Nintendo really out Nintendoed itself with last month’s Labo announcement. The cardboard kit gets some innovative use out of the Switch’s underlying technology, letting kids build robot, fishing rods, pianos and the like, using the console’s Joy-Con controllers as the brains.
At a kick off event in New York City today, the gaming giant offered some hands-on insight into the system, and revealed a few bits of unannounced functionality that will be available when the kits launch in April. The most compelling new addition is Toy Con Garage, a software feature that lets users customize their Labo creations with new functionality.
During a quick preview at today’s event, the company showed off a simple interface that makes it possible to cross pollinate various parts of the kit to build unique creations. On a basic level, you can, say, use Motorbike or Fishing Rod as a control for the RC Cars.The company also showed off an electric guitar it built using the Piano software and some custom cardboard cutouts.
It’s tough to say precisely how much control the company is going to give users over their creations. The software interface appears pretty basic, so it may be a pretty controlled environment. After all, Nintendo’s infamous for keeping a tight grip over its IP and likely doesn’t want people building any creations that fly in the face of that.
That said, if the company plays its cards right, Labo’s Toy Con Garage could foster a vibrant community of online creators.