You've probably read a lot over the past few days, or at least you probably have if you've got any interest in video games outside of the mobile sphere, about Nintendo Labo. People have been getting their hands on the new tech, and the general consensus is that it's looking like it might be pretty special.

Which got me thinking - is this the sort of thing we're likely to see coming to mobile any time soon? And if we are, what form is it likely to take? These questions and more are all going to get answered in the next few paragraphs, so let's put on our thinking caps and see where they take us.

How might it work?

If you don't know what the Labo is, let me give you a brief run down. It's essentially a bunch of cardboard that you can attack to your Switch in order to make it do some cool stuff. One kit turns it into a sort of bug that vibrates around your table. Another turns it into a piano. A third turns it into an awesome robot suit made of string pulleys and a jetpack.

Obviously there are going to be some limitations when it comes to how that might play out on your mobile device. For one thing there's no controllers to play around with, which could impact dramatically how the mobile version might work.

But there's definitely potential for something similar on mobile. Just look at Google Cardboard. Sure, it wasn't the most advanced VR headset, but it was a fraction of the cost, and it did the job well enough that anyone who bought or found one didn't really feel the need to get anything else.

There have been other mobile peripherals too. Most of them have involved strapping your iPhone into a gun to play a sort of AR FPS. And that's probably the sort of thing we're going to see in the first round of Labo-likes for mobile. Simple projects you build yourself, to use as sort of flimsy add-ons.

What might the problems be?

Well for one thing there's that word there - flimsy. Cardboard isn't renowned for its strength, and while dropping one of the controllers from your Switch might be a bit annoying, smashing up your $1,000 iPhone is priobably going to be a bit more of a kick in the teeth.

Then there's the screen. Because all of the bits and bobs that make anything happen in your iPhone are attached to the screen, it's going to be pretty hard to see what you're doing, or control it, if you've slotted that screen into a cardboard contraption.

That's something that could be bypassed by using the Apple TV, but it strikes me as something that's unlikely to happen. There's a better chance that this sort of new idea is going to come to Android well before it comes to iOS devices.

How likely is it?

To be honest, I can't see anything like the Labo becoming popular on mobile. Perhaps on Android, but it's unlikely that there's going to be support from Apple for this sort of idea, and that will mean third party development, which is never exactly brilliant for iOS.

There might be the odd attempt here and there, but without the backing of Apple it's doubtful that it'll happen. That's a shame, but on the flip side of that, at least you're not going to destroy your phone trying to juggle a card robot that you've put together yourself.

Have your own ideas about Nintendo Labo for mobile? Make sure you let us know in the comments

Posted in: News, Opinion
Tagged With: Nintendo, Android, Ios, Cardboard, Nintendo Labo
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