Valve Is Adding Custom Button Mapping For All VR Controllers To OpenVR

by Jamie Feltham • January 9th, 2018

Valve is about to make OpenVR a lot more open.

Technically, any VR content launched on Valve’s SteamVR platform will support the three major headsets out there at the moment: the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Microsoft’s Windows-based ‘Mixed Reality’ devices. However, if a developer releases a game with only one or two of those headsets truly optimized for it (as indicated on the game’s Steam page), there’s a fair chance the headset that isn’t officially supported will have some button mapping issues. Soon, though, you’ll be able to take this issue into your own hands (literally).

Valve today a launched a temporary beta for what it calls ‘OpenVR-InputEmulator’. This is going to give SteamVR users the chance to map buttons on any PC-based VR controller however they see fit. Oculus’ Touch, Vive’s wands and Window’s inside-out tracked input systems are all great but also pretty different. Touch has more buttons than that others, for example, while Vive has two grip buttons instead of one. When using Touch controllers for a Vive-optimized title, for example, you can sometimes find inconsistencies in the control schemes that are annoying at best and make games unplayable at worst.

You might even want to use the emulator to customized the same controller; perhaps you’d prefer to use the trigger on Touch to grab stuff?

Right now this is only a test that users have to opt into via the Properties tab on SteamVR and it will end on January 22nd. Hopefully full integration isn’t too far behind; this feature is going to solve a lot of headaches this year.

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What's your reaction?
  • Jim P

    Thank you Valve

  • impurekind

    Thank you. It really was needed because most Rift current just control and feel crap when I try them through Steam. Proper button mapping should pretty sort that right out, hopefully.

  • Jim P

    If it fixes Fallout 4 I will buy the game as well as Doom.

    • koenshaku

      I didn’t know Doom had any issues.

      • Jim P

        Doom plays good with Rift controllers. ?

        • koenshaku

          As far as i know yes, fallout 4 was the game with controller issues. I would double check though.

  • Alundre

    Awesome…can’t wait to try this out!

  • PoTemos Comunismo

    Still waiting for Oculus support other hmd’s. Oculus=shit.

    • koenshaku

      I wouldn’t hold my breath the facebook crusade will last for awhile I suspect.

    • mirak

      I don’t give a shit about oculus.

  • Hopefully this will work for games that require the user to click the touchpad like Project LUX. On the Rift this makes it so you have to move the analog stick and click it to simulate the touchpad. It would be better to just move the stick…

  • mirak

    Vive only have one grip button.

    • Konchu

      Vive has 2 grips buttons per controller not sure if the are technically separable to different inputs bit there are 2 physical inputs.

      Just Google image search Vive controller and you will see.

      • mirak

        No, that’s physically just one button that can be pressed from both sides of the handle.

        I have the Vive and when you press one side, you can easily notice the other side moves, it’s connected, it’s just one piece of plastic.

        It’s really the cheapest part of the whole HTC Vivid, it’s not good, but it does the job.

        • Caven

          I can confirm this. While I don’t see the opposite button move, I have noticed that if I’m holding down the grip button on one side, the other side is no longer clickable. I’ve also noticed that if I hold done one side, then hold down the other side, then release the first side, it doesn’t click upon release, but once the second button is released, then it clicks.

          The grip buttons really are just a single button with two opposing surfaces.

  • Jonny

    No doubt as an answer to Bethesda’s attempts to sabotage Rift controls.

  • Konchu

    Awesome have been waiting will have to check out I got a Samsung Odyssey and it is painful to play vive games with a tiny track pad I feel on movement I’m slower and can only assume its due to limited resolution you can accurately press on a smaller pad. AKA in fallout on vive i can walk full speed easy but on MR I feel I have to sprint to get any speed and thus constantly running out of stamina. So being able to force this to sticks is great.

  • Psycho Killers

    Im still waiting (hoping) for the day where I can use my touch controllers with my VIVE headset. That would be amazing. Also, would be nice to see them allow drivers to set the PSVR Aim controller working with Steam too. I truly believe that they only way that VR will really take off is to make all vr universal. VR should be treated like any other pc. Imagine if Alienware was the only brand allowed to play steam games, and HP was needed to play Blizzard games, etc. How about if razor mice and keyboards only worked on Ibutpower pc’s. Universal give people a choice in what headset they like, and they don’t miss or regret any purchase.

  • Toe Knee

    OMG, Please put this on rush Valve. I bought WMR and have absolutely no intention of buying HTCV or OR. I do however, want to buy as many VR games as I can reasonably get my hands on. My one roadblock: not being able to remap HTC/OR controls to my WMR controllers. Help us out here!

  • antonio mora

    Great but now I can’t play Skyrim VR using Steam VR openvremulator temporary beta. Sucks 🙁

  • impurekind

    Eh, so can and how do I actually use this right now to remap some buttons in my games so they are better suited to the Rifht and its Touch controllers, as a Steam/Rift user and not a developer?