In this paper, we describe a method allowing one to perform three-dimensional displacement control in force spectroscopy by atomic force microscopy (AFM). Traditionally, AFM force curves are measured in the normal direction of the contacted surface. The method described can be employed to address not only the magnitude of the measured force but also its direction. We demonstrate the technique using a case study of angle-dependent desorption of a single poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (PHEMA) chain from a planar silica surface in an aqueous solution. The chains were end-grafted from the AFM tip in high dilution, enabling single macromolecule pull experiments. Our experiments give evidence of angular dependence of the desorption force of single polymer chains and illustrate the added value of introducing force direction control in AFM.