Steam Deck Wii U Emulator

Steam Deck Mod Transforms It Into Wii U Gamepad

Players can now run Nintendo Wii U games on the Steam Deck – complete with gyroscopic motion control – thanks to a newly compatible emulator.

Tea Steam Deck often gets compared to the nintendo-switch thanks to its portable touchscreen interface, but a new mod allows it to emulate the less-successful Wii U – complete with gyroscopic motion control. In addition to letting players take their library of Steam titles like The Witcher 3 with them on the go, the Steam Deck is a solid emulator for older systems like the GameCube, Nintendo Wii, and the original PlayStation. These emulators add even more classic games to the Steam Deck’s already impressive line-up of compatible PC titles, although some require a few hardware modifications to get them working properly.


One older console that some Steam Deck owners might want to emulate is the Nintendo Wii U, the follow-up to the vastly popular Wii and Nintendo’s sixth globally-released home console. Released in 2012, the Nintendo Wii U was designed to compete with the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One and replaced the motion-controlled “Wiimote” of its immediate processor with a tablet-like “Gamepad” controller that featured a touchscreen and built-in gyroscope for motion control. The Wii U Gamepad’s touchscreen could also be used as a second display, a feature that Nintendo would later implement to greater effect in the Nintendo Switch. However, despite being home to some solid first-party Wii U releases like pikmine 3 and Bayonetta 2the Wii U never reached the level of success of the original Wii and was discontinued in 2017 – just five years after its initial launch.

Related: Wii & Wii U Games Still Missing From Nintendo Switch

Now the Steam Deck can channel the late Nintendo Wii U thanks to a new emulation mod seen on Steam Deck HQ, a website devoted to chronicling all the different mods, emulators, and configurations for Valve’s new portable console. As reported by GameSpot, any Steam Deck users wishing to play Wii U games on their systems will first need to download the designated Cemu emulation software, then enable gyro control with a designated line of code. The result can be seen in a brief video clip posted to Steam Deck HQ‘s Twitter account, which shows the Steam Deck being used as a motion controller for The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD.

Steam Deck Can Now Play Wii U Games With Emulation

Of course, emulators like the kind used to bring Wii U gameplay to the Steam Deck have always been a source of legal contention, and Nintendo could very well issue a cease-and-desist order as it has for such fan projects as a 2D Metroid Prime remake and a shockingly violent Pokemon FPS. On the other hand, Cemu has been operating for a long time, and its base code even went open-source a couple of weeks ago. Meanwhile, there are several alternative PC gaming handhelds out in the market that aren’t as expensive as the Steam Deck, such as the Win 600 and Loki Zero.

Overall, there seems to be no limit to what games can run on the Steam Deck, and now the short-lived Nintendo Wii U has been added to the list of older systems that can be emulated on Valve’s breakout portable PC gaming system. All it takes is downloading the designated emulation software and activating the Steam Deck‘s already built-in gyroscope to be able to play the best the Wii U had to offer in its relatively brief lifespan.

Source: Steam Deck HQ/Twitter (via GameSpot), Steam Deck HQ

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