My 25 Favourite Switch Games To Play With A D-Pad

Image: Alex Walker (Kotaku)

I have 34 games downloaded onto my Nintendo Switch which do not require the player to ever use either analogue stick.

Once I realised this, I couldn’t stop noticing how often my thumbs bump into the analogue sticks while I play.

Last week, I purchased Hori’s new portable-mode-only Joy-Con for the Nintendo Switch. Now my Switch has a proper d-pad on it, not just four little tiny clicky buttons. (Which I actually liked just fine, until I got this d-pad.)

I ordered a cute blue Hori d-pad Joy-Con from Amazon Japan, where it was about $US27 ($37) shipped to the US, though Hori is also releasing an international version at some point this year. Unfortunately, the US ones are plastered in grody Mario or Zelda art.

I then made a video ranking my 25 favourite games to play with the d-pad on the Nintendo Switch. These are all games that don’t ever require the analogue sticks.

Of course Hollow Knight is on the list. And no, Stardew Valley is not. Axiom Verge would have made it, if that game didn’t require you to click the stick to change weapons.

One thing I don’t mention in this video is that this Hori d-pad Joy-Con drains the Switch’s battery with extreme speed. This has something to do with the Nintendo Switch not being able to fully put itself to sleep while the Hori Joy-Con is attached. The whole concept of a portable-mode-only Joy-Con confuses the poor thing.

Hori’s Japanese website contains a lengthy apology for the inconvenience, and instructs players to remove the Joy-Con when not using the Switch. So, in a shocking twist, I keep leaving the dumb thing at home and coming to work with just one Joy-Con attached to my Switch. Oops!

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    One thing I don’t mention in this video is that this Hori d-pad Joy-Con drains the Switch’s battery with extreme speed.

    This seems like an absolutely fundamental problem. Like, there is no reason to buy this thing while this is an ongoing issue.

    The hori joy con is a broken piece of garbage, the small benefit of the dpad is massively, massively outweighed by its laundry list of deficiencies and defects.

    If you want a dpad, you are far better off buying a chinese joycon shell kit and DIYing the install. It poses less risk to your switch than the hori gear.

      This looks awesome! Did you follow any particular guide on how to do this?

        Nah, as far as pulling apart consumer electronics this is a 1/10 difficulty compared to phones or camera lenses. You only need the most basic tools, a tri-wing screwdriver, small phillips, and a pair of tweezers.

        There are plenty of guides around, but taking it apart is pretty obvious, and putting it together is just the reverse.

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