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Many players prefer using gamepads (aka controllers or joysticks) over a keyboard and mouse.

Built-in support

Minetest has some experimental built-in support for gamepads but it is quite broken and doesn't work on most hardware. Even when it does work, it doesn't support using GUIs.

There's plans to improve this in the future, but for now it's recommended that you use an external program for controllers, and not Minetest.

External programs


AntiMicroX is a graphical program used to map gamepad keys to keyboard, mouse, scripts and macros. You can use this program to control any desktop application with a gamepad on Linux and Windows.

Todo: tutorial

Steam Input

You can bind your controller to Minetest controls using Steam Input

On Desktop

Steam Input settings
  1. Install and open Steam
  2. Library > Add a game > Add a Non-Steam Game > Find and select Minetest > Add selected programs
    • If Minetest isn't in the list, click "Browse" and select the executable
  3. Open Big Picture Mode (click the expand icon in the top right of the Steam window, to the left of minimize/max/close)
  4. Go to Library > Minetest > Manage Shortcut > Controller Options
  5. Enable "Allow desktop configuration in launcher" and select "Forced On" in Steam Input Per-Game. Click OK
  6. Click "Controller Configuration"
  7. Click "Browse Configs" in the bottom of the Steam Controller Configurator
    • You can find community layouts in "Community"
    • OR you can use "Templates > Keyboard (WASD) and Mouse" to make your own
  8. Click Apply Configuration and then click Done
  9. Click "Your shortcut" and then "Play".

On Steam Deck

For a more in-depth guide, see rubenwardy's blog post

  1. Install Minetest
    1. Power > Switch to Desktop Mode
    2. Open Discover
    3. Search for Minetest and click Install
    4. When installed, go to Start > Games. Right-click Minetest (using left trigger) and click "add to Steam"
    5. Desktop > Return to Game Mode
  2. Library > Non-steam Games > Minetest
  3. Select controller icon, and choose a layout:
    • It's recommended that you use Community > Semi-official Steam Deck by rubenwardy
    • OR you can use "Templates > Keyboard (WASD) and Mouse" to make your own
  4. Play Minetest


  • QJoyPad
  • Joy2Key