Joy-Con shoulder buttons don’t make very comfortable pinball flipper controls. That’s why Nerds&Makers’ Tommy Williamson harnessed the power of creativity and 3D printing to create the SwitchPin, a TV-spanning Joy-Con dock the sole purpose of which is to turn two buttons into two other buttons.
I am not disparaging Williamson’s pinball pursuits. Sometimes two buttons really need to be two other buttons, and in those times we should not let anything get in the way of a creative solution. The design is pretty simple. Williamson made two plastic blocks and fitted them with arcade buttons similar to those found on the side of real pinball machines. Joy-Cons fit into slots on those blocks, with the shoulder buttons lining up with the actuators on the arcade buttons.
The rest of the unit is simply enough plastic to run the span of his television on portrait mode. Set the TV on a table, put the SwitchPin at the bottom, set PinballFX or your preferred game to the correct view and presto, you’re playing pinball the way it was intended.
Want to make a SwitchPin of your very own? Hit up Thingiverse for the free 3D printing files. It helps if you have a 3D printer. And check out Nerds&Makers for more mods, cosplay bits, and other pop culture-related projects. They do good things.