PUBG Mobile is a great game but it is a mobile game so the controls aren’t so great. This is a classic problem for mobile games due to the touch screen controls only working so well for action-focused games. People who aren’t used to them will have trouble adjusting so it’s easy to see why using a controller is preferred for shooter games on mobile platforms.
Pros and Cons of using a controller
While using a controller for PUBG can come with a lot of benefits, there are also some good reasons why some people don’t want to do this. It can give users an advantage and the developer has also taken steps to prevent or limit this.
- Smoother gameplay experience
- Easier than using the motion controls
- Better trigger sensitivity
- More precise
- Harder to aim at a specific target due to the built-in aiming mechanics which is why most PUBG specific controllers still use touch screen
- Some controllers require third-party applications to work
- Certain controller applications may get you banned
- Controllers are not officially supported for PUBG Mobile on any device
Best Mobile Controllers for PUBG Mobile
Using a controller for PUBG mobile but setting one up is pretty simple. Each controller comes with instructions on how to set them up so always check the box of your mobile-specific controller. If you’re using a controller intended for another platform such as an Xbox One controller then you won’t be getting any instructions to set-up with mobile devices. Scroll down to the next sections if you’re looking to use an Xbox One or PS4 controller with the game.
If you plan to purchase a new controller to use with PUBG Mobile or PUBG Mobile Lite then we’ve handpicked some good options. These controllers are designed for playing shooter games so they’re perfect for playing PUBG Mobile.
This brand has a few different options which are perfect for PUBG Mobile. They also cater to different types of controls which is great considering how personal controllers can be for users depending on how you like to play. GameSir also includes keypads designed for mobile devices and converters so you can use your keyboard and mouse with the game.
GameSir G6 Mobile Gaming (https://www.amazon.co.uk/GameSir-Touchroller-One-Handed-Controller-Bluetooth/dp/B07RBTM75M/ )
This might look like half a controller but it’s perfect for PUBG Mobile. It gives you a joystick to make controlling the camera much easier, triggers and buttons. Those are all you need for PUBG Mobile since aiming is easier with the touchscreen having one thumb free for that improves the gameplay experience.
The downside to this controller is that you’ll probably need to replace the phone cover with this when you want to use it. A big positive however is how small it is and how portable this style of the controller is.
Glap Play P/1
There are other controllers in this style but the Glap Play is a great option if you’re looking for a controller that makes your smartphone look like a Nintendo Switch. It takes inspiration from Xbox controllers with the YBAX button design. Glap Play is also compatible with a handful of Steam Link games including the original PUBG however, this will not work with iOS devices.
This is a great controller style with controls on both sides making it user friendly, even for left-handed players. Due to this, however, this is a bigger controller which could be an issue for some people.
This one looks more like a classic console controller which might suit some players with a lot of console gaming experience. Rotor Riot looks similar to the Xbox controller designs so for Xbox gamers this controller will also feel familiar. It’s designed for Android compatibility and will work with most recent Samsung, Sony and Google Pixel phones in addition to other brands. The most common mobile controllers, in general, are ones that look like this however, the Rotor Riot controller offers latency-free gaming without needing batteries, full-sized buttons and a full-sized controller.
The Rotor Riot controller offers a lot and is perfect for PUBG Mobile along with any other mobile games you might play. The design of the controller doesn’t allow for a hand to be used on the touchscreen which some players might dislike. Being a full-sized controller also means that it’s not the most portable controller on this list though the mobile support post is removable which certainly helps.
How to connect a Console Controller
If you have a console then you might want to just use one of the controllers for it since you already had that on hand. However, to use these controllers you may need to use a third-party app to make it work with a mobile device. Apps like that will modify PUBG which breaks the ToS and can result in your account being banned. Currently, there’s no way around this when using a console controller if an App is needed.
Bluetooth is the most common way to connect a controller to a mobile device since most of us have wireless controllers now. However, you can also use a wired connection directly into the mobile device. Wireless might come with some small input lag issues but a USB connection would work perfectly.
How to connect a PS4 Controller using Bluetooth to play PUBG Mobile
This will work for both Android and iOS devices so it shouldn’t cause you any trouble. While connecting an Xbox One controller uses a similar system, it uses different buttons on the controller for pairing. While you can connect the PS4 controller using the below instructions, it most likely won’t function correctly without using an app called Octopus.
- Set the PS4 controllers into pairing mode: If you don’t know how to do this, press and hold the PS button and the Share button at the same time. The light on the back will start to flash when in pairing mode.
- Enable Bluetooth on your device: Swipe the top menu down to reveal the Bluetooth option for Android phones or go to the Settings on iOS devices then tap the option to turn it on.
- Once enabled, scan for any available devices and connect to Wireless Controller: The controller might immediately display when the Bluetooth is enabled but you might also need to scan for it a few times first. There’s a chance you may also need to put the PS4 controller into pairing mode again if it times out. If this happens just repeat Step 1 and 3.
- Tap the controller to pair with it then click OK to finish pairing them: This will attach the PS4 controller to the mobile device and they will remain paired until you turn off the Bluetooth on your Android device. To use it with a PS4 again, you’ll need to pair it with the console.
How to connect an Xbox Controller using Bluetooth
If you’re familiar with connecting the Xbox controller to the console then pairing it to a mobile device won’t be a problem. This is another simple controller to connect for playing PUBG Mobile but you do need to confirm this an Xbox One controller which has Bluetooth. Wireless controllers will match the overall colour of the controller while a non-Bluetooth one will be black around the logo area instead. They’re obvious when compared side by side or when looking at images of different controllers online.
- Put the controller into pairing mode: If the controller is already paired to a console then you need to hold the Xbox logo down until it starts flashing then hold the small Synching button found between the bumper buttons. It’s a small black button which is easy to miss so you may want to find this first before starting to pair the devices.
- Enable the Bluetooth on the smartphone: Swipe the top menu down to reveal the Bluetooth option for Android phones or go to the Settings on iOS devices then tap the option to turn it on.
- Find the controller in the menu: Once Bluetooth is enabled, go into the menu and you should see the Xbox Wireless Controller for you to connect to. If not then you may need to scan for it a few times. Also, make sure the device is still in pairing mode.
- Connect to the controller: Tap the name of the controller on the Bluetooth list and the device will ask you if you wish to pair to the device. Select the Pair/OK option depending on what the window says to confirm the connection.
Using Octopus for PUBG Mobile (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.chaozhuo.gameassistant)
Connecting the controllers to the mobile is simple but they might not work correctly which means you need a third-party app to fix these issues. Octopus is the best option for any non-console controller and it helps to make the process as simple. The application will detect the controller and launching the Octopus app will tell you if the controller is connected. From there, the process is incredibly simple.
Keep in mind this is an Android exclusive app and there isn’t currently an iOS version.
- Install Octopus from Google Play (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.chaozhuo.gameassistant)
- Launch Octopus and then launch PUBG Mobile through the application
- Log into whatever account you want to use on PUBG Mobile
- You’ll want to set-up the controller so go to Training
- There’s a little purple icon on the left side, press it to open the options: This will bring up a screen for you to start mapping the buttons specifically for your controller. Tap the option on the screen that you want to set a button for then press a button on your controller to assign it.
- Open the Settings windows: When you open the control options, you will notice a window on top which has a Settings box in the middle. Tap that to open additional options including button transparency. Click the “Back” button once you’re happy with the changes,
- Close the controller options: Once you’re happy with the changes, click the “Fold” option hovering above the top layer box. It has an arrow pointing up and will return you to the game.
- Test the controller out in Training mode to make sure you’re happy then play!
Do you need to use a third-party app?
Most games will automatically detect you have a controller connected to the device including PUBG. While you shouldn’t need to use a third-party app, some do prefer it for ease of use since customizing controls can be a bit awkward. Connect a controller via Bluetooth or USB should be perfectly fine for playing PUBG Mobile.
Emulating PUBG Mobile on a PC
Another option for mobile users is using an emulator to play the game on a PC. This isn’t something most mobile gamers would need to consider doing unless there’s some kind of accessibility issue involved. This is also cheaper than buying a controller for the game and is perfect for when you play the game at home with the computer nearby.
GameLoop/Tencent Gaming Buddy (https://gameloop.fun/en/game/fps/play-pubg-mobile-on-pc)
The Tencent Gaming Buddy was rebranded to GameLoop and is exclusively designed for playing PUBG Mobile. Downloading it doesn’t require a VPN or demand account creation to play PUBG Mobile. However, if you want to use the friend feature included with the emulator then you will need to make an account.
It has a lot of control customization options which we advise setting up through the Training area accessed on the home screen of PUBG Mobile. There are some limitations however, the scroll wheel isn’t always accurate or predictable when using this emulator. With access to the full keyboard or other mouse buttons, this shouldn’t be much of a problem.
Nox Player (https://www.bignox.com/)
The Nox Player is an Android emulator allowing you to play a wide variety of mobile games on the computer. It’s not dedicated to PUBG like with GameLoop but this is still a great software for emulating the game on PC. It also comes with settings to help the performance of the computer and the ability to replicate different phone types so you can play any Android mobile game you wish.
Sadly, this software does work better on higher-end PC’s and you will need to do some key mapping. It’s always a good idea to do some key mapping regardless of the emulator so you can ensure you’ll be happy with PUBG Mobile on PC.
Many other mobile emulators exist and most of them will run PUBG Mobile. The two listed above are the best ones currently available and give you a good idea of what other software you can find online to emulate PUBG Mobile.
Why using a PUBG Mobile emulator might not be good
Playing the game on PC can provide many advantages due to things such as having a larger screen and the controls being generally better for shooter games. Since mixing emulator uses with normal mobile gamers would unbalance the game, the developers have implemented a solution. To keep it fair only those on emulators will be matched with those using an emulator.
So normal mobile gamers don’t need to play with those using an emulator and play at a disadvantage due to it.
Those playing in groups where someone is using an emulator will also only be matched with others where someone is using an emulator. This is certainly fair but it’s worth keeping in mind that finding matches could be much slower at certain times of the day due to the lower potential player pool.
Do you need an emulator to play PUBG Mobile on PC?
In short, no. There are devices which can project a mobile game onto a larger TV or monitor display so they can be played with a keyboard and mouse. Most of them will not work with laptops, however.
The Mirascreen X10 (https://www.witrigs.com/mirascreen-x10-gamepad-for-pubg-mobile) is a great example of these devices. It’s a game ‘controller’ which looks more like an external hard drive where you just plug in the wires. The game is shown on the larger screen with full synchronization between the mobile and the larger screen without any lag or delays. Devices such as this one usually support Android and iOS smartphones or devices. Mirascreen X10 might not be made for PUBG but it does support the game along with most other mainstream games.
Like with other mobile games, PUBG Mobile is simple to set-up for playing with a controller or through an emulator on PC. It’s important to remember that installing third-party software which affects your game can get you banned so thoroughly research the application first. For emulators, however, the developers have opted to keep them away from normal mobile players which is perfect for those who prefer playing with a larger screen. PUBG Mobile is a great mobile game and being able to use a controller or keyboard-only improves the gameplay experience.