So you want a gamepad to play that new platformer on your Windows PC, but you don't relish the idea of buying an expensive peripheral that will collect dust after you're done. Are you stuck using the keyboard? Not if Ideum has its way -- it's updating its GestureWorks Gameplay virtual controller app with Android support, letting you use your phone or tablet to steer the action instead of either a real gamepad or on-screen buttons. You can still tailor the controls for specific titles, so you won't have to settle for a sub-par experience just because you jumped from Castle Crashers to Bastion. The new software supports more graphics standards, too, so more of your favorite games should be compatible.
You'll have to spend $15 to get the full version of the new Gameplay app, which should be available on Steam either now or very shortly. That's relatively costly for a utility, but the Android upgrade extends the software's usefulness beyond tablets -- it could save you from buying gamepads for most any Windows PC, and it will visiting friends join in on multiplayer sessions without having to bring dedicated hardware.