After a few years of speculation that Nintendo would be stepping back into the VR game with the Switch, it seems the House of Mario has indeed decided to do so in the most Nintendo way possible: With a bunch of a fold-able cardboard.
Nintendo’s popular DIY Labo kits will be making a return on April 12 with the Nintendo Labo VR Kit, the company’s own unique take on virtual reality. I imagine it’ll at least do better than the Virtual Boy, Nintendo’s last attempt at VR 24 years ago that was one of the flippiest flops in gaming history.
For the uninitiated, Nintendo Labo was a series of cardboard construction kits that worked in tandem with the motion controlled Joy Cons and a number of Switch apps. For example. you could build a cardboard robot suit and play a mini game on Switch that saw you stamping through a city causing chaos, while another let you build and play your own piano.
It was gloriously inventive stuff, and while it didn’t really appeal to an older audience, kids and parents had a ton of fun building and playing together. I also had a blast with it as a childless 25 year old man. Make of that what you will.
The new set works in a similar fashion to Google Cardboard, which was itself an affordable – if crude – approach to VR. The comes with a face fitting mask and plastic lenses that attach to the Switch in its portable mode, with said lenses turning the Switch screen into two eye-fitting images that simulate VR.
As was the case with the last batch of Labo goodness, the kits will come with a number of cardboard constructs to build, including a camera, a rocket launcher, and… a duck.
Just look at the image above. If any company could get away with a peripheral that makes it look like your child is staring up a duck’s anus, it’s Nintendo. You gotta love ’em.
Oh, and it’s worth noting that this new VR will only work with the Labo games it comes with, and you won’t suddenly be playing Skyrim or Breath of The Wild in glorious Virtual Reality.
Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.