Designing video game controllers must be difficult, not only in terms of general usability and ergonomics, but also of accessibility. Due to limitations, using a standard game controller can be difficult. Fortunately, there are a variety of options and fan-made modifications available to address some of these potential issues. Manufacturers and fans are working on solutions ranging from the Xbox Adaptive Controller to a 3D printed Switch Joy-Con adapter.
Vexelius’ 3D printed Switch Joy-Con mount is a simple and affordable option for anyone who can only play with one hand. However, Akaki Kuumeri, a modder, has created something a little more complex… and a little more versatile.
The design went through several iterations before being finalized, according to Kuumeri, but the end result is a one-handed Switch controller adapter that gives players full access to all of the necessary buttons and control sticks on both Joy-Cons. It’s also available in both left and right-handed versions.
How it works
The completed “One-Handed Switch Joy-Con adapter” is an innovative piece of engineering that allows one-handed play by flipping one of the two Joy-Cons upside-down (depending on whether you play left- or right-handed). Furthermore, it does not necessitate any changes to the Joy-Cons themselves, nor does it necessitate any changes to your Joy-Con settings. You simply insert them into the adapter and you’re ready to go.
To control the stick on the upside-down Joy-Con, a flexible armature on the bottom of the adapter is used, and you simply lay it on a surface (like your leg or a table) and nudge it to get things moving. It’s also been designed to properly invert left and right movement, so the directional response matches the direction you move the controller.
Aside from the clever stick control, the adapter also has armatures built into the center that can be used to press the face buttons on the upside-down Joy-Con. This allows you to use a single thumb to tap any of the Switch controller’s eight face buttons. Similarly, the inverted Joy-shoulder Con’s buttons are controlled by two buttons on the inside of the adapter grip.
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Kuumeri’s one-handed Switch controller adapter is available on Etsy in both left- and right-handed versions (as well as adapters for other popular console controllers). Each adapter comes with optional straps for your hand and leg for added stability, and the bundle is priced around $205 USD, which is understandable given that each set is made-to-order and handmade.