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Thursday, December 27, 2018

The Nintendo Labo Robot Kit's Sneaky Price Cut

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - There's something weird going on with the Labo. Weird by Labo standards.

According to the Wayback Machine, the Nintendo Labo Robot Kit's Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price was reduced from $80 to $60 between October 22 and October 29, 2018. This isn't a sale. It appears to be a permanent price cut that remains to this day, reflected in all the retail outlets.

But you don't hear about it in the mainstream gaming media, or even in Nintendo's press releases. The only Labo-related bit of news during that time period is a feel-good story about Nintendo distributing free Nintendo Labo Variety Kits (and Variety Kits only, not the others) to the Institute of Play, where they'll be redistributed to elementary schools similarly to Minecraft for education.

Nintendo Labo Toy-Con Variety Robot Vehicle Kits
At first glance, it appears that the Robot Kit got a $20 permanent (?) price cut because it doesn't have an award on its box.

Now Nintendo is trumpeting a bunch of awards. The Variety Kit made it to the Toys, Tots, Pets & More's Arts, Crafts, & Activities list of most wanted toys in 2018. The Toy Insider put the Vehicle Kit on the top 10 STEM toys, in the top 4 for ages 6–8. The awards continue, with the frauds at TIME Magazine rating the Nintendo Labo one of the best inventions of 2018. I disagree with that.

No one wants to give the Robot Kit an award (and I don't blame them), so I guess that's why it got a price cut that absolutely no one talked about. Usually, Nintendo creates press releases just to talk about price cuts, such as when the Nintendo 3DS went from $250 to $180. We all know that happened not because Nintendo is nice, but because that $250 was priced way too high for the market and the 3DS was failing as a result. (It was such a famous price cut that back when KoopaTV staffer RawkHawk2010 was in college taking Intro to Macroeconomics, he used the 3DS price cut as the basis for his project on supply & demand. He got a C.) Same thing with a Wii U Deluxe price cut (remember when the Wii U released at two different price points?) and individual permanent game price reductions.

Is the Nintendo Labo that toxic and knowingly dangerous that they refused to mention the Robot Kit's 25% price reduction?

They did want to mention this deal, though:

Nintendo Labo Kits holiday Christmas sale GameStop buy two for $99
Purchase any two Nintendo Labo Kits for $99? At GameStop?
Double the villainy!

I waited until after December 22 to write this article because in no way did I want to encourage readers to take advantage of that deal. I want readers to take advantage of, say, the CAPCOM Winter Sale of 2018 and buy some Ace Attorney games.

That's how the media is biased, folks. They choose what stories to cover, how to cover them, and how much time they give to them. In KoopaTV's case, we've written negatively about the Labo three different times this month (including today).

This is a negative story because there is something so unbecoming about the Nintendo Labo that Nintendo silently cut the price of the Robot Kit without an announcement, and they're basically pretending that the Robot Kit was priced at $80 all along since the Labo's launch. There's no price cut slash indicating its former price. They're trying to rewrite history.

Sorry, KoopaTV has an eye on you, Labo. You too, Nintendo. You won't pull a fast one on us. They tried to stealth-launch the entire Vehicle Kit as well (for world-dominating ends), but we caught them. And now we caught them again.

Oh, and if the Robot Kit really wants an award, we'll give it the KoopaTV Award For Worst Toy Idea, 2018. ...Actually, I saw some Fortnite figurines at the toy store recently, so that's some competition. Nevermind.

KoopaTV won't have a toy category in the Game of THAT Year Awards 2018 that will happen in early January 2019. Stay safe with KoopaTV for all of the sneakiness that the Labo tries to pull. Meanwhile, Ludwig wonders how much money Nintendo paid for the Labo to win those awards, or that TIME recognition. KoopaTV would rather spend that money on you, the reader, in the form of giving back via the KoopaTV Loyalty Rewards Program. Round 23 ends very soon, but you can still have the chance to win something via the once-a-year luck-based raffle portion! (As opposed to the always-constant skill-based portion.)

Following this article, KoopaTV actually dug up most of Rawk's college essay on the Nintendo 3DS price drop and republished it.
The price drop on the Robot Kit is visible from the retail field.


  1. Were the Fortnite figurines just those "pop vinyl" things? Because, freaking everything under the sun has those these days, so I wouldn't count them as a dedicated product at least.

    1. I don't remember, but looking at them online (and they exist) I think they were more realistically-proportioned.
      I should've taken a picture.

  2. It looks like the robot kit is going straight to the junkyard where it belongs. Eventually, the others will follow and we will never again have to worry about this cardboard menace ever again. The Labo is surely on its last legs, and I could not be any happier about it.

    1. HOLD IT!

      That's quite a baseless "Eventually" leap. The Labo is only getting more powerful (even if the Robot isn't, the others are), aided by powerful distribution networks.

  3. You really wanted Labo to fail, hmm?


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