Nintendo announces Game Builder Garage for building your own Switch games

Game Builder Garage Switch
Game Builder Garage Switch (Image credit: Nintendo)

What you need to know

  • Nintendo revealed a new game called Game Builder Garage, in which players are taught how to build their own games.
  • Game Builder Garage uses colorful anthropomorphized code pieces called Nodon to simplify the game design process.
  • The game launches on June 11.

Nintendo today announced a new game for Nintendo Switch called Game Builder Garage. As the name implies, it's a game for young game designers, in which you learn how to build your own game with simple lessons and fun graphics. It'll be released for Switch on June 11.

Game Builder Garage resembles previous Nintendo game-making software, like Super Mario Maker, or Nintendo Labo. It's intended to get the youngsters that make up Nintendo's target demographic interested in game development.

From the trailer, it appears that the game guides you through the game development process with simple lessons. Game Builder Garage uses Nodon, sentient pieces of game design code, to help ease budding game-makers into programming. Nintendo describes the Nodon as "colorful creatures packed with personality in charge of things like moving your character, pressing buttons, and adding sound effects."

For example, to make your character jump, you would attach a button Nodon to the character's jump function. Then, whenever you press that button on the Switch, your character will jump. That's about as simple as game design gets, and you can make it more complicated if you choose.

If you've taken the in-game lessons and you want to try your hand at making a game of your own, you can enter the Free Programming mode, which lets you play around with Nodon to your heart's content. The trailer shows a large range of potential games, including mazes, racers, bullet hell shooters, fighting games, and platformers -- there's even a cute simulation game called "Tuna Cube Factory 2," that appears to involve moving boxes with a tractor.

Once you've made your game, you can share it with friends by sending them codes. According to the Nintendo eShop page, you can even use it to work with friends, though it's not yet clear if you can collaborate on games. We'll have to see when the game launches on June 11.

Rachel Kaser