Can you use the Switch wheel to play other games aside from Mario Kart?

Updated: May 10


With around thirty million copies sold, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe stands as the most popular title on the Switch. Its popularity inspired a whole line of gaming accessories specifically made for the game, wheels being the most common among them, but no the only one. You can even get an RC Mario Kart toy that you play on your Switch, albeit with a bit of a spotty connection.


If you want your experience to be more immersive, you can buy one of these wheels and use the tilt controls to play Mario Kart. However, it might seem like a waste to spend money on a gadget that you will only use for one game, so, can you use these wheels on other racing titles on the Switch?


Yes, you can. But first, you need to know that not all the wheels are made equal for Nintendo´s console. Wheels are nothing new to the gaming scene, drive sims having been using them for ages, and you can trace their history back to the arcades. The wheels sold for the Switch, however, are a bit different from the rest.


On the other gaming consoles and the PC, a wheel is a controller on itself, often accompanied by pedals and sometimes even a gear stick. They are heavy, complex gadgets that can cost hundreds of dollars.


On the Switch, "wheels" are usually little plastic holders where you put your joy-con. They don´t do anything on their own, instead, they rely on the controller´s internal gyro to detect your movement (the famous tilt controls).


There is one exception. Hori released a more traditional racing wheel for the Switch, the Wheel Pro Deluxe (and the Pro Mini). Like it´s peers on the other consoles, the Pro also comes with paddles and even a dedicated horn/item button. It only lacks the rumbling and feedback of its competitors to be a "proper" wheel.


(Well, there´s another alternative called the Serafim R1, but that´s a multiconsole wheel that happens to be compatible with the Switch. It might not work with all the games that work with the Hori model)


So...


Can you use the Hori Wheel Pro on other games aside from Mario Kart?

In theory, yes. The wheel was made to work with other racing games. However, it has been found that it will not work with all of them. Or rather, it will work quite wonky.


Just because you drive a car, doesn´t mean that each racing game controls the same. The karts in Mario Kart behave differently than the cars in GRID Autosport, for instance. As such, you will need to calibrate the wheel for each game.


Luckily, not only you can rebind the buttons on the wheel, but the sensitivity and rotation angle as well. Different games work better with different setups, some favor snappy controls while others need something slower. The instructions on how to change the wheel setup are in it´s manual, but it´s nothing complicated. Just press and hold a combination of buttons together.


With all that said, some games are still not fully compatible with the Pro Wheel in any configuration, such as Rocket League or Trials Fusion. While most of them detect the wheel, they don´t fully integrate with the gadget. They don´t turn well and/or ignore button pushes.


Which games are compatible with the Hori Wheel Pro?


Here are a few games that are confirmed to work with the Wheel Pro Deluxe. It isn´t by any means a complete or exhaustive list, but it should be enough to give you an idea of what works:

  • Adrenaline Rush Miami Drive

  • Burnout Paradise Remastered

  • Crash Drive 2

  • Fast RMX

  • Gear Club Unlimited 2

  • Grid Autosport

  • Horizon Chase Turbo

  • Mario Kart 8

  • Mario Kart Live Home Circuit

  • Mini Motor Racing X

  • Mudrunner American Wilds

  • Need For Speed Hot Pursuit Remastered

  • Road Redemption

  • Truck & Logistics Simulator

  • WRC 8

  • WRC 9

  • Xenon Racer

  • Xtreme Club Racing

There are probably more technically compatible games that are not included on the list. These are mostly are mobile ports, like Asphalt 9. The issue with them is that they can´t steer well with the wheel. The turns go from 0 to 100% with a single nudge, making it very awkward to control. I can´t quite put them on the list.


Can you use the Mario Kart wheels on other games aside from Mario Kart?



Yes, you can use them. These wheels are little more than plastic holders for your joy-con. You put the controller in place and tilt it left and right to simulate a driving wheel.


As you can imagine, games aren´t made to be specifically compatible with these controllers, because they are not controllers in and of themselves. Instead, all driving games that have the option to use motion controls are going to work with this configuration.


There is no shortage of games compatible with gyro controls for the Nintendo Switch, but unlike shooters, driving games are usually more reserved about their implementation. Mario Kart has them, obviously, but there are some notable exceptions, like Crash Team Racing and Sonic Racing which do not.


In which games can you use tilt controls on the Switch?


There are even fewer games compatible with tilt controls than with Hori´s wheel. We´ve been able to find the following titles that make use of motion controls to drive. Again, this is not a completely exhaustive list, but enough to give you an idea of what works.

  • Asphalt 9

  • Burnout Paradise Remastered

  • Gear Club Unlimited 1

  • Gear Club unlimited 2

  • Grid Autosports

  • Mario Kart 8

  • Mario Kart Live Home Circuit

  • Mudrunner American Wilds

  • SEGA AGES Virtua Racing

  • WRC8

Remember, just because it has motion controls as an option, doesn´t mean they are well implemented. You might still have difficulties controlling the game either way.


And that´s it. I short, yes you can use the wheel in other games that are not Mario Kart, but it´s not compatible with all racing games, just a few of them. If you are interested in seeing what games work with the Labo wheel and Steering handle. Check out our article over here.