Nintendo Labo was already amazing in its inaugural form. These cardboard-based toys work with your Joy-Cons to make for some unique controls. Instead of having to buy a whole new controller for a fishing rod, for instance, you can buy the much cheaper cardboard kit and toss your Joy-Con in.
Nintendo is expanding on this idea in a great way with the Toy-Con Vehicle Kit. Here's everything you need to know about it.
What is Nintendo Labo?
Nintendo Labo is a project that aims to change the way you can use the Joy-Cons of your Nintendo Switch. They are cardboard kits that can be built up as unique controllers, such as a fishing rod, a piano, or a steering wheel.
Players put Labo kits together with the help of a fantastic visual and interactive tutorial available on their Nintendo Switch. Once done, you'll have a variety of games to use the controllers in.
While Nintendo provides their own controllers and a basic game to go with each Toy-Con, those looking to feed their curiosity can make their own creations. That's because Nintendo offers open-ended software and instructions for bringing any idea you want to life.
What's coming with the Toy-Con Vehicle Kit?
We have three new Toy-Cons coming as part of the Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit. One is an advanced steering wheel complete with shifting controllers and a gas pedal. There's also a submarine controller and a flight stick.
Cheekily enough, you Switch between the different controllers by moving your "key" from one slot to another. Each controller corresponds to one of three vehicle modes featured in the included software.
- Buggy: You'll use the normal car mode with the steering wheel when you need to keep to the road. Your steering wheel and gas pedal are self-explanatory, but there are a few other cool things in this kit, including levers that you can use to activate certain features like a windshield wiper, or even pop a wheelie. A pull cord on the right side of the steering wheel also lets you deploy weapons like bombs or a saw blade, or punch someone else's lights out.
- Submarine: Heading for water? Drive in and switch to the submarine controller. You'll see your car transform and you'll have a whole new way to control it while you're in the water. Use the dial controllers on the left and right to control the left and right propellers. Your submarine will have a grappling hook to do, well, god knows what with.
- Airplane: When you need to take to the skies, use this one. It's a simple joystick that lets you alter your roll, pitch, and yaw like the legit pilot you are. Do a barrel roll to dodge attacks and shoot back with missiles of your own.
You'll use these vehicles in a nice adventure mode which has you exploring pyramids, archaeological dig sites, and mountainous terrain. There will be a bundle of missions to complete and things to find both solo and with a partner.
When you're not feeling adventurous, you can instead go up against a friend in four other head-to-head game modes:
- Rally: Race from point A to point B, passing through checkpoints in between.
- Circuit: Run laps around your opponent while punching them in the face.
- Slot Cars: A classic take on an isometric racing game that only requires the pedal to play.
- Battle: Go one-on-one in vehicular mayhem. This is like Twisted Metal, only not so deadly.
All told, there will be about 10 different environments to explore and play in, each with their own distinct themes and features. Nintendo notes that multiplayer mode not only requires additional Joy-Cons, but may even require an additional Vehicle Kit depending on which game mode you're playing and how you want to play.
Paint your cars
With Paint Studio, you can use your Toy-Con Spray Can to change the way your vehicles look by spraying them like you would a real car. You can even use stencils to make custom shapes. Shake your Toy-Con to hear the mixing pea moving around inside to get yourself immersed.
Create your own controllers
With this launch, Nintendo Labo is getting custom controls. This feature allows you to customize the controls in a game to play them how you want. For instance, flying in the new Vehicle Kit game can be done by attaching your Joy-Con to a broomstick, if you so wish.
Nintendo is positioning this feature as a gateway to custom Toy-Con creations. Start here, and once you see just how much freedom you have you can stretch your creativity further by building your own cardboard controllers, and even your own games.
Use them in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
One cool byproduct of all this is that Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is getting a big update that'll let you use the Toy-Con Car, Key, and Pedal accessories. You'll also be able to use the motorbike handles from the Toy-Con Variety Kit if you already have that.
The steering wheel can be used as a simple controller for the game while it's hooked up to a TV, but you can also insert the Switch itself into a Screen Stand attachment to play it anywhere you want.
This feature won't be available at the launch of the Vehicle Kit, but we're told an update will arrive to bring that functionality shortly afterward.
How much will it cost?
Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit will retail for $69.99. You'll get the game and all the cardboard sheets and pieces you need to create the steering wheel, pedal, flight stick, submarine controller, and the key that's used to start all these engines up. Nintendo will include extra sheets and extra accessories to help you customize it (or, you know, just in case you happen to lose something).
When can you play it?
The Vehicle Kit represents Nintendo's single most meaty Labo offering to date. The default game and controls alone should offer up mounds of fun, and the new customization options allow you to take more control than you've ever had.
Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit is out September 14th. Pre-order it now at Amazon and it'll be on your doorstep the day it launches.
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