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Nintendo Surprises With Cardboard Accessories for Switch |

Nintendo Surprises With Cardboard Accessories for Switch

Nintendo Co. surprised gamers and investors alike by unveiling new cardboard accessories which interact with games for its Switch console.

Nintendo Labo features cardboard sheets that users can pop out and fold into everything from motorbike handles to fishing rods and a miniature piano. The Switch’s detachable Joy Con controllers are then inserted, with their sensors detecting movement such as turning a corner to manipulate games on the screen. Shares of Nintendo rose as much as 3.3 percent in Tokyo after the unveiling.

Focusing on physical ways to interact with software sets Nintendo apart in a gaming market where the majority of revenue is made by tapping a smartphone screen. The move is also a nod to the Wii a decade ago, which broadened the audience for Nintendo’s products by getting kids and grandparents alike to swing controllers and play virtual tennis and bowling.

“This is extremely fresh. It’s a surprise,” said Hideki Yasuda, an analyst at Ace Research Institute. “It’s hard to estimate how much it will sell. They’re targeting families, so likely kids will buy it first, but it could broaden to other generations.”

Nintendo Labo will initially come in two sets that go on sale April 20 for $70 and $80 each. A video announcing the new product showed footage not mentioned on its website or in the press release, including a cardboard steering wheel and gas pedal, camera and gun-like controller. A Nintendo spokesman confirmed additional accessories are under development, but declined to say if and when they will be released.

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