Take one look at the Fixture S2 Mount and you might ask yourself: why do I need a plastic attachment to hold my Switch and Switch Pro Controller when my console already does most of that perfectly fine already? Doesn’t the Switch already have a stand? And don’t I already have a controller? If you’re a dedicated Switch player the answer to both questions is probably yes, but you’d be missing the key ingredient that makes something like the S2 Mount viable: balance.
What Fixture has done with their S2 Mount, much like they did with the previous edition, is to ‘fix’ the Switch OLED most glaring controller issues, namely to keep the console mobile but still give you full access to the Pro Controller’s superior goodies, namely its analog sticks, D-pad, and full array of actual buttons and triggers. As fun as they are, the Joy-Cons simply can’t handle playing some of the console’s most intense games like they were meant to be played, especially fighters, first-person shooters, or anything requiring pinpoint accuracy in 2D or 3D gaming.
Installation is easy: detach the Joy-Cons from the console and slide the S2’s cradle into the Switch’s grooves. You’re going to have that natural plastic-against-plastic resistance, which could make you afraid that you’re going to scratch your console (or break the S2), but don’t force it and you should be fine. To be fair, people have been worried the Switch’s own dock was going to scratch its screen and those fears have been (mostly) for nought. The Pro Controller locks into the bottom cradle with a loud SNAP!, so don’t be alarmed.
Both console and controller cradles have light padding to help secure both devices snugly. Fixture even had the foresight to include passthrough openings on both the hinge and controller cradle so you can charge both devices while playing, if needed, so kudos for cable management.
Once connected there’s really nothing to really test as all the S2 Mount does is, well, mount your Switch to the Pro Controller. It doesn’t add any new functionality, use extra battery life, or increase your skills (sadly). What the S2 Mount does is to center the weight distribution of both console and controller in one combined package, maintaining the portability of the Switch while adding the better controls of the Pro Controller. Using the two separate hinges you’re able to tilt and angle the screen as you like, though doing so can radically change how the S2 distributes its weight, so you’ll want to experiment.
You can even use the S2 as a stand, sans controller, if you wish. There’s really no point as the Switch itself has a built-in stand, other than to gain some elevation (for multiplayer) or slight angles, but that’s another option if you prefer and the generous rubber padding on the bottom keeps things very sturdy.
The Joy-Cons, while fun, offer inferior analog nubs (when they aren’t drifting), the face buttons are poor substitutes for a real D-pad, and the back triggers too tiny for fatter fingers. Sure, they work in a pinch, but spend any real time with Nintendo’s itty-bitty detachables and you’ll long for the real thing. The Pro Controller fixes all those issues and then some, and is easily one of the best traditional gaming controllers for any current-gen console. It’s great.
Replacing the Joy-Cons with a Pro Controller means better controls, better accuracy, better inputs…better just about everything, minus the extra weight (which I’ll get into below). But playing Switch with a proper controller is lightyears more fun and you’ll be rip ‘n tearing demons better than ever in DOOM Eternal, dragon-punching rivals in Street Fighter, pulling off fatalities in Mortal Kombat, blasting foes in Splatoon 3, or jump-kicking zombies in Dying Light. It’s all so much better with more accurate controls.
There’s one big caveat potential buyers should take into account, and it’s a big one – especially if you’ve got smaller hands or (honestly) less upper body strength. Just by itself, the Switch OLED weighs 320g (about 11oz) with the Pro Controller another 246g (about 8.6oz). That’s well over a pound of gaming to balance in your hands, and while the S2 Mount does a great job of distributing it (better than you’d think just looking at screenshots) it can’t defy gravity.
Playing the Switch attached to an S2 Mount for extended periods can cause strain, even if you feel comfortable at first. It’s just physics. How much strain depends on what angle you’re playing, how long, or what you’re capable of. The original design of the Switch (with Joy-Cons attached) ingeniously distributes this weight more broadly, so it was inevitable anything trying to center it back would come up against Mother Nature.
I found that resting my hands while playing alleviated most of the strain, either on a flat surface or (if lying in bed or on a couch) going fully ‘belly mode’. You’ll likely find a similar groove after playing for any length of time, though you might want to consider something else if you have carpal tunnel.
Also: the online listing makes it clear the S2 Mount is only compatible with the Switch OLED, but that’s not true. It works perfectly fine with the standard Switch, too, or nearly perfectly. Both versions of the console fit nice and snugly between its plastic clamps and both remained fully balanced in your hands or when sat on a solid surface. I’ve seen reports elsewhere where this might not be the case, but the version we were sent played nice with both Switch models. It goes without saying the original S1 most likely won’t fit on the larger Switch OLED, so choose wisely.
If you plan on doing any heavy gaming and/or traveling with your Switch and S2 Mount I’d suggest ponying up for the extra Carrying Case, which you can buy separately or bundled with the mount (the latter is highly recommended). It’s a great zippered, tough nylon case that not only holds the Mount but your Switch and up to ten games as well. Remember those cool DS cases you probably had back in the day? That’s the vibe here, and there’s plenty of extra space for cables and cords as well.
There’s no question playing Switch with a real controller is better, more fun, and really makes you appreciate the versatility of the console more. Fixture Gaming’s S2 Mount helps you do this without much hassle or fuss. There’s really no getting past the added weight issue, though your (if any) discomfort will vary on the size of your hands and ability to balance 1+ lbs of gaming goodness. For some, the benefits will – literally – outweigh the weight issues.