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Gamepad Controller Emulator

November 6, 2019 update:
  • There's a new open source Cardboard SDK that offers a streamlined API, improved device compatibility, and built-in viewer profile QR code scanning. We recommend that all developers actively building for Google Cardboard migrate to the new Cardboard SDK: iOS, Android NDK, Unity XR Plugin (SDK)
October 15, 2019 update:
  • The Daydream View VR headset is no longer available for purchase. However, you can continue to use the existing Google VR SDK to update and distribute your apps to the Google Play Store, and make them available to users in the Daydream app.

Apr 08, 2019 As a result, the game will recognize the controller input, except it will be not a physical gamepad, but the one an Xbox controller emulator created. ReWASD hides your physical controller from the system, and there’s only the virtual one recognized by Windows and applications. One of these programs is World of Joysticks XInput Emulator, a novice-friendly application that can emulate an Xbox gamepad from any DirectInput device. It comes with helpful presets and an.

The Controller Emulator app is deprecated. Use Instant Preview(Unity,Unreal) instead.

The Controller Emulator app has two use-cases:

  • It allows you to use a second Android phone in place of a Daydreamcontroller, in case you don't have access to one.

  • You can also use it with Unity and Unreal to emulate a Daydreamcontroller in the engines' in-editor preview.


To use the Controller Emulator, you must have a spare phone (not your headsetphone) running KitKat or above. These instructions were tested using a Nexus5X. This phone is used to emulate the Daydream controller and must have agyroscope. We will refer to this phone as the controller phone.

  1. Install the Controller Emulator on your controller phone.

  2. Pair your headset phone to your controller phone via Bluetooth.

    • On both phones, go to Settings > Bluetooth.
    • Optionally, rename your controller phone in order to make it easier toidentify. To do this, press ,then Rename this device. Change its name to, for example,(Your Name)'s Controller Phone.
    • On the headset phone, tap the controller phone's name on the listof devices. This will show a dialog box on both devices to confirm thepairing.
    • Confirm the pairing, then return to the home screen on both devices.
  3. Configure the Controller Emulator device.

    • On the headset phone, launch the app for Daydream you installed earlier.
    • Press the button at thebottom of the screen, then press Setup.
    • You should now be in the Google VR Services settings screen.Tap the Version item 7 times to show the Developer Options.
    • Select Controller emulator device.
    • Select the controller phone from the list.
    • Close the app by pressing the square Recents button in thebottom-right and swiping the app away.
Important: Make sure you installed the latest version of the Controller Emulatorapp (version 1.4.01 or above). Only the latest version will allow you toconnect via Bluetooth. You can check the version in Settings > Apps >Controller Emulator.Viewer

Remember that your headset phone and controller phone must be paired viaBluetooth in order to use the Controller Emulator. Refer to the stepsin the previous section for how to do this.

Important: Make sure to enable Bluetooth on the controller phone. Due to a knownissue, the controller emulator app does not warn you if Bluetooth is off.


The Controller Emulator UI contains these elements:

  • Connection indicator (top): This text indicates whether the emulator isconnected to a headset phone. It also shows network information for thecontroller phone.

  • Touchpad area (large circle): This area emulates the touchpad area ofa controller. It does not support multi-touch.

  • Touchpad click emulation: On the real controller, the touchpad can beclicked by pressing down on it. This is considered to be a button, and iscalled the 'click button'. Clicking the touchpad on a physical controller isemulated by double-tapping the touchpad in the Controller Emulator and willsend Click button events to the app.

  • App button (immediately below touchpad): This button sends Appbutton events to the app.

  • Home button (bottom): This button is reserved for system use and cannotbe used by your app. It is also used to recenter the controller.

The behavior of the touchpad, Click button and App button are up to yourapplication. Typically, the click should map to your application's primaryaction (e.g. selecting, shooting) and the app button should be used forsecondary actions (e.g. menu, pause, tool selection).

The physical controller also includes buttons to control the volume of yourheadset phone which are not emulated. TheControllerclass shows the various inputs and buttons you can listen to.

Gamepad Controller Emulator

Gamepad Emulator Download

Recenter the controller

If you find that the headset and controller are not aligned, you can recenterthem. To recenter, press and hold the Home button on the controller/emulator(the lower button with a circle). Hold the controller/phone in front of you andlevel with the horizon for at least 1 second, then release the Home button.


Since users can't see a controller with a headset on, it is designed to be easyto understand by touch alone. To simulate this with the Controller Emulator, youcan use a physical cutout so you can feel the trackpad and button areas.

Controller Emulator Overlays
Controller Emulator Overlay - A4Download
Controller Emulator Overlay - VectorDownload

Game engines

You can use the Controller Emulator in Play mode of both the Unity and Unrealeditors as follows:

  1. Enable USB debugging by going to Settings > Developer options.

    • If Developer options is hidden, go to Settings > About phone and tap Build number seven times. Return to the previous screen to find Developer options.
  2. Connect the controller phone to your computer with a USB cable.

  3. (Unity only) Select the USB option for EmulatorConnectionMode on the GvrControllerInput script in the Unity scene.

The controller phone should now connect automatically when you are in Play Mode.

(Unity only) Note that this is incompatible withInstant Preview,and the Controller Emulator will not work over USB if any USB-connected phonehas the Instant Preview app installed.

reWASD functionality expands with each release, and since reWASD 4.0 came out it can be rightfully called an Xbox controller emulator. Why is that good, you may ask? We will reveal the answer to this, and many other questions in this blog post. If you already know you need an Xbox 360 controller emulator you can go right to the how-to-use part. Or if you’ve already tried to use the virtual controller, and the game doesn’t recognize the input — go right to the troubleshooting :)

How can Xbox controller emulator be useful?

A bit of theory: reWASD emulates the Xbox 360 controller, and that takes the functionality to the new level. You can assign Toggle, Turbo to controller button actions, and create controller button key combos. As a result, the game will recognize the controller input, except it will be not a physical gamepad, but the one an Xbox controller emulator created.

reWASD hides your physical controller from the system, and there’s only the virtual one recognized by Windows and applications. You can see if it works if you open joy.cpl. Open Windows search (by pressing Win keyboard button, for example), enter joy.cpl and press Enter. The following window opens:

Basically, this is what happens when you press Apply and have Virtual Xbox 360 mappings in your config. The physical controller disappears, and there’s a virtual one instead. When you turn remap OFF the Virtual controller disappears, and the physical one is back on track. You can see it on this gif:

Xbox 360 controller emulator is also irreplaceable for the cases when you have a PlayStation, Switch Pro or Joy-Con controller, and the game doesn’t recognize it, but works well with any Xbox controller. That happens quite often with the games that came out quite a long time ago, or if they simply don’t support any gamepads except Xbox ones (for example such as Dragon Age: Inquisition, Monster Hunter World, Final Fantasy XIV, SOULCALIBUR VI, Volgarr the Viking, Life is Strange, etc.).

How do I use the Xbox 360 controller emulator?

There are a few steps that are common for each of the further cases:

  1. Download reWASD from the official website, install it on your PC and reboot it
  2. Create a new profile, the config is added automatically
  3. Enable Autodetect: assign the *.exe file so the config apply automatically when the application is in focus

Case 1: I just want to enable controller support for any-gamepad-except-Xbox-controller

If you’re dealing with the game that only sees Xbox controllers which you don’t have, it’s just a three-clicks-situation:

  • Press the magic wand below the image of controller
  • Pick Virtual Xbox 360
  • Press Apply
About Joy-Cons: make sure to create a pair of those first, and then you can use the Xbox 360 controller emulator in its full swing. Plug both Joy-Cons to your PC, pick one of them in the lower-left corner, click on the Group icon, and create a group of devices. Now you’re good to go!

Case 2: I want to Toggle/Turbo a controller key, or make a controller buttons combo

  • Pick the controller key, put the mark on Toggle/Turbo or add a keycombo
  • Press apply

Case 3: I want to change the controller layout completely!

This one takes a bit more time to create. Take your time and reassign the keys one by one, to make the perfect layout. To make this process easier, pay attention to the icons near reWASD mapping list: unclick keyboard and mouse to leave controller binds only, this will make the process quicker.

Why should I hide the physical controller before I use Xbox controller emulator?

Nice question. When you create a virtual controller, there may occur double input both from the physical and virtual gamepads. Or the game will just focus on the physical gamepad and ignore all the mappings you have added in the config, which is also definitely not the thing you are trying to achieve. So basically, what you need to do is to open Preferences — General, and check if Hide physical controller when the virtual one is added.

What to do if the game doesn’t respond to the Xbox controller emulator config?

Seems like some troubleshooting is required, and we’re about to help you out. Some games detect the input device on the launch, so if you don’t apply the new Xbox 360 controller emulator config before you launch the game it may not see the virtual gamepad. The game will recognize the physical controller as the main one, and when you switch to the virtual gamepad — the physical gamepad is hidden from the system, and the game ignores the virtual reWASD controller. Such a thing happened to the virtual gamepad in the games like PUBG, Fortnite, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Warframe — the game ignores it.

Gamepad Controller Emulator

Rocket League was also kind of a struggle for our Xbox controller emulator because the game detects a ‘new’ controller each time you replug your gamepad. And eventually, there were several controllers at once, even though there’s only the Virtual one emulated by reWASD.

So! A quick guide for troubleshooting an Xbox One controller emulator & games. Let’s imagine you already have a config, and it’s just a game that doesn’t recognize the input:

Gamepad Controller Emulator For Pc


Gamepad Emulator Apk

  1. When you add virtual controller mappings, you need to hide the physical gamepad first. The paragraph above explains why that is the best option.
  2. If you found out that the game doesn’t recognize the input from the gamepad created by Xbox controller emulator, try to relaunch the game with applied config.
  3. If the steps above don’t help, we kindly ask you to enable remap on startup. First of all, open reWASD Preferences, choose to Use Tray Agent and Enable autoremap on startup:
  4. Then you need to check your Windows Startup preferences. To do that, open Task Manager (Ctrl + Shift + Esc shortcut), press More details, open the Startup tab and make sure that our Xbox 360 controller emulator is enabled, otherwise it won’t work.

    Once it’s done, open reWASD, turn remap ON and reboot your PC. After the PC turns on again, wait till reWASD icon appears in Tray and the green circle appears near it (this means that remap is ON). Then try to launch the game, and check if your controller works.

  5. There is Step 4 indeed, that will be contacting our support :) We’ll gladfully help you solving your problem. You can do this via Contact support form on our website, Facebook messages, reWASD Forum, or in our Discord channel.

Gamepad Controller Software

We truly hope that you will not have any problems using our Xbox controller emulator and that your experience will only be positive. We can do our best to help you, and figure out every tiny detail that could have caused the problem. Make sure to follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube to keep your hand on the pulse. Also, join our Discord text chat for more fun :)