Nintendo Switch games get even better with new button remapping feature

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Anyone with a Nintendo Switch or Nintendo Switch Lite console may have come across the irritating restriction of not being able to remap buttons, but it looks like things have now changed – for first-party controllers at least.

The latest version of the Switch’s firmware has introduced button remapping, allowing players to customize what buttons correspond to what inputs, and allowing for a greater variety of freedom when grappling with the controls for each game. 

There's no wrong way to play, after all, and the change means you can jump, fire, equip, or input anything else with whatever button of your choosing – making any Switch game more accessible and intuitive for you to play. Players have the option to save up to five button configurations for either Joy-Con, the Nintendo Switch Pro controller, and the Switch Lite button array – that’s five for each controller – meaning this isn’t a half-baked update either.

However, the Nintendo support site informs us that it is "not available for other controllers", meaning any of you gaming away with third-party Nintendo Switch controllers won't be able to make use of the feature – a further slap in the face for gamers trying to support their Nintendo habit on some kind of budget. (Those official Joy-Cons are expensive!)

Other new features are largely small iterative changes to the UI, including a new bookmark option for Nintendo news items (up to 300), and a way to restrict or delete the visibility of your play activity (on the off chance you don’t want your friends knowing what you really sink your time into). There’s a new slate of avatars, courtesy of Animal Crossing: New Horizons too.

Push the button

It’s a welcome change for Nintendo Switch, and one that finally sees it catch up with the competition. 

The PS4 DualShock 4 controller allows for button remapping as a matter of course – with an optional attachment that adds two additional customizable buttons to the rear of the controller. Xbox One controllers now offer remapping, too – though the feature came to the Xbox One Elite controller first.

We’ve had our first look at the PS5 DualSense controller, which will almost certainly have the same functionality, though the next-gen leaps in features for PS5 and Xbox Series X controllers will likely leave the humble Switch Joy-Cons even further behind when the consoles launch in late 2020.

Via DualShockers

Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist, and former News & Features Editor for TechRadar, where he specialized in home entertainment gadgets such as TVs, projectors, soundbars, and smart speakers. Other bylines include Edge, T3, iMore, GamesRadar, NBC News, Healthline, and The Times.