Keeping with its tradition of doing the unexpected, Nintendo announced Nintendo Labo. Billed as “interactive build and play” experiences, kids get their DIY on by assembling cardboard parts into working pianos or wearable robot suits that interact with their Switch. As left-field as this idea sounds, the kits are undeniably neat-looking. More importantly, Nintendo Labo has the potential of becoming an unexpected hit. After all, people didn’t expect Amiibo, NES Classic, and Switch to skyrocket the way that they did.
In the event Nintendo Labo takes off I’ve taken the liberty of designing mockups of future kits for the line. Not only are these prototypes cool but some would enhance the Switch user experience in significant ways.
Toy-Con Cloud Kit
This adorable kit does more than resemble Mario’s cheerful bundle of water drops. When the Switch is docked between its fluffy interior this kit grants owners their biggest wish: cloud save functionality. That’s right, for only $69.99 players can finally back up their data and breathe a long-held sigh of relief. Just be careful not to spill any water on the Cloud. What you can pour instead is another dozen of hours into Zelda anxiety free. No, you can’t actually play with this kit but who wants to play with a cloud anyway?
Toy-Con Switch Dock Kit
The Switch’s slim design makes it ideal for traveling. It’s bulky dock…not so much. Every time I shove that hunk of plastic into a bag I pray to the Ninten-gods for an easier method. Those prayers could be answered with this Labo version of the Switch dock. It still magically transports games from the small screen to the TV only now the flexible form factor allows it to be neatly folded to fit inside of a pocket. Admittedly, repeated foldings will cause it to deteriorate rather quickly. However, I’m confident that customers would sooner drop the cash for a new cardboard dock than go back to squeezing the original dock into another stuffed carry-on bag.
Toy-Con Box Boy Kit
Nope, that’s not Solid Snake. Rather, it’s HAL Laboratory’s lovable and recognizable Qbby, hero of the Box Boy series. Thanks to Nintendo Labo, kids can Q-be him too! I can’t think of an easier lay-up. The character is a box! Nintendo could conceivably make a killing on kids wearing a plain cube with eyebal-er-squares.
Toy-Con Voice Chat Kit
If you can get over looking like a dork (Nintendo’s already asking you to dress up as a box robot), this kit solves the Switch’s convoluted voice chat problem. When plugged into the console these corrugated headphones allow for instant, seamless online chat. Don’t ask me how; it just does. It must have something to do with the type of cardboard they use or something.
Toy-Con Switch Watch Kit
When someone asks you the time do you ever wish you could answer by checking the time of day in Breath of the Wild? Now you can with this nifty and slick Labo accessory that makes the Switch even more portable. This effectively turns the console into a cheaper Apple Watch with better games. Finally. Lifting the dense screen to your face provides an effective arm workout as a bonus feature. Another possible name would be the “Wrist Switch”. Up to you, Nintendo.
Toy-Con R.O.B. II Kit
This time for sure, right? Just as the original R.O.B. Trojan Horse’d the NES into our living rooms his cardboard follow-up will deliver Labo into our hearts. Classic R.O.B. could only play two games. R.O.B. II plays zero games but he can hold the Joy-Con’s by sliding them into his specially designed Joy-Con holding arms. He won’t actually charge the controllers but Switch owners should be used to such shortcomings by now. Kids will have a ball gingerly interacting with their fragile new friend.