All MaxxStick Pro Keyboard Joysticks Shipped After January 1, 2024 Have Our Newest Plug-and-Play Firmware Preinstalled.

Getting StarteD

MaxxStick S3 Pro. R3 Pro.

We are incredibly thankful for your purchase of our MaxxStick S3 Pro or R3 Pro keyboard joystick. Please follow the instructions on this website to make your first-time set up as easy as possible. 

our new PRo's are plug-and-play

Did your new MaxxStick Pro ship after Jan 1, 2024? If so, congratulations! We pre-installed our new plug-and-play firmware on it.

Watch our plug-and-play video guide to learn more.

Watch out for theses gotchas:

  1. The old web utility ( will not work with your new MaxxStick. Your new MaxxStick only works with our new Maxx utility (
  2. You do not need the MaxxStick App now. The MaxxStick App was designed to work with our older firmware. New Pro models are not recognized.
  3. Follow the simple guide below on how to make your web browser compatible with the Maxx Utility.

First Time Setup for 2024 Pro Models

Congratulations on joining our joystick family. To kickstart your immersive gaming journey, we have created a straightforward unboxing and setup instructions. This visual guide will help you get your joystick up and running, while offering tips to enhance your gaming experience.

MaxxStick Unboxing

Congratulations! You’ve received your MaxxStick. Open it up!

Whats in the box?

• 1× MaxxStick Keyboard Joystick
• 1× 6ft Braided USB-C Cable
• 1× Memory Foam Wrist Rest

How to Get Gaming

With our plug and play firmware, we have tried to make the process of getting gaming as simple as possible. Just plug it in, and the MaxxStick will be recognized by Windows as an Xinput device (i.e. Xbox-style controller for Windows). There is no need for any additional apps to get going.

Important notes:

  1. Most games will only register one gamepad at a time. So be aware of what other controllers your PC is reading. Disable or unplug any controllers that are not in use.
  2. Some games (such as Fortnite) require you change a couple of settings in game. See our other guides or do some research on your specific game.
  3. Some games do not allow simultaneous controller + keyboard/mouse controls. That’s why we include a operating mode that transforms your MaxxStick into a keyboard. See our operating mode section.

Maxx Utility Introduction

Do you want to customize your joystick?
Our Maxx Utility makes it easy to adjust your MaxxStick to fit your needs. It has a multitude of controls to help you in game.

This video provides a high-level overview of the controls and options in the Maxx Utility.

Hovering your mouse over most controls will give you further explaination to what it does.

Play Video about Important Note

DO THIS FIRST - Maxx Utility Compatibility

As of January 1, 2024, we have begun shipping all MaxxStick Pro’s with Plug-and-Play firmware. That means you can start playing games without any app or additional drivers. However, websites like our Maxx Utility (and Gamepad Tester) will not recognize MaxxStick movement without changing a flag in Chrome.

To see movement on our Maxx Utility and chromium-based browsers, do the following:

  1. Copy the following URL:
    OR go to chrome://flags and search for “gaming.”
  2. Paste the copied URL into a new tab in your browser. This will take you to the “Experiments” page.
  3. Find the “Enable Windows.Gaming.Input” setting on the page (should be the first entry).
  4. Change the dropdown next to the “Enable Windows.Gaming.Input” option from “Default” to “Disabled.”
  5. Click the “Relaunch” button that appears at the bottom of the page to restart your browser.


Your joystick movement will now show in our Maxx Utility.

Game Compatibility Modes

Our team here at MaxxStick has worked hard to make sure that you can play your favorite games with our keyboard joystick controller. Please make sure that you read our instructions below so that you can fully enjoy every element of our joysticks. 

What exactly is the game compatibility mode?

The MaxxStick R3 keyboard joystick is a special kind of USB device that can communicate with your computer in multiple ways allowing you to connect with most games. You can think of it as a multilingual speaker, capable of ‘speaking’ different ‘languages’ to your computer, depending on what the situation needs and what the game requires.

The idea is that every game has different settings and different ways of using joysticks, keyboards and mouse. We’ve done our best to make sure that you can get the most out of your joystick by creating 3 different compatibility modes that will allow you to connect with most games.

Please try all of our modes to see which one is right for your game. 

Mode 1

Xinput Mode

The Xinput mode is what many modern games like Fortnite understand well. When MaxxStick speaks Xinput, Windows will see it as using a regular Xbox game controller, giving you the full ability to use the controller functions just like you would when playing with a controller on a console. 

Mode 2

Keyboard Mode

Just like you the name suggests, our keyboard mode allows your joystick to act just like a keyboard, and the best part is that it doesn’t need an app or program on your computer to translate. It’s like directly typing on your keyboard. 

We hard code our keyboard mode to use the UP, DOWN, LEFT, and RIGHT arrows. We did this so that you can bind the WASD keys to more useful binds. Note: What this means is you will need to go into your game settings and change your keyboard movement binds to the UP, DOWN, LEFT, and RIGHT arrow keys. 

Mode 3 (Hidden Mode)

Direct Input Mode

And the final game mode is the direct input mode. This game mode works best with older games. It is also the language other operating systems, such as Linux and MacOS, understand well. However, this mode is hidden initially and needs to be enabled when you require it. 

To enable this feature, simply hold the button on the bottom of the joystick down for between 11 and 15 seconds. Then unplug and replug the joystick. You will now be able to access DirectInput mode. To disable this feature, follow the same instructions, simply hold the button on the bottom of the joystick down for between 11 and 15 seconds. Then unplug and replug the joystick. You will now be able to access to the other modes available. 

Check the MaxxStick App to see which mode you’re in.

Game mode default and switching modes on your joystick

Short press the multi-function button on the bottom of the joystick. (Between 1 second and 5 seconds)

By using these various game modes, your MaxxStick gives you the flexibility to play all sorts of games on your computer. All you have to do is tell it which game compatibility mode you want to use, depending on the game you want to play. Note, our default mode first installed on your joystick is Xinput. 

But you can switch to the other game compatibility modes by short-pressing the multi-function button on the bottom of the joystick. (Between 1 Second and 5 Seconds)

Important Steps to Calibrate the R3

We designed the MaxxStick with firmware features to combat stick drift. Those features are active every time you plug in the MaxxStick R3. On firmware v1.8 onwards (released in late March 2023), all MaxxStick R3’s store a set of calibration data in its onboard memory. Specifically, it stores the center point and the range of motion. Please watch our simple step-by-step video that will help you calibrate your MaxxStick keyboard joystick. 

Reset Joystick Calibration

If you would like to reset the calibration, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure your joystick is connected to a USB port.
  2. Get a paperclip and use it to press down on the multifunction button on the bottom of the joystick. Hold it down for between 5 to 10 seconds.
  3. Release the button and then start moving the joystick thumbstick in complete circles.
  4. After doing a few circles, press down on the joystick thumbstick button. This lets the MaxxStick know you’re done with the calibration.

The MaxxStick calibration routine is only complete if the thumbstick button has been pressed. The center point and range of movement data is then sent to the MaxxStick’s long-term memory.

Required In-Game Settings

To ensure you can use the MaxxStick fluidly within Fortnite, the following user settings need to be enabled.

In Fortnite Settings -> Mouse and Keyboard Tab -> turn off “Ignore gamepad input” and turn on “Lock input method as mouse”.

As you joystick spring will wear, you may need to adjust the deadzone in game. Go to controller settings and increase the Left Stick Deadzone as required.

The joystick button is mapped to controller button A. In Fortnite, you can remap the action of controller button A by going to the Controller settings, choosing custom controller binds, and remapping button A.

If your MaxxStick Pro was shipped out before December 25th, 2023, this guide is for you.

2023 FirmWare Update Setup

First Time Setup

We’ve have created a straightforward unboxing and setup video. This visual guide will help you get your joystick up and running, while offering tips to enhance your gaming experience.

We encourage you to watch the video to ensure a smooth setup process. Ready to dive in? Click the video link below and let’s get started!

MaxxStick Unboxing

Congratulations! You’ve received your MaxxStick. Open it up!

Whats in the box?

• 1× MaxxStick Keyboard Joystick
• 1× 6ft Braided USB-C Cable
• 1× Memory Foam Wrist Rest


We have made the software setup simple thanks to our new installer.

  1. Download the MaxxStick Installer.
  2. Run the “exe” file to install the both the app and ViGEmBus driver.
  3. Restart your PC.
  4. Plug in the MaxxStick.
  5. Start playing.

The MaxxStick App

The MaxxStick App does NOT have a graphical user interface (GUI). It is simply a driver to convert joystick movement to XInput. You will know if the MaxxStick app is running by going to your system tray and locating the icon.

We give you many controls and adjustments through our web utility. The default web utility for R3 and S3 Pros is located at

The app icon in the System Tray

When you click on the icon
The web utility

Not Required

MaxxStick S3 & R3 Pro App

This MaxxStick App is compatible with our older firmware. You do not need the app if your MaxxStick has our Plug-and-Play firmware (PnP FW). If your MaxxStick was shipped after January 1st, 2024, your MaxxStick would have the PnP FW pre-installed. You can upgrade your older Pro’s firmware to our plug-and-play firmware by joining our mailing list below.

Latest Firmware

You have everything you need to make the MaxxStick work. But we continue to make improvements to the onboard firmware. To get the latest updates to the joystick firmware, join our mailing list.

Our Mailing list is kept completely private and is used so that we can let you know when we’ve made improvements to the MaxxStick and our other products.

Still struggling with your joystick?

Contact Our Support Team

If you face any problems with your MaxxStick keyboard joystick our knowledgeable team is here to help. Get assistance for your purchase through the support page of our website.