Nintendo Labo didn't quite get off to the flying start that Nintendo may have been hoping for; despite receiving an overwhelmingly positive reaction from fans and media on the whole, the two bundles - the Variety Kit and the Robot Kit - quickly plummeted out of the sales charts. Support for the new brand will continue, however, with strong aspirations still very much present in Nintendo's thoughts.
Speaking with The Verge, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé has explained Nintendo's thought process on Labo. Interestingly, he likens the new experience to games such as Brain Age and Wii Fit, suggesting that it will continue to sell at a steady pace.
“Labo is the type of game, much like Brain Age for the Nintendo DS, much like Wii Fit, it’s a game that’s going to sell for a very long time at a very steady pace. Which is a different curve than a traditional video game. And so from that standpoint, our focus is on how we can continue to support it, how we continue to help consumers understand the proposition. There’s a lot of activity happening with Labo around the summer, especially as kids are out of school, we think it’s a prime opportunity. Labo is off to a strong start and in our view is going to continue to get a lot of support.”
Shinya Takahashi, general manager of Nintendo’s software division, Nintendo EPD, also mentioned how Labo's target audience is still in the process of being reached. As it stands, fans of gaming (who might not be completely sold on the concept) are the only people who really know about it, but Nintendo hopes this will change in the future.
“We want to get to a demographic that’s not traditionally reached by games at all. I think the case with Nintendo Labo right now is that there are some people who know about it, and quite a lot of potential still for us to explore. The people who are aware of Nintendo Labo right now I think are still in the circle of Nintendo fans and game fans in general. We’re really interested in how we can go beyond that, to people who aren’t really in the loop of game news.”
Nintendo Labo does seem like a unique middle ground between traditional video games and the more hands-on style of toys such as LEGO; the aim here is clearly to sell the product as a creative toy with interactive elements, rather than a video game that has parts to build. Whether or not Nintendo will be successful in reaching its desired audience is yet to be seen, but continued support for Labo in general can only be a good thing.
Have you tried Nintendo Labo? Did you have fun building and playing with the Toy-Con? Let us know with a comment below.