In an official press release stated by Nintendo, is finally acknowledging the current issue of “Joy-con drift” that is experienced by a significant number of Nintendo Switch users across the world. This is particularly after a class-action lawsuit was filed against the company in the last few days.
The Joy-con Drift Issue
Joy-con drift, as it is known to Nintendo Switch users, is a malfunction, where the controller’s motion sensing and tracking systems eventually shifts on a certain direction without returning to its default center, even without the player’s active control. The effect is most evidently seen when the controllers are calibrated, displaying a very visible automatic motion on one direction despite not giving the controller input to do so.
While it usually only causes a very slight change in the control of your game, this is usually enough to derail the controller’s input precision, causing many game sessions to be played frustratingly inaccurately.
The effects of the unintended inputs are made even worse during multiplayer sessions, where users often get unfavorable playing performance simply by a slight veering off the controls to a certain direction.
Since 2017, the issue has previously been thought of as a minor product defectiveness, but many Nintendo Switch users have since then relayed their own experiences in the issue of “Joy-con drift.” This has led to the conclusion that the default assemblage of the controller itself is the issue.
As more and more users report the same issue, the opinion shifts more and more to the realization that it is indeed real, and Nintendo must be responsible for releasing what is perceived as a defective product.
The bigger problem, however, is that even as the reports piled up, Nintendo never seems to acknowledge the issue. In fact, based on how they routinely ignore hundreds of posts and replies that tell the same thing, it looks like Nintendo doesn’t even want to believe that there is an issue in the first place.
This has, of course, infuriated a lot of the console’s users. These users, at that time, have no other recourse but to send the controllers for repair, possibly waiting for a month or two to get it back, or to buy a new set of Joy-cons, which don’t exactly come cheap at around $80 (which can’t be purchased individually and must be bought as a pair by the way).
Eventually, before the end of July, the law firm Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith filed a lawsuit against Nintendo of America over the very issue of “Joy-con drift.” The complaint’s argument alleges that Nintendo had sold the Switch, despite being aware that its Joy-cons are not up to consumer-grade standards as per the number of complaints sent to the company by its users.
With a class-action lawsuit looming directly over them, Nintendo presumably finally had no choice but to announce that they are aware of the Joy-con drift issue. The exact response, however, didn’t exactly deliver an apologetic tone:
“At Nintendo, we take great pride in creating quality products, and we are continuously making improvements to them. We are aware of recent reports that some Joy-Con controllers are not responding correctly. We want our consumers to have fun with Nintendo Switch, and if anything falls short of this goal, we always encourage them to visit http://support.nintendo.com so we can help.”
To be fair though, numerous reports have confirmed since then that Nintendo is at least willing to accept the defective Joy-cons, and to offer users repair services and replacements at no additional cost. A PR saving move, perhaps?
Whether or not you have experienced this issue, or whether you even own a Nintendo Switch, the biggest take on this fiasco is that many users expected Nintendo to provide the best quality in its products.
This was a bit of a disappointment because not only were the Joy-cons seemingly defective, suffering from issues just a few years or even mere months after purchase, Nintendo even ignored its customer base and had seemingly chosen to go silent over the problem. It is quite likely that if not for the class-action lawsuit filed against them, they would not have acknowledged the countless reports in the first place.
The Nintendo Switch Lite, having a more “solid” hardware configuration than original Switch, probably won’t have similar problems in the near future, but we do hope it never suffers from anything like this debacle as it gets released.