Launching in April, Nintendo dazzled the world of recycling by taking unsold Wii U boxes and reselling them as Nintendo Labo! An assortment of DIY cardboard accessories for the Switch, Nintendo Labo‘s intent was to try an entice new audiences from outside of the standard game-playing demographic.
While Nintendo Labo has sold decently, sneaking in to the NPD Top 10 sales chart during it’s launch month, there’s still work to be done on the fledgling concept.
While the concept of reaching people outside of gaming isn’t something new for Nintendo, as it venture heavily into it’s “blue ocean” strategy with the Wii and Nintendo DS, where it launched the Brain Training series as well as the packed in Wii Sports that seemed to captivate not only traditional gamers, but also drew in an audience of “non gamers”. Nintendo believe Labo will allow them to catch lightening in a bottle for the second time.
“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,” says Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé. “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.”
By introducing a unique way to interact with their media, Nintendo have set themselves up to potential succeed in capturing the outside market again, but according to Shinya Takahashi, general manager of the company’s software division, the outside market has yet to be drawn in.
“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.”
Do you think Nintendo Labo will reach the same critical mass as Brain Training, Nintendogs or Wii Sport? Let us know in the comments below!