PC GAMING PLATFORM Steam has added beta support for the Nintendo Switch Pro controller, adding yet another gamepad to the bevvy the software already supports.
To get Steam to play nice with the Switch Pro controller, users will need to opt into the latest Steam client beta.
From there, you can configure the controller's inputs through the Steam Input protocol found in Steam's Big Picture mode, which coaxes the software to fit nicely on big screen TVs, where one would expect controller-based PC gaming to take place.
Steam is already compatible with the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 controllers, with the latter sometimes requiring a bit of tweaking to get the inputs set up nicely. And Valve's gaming platform supports controllers from a number of accessory brands like Razer and MSI, as well as its own rather usual Steam Controller.
One might wonder why the Nintendo Switch Pro controller needs to be added to the mix. While the controller is pretty good for gaming on the Switch while it's plugged into a telly, it lacks the analogue triggers of the aforementioned controllers which some might feel erodes some of the tactile precision that desired for first-person shooting and racing games.
However, Valve is a fan of the Switch Pro controller and reckon its got enough on offer to appeal to PC gamers.
"We think it is a great device with a feature set that pairs nicely with your Steam catalogue. The d-pad is ideal for fighting games and platformers and the gyro enhances aim in your action/FPS titles," Valve said.
Nintendo doesn't always like having its hardware used with other platforms but it seems to have not objected with Steam adding official support for its gamepad.
The move also highlights the openness of PC gaming compared to console gaming, as there's all manner of software that enables peripherals and kit originally designed for console gaming to work with PCs. Sometimes getting everything to play together nicely can take a bit of wrangling and finding third-party software workarounds.
But in this case, Valve has made it easy enough to get the Switch Pro controller running with Steam, though the same may not be the case with other gaming platforms like EA's Origin and Ubisoft's uPlay. µ
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