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Engineer invents Switch peripheral for one-handed gamers

Releases free blueprints to 3D print it.

Mechatronics engineer Julio Vazquez has invented a couple of peripherals that make the Switch's Joy-Con controllers much easier to play for disabled players limited to the use of one hand.

As pointed out by AbleGamers, a charity specialising in bringing video games to those with physical disabilities, Vazquez's unique controller peripherals can be 3D printed at a local shop and blueprints for both models can be obtained on Vazquez's Thingiverse page.

One model simply squishes the two Joy-Cons together so there's no empty space in the middle. This looks really awkward to use for two hands, but those with only one hand will find it much easier to reach their thumb across this more condensed layout.

The more interesting variation slots the Joy-Cons together at a right angle so you use your thumb on the left side, while your fingertips can reach around and manipulate the buttons on the right Joy-Con.

As it turns out, Vazquez was inspired to make these peripherals after their Zelda fan friend lost the use of their right hand.

"This adapter was developed by request of my friend Rami Wehbe, who wanted a way to play Zelda: Breath of the wild using only his left hand; as he lost the ability to control his right hand due to a cerebrovascular accident." Vazquez said of this ingenious invention.

"This current design was the result of almost a week of research and lots of failed prototypes, as I had to ensure that it would be easy to print, lightweight and practical. After testing that it works properly, we decided to share it, so that it can be of help to other gamers in a similar situation."

Seeing this controller peripheral used in action in the video above, it looks surprisingly easy to control. Thanks to Breath of the Wild's gyroscopic aiming, you can even accurately aim via motion controls. This looks like it would work fairly well for a multitude of games outside of Zelda, offering a whole new catalogue of games for those who would otherwise find such titles nearly impossible to play.

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Jeffrey Matulef


Jeffrey Matulef is the best-dressed man in 1984.