Which Fire TV Game Controllers actually work?

There are quite a few options for a decent Fire TV game controller.  For Fire TV Stick, we have Bluetooth Game Controllers as our only option. Just because a game controller has Bluetooth does not mean it will pair with your Fire TV.  In other words, all Bluetooth gamepads are not compatible with Fire TV / Fire TV Stick – only some Bluetooth gamepads will pair.
So here’s a list of every compatible Fire TV game controller we know of.  This way you can find note just the best Fire TV game controller, but the cheapest Fire TV game controller, too:

  • Note:  Any Bluetooth Controller that works on Fire TV Stick will work with regular Fire TV.  However, USB controllers that work on Fire TV will not work on FireStick.  Why?  FireStick has no USB port – you must use a Bluetooth controller with Fire TV Stick.  If you get a USB game controller for Fire TV Stick, you will have nowhere to plug the USB cord into!

List of Fire TV Game Controllers:

  1.  Ouya Game Controller ($42+ online, reportedly sold at game stores for $20)
    1. Update on long-term use of the Ouya Game Controller:  I’ve been using the Ouya game controller for several months now to play emulators on the FireStick.  It’s still working great!  It hasn’t lost responsiveness and the battery still holds a strong charge.  I personally recommend the Ouya Controller.
  2. Playstation4 DualShock Bluetooth Controller ($52 new, works out of the box (may have to use in-game key mappings))
  3. Red Samurai Bluetooth Game Controller ($32 new on Amazon – A.K.A. Tablet Wireless Game Controller V2 from Gamestop)
  4. Amazon Fire TV Game Controller – You can get these brand new from Amazon for $39, or Certified Refurbished for only $29!  This is actually a great deal for a Fire TV game controller that’s literally guaranteed to work right out of the box.    *Note:  The refurbished ones seem to go out of stock, so check regularly.
  5. Nyko Playpad Pro ($19 on Amazon) * Note:  This controller IS compatible with FireTV but the build quality is very low, and only about 33% of the units we tested actually work.  This controller is not recommended.

 

These Fire TV Game Controllers WILL Work:

One of the “more expensive” options we refer to is the Red Samurai controller, the official Amazon Fire TV Game Controller, and the OUYA controller.

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The Red Samurai controller is a Bluetooth game controller for Fire TV that runs about $32 on Amazon.  Many folks report that this controller works great and is compatible with both FireTV and FireStick.

The official Amazon Fire TV Controller is your best bet if you want something that “just works”.  By the way, this controller ($39 new) is usually out of most peoples’ desired price range for a simple controller to play emulators with.  But you can get these Certified Refurbished for $10 cheaper ($29 from Amazon).  You won’t have to worry about quality control or Bluetooth pairing issues with this baby.  Just buy it, pair it, and play.  Most people report that it’s fully compatible and the buttons are mappable for every emulator you can throw at FireTV / Fire TV Stick.

The OUYA controller has also been known to be a high-quality game controller for Fire TV.  Many people report that the OUYA controller works very very well for playing emulators on Fire TV.

 

The BEST Fire TV Game Controllers:

–  Most Native (this means “most naturally deals with the Fire TV system”):

Official Amazon Fire TV Gamepad

 

 

The following game controllers for Fire TV Stick do not work:

  1.  MOGA Mobile Gaming System for Android 2.3+
  2. Nyko Playpad Wireless Game Controller for Android Tablets and Smart Phones. * Note:  This is different than the Nyko PlayPad PRO fire TV game controller.
  3. Generic PS3 controllers from Amazon (cheapos).

 

Nyko PlayPad Pro – A Cheap Game Controller for Fire TV Which Does Not Work

Nyko PlayPad Pro Fire TV Game Controller does NOT work, usually.

Nyko PlayPad Pro Fire TV Game Controller does NOT work, usually.

The Nyko Playpad Pro is compatible with Fire TV and FireStick – but there’s one big problem.  The Nyko PlayPad Pro was not quality tested before it left the factory.  This means most of the units are defective.  I ordered three from Amazon and only 1 Nyko Playpad Pro worked out of them all.  In addition, you need to do a firmware update to get them to work with the FireStick / FireTV.

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So, the Nyko Playpad Pro is NOT recommended.  The time you spend trying to get the Nyko PlayPad Pro to work with FireTV is not worth the low price.  The Nyko Playpad Pro is not the best game controller for Fire TV by any means.  You’re better off spending 10 or 20 more dollars on something that was quality tested, so you don’t end up sending it back to Amazon multiple times.  Meanwhile you’re jonesing for Mario Kart and there’s not a kart to be Mario’d in sight.

 

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