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Probably the most bizarre announcement in the history of Nintendo but somehow I cannot wait to get my hands on this. Nintendo has announced something called Nintendo Labo and no it is not a labrador or even close to it, rather it is a wild new experiment for the Switch that will allow players to insert the console into assorted pieces of cardboard and create awesome devices by combining all these mechanisms together.
According to the Nintendo Labo site, the series of creations will bring out the fun of DIY and along with your Switch it will create magic as you make new things come to life. You will start with a piece of cardboard and build onto it all using the Switch’s Joy-Cons and console. After you have put it all together you will use your Switch and its accessories to power this cardboard device up and you can then actually play with your creation.
The trailer shows off some really awesome designs as people build everything from houses to jetpacks to cars and even a piano that actually plays music. This will all be powered by the Switch so after you build your creation you plug it in and the console breathes life into the cardboard. The trailer also shows people colouring in the cardboard and I won’t lie, it looks amazing.
Nintendo Labo will release on 20 April 2018 and the company announced that you will be able to buy two different sets that will contain all the pieces of material to build the objects. So right now two kits are all you need as there is more than one object to build in each one. The Variety Kit will set you back $70 (+/- R900) and contain two Toy-Con RC Cars, a Toy-Con Fishing Rod, a Toy-Con House, a Toy-Con Motorbike and a Toy-Con piano.
- Toy-Con RC Car: Insert the Left and Right Joy-Con into your newly built RC Car and control its movement using touchscreen controls on the Nintendo Switch console. The HD Rumble feature in the Joy-Con controllers will cause vibrations that move the car in the direction you choose. Materials to construct two RC Cars are included.
- Toy-Con Fishing Rod: Construct the Fishing Rod with an active, rotating reel that is attached by string to a cradle holding the Nintendo Switch console. Catch one of many exotic fish shown swimming on the Nintendo Switch screen by casting your Fishing Rod and unwinding the reel to lower the hook. Once you feel a vibration from the Joy-Con inserted in the reel, you must tug the Fishing Rod upward and crank the reel quickly to try and complete the catch!
- Toy-Con House: By inserting various assembled blocks into openings in the sides and bottom of the House, you can interact with, play games with and feed a cute creature on the front-facing Nintendo Switch screen. Each differently shaped block is detected by the IR Motion Camera on the Right Joy-Con inserted on top of the House.
- Toy-Con Motorbike: Insert each Joy-Con into an assembled set of handlebars to drive a motorbike on the Nintendo Switch screen. Pressing the ignition button starts the engine while twisting the right handle activates the throttle. Leaning your body or turning the handlebars left and right controls the motorbike.
- Toy-Con Piano: After assembling a beautifully crafted 13-key piano and inserting the Nintendo Switch console and Joy-Con, you can experiment with your own musical creations by pressing different keys. You can even insert different assembled knobs to create new sound effects and tones!
The $80 Robot Kit will let you build an interactive robot suit with a visor, backpack and straps for your hands and feet which you can wear as you take the role of a robot in a game. The kits will both come with all the cardboard and software you will need to make the creations and play the games associated to each one. There will also be a $10 customization set that will come with stencils, stickers, and coloured tape to fix the creations if they do break. They are made of cardboard after all.
While Nintendo Labo is targeted at kids I have a 7-year old niece who I would love to play this with. I can totally see us creating things and playing the games together and when she goes home I will probably carry on without her.
What do you think of this all? Let us know in the comments below.