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After looking through several forums and playing around with python-uinput (allows to software emulate HID stuff like joysticks) I found that this framework needs a joystick that has at least 1 button in order to use it - having 4 axes only is not sufficient!

On top of what framework was this software written? Is this Source Engine? Or UNITY Engine? I noticed that this console text output pattern ("Using libudev for joystick management") is pretty common. If you could tell me that I would open a bug report there.

That's interesting info, thanks for sharing. Freerider is built with the Unity engine.

(+1)

Your welcome! I reported it on bugs@unity3d.com - hope that helps.

I'm not sure if you ever found a solution, but thanks to the information you provided about needing at least one button I was able to resolve the same issue for myself.

I used Wejoy (https://github.com/Vantskruv/wejoy) to create a "virtual" joystick with 1 button and 4 axes and just forward the necessary axes from the physical device to the virtual. Hopefully that's useful to you or some future Linux user in need of a fix.