Earlier today I mentioned how The World Ends With You: Final Remix plays basically like the tablet version, which is all well and good. There’s another control scheme though, where you use a single JoyCon like a mouse pointer, slashing and waving at the screen.
It’s a neat idea. And it’s basically unplayable.
The control scheme unique to the Switch uses a single JoyCon, which you point at the centre of the screen. A small circular reticule appears on the screen at all times. The back trigger used for interacting with options and attacking, while the bumper is used to move Neku around the screen. You can use the thumbstick to move Neku around Shibuya, but when you’re in combat, you’ll need to swipe a direction while holding down the bumper.
It’s a bit weird. It’s almost like the JoyCon is being used to emulate touchscreen controls. Problem is, touchscreens are tactile. It’s easy to be precise when you just have to physically touch something.
But with the JoyCons? Well … that’s a bit harder.
What you’re seeing here is a bad case of controller drift. JoyCon drift isn’t unusual to the Switch – a lot of users had it with the first iteration of the controllers, with many either buying a second pair, fixing it themselves or just putting up with it.
The key problem here is that the drift isn’t with the analog sticks, but the gyro controls. It’s not an issue that cropped up in Splatoon 2 – although it’s been a while since I’ve played that game. I’ve also tried it on two sets of JoyCons, a newer pair bought this year and the original pair that came with the console.
All four separate JoyCons exhibited the same problem. Not only that, all four JoyCons sometimes were entirely fine. And that inconsistency is an absolute killer, especially when part of combat relies on you being able to precisely select an object or enemy.
To demonstrate, here’s me stumbling my way through a Fusion Attack with the JoyCons.
It’s painful. With touch controls, the fusion attacks are the kind of thing you fly through. Unless I try really hard to cock it up, I’ll never get less than a 4x multiplier on the Fusion Attack. But that’s because I can instantly and precisely use two fingers to press the correct cards as soon as they come up.
You’ll never get that precision with the JoyCon controls. And the rest of combat struggles from the same issue. The most efficient way to play is to double up on pins with the same attack motion — it rapidly improves your sync ratio, and helps stun annoying enemies. But try doing that when your cursor is sometimes drifting off your target, and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.
It’s a shame because the co-op mode is only playable with this awful JoyCon configuration. There’s no local or online wireless option for people who would rather play with the far superior touchscreen controls. I understand the extreme edge-case nature of that, but it’d be such a vastly superior experience.
Any game where you’re battling the controls as much as the enemies is a recipe for disaster. And that’s the case with TWEWY‘s gyro aiming. Gyro controls can work just fine – Splatoon 2 is a great example – but if you’re playing TWEWY, just use the touchscreen instead. You won’t be able to play co-op, but at least you’ll enjoy the classic JRPG for what it is.