates. COMMS ARE KEY in online matches.

Good communications don’t have to stop at the mic. In most battle royal modes, you can also use pings to mark weapons and locations. Do this as often as you can. You never know when that shield you just marked is going to come in handy.

Trust me, having active communication between your teammates is going to save your life more than once.

Practice, Practice, Practice

As you practice and eventually play through a couple of games, be mindful of what you just learned.

Never forget these three key things: where you are, where your enemies are, and more importantly, where you’re pointing your gun at.

Don’t worry if you find yourself missing shots more often than not at the start. That’s normal as you move away from your previous habits and start to get used to your new settings. Eventually, with practice, you’ll have no problem squaring shots right on the center of your opponent’s faces.

Most important of all though, is to not just settle for just one sensitivity setting. Instead, try to adjust your sensitivity every ten or so games you play. Of course, don’t forget to take breaks in between to keep yourself well-rested and fresh.

Once you find the setting, you’re most comfortable with, work on your aiming skills next. Don’t be afraid to try to go for the more difficult shots. Also, try to expand your repertoire by shooting with weapons that you’re not really used to using.

All things considered, being good enough to dominate the playing field all boils down to developing muscle memory via hours and hours of repetition.
That should no longer be a problem for you, though.

Now that you know how to practice the right way, you’ll be getting better results and dominating FPS games in no time.

That is it for now but stay tuned as we are going to be bringing you similar content in the coming days. Until then, comment below and let us know what practices you have adopted to get better at playing FPS games.

+ Write Comment

Timothy Robbins


Thank you for this. I’d been bouncing between Battlefield and CoD and when I started back on Modern Warfare my aiming was all messed up so I lowered the sensitivity WAY too far. Put them up to the settings you listed above and now everything works normally again. Thank you.

May 1, 2020



Good to hear. It’s very difficult to keep consistent when moving from game to game, especially BF and COD. Even though they are both FPS games, they run on completely different engines.

May 3, 2020

Bishal Bhandari


Any guide on how to connect mouse with a controller?

Feb 19, 2020



There is a product which does exactly this made by Hori. A quick google search should bring up a lot of details. The brand is Horri

Mar 25, 2020



Greetings! Very helpful advice in this particular
article! It’s the little changes that produce the most important changes.
Thanks a lot for sharing!

Apr 25, 2019

rohit aggarwal


Thanks for the information

Jan 16, 2019



Well higher sensitivity showed me how xbox controller rocks. Probably ps4 too, just don’t have it. The several aiming modes are great for precision and now I can look where I want, not where I can, so I wouldn’t lose the direction I’m interested in. Now I mostly reply back to shots, before turning was just too damn slow. I’ve played CS with a PC in an ok level, got banned for “cheating” every know and then. Maybe there’s hope for controller after all.

Jan 15, 2019



1.Switch to fighting game 2.Fuck keyboards

Dec 26, 2018



How to dominate FPS games with your PS4 controller:

Step 1: Unplug it and use a mouse and keyboard

Oct 14, 2018



Thank you

Jun 3, 2019



Thanks for sharing advantages PS4 controller! The best by using it to play Fortnite

Jul 16, 2018



What a load of self evident garbage. This is basically a filler text telling you everything about nothing.

Jun 27, 2018

Bob johnson



Jul 28, 2018



I simply can not get used to shooters using a controller on consoles. Garbage. Consoles are good for platform games and stealth games where you don’t need to make split second spot on aiming choices. But consoles are garbage for FPS shooters.

Feb 4, 2018



There’s definitely an advantage when using mouse and keyboard for FPS games. Aiming is a lot more precise in a fraction of the time. I find that PC gaming is a lot more difficult to master though. The mouse part is easy enough but when you factor in the keyboard buttons, i think it can get pretty confusing for a newbie. At the end of the day, as long as you are playing on the same platform then its fair game. No one will have an added advantage if we are all using teh same equipment.

Feb 4, 2018

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