I had to go and re-grease it to reduce stiction on the stick (makes fine adjustments easier)...but I have to say it was worth every penny, and utterly eliminates the HOTAS Cougar withdrawal I was having. While the CH Products setup I had bought in the meantime had all the functionality, it just didn't have the feel that puts me into the virtual cockpit, so to speak.
Simply put, the HOTAS Warthog has the feel. Very ergonomic, very smooth (even if the stick ball joint may have to be re-lubed for someone as picky and perfectionistic as I am), very precise, and just grabbing both of 'em makes me feel like I'm in the cockpit already, ready to rock. It also has a mind-boggling amount of buttons and switches to the point where I don't have to worry about running out of essential controls even with the most demanding sims!
The only drawback I can think of is that TM/Guillemot doesn't produce TARGET-compatible USB rudder pedals, so it's more difficult to merge them all under a single DirectInput/WinMM ID (necessary for older games).
Well, that, the slew control mini-stick is VERY small and thus difficult to make fine adjustments with (albeit also fairly precise and jitter-free), and the gap between the two throttle halves is significantly more than I was expecting, a bit jarring when coming from a Suncom SFS Throttle (which I planned to USB-mod at some point). Still, at least the slew control is much better than the mouse mini-stick on the Saitek X-52 (Pro) throttle, which suffers from equally small movement and much more limited precision.
Yeah, I think flight simulation equipment is ultimately more damaging to my wallet than audio equipment. The Warthog itself is expensive enough, but if I were to throw in an FSSB R3 stick base for flying Falcon BMS the proper way (like I used to with the FCC-modded Cougar while I had it), or maybe get my hands on some Simped F-16 pedals...oh god, my wallet's screaming in agony. And the more recent sims like Rise of Flight and DCS World are pretty computer-intensive in and of themselves, also giving me more of a computer upgrade itch. Oh, and of course, if you want to build a full simpit, with working switches and gauges and everything...at that point, I'd probably get kicked out of the house.
As for Trigun, I need to get on that. I've seen random episodes here and there years ago and liked what I saw, but like all anime series, it needs to be watched in-order, start to finish.