‘Joy-Con drift’ class-action lawsuit expands to include Nintendo Switch Lite users

Unhappy Nintendo Switch Lite users already experiencing Joy-Con drift have joined a class-action lawsuit suing Nintendo for its defective thumbsticks.

As reported by Polygon, some new Lite owners are reporting the handheld device’s Joy-Cons exhibited signs of “drifting” within just a few hours of use. Consequently, the lawyers representing 16 American plaintiffs across 18 U.S. states have widened the lawsuit to include those affected by Joy-Con drift on the recently released Lite, too, suing for “defective” controllers and alleging fraud and breach of warranty, as well as state consumer protection law violations.

“Despite knowing about the Joy-Con defect, Nintendo continues to market and sell the Switch and Joy-Con controllers […] without disclosing the defect,” the filing said.

“I can’t believe it, my Nintendo Switch Lite is already drifting,” cited one complaint within the legal paperwork. “I was playing [Breath of the Wild] and the camera kept moving without touching the analogue stick. I tried to calibrate and update the controllers but it was still the same.”

“I beat Link’s Awakening over the weekend on my original Switch Lite system, I had only put like 20 something hours on it, and it started to show joy-con drift,” added another complainee. “Why is this happening earlier on than with the earlier Switch?”

In response to widespread reports of “Joy-Con drift” – an issue where the analogue sticks on the Nintendo Switch’s detachable controllers “drift” across the screen without input from the player – Nintendo informed its customer support representatives back in July the company will repair malfunctioning controllers “at no charge” to customers. At the time, Nintendo instructed support reps that regardless of whether the customer has proof of purchase or a valid warranty, repairs should be offered for free should the player be unsuccessful in mitigating the issue via troubleshooting. The company also pledged to refund any players who have previously had to pay to repair their Joy-Cons for the same issue.

In a formal statement to the press at the time, Nintendo said: “At Nintendo, we take great pride in creating quality products and we are continuously making improvements to them. We are aware of recent reports that some Joy-Con controllers are not responding correctly. We want our consumers to have fun with Nintendo Switch, and if anything falls short of this goal we always encourage them to visit http://support.nintendo.com so we can help.”

As yet, Nintendo has not returned press requests for comment on this latest controller issue.

In other Nintendo news, despite selling over 160,000 Nintendo Switch Lite units in its debut week in Japan, Nintendo’s share price was sent tumbling, falling 4.37 per cent – it’s lowest point in eight months – as sales failed to hit Citibank’s 300,000 projection. Its thought the stock drop is partly attributed to Media Create, which originally reported the Lite’s first week of sales as 114,000, not 160,000.

Nintendo announced the Nintendo Switch Lite, a new iteration of its handheld console, in July. The new system – available in yellow, grey, and turquoise – went on sale September 20, 2019. In line with recent rumours that Nintendo had two new Switch models in production, the Nintendo Switch Lite is smaller than the original version and does will not include a stand nor a dock, so unlike the current model it will not support video output to TV, but it will support “all games in the robust Nintendo Switch library that support handheld mode, although some games will have restrictions”.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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