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GPIO Button Guide for Game Boy Controller v2.0 / v1.1

Wiring the Game Boy Controller v2.0 to the Pi Zero or Pi 3’s GPIO pins is the simplest way to configure controller inputs for the Game Boy Zero/3 without any additional component. You can use the following diagram to solder the button inputs to the Pi and download a copy of RetroPie with the GPIO program already pre-installed.

17 thoughts on “GPIO Button Guide for Game Boy Controller v2.0 / v1.1

  1. […] For the controllers you visit GPIO Button Guide for Game Boy Controller v2.0. […]

    1. I connected all the wires to the pi as listed (including the PWMs, 5v and ground) but all the buttons will register sometimes, then will stop working altogether when I move the unit. I have a 1.1 board and the 5v, ground and both PWM wires are securely connected to the pi. Any idea why the connection isn’t consistent?

      1. Read the post at That might be related to your issue.

  2. Does this eliminate the need for an Arduino Teensy or something related to that? It gets connected directly to the Pi?

    1. You can use a teensy or you can directly connect the input buttons to the Pi. You just need the Adafruit Retrogame utility which is already pre-installed with my custom RetroPie image at

  3. I got my custom image and directly connected the board to the pi (including the 5v and ground + the 2 PWM wires). My issue is that sometimes the buttons will register, but then move it and no button will register. The board’s 5v, ground, and both PWMs are both securely connected and the board is always receiving 5v. Any idea why the connection isn’t consistent?

    1. Clean the contact pads or try other silicons and check this post at

  4. Hi how are you? I have a PCB v1.2 could you please guide me where to connect the c and the z button, any help will be greatly appreciated, thanks a lot.

    1. Just connect the C and Z button to any available GPIO pins on the Pi and edit the file retrogame.cfg.

  5. Hey,
    How do I wire the Tactile Switches? bit confused on how to do it.

  6. No ground needed for the buttons?

    1. You need just one gnd for the buttons but since you’ll be connecting the 5v and gnd to the pi so that would be it.

  7. Does the L and R button need to be connected together ??
    and please tell me how to count GPIO pins on Rpi Zero .

    1. The L and R buttons are optional but required by some games like GBA games. Visit for the GPIO numbers.

  8. Do you think you could make one of these for Pi 4? No sweat.

  9. Working with electronics and hardware components carries certain risks, so it’s essential to exercise caution and refer to proper resources for guidance.

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