clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Nintendo Switch Joy-Con controller does some amazing things

Switch controllers include motion IR reader, “HD rumble”

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

The Joy-Con controllers for Nintendo Switch — the tiny, detachable gamepads that can be used by two players and slotted into the system’s main controller — feature a number of impressive, previously unannounced features, including an infrared motion sensor and “HD rumble” that will provide precise feedback to players.

Joy-Con controllers will come in a variety of colors, Nintendo announced during a livestream presentation. The company showed two — neon blue and neon red — and a Joy-Con strap that controllers can be slotted into. The strap, reminiscent of the Wii Remote strap, includes a piece of hardware itself that features larger L and R buttons.

The right-side Joy-Con controller will also include a motion IR sensor. That sensor can read how far away objects are and can even detect shapes. Nintendo said the sensor is capable of telling the difference between hands in the shape of paper, rock and scissors, meaning games of roshambo are possible on Nintendo Switch.

Nintendo detailed the controller layout of its Joy-Con, which includes no shortage of buttons and other inputs.


The Joy-Con controllers also feature “HD rumble,” Nintendo said. That force feedback feature offers sensations that can emulate, for example, the feeling of holding a glass filled with ice and shaking the cubes inside. It can even simulate the feeling of that glass being filled with water, Nintendo said.

Nintendo will release the Joy-Con controllers alongside the Switch itself, which is coming March 3, 2017.

Nintendo Switch

More Nintendo Switch

Go here to watch the Nintendo Switch presentation live. And go here for all the latest Nintendo Switch news and information.

Want the latest news, videos and podcasts sent to your inbox once every weekday? Then sign up for the Polygon Newsletter below.

Polygon Newsletter

The next level of puzzles.

Take a break from your day by playing a puzzle or two! We’ve got SpellTower, Typeshift, crosswords, and more.