Using the Ouya Controller on a PC.


As my ageing PC gaming pad has finally crapped out on me, I’ve been on the look out for a replacement this week. In an attempt to de-clutter some of the peripheral wiring behind my desk, I thought I’d go with one that’s either wireless or Bluetooth.

I returned from the stores empty handed though. It’s not that they didn’t any in stock  it’s just that I didn’t realise how expensive they would be! Most were in the plus £40 bracket being dual purpose with either the xbox or PS3.

To the Internet and eBay it is then and I’ve found all manner of weird and wonderful (cheaper) controller that would suit my needs.

Check out this classic Famicom styled gamepad.




..and the less said about this, the better…eek!

hulk pad

During my  searches, I came various forum posts from folks stating that they’ve had marginal success pairing their Ouya controllers to their PC’s. Having a Ouya myself,  I thought I’d give it a go this afternoon.

Despite my Acer 1825ptz netbook  being advertised as having on board Bluetooth as well as a specific function button to activate it  (woo!), it appears not to be the the case. However, no matter Curstie has an old Bluetooth keyboard she no longer uses so I’ve nicked the rather dinky USB Bluetooth dongle to see if it would work.

Who needs you anyway F3!

IMG_4542 (Custom)

The Bluetooth adaptor was auto detected and installed without needing any third party drivers. My Acer is running Windows 7 – 64bit but I have no idea what brand the adaptor is.

I held down the system button on my Ouya pad and wasn’t expecting Windows to detect it but sure enough there it was and appears to be fully functional. Interestingly the controllers touch pad works too including single and double tapping – useful for HTPC owners?

I’ve tested with a PC game and by default the left analogue stick on the controller is active rather than the D-Pad. That’s o.k for certain games but but for older systems running under  emulation, I’d much prefer to use the D-Pad instead.

For these instances I’ll use JoytoKey and the beauty of this application is that you can create multiple control profiles to suit individuals games and systems. So for example, I can configure digital controls for emulators like Stella and Vice and  have analogue profiles for PC games and certain MAME games.

The D-Pad appears as buttons 9 thru 12, which I’ve remapped in this profile to use the cursor  keys.


Just recently I’ve been enjoying a spot of web browser classic gaming thanks to JSMESS and the Living Room Console hosted at – The systems available here all use different keyboard controls and therefore utilising JoytoKey again, I’ve been able to create separate controller profiles for each of them.

Atari 7800 DK, still a cracking game.

IMG_4546 (Custom)

O.K, so the Ouya controller isn’t exactly the greatest controller out there, but in the end it’s saved me a few quid having to buy another controller and well worth giving it a go if you happen to have one. A good job really, I was beginning to take a shine to that lime green monstrosity 🙂



6 responses to “Using the Ouya Controller on a PC.

  1. I use self modded mega drive and snes controllers with a lot of success. Will look into this though.

    Oddly I had the same issue with an Acer laptop some years ago. Had a nice blu-tooth button that even lit up. Sadly, after some research, mine was the variation that came with the ever useful HD DVD drive, which incidentally stopped working at all the precise day the warrantee ran out.

  2. Funny how they do that when the warranty is up.

    If you have time, could you tell me more about your modded pads as they sound interesting? Before finding out the Ouya pad works I was toying with the idea of modding an old SNES pad.

    Many thanks


  3. Sure, although you can buy them occasionally on eBay for not much more than the cost of parts, a lot cheaper in fact if you don’t own a AVR programmer. There are a few online guides on how to do it. This is pretty much what I did:

    Interesting build, and I added a couple of extras to mine in terms of a variable auto fire, but it is essentially the same.

  4. Thanks for the info, looks like a nice project to try out. Sure you can buy them cheaper but any old excuse to get out the solder irons eh?

    I’ve been toying with the idea fitting Bluetooth and battery pack using parts from Adafruit. The preset keycodes on there interface board should be more than adequate for a simple PC controller without having to purchase a programmer.



  5. Nice! Hadn’t come across that before. I might make one. I have a spare SNES controller here. Odd story – doing my weekly retro eBay searches, I came across a new old stock snes controller for a fiver, so snapped it up (always nice to have spares, especially for projects like this). Anyway it arrived, obviously never been opened. Pad was still in plastic and the original label on the box was undistrubed. Opened it up and gave it a try and it didn’t work. Cracked it open and two of the three resistors were missing, no evidence they had ever been soldered onto the board. Quick fix, works perfectly now. Very odd.

  6. Yeah they look pretty good don’t they.

    You can’t have enough SNES pads, probably the most comfortable pads I’ve ever used although as you say, that last purchase turned out to be rather odd.

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