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Nintendo investigating Switch Joy-Con issues

"We are in fact-finding mode."

Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime has said the company is actively investigating reports of Switch's Joy-Con disconnect issue.

But also, somewhat bizarrely, that company still doesn't fully understand the issue. You'd think Nintendo would know how exactly its controller works, after all.

"We're asking consumers a lot of questions," Fils-Aime told Time. "That's why we want to get consumers on our help line, so we can get as much information to understand the situation as possible.

"And so we are in a fact-finding mode, to really understand the situation and the scenarios. And with that information, we'll look and see what the next steps are."

Switch's Joy-Con issue - where one controller, usually the left, desyncs from the console during play - has been widely reported.

Digital Foundry has investigated the issue at length:

"On the face of it, our testing presents credible evidence that one controller has a more solid connection to the base unit than the other," the Digital Foundry team concluded.

Nintendo, meanwhile, has only given customers a list of vague advice to help remedy the situation.

Remove other electrical devices nearby, Nintendo's support site suggests, and place them "three to four feet away". Such devices include your phone, laptops, tablets, and all manner of USB devices.

You should also make sure your Switch console isn't "behind your TV" or "near an aquarium", or within four feet of your wireless router.

These seem like oddly picky restrictions - especially for a console which will require you to use your mobile phone for its online multiplayer functions in the future.

Elsewhere, Fils-Aime said Nintendo had noted reports of Switch users' docks scratching their console screens - but that this had not happened at all at Nintendo's own events. Again, the company was asking people to get in contact via its support website.

But the Joy-Con issue remains the larger problem.

"The number [of Joy-Con replacement or repair requests received] is not significant, and is consistent with what we've seen for any new hardware we have launched," a Nintendo statement to Time, following up the Fils Aime interview, stated.

This may not reflect the amount of users who have experienced the problem, however - simply those who have taken the step to order a repair, during which users are warned that their game progress will be wiped.

The vast majority of Eurogamer's Switch owners on staff, myself included, have experienced Joy-Con disconnecting during use at some point.

At the moment, while the majority of Switch owners are enjoying the single-player Zelda, the problem is annoying (especially if you're in the middle of a boss fight, or the Joy-Con's lack of control sends you strolling off a cliff).

When the Switch community moves onto online multiplayer games like Mario Kart and Splatoon, though - Joy-Con issues when you're playing competitively will be an even bigger issue.

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Tom Phillips avatar

Tom Phillips

Deputy Editor

Tom is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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