Nintendo Switch Use Wii Remotes? (Checked out)

Since launch day, the Wii remote has been hailed by Nintendo fans as one of the most genius inventions by the company. It contributed to the success of the consoles, and since the Switch model is a newer release, I went on to find out whether it can also support Wiimotes.

So, can you play Nintendo Switch with Wii remotes? You can use a Wii remote to play Nintendo Switch, but only if you have an adapter and a unique USB type C port. It cannot connect automatically because of the difference in design. It has fewer buttons, and you may not have the same functionalities when you use it for the Switch-dedicated titles. Besides, some games may fail to work if they need a controller that supports more skill sets like HD rumble or very accurate accelerometers.

The Wiimote has millions of fans around the world, thanks to its genius functionality. If you intend to use it on your Switch console, there are many perks that extend to the Switch especially when compared to Joy-Cons. Nintendo fans are often torn between the Wiimote and the Joy-Cons. The two are well-suited for their respective consoles, but most gamers seem to incline more to the Wiimote.

The Wiimote is sleek, has an impressive IR pointer, and features the Wii Motion Plus for the ultimate control. It also comes in a great size that fits well into your hand as you play and allows it to function as a controller when you place it sideways and a pointer when facing forward. The buttons are also well laid out and are very comfortable to use.

The Joy-Cons, on the other hand, is tinier but perfect for handheld gaming. They also feature more buttons with modern functionalities and better accuracy. Unlike the Wiimotes, they are versatile since you can use them when you join them to your console or detach them to function as separate controllers.

When the Wiimote came to the market, gamers rushed to acquire it thanks to the impressive features allowing users to use it as a pointer for navigation and a controller, particularly for motion games. It fits like the conventional controller and came in the right design, perfect for Wii titles.

From the comfortable gameplay to the versatility, it seemed like the ultimate controller until the release of the Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons. These tiny gadgets came attached to the Switch that was primarily a handheld console.

They allowed the gamer to play anywhere and offered the best solution for a portable console. The button layout was well-planned and factored in more advanced functions. The company was going for a smaller controller that lets you play whenever you want and added the removable design to enjoy gameplay with your friends.

However, one aspect that they overlooked was the size. Most games prefer the Wii remote because it is comfortable to hold, while the Joy-Cons tend to become impractical when detached, especially for long hours of use.

Wiimote Vs. Joy-Cons

Nintendo fans are always fascinated by the Wiimote and Joy-Cons, which contribute to the successes of their respective consoles. To kick off, I will tell you why gamers love these components and give you the contrasting features.

The Wiimote has a more accurate gyroscope and hygrometer. It also has the rumble and an in-built speaker that emits game notifications as you play. Additionally, the Wiimote has an IR sensor that links to the respective bar for the device to serve as a navigation pointer. The Joy-Cons, on the other hand, have higher fidelity and are comparatively smaller than the Wii remotes.

Secondly, they feature more buttons and have a more elaborate design with specialized functionalities. Ultimately, the Joy-Con will always come in handy for the advanced Switch games and offer you the required motion controls.

The Wiimote and Joy-Cons feature different tech levels in their design since they are a unique creation for specific consoles and titles. They also came into the market targeting individual gamers, explaining the contrasting looks and functionalities.

However, the most glaring and distinguishing feature is the number of buttons in each controller, with the Joy-Cons having more buttons according to their specialization. There are four at the face, one for Option and another for Function. The Function additionally features two front and two side buttons.

In contrast, the Wiimote comes with three primary keys, two for Option, two for Function, and a Trigger. Most Wii remote users love the controller’s size and comfort, as it fits perfectly into your hands. However, the Joy-Cons are relatively tinier and more challenging to use. They are best suited for handheld gaming when they attach to the console. Therefore, you may lose some features like motion control when you don’t use them on the Switch.

Can You Play Nintendo Switch With Wii Remotes?

The Nintendo Switch design focuses on a handheld gaming experience thanks to the two detachable Joy-Cons at the sides for control. You can also prop it on its dock for connection to other devices. Many gamers ask whether the model also supports the Wiimote, especially when docked.

You can use Wii remotes on your Nintendo Switch, but you will need customized adapters. The Wiimote isn’t specialized for Switch gaming like the Joy-Cons; therefore, you may miss out on some essential functionalities even when you make the connection.

The Wiimote has a basic design, unlike the Joy-Cons, and, in some cases, they will not come in handy for certain games that require a high set of skills like HD rumble or an accurate accelerometer. Therefore, gamers prefer buying more Joy-Cons or Pro Controllers since they are specially made for the Switch and have all the features for gameplay.

I often recommend using a Wiimote only as a last resort when you need extra control for your console. Using it means buying a compatible adaptor that doesn’t come cheap, and it means compromising your gaming experience.

Only the Joy-Cons are adaptable to Switch gaming, as they support all the titles in the console. They also have unique functionalities like gyroscope and HD Rumble, features absent in the Wiimotes.

Therefore, if the game requires all the Joy-Con buttons, it will be challenging to use the Wii remote. For instance, the Xenoblade Chronicles 2 title deploys all the 16 Joy-Con keys, making it impossible to use a Wiimote as a substitute controller. Besides, the button arrangement may also be challenging to use if you are used to the Joy-Cons.

However, one similarity is that the two controllers use Bluetooth to link to the console, and, maybe, there may be a modding solution in the future to allow you to use the Switch with the Wiimote without an adapter.

Can You Use Wii Controllers on the Nintendo Switch?

The Nintendo Switch controllers are the detachable Joy-Cons that are pretty tiny for an avid gamer, especially if you want to play with your friends or hook it up to a secondary screen. This explains why you may want a more comprehensive controller like the Wii device.

You can use the Wii controllers on the Switch, but they cannot connect unless you deploy compatible adapters first. You can set it all up yourself such that the system fully works. It is relatively easy, thanks to several valuable resources available, giving you a stepwise manual.

You will get the comfortable feel in your hands that will enable gameplay for hours, and you won’t have to strain. However, since the Switch Joy-Cons are console-specific, tailor-made for the advanced tech of the titles, the Wii controllers may not offer you the same service. Therefore, you will find it tasking to play some games.

It may not be the best idea to use Wii controllers for your Switch, and you may have to buy extra Joy-Cons instead if you want to get the most off your gaming device. The console-specific gadgets are more suitable for the job since they are designed with all the titles in mind.

However, the advantage is that the Wii controllers fit better in your hands and are very comfortable to use. You can enjoy playing with your friends, and you are not limited to the small spacing between the buttons.

Moreover, it is more fun to use when connecting it to your TV, allowing a massive room for the best gaming experience. Therefore, you can link the Wii controllers, but remember to go through the guidelines first to ensure that it works.

There are several dongles and adapters for the role, meaning each will come with its set of instructions. Besides, you can also turn to the internet to find out how to connect if you get stuck. However, note that these unconventional controllers will be restrictive to your gaming experience and may fail to work when trying to play some titles.

How To Use Wii Controllers on Switch

The Wiimote has always been a unique device to Nintendo fans. From the sleek look to the impressive features, it is understandable to extend that to another console. After establishing that you can use it on the Switch, I will further tell you how to connect them.

First, you should power your console while checking that it has enough charge, preferably at 50%. You can also confirm whether your Wiimotes are working and that there are batteries inside. Next, plug a USB into the Switch, primarily, a Type C, and, once inserted, connect your 8bitDo dongles.

If successful, you will notice red lights blinking to show that the adapter is powered. Afterward, click the Sync key on your dongle, then press the same key on the Wii remote. If you succeed, you will enable the USB to detect the Wii controllers, and it will come in handy as your Switch controller.

Connecting your Wiimote to your Switch is that simple; you only need a compatible USB plug and an 8bitDo dongle. You can also check that the Wiimote is working, and the console has enough power to run, then tap the Sync button on the two gadgets as they search, getting ready for pairing.

However, you will not use the Wii remote vertically, as you do with their consoles. Since the Switch controllers function when you hold them horizontally, the Wiimote will operate the same way. The buttons will remap as you use the corresponding keys for navigation.

Before you connect your system, it is best to lay out all the devices you will need. First, have a functioning Nintendo Switch, Wiimotes or controllers, a Type-C USB, and an 8bitDo USB adapter that matches the number of Wiimotes you have.

It will be easier to have your old Wiimotes and USB plugs, but you can also buy them at affordable prices from online shops or buy used ones for less. Note that if you want to use two Wiimotes, you may have to use two adaptors for each connection because you can only use a pair at a time.

You may also need an updated dongle using the latest software, or you can conveniently upgrade it. Some gamers find it easier because you only have to link it to the system, press sync, then upgrade it using a downloadable tool if there are available updates. The 8bitDo is a preferred dongle because it has some of the most coveted functionalities.

It features the Switch mode, six-axis rotation on the console, vibration support, and free upgrades. Although it may not offer the Joy-Con functionality level, it is still a worthy investment that you can use to connect your console to the Wii controllers.

Notably, it is also critical to ensure that the keys are correctly functioning, and its best to check first. You can go to the System Settings on the Nintendo Home Screen, and you will find the Controllers icon on the left side, then click on it. Next, go to Test Input on the right, then click on the Controller buttons.

It becomes your cue to determine the type of input the buttons on the Wiimote are sending the system. When you are sure about the functions of all the buttons, you will find it easier to use the controller to maneuver your titles. You can now long-press any key to go back to the home screen.

Final Word

Wii remotes can connect to the Nintendo Switch, and you can use them to play your titles. However, they don’t function the same as Pro controllers since they have different designs and functionalities. The Wii remotes are comfortable to use and are larger than the Joy-Cons.

The switch consoles, in contrast, have more buttons and a unique design to handle the advanced tech titles. You will need an 8bitDo dongle and a USB C cable to connect them. However, note that the Wiimote may still not function as the dedicated controller even if the connection is successful. It doesn’t have unique in-built skills, and some games may fail to play.

Bal Kang

Bal Kang is a technology expert based in the UK, with experience across a number of technology areas from phones, tablets, computers to gaming.

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