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How to Use a Controller When Emulating Switch Games With Ryujinx

May 28, 2023

Emulation is a great way to see the full potential of Switch games on PC hardware. Here's how you can use a controller alongside Switch emulation.

Nintendo Switch emulation is an immensely promising and fresh form of gaming that can improve some of the weakest elements of the Nintendo Switch platform, like power. But because of the finicky nature of Switch emulation, some of the expected features of other emulators can be quite awkward.

If you use Ryujinx, many expected emulation features are supported but often require a lot of trial and error. Luckily, if you want to map and use a controller for Switch emulation via Ryujinx, the process is quite simple. Let's take a look.

Instead of diving straight ahead to connecting and mapping your controller, you need to know a few key features of Ryujinx and its controller mapping beforehand. These features can be defined by the following:

If you are yet to install Ryujinx as a Nintendo Switch emulator for your PC, the process can be tricky and may require individual file alterations. But even with the base version of Ryujinx installed, you can start mapping your controller of choice straight away.

With some of the specific features of Ryujinx defined, you should be ready to start mapping a controller for Nintendo Switch emulation. So, as long as you have Ryujinx installed on your device of choice, you can map a Nintendo, PlayStation, Xbox, or third-party controller by following these steps:

From here, you can individually go through each button command and map it to a controller input of your choice. For instance, If you want to remap the B button, select the on-screen B in Ryujinx, followed by the button on your controller you want B to be replaced with.

Once you are done, select Add in the top-right of the Configure screen. You will then be prompted to name your controller configuration. Confirm your changes by selecting Ok followed by Save.

And that's it. With your controller configuration saved, you can go on to emulate any Nintendo Switch game through Ryujinx while using your controller of choice, configured exactly to your preferences.

Much like other Nintendo Switch emulators available for Windows, now you have a connected and mapped controller for Ryujinx, there are a few extra tips to help streamline and customize your emulating experience.

The Configure screen for mapping a controller, for instance, comes with a few extra features beyond classically mapping a controller's input. Most of these extras come down to useful quality-of-life alterations you can make, but some even alter the way you play your emulated Switch games. These features include:

While these alterations may seem small in some cases, having more options is always positive, and with Ryujinx offering a simple and effective way of mapping and customizing a controller for Switch emulation, more simple features are certainly not a bad thing.

With Ryujinx set up and a mapped controller ready to go, your experience of Nintendo Switch emulation should be a lot less stressful. And with a personalized controller configuration, the games you play should feel all the more intuitive.

But even with a simplified way of mapping a controller through Ryujinx, emulation can sometimes be a bit of a headache. Yet, with all the varieties of emulators and the platforms available, you can always find aspects of emulators better suited to you. With Ryujinx, simple controller support is a bonus.

Josh Free has had a passion for gaming and writing since childhood. Securing a Master's Degree for his studies in creative writing, Josh has started a career as a gaming writer, using his passions and skills to produce articles on everything gaming related.

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