How to use a GameCube controller with your Nintendo Switch - MrLiambi's blog


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Friday, 10 June 2022

How to use a GameCube controller with your Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch is great fun, but it's also expensive once you calculate the cost of the system, games, accessories, and extra controllers.

For instance, the Nintendo Switch Pro controller costs a bit of a bundle. If you want to play Mario Kart 8 Deluxe with, say, three other players, you do have a few different options, like buying additional Pro controllers for all the other players, but that isn't exactly cheap. However, if you owned a GameCube back in the day and still have its controllers laying around, you are lucky, because you have a cheap workaround.

When Nintendo released the 4.0 software update for the Switch, it quietly included a new feature: the ability to use old GameCube controllers with the Switch, as long as you pair them through a Wii U GameCube adapter. You can use the original adapter or a generic one available from places like Amazon. Anyway, once you have one of these adapters, you can use a GameCube controller with your Switch.

Here's what you need to know.

How to use a GameCube controller with your Nintendo Switch

Hardware requirements

You need a Switch or Switch OLED, obviously, as well as a GameCube controller and a Wii U adapter. Note that this requires a docked Switch, so it won't work with a Switch Lite.

Connect the adapter and controllers

First, you have to connect the adapter to your Switch; there are two USB ports on the side of the Switch dock. Then, it's as easy as plugging your GameCube controllers into the Wii U adapter.

Pair your controllers

On your Switch, go to the controller Settings menu on the home screen (the icon a Joy-Con controller). Then, simply press the L and R buttons on the GameCube controller as you would when pairing your Joy-Cons or Pro controller, and it'll be detected as a USB gamepad.

After that, you should be ready to go.

Are there any limitations?

Users of the old GameCube controllers know that they won't match up exactly to the configuration of the Nintendo Switch. There's no left Z button (just a right one), so if you're trying to a play a game like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, for instance, you'll have to play without the ability to use your shield. There's also no home button. But other than that, everything else should work perfectly.

Note: Old GameCube controllers don't support motion or rumble on Switch. 

What about Super Smash Bros Ultimate?

Super Smash Bros Ultimate supports several different controller options, including existing GameCube controllers via an adapter. There's even a Smash-branded GameCube controller available to order from both GameStop and Amazon. If you need the adapter, you can order those via Amazon for $20. Sadly, high demand and low supply has driven these components up in price by quite a big margin.

Want to know more?

If you need to update your Nintendo Switch, you can learn how here. For more Switch games that we recommend checking out, see Pocket-lint's round-up here.

We also have a listing of the best upcoming games here.

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