In the leadup to the release of the Nintendo Labo, it’s fair to say that there were concerns. Cardboard is an interesting material to use. It lends itself to construction. It’s lightweight enough, it’s recyclable. But an obvious downside is the durability. Despite this being an innovation with a focus on a younger audience, the materials are pretty easily damaged. Well, Nintendo has come up with a simple solution: Printable templates.
Nintendo Japan has uploaded pdf templates of all the Labo cardboard pieces across both the variety and robot packs. Just download one of the files, print them onto some nice sturdy cardboard and get right to it! The only sticking point may be, well, the stickers. Some of the “Toy-cons” utilise the IR camera built into a Joy con controller as an input. For example, reflective stickers on the back of the piano’s individual keys are read by the camera to determine keys pressed. They are an essential part of some of these models, but Nintendo are not specifically offering them for purchase. But don’t worry, reflective tape is easy enough to find, and generally costs $10 or less for a roll of it.
At this time it doesn’t seem like the Nintendo Australia or America pages seem to be offering this service. Rather, they are allowing users to buy the cardboard separate to the Labo software. However, you can still easily use the files from the Japan site. The sheets are clearly labelled (eg Piano sheets are inked black and have Sheets labelled A, B, C etc.); so go ahead and just print off some sheets from Nintendo Japan.
This is clearly the right move for Nintendo. Rather than fleecing customers, they’re giving more reason to try the tech out. Here’s to hoping that Nintendo Australia / American and other national branches follow suit and offer this up to consumers