Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Controls Settings

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Controls Settings

Ever since the new Mario Kart release on the Switch, people have been asking about the best control settings to use.

That’s because there have been some complaints from some users about some features including sudden Auto acceleratng or Auto steering that were not enabled by default.

It seem to be be doing this mostly in Mulltiplayer mode when it auto-detects control schemes.

What are the best Control Setups in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe?

In summary, you can play the game in 3 distinct ways, all applicable in docked or portable play:

  • Sideways Joy-Con -You may use a wheel or not, the peripheral is irrelevant except for housing the controller and utilizing bumpers for pressing the shoulder buttons. You can either utilize motion controls with the analogue stick on the left or buttons; the latter is possible, but might be uncomfortable for big hands.
  • Two Joy-Con and the Grip – As you all know, the Grip bundled with every Switch turns the Joy-Con into a conventional controller. This is a good option for those of you wanting to play with a standard feel of joystick on the left, face buttons on the right and easily accessible shoulder buttons.
  • Pro Controller – The Switch version of this game has the complete set of features, which means you can use it for motion controls.

The key thing to remember though is to check your settings on assist tools and motion controls, so you don’t start a race and wonder why your character isn’t correctly responding as you would expect.

Motion Control Settings for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

There are multiple control options if you want to use motion controls for Mario Kart 8.

Here are the basics on how it works with each setup:

  • Joy-Cons in portable mode: simply tilt the whole system with the Joy-Cons attached!
  • Joy-Cons + Grip in portable / docked: go use your Joy-Con grip and tilt the controller like a steering wheel
  • Pro Controller in portable / docked: simply turn the controller like a wheel
  • Single Joy-Con in wheel accessory (portable/docked): slot a Joy-Con into a wheel and drive it.

As you’ll see, enabling motion controls is similar to activating auto-steer, as you do this after you’ve selected your character.

It’s basically changing the screen where you choose your kart, wheels and glider.

How to set a single Joy Con as the controller?

The controllers can be assigned in the system settings, but we will use the in-game option because it is simpler. You would do this on the Character Select screen–the one prior to when we enabled motion controls.

This time the little ‘+/-‘ sign is on the top right corner.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Controls Settings

Remove the Joy-Cons from your Switch. Once you’ve pressed + or -, press the setup button on the screen that appears.

Then rotate your Joy-Con horizontally and press its shoulder buttons together: ‘SL’ and ‘SR.’

Now your controls will work with that horizontal controller, which is perfect for motion controls and the wheel accessories that are available.


So there you have it, all the settings that you need to know for the best control setups in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

Remember to check your assist tools and motion controls before starting a race, and have fun!

About the autor

Alessio Lorandi

Alessio has been involved at the highest levels in racing since the age of 5 (2003). He won a CIK-FIA World Championship in 2013 and then raced in F3, F2, and finally GT3s before now dedicating himself to SOLOX. He’s now on a mission to help thousands of sim racers around the world achieve their fullest potential through his ACC setups.
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