The dreaded Joy-Con drift issue has plagued Nintendo Switch since its release back in 2017. However, it looks like the situation’s effects go beyond the gamer. The repair center that handled Joy-Con fixes was reportedly constantly overwhelmed and was prone to making mistakes.
According to Kotaku, Joy-Con repairs were reportedly not handled by Nintendo themselves, but rather by another company called United Radio. A former supervisor says that the volume of Joy-Cons coming into the shop reached up to thousands every week and was a very stressful experience, which ultimately lead to high turnover and lots of repair mistakes.
“We ended up having to set up an entire new workspace just for Joy-Con repair,” the former supervisor told Kotaku.
While Nintendo sent brand new Joy-Cons as new replacements for customers at first from 2017 to 2018, eventually the employees at United Radio had to repair every set of Joy-Cons. Reportedly, the shop’s metrics required it to repair 90% of incoming Joy-Cons within four days, whether or not new workers were coming.
As a result of the high turnover rate, there was a lack of senior expertise at United Radio which caused frequent mistakes in Nintendo Switch repairs. In one instance, a Nintendo customer received a repaired Switch, but it had a completely different person’s account and save data.
The customer posted about their experience on Reddit. In response, United Radio implemented a new policy where a customer’s Switch would have to be factory wiped if the serial number couldn’t be verified during the repair process. The problem with this, however, was that some Switch consoles would have their data wiped without warning.
Nintendo has faced legal troubles surrounding Joy-Con drift. This Joy-Con situation also isn’t the only controversy Nintendo is going through right now either. Recently, a former employee has accused the company of firing them for unionization activities.
George Yang is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @yinyangfooey