Accessory maker Hori is releasing a left Joy-con controller for the Nintendo Switch that includes a D-pad in the place of the Joy-cons’ standard four button setup.
While this seems positive so far, there are a few rather horrible catches.
First, the Joy-con is only available in Japan right now. Also, even if it does make its way to North America, the Joy-con only works in handheld mode and can’t be attached to the Joy-con grip to play off of a television. The controller also doesn’t work with local multiplayer.
If you thought the above issues were bad, it gets worse. Hori’s left D-pad Joy-con also doesn’t feature HD Rumble or include gyroscope functionality. There’s also no SL or SR button, sync or player LED light. The gamepad also only comes in dark blue.
Hori says that the Joy-con is designed with only classic games and fighting titles in mind, which makes sense given a more traditional D-pad is great for those particular genres. Still, it’s strange to not feature the original Joy-cons’ basic functionality in an accessory that otherwise seems promising.
The D-pad Joy-con is set to launch in July for ¥2,480 or about $24 USD ($31 CAD).
If you’re looking for a standard D-pad but need a functional gamepad for the Switch, Nintendo’s Pro Controller is a more expensive, but significantly better option.