Since its one of the mainstream distro's shouldn't it work without needing to make modifications to the kernel?
Welcome to the wonderful world of Linux. I'm afraid that there is *no* universal settings/programs that work on all distributions. Why do you think they all have thier own repositories of binaries?.
If you want force feedback, thats another kernel parameter. It's all good fun!!. I never saw it before I started working on JInput, but I hate to admit it, that I do at least understand the 'we don't support linux' perspective. There are just too many variations. Despite the enormous progress they have made, it's still not an 'average users' system. You still have to be a geek and tinkerer at heart.
That said, I still use it, dual boot desktop, and all my servers run it. You do have to know it, inside out, some times, to over come the little niggles here and there.