A Frankfurt, Germany man who lost his Nintendo Switch at one of the busiest airports in the world was reunited with his console in mere hours after posting about it on Reddit.
Juan, who asked that we not use his last name, was looking forward to whiling away the time on his flight with Floor Kids, a Switch game he'd downloaded for the three-hour ride to Madrid. What he didn't know yet was that, on the bus ride to his gate, his Switch had fallen out of his bag and landed between some seats. Searching for it on the plane, he later told me, "I started sweating bullets."
Juan asked the flight attendants whether the bus was still parked. They said it had left. He frantically filed a lost-and-found report with the airport and, for the rest of the flight, sat thinking of his 55-hour Zelda and 33-hour Binding of Isaac save files. Shortly after landing, Juan had an idea: He'd seen others post about lost Switches on the 400,000-subscriber Nintendo Switch subreddit. Why not give it a shot?
"I lost my Switch at Frankfurt International Airport," he wrote on /r/NintendoSwitch subreddit. "Please if you're the driver of the bus, I'd be eternally grateful and bring you chocolates." In the post's body, he added, "I know this has 0,000001% possibility to work."
The first person who commented was XxPyRoxXMaNiAcxX, who dropped a link to another /r/NintendoSwitch thread, written by the user Itchybun an hour earlier. It read, "Found a lost Switch, any idea how to contact the owner?" It offered no details on where the Switch was found or what it looked like.
"My friend found the hardware on the bus," Itchybun, who asked that we not use his real name, later told me. His first move was to turn on his own Switch and look for a social feature that could help him connect to the lost Switch's owner. But, nope: the Switch has no features like that. His second move was to reach out to Nintendo and ask the gaming company to connect them. That didn't go anywhere fast enough. Then, he wrote a Reddit post. An hour later, he'd hear from Juan.
"It took four hours to find him," Itchybun said. In DMs, Itchybun asked for Juan's username, the JoyCons' colours, known wi-fi names, some friends' names, the last played game and what cartridge was in the console to verify that he was the owner. Juan answered all his questions correctly.
"Once I replied to all the questions, he said, '100 points.'" Juan laughed. He'll be meeting up with Itchybun and his friend in the new year to retrieve his lost console. In an update to his original Reddit post, Juan wrote, "Today I love this community even more and especially that great user and person who decided that finding the owner would be more fun than just keeping it."