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CheckMag | 4 great Netflix games with controller support

Netflix's games library contains titles previously exclusive to other platforms. (Source - Netflix)
Netflix's games library contains titles previously exclusive to other platforms. (Source - Netflix)
Netflix's library of games is steadily growing and it features some popular titles, but not all are compatible with a controller. However, there are still a handful that have controller support.

Since the announcement in 2021 that it would add games to its library of movies, documentaries, and TV shows, Netflix has steadily built a catalog of video games that span different genres. Some of these games are based on a few of Netflix's popular shows, while others were originally made for other platforms but have been brought to mobile devices by the streaming giant.

One unfortunate drawback of Netflix's games library is that many of the titles can only be played using touchscreen controls. Thankfully, there are some fantastic, albeit few ones, with controller support.

1. Dead Cells

One of the most popular roguelike-Metrodvania games, Dead Cells is one of the Netflix games that works with a controller. In Dead Cells, players have to control a character called ‘The Prisoner’ as he fights his way through a horde of enemies using a variety of weapons. Every time they die, they start their adventure afresh, losing all their weapons and money. However, some unlocked features during a previous run remain unlocked.

In addition to having controller support, players can modify the actions assigned to each button as per their preference. Like all Netflix games, Dead Cells has no ads and in-app purchases compared to the non-Netflix version as well as the version on other platforms. It also comes with all the DLCs.

2. Spiritfarer

Like Dead Cells, Spiritfarer is also available on other platforms including PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch but its mobile debut was made possible by Netflix. In this adventure game, players control Stella, a ferrymaster whose job is transporting souls to the afterlife. Players have to look after these spirits by taking care of their emotional and physical needs until it is time for them to go to the afterlife. The gameplay involves collecting materials to add more features to the ship as well as fishing, farming, and cooking meals for the spirit guests.

While it has controller support, players can’t remap the keys. Nevertheless, the action linked to each button is visible when you pause the game. Also, thanks to being a slow-paced game devoid of combat, there isn’t any penalty if you press the wrong button for an action.

3. TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge

TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge is a multiplatform beat ’em up side-scrolling game reminiscent of old arcade games. While it was released on other platforms in 2022, the mobile version for Android and iOS was published by Netflix in early 2023. In TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge, players get to play as any of the four Ninja Turtles as well as their known allies such as Splinter, April, and Casey Jones

Like Dead Cells, players get the option to customize the controls or reset them to default. In addition, the DLC released after the game’s launch is also available.

4. Oxenfree II: Lost Signals

A sequel to the 2016 mystery game, Oxenfree, Oxenfree II: Lost Signals is Netflix’s first internally developed game as it acquired the studio behind the development of the first game. However, despite Netflix Games being the publisher, Oxenfree II is available on not just mobile but also the PlayStation 4 & 5, Nintendo Switch, and Steam.

In Oxenfree II, players control the protagonist, Riley, as she investigates the mysteries happening on her home island and tries to stop an evil cult. The game is filled with puzzles but there is no combat. The controls are basic and require the use the trigger buttons, thumbsticks, and face buttons. Sadly, the keys can’t be remapped.

Now that you know which games work with a controller, the big question is which controller to use. There are a plethora of controllers available on the market for mobile devices. For those who own a PlayStation 4 or PlayStation 5, the DUALSHOCK 4 and DualSense controllers are great as they both work with Android and iOS devices. Just connect them via Bluetooth, and you are good to go.

However, if you would rather purchase a new controller, a reliable choice is the 8BitDo Pro 2 (available on Amazon for US$48). It works not only for Android and iOS devices but it's also compatible with the Nintendo Switch, Steam Deck, Windows, ChromeOS, Apple tvOS, and macOS.


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Habeeb Onawole, 2023-11-29 (Update: 2023-11-29)