I have 34 games downloaded onto my Nintendo Switch which do not require the player to ever use either analog stick.

Once I realized this, I couldn’t stop noticing how often my thumbs bump into the analog sticks while I play.

Last week, I purchased Hori’s new portable-mode-only Joy-Con for the Nintendo Switch. Now my Switch has a proper d-pad on it, not just four little tiny clicky buttons. (Which I actually liked just fine, until I got this d-pad.)

I ordered a cute blue Hori d-pad Joy-Con from Amazon Japan, where it was about $27 shipped to the US, though Hori is also releasing an international version at some point this year. Unfortunately, the US ones are plastered in grody Mario or Zelda art.

I then made a video ranking my 25 favorite games to play with the d-pad on the Nintendo Switch. These are all games that don’t ever require the analog sticks.

Of course Hollow Knight is on the list. And no, Stardew Valley is not. Axiom Verge would have made it, if that game didn’t require you to click the stick to change weapons.

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One thing I don’t mention in this video is that this Hori d-pad Joy-Con drains the Switch’s battery with extreme speed. This has something to do with the Nintendo Switch not being able to fully put itself to sleep while the Hori Joy-Con is attached. The whole concept of a portable-mode-only Joy-Con confuses the poor thing. Hori’s Japanese website contains a lengthy apology for the inconvenience, and instructs players to remove the Joy-Con when not using the Switch. So, in a shocking twist, I keep leaving the dumb thing at home and coming to work with just one Joy-Con attached to my Switch. Oops!

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