Linking your Stadia Controller to a screen
You need to link your Stadia Controller to a screen before you can use it to play. If you want to play on a TV using Chromecast Ultra, you’ll need to use a linking code to link your Stadia Controller wirelessly. If you want to play on a PC or phone, you must use a USB cable to connect the Stadia Controller.
What is a linking code?
To let your Stadia Controller know which screen you want to play on wirelessly, you’ll need to enter a linking code for that screen. The linking code lets you easily change which screen your controller is linked to. Each screen will have its own unique linking code that will rarely change.
Enter linking codes from left to right, one button at a time. Linking codes are 4-5 characters long and consist of only Up, Down, Left, Right, A, B, X, Y.
Here is a sample of what a linking code looks like. The code for your screen will be different.
Note: Currently, linking codes will only appear on Chromecast Ultra. Linking codes for other devices will be available soon.
How to link with a Chromecast
- Press the Stadia button for one second to turn on your Stadia Controller. The controller will vibrate. If you have not previously set up the controller with Wi-Fi, you can follow the instructions in the Set up your Stadia controller article.
- As soon as the status light blinks white, enter the linking code displayed on your Chromecast Ultra in Ambient Mode.
- If you don’t see the linking code on the screen, go to the next section for instructions on how to make your Chromecast Ultra display a Stadia linking code.
It can take up to 15 seconds for the entered linking code to be recognized. If the link was successful, the controller will vibrate and Stadia will launch on your Chromecast Ultra. The status light on your controller will turn solid white when it is linked to the screen.
Note: If the status light blinks orange, it means the controller can’t connect to Wi-Fi. Open the controller menu in the Stadia app to connect the controller to a Wi-Fi network. If you need to change the Wi-Fi on your Chromecast, use the Google Home app.
If you don’t see a linking code on your Chromecast Ultra, you may need to turn it on in the Google Home app. Follow these steps to display the linking code on the Chromecast Ultra’s Ambient Mode:
- Select your Chromecast Ultra in the Google Home app.
- On the app page for your Chromecast Ultra, select Personalize Ambient at the bottom of the page.
- If you don’t see this option, go to Settings and choose Ambient Mode.
On the “Ambient Mode” settings screen, scroll down to “Stadia Controller linking code” and select Show. Your Chromecast Ultra should now display the Stadia linking code in its Ambient Mode.
You controller will automatically link to the last Chromecast it linked to when you turn it on. You don’t need to enter the code on your controller if you’re going to play on the same screen you played last.
You can bypass auto-linking so that you can play on a different screen than the last one you played on. To do this, hold the Stadia button down for 3 seconds on startup. You will feel the controller vibrate once when it turns on and another time at 3 seconds. This signals that auto-linking has been disabled.
You can also skip auto-linking by entering the code for the screen you want to play on prior to the controller linking automatically.
How to link with a PC
Make sure your PC meets the minimum requirements for playing on Stadia.
To use your Stadia Controller on a PC, make sure the controller is turned off and then use a USB cable to connect it to a USB port on your PC. Go to stadia.com in a Chrome browser to start playing.
Wireless play with the Stadia Controller on PC is currently unavailable, but we’re working on adding this feature. Check back here for updates.
How to link with a phone
Make sure that Stadia gameplay is supported on your phone.
To use your Stadia Controller on a phone, make sure the controller is turned off and then use a USB cable to plug it into the phone. Open the Stadia app to start playing.
Note: If you are using a USB-A to USB-C converter, please make sure that the converter is on the side of the phone instead of the controller.
Wireless play with the Stadia Controller on phones is currently unavailable, but we’re working on adding this feature. Check back here for updates.
The controller menu
The controller menu shows any controllers that are currently linked to the device.
To view the controller menu in the Stadia app, select the Controller in the top right corner of the Home screen.
The controller menu in the Stadia app will also show controllers that are turned on and nearby, but not linked to a screen or in an active game session. Select controllers from this menu to connect them to Wi-Fi.
If you’re on Chromecast, or if you’re playing a game, you can also view the controller menu in the Stadia menu:
- Press the Stadia button on your Stadia controller or press SHIFT + TAB on your computer keyboard to open the Stadia Menu.
- Select Controller.
Troubleshoot wireless linking issues
If you run into trouble linking a controller to a screen with a linking code, the following tips might help.
It may take up to 15 seconds for Stadia to recognize the linking code after you enter it. Pushing any buttons after entering the code will change the code that is sent to Stadia, so make sure not to press any more buttons once you’ve entered the code. The controller will vibrate when it is recording your code entry.
Make sure you enter the right code
Make sure you’ve entered the right code and did not press any additional buttons. If you’ve entered the wrong code, just enter the right code while the controller is flashing white.
Make sure you’re on the same Wi-Fi network
Wireless linking requires that both the Stadia Controller and the device you want to play on are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
Make sure the Wi-Fi network is compatible
Any home Wi-Fi network should work with Stadia, but you may not be able to wirelessly link a Stadia Controller to a screen when you’re connected to a shared network, such as in a hotel, office, or café.