PinSwitch Turns Your Nintendo Switch into a Tiny Pinball Machine

One of the many things that’s cool about the Nintendo Switch is how people are coming up with creative ways to dock the handheld. Most of the docks I’ve seen keep the screen hidden. In this case, the dock turns the Switch into a tiny pinball machine instead.

Created by Sakura RetroModding, the PinSwitch is a miniature replica of a pinball machine, where the screen of your Switch becomes the playfield.  It works in concert with the Zen Pinball game Pinball FX3, and has real arcade style flipper buttons, a launcher button, and a mini joystick for nudging. The tiny cabinet is made using 3D printed PLA, and covered with colorful decals with fun Nintendo art on them. It connects via the Switch’s USB-C port for zero-latency control, and holds the bezel in front of the handheld with mini neodymium magnets.

Check it out in action, and see how to set up the PinSwitch in the videos below.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear to provide a passthrough charging port, so you’ll be running entirely on battery power, but otherwise this looks like a really nifty accessory for pinball fans. If you’re interested, you can pre-order yours on Etsy for about $222. If you don’t want to spend that much, they’re also making a version without the backbox section and graphics for about $116. They’re expected to start shipping around the end of the month.

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Children will perhaps never understand what it was like to plug an NES into your CRT television, blow on the back of a game cassette before plunging it into the console and praying that the game would work. These small idiosyncrasies were just as part of the Super Mario experience as the actual gameplay was. Pressing harder on the buttons and somehow expecting Mario to jump higher, and just having absolute contempt for those shellback birds known as Koopas. All this was baked into the Mario experience that playing on a smartphone emulator or on a Switch just doesn’t capture. How does one bring that tactile experience back to Super Mario for the younger generation then? Well, LEGO has a fitting solution! Meet the LEGO Super Mario Interactive Building Sets, a Mario gameplay experience that brings the beloved Italian plumber to life along with his entire world.

The starter kit comes with a LEGO Mario, complete with dynamic eyes, a screen on his torso, and even vocal effects that should light up your eyes when you hear the familiar high-pitched “It’sa Meee!” The series also comes with multiple expansion packs including popular environments like the Piranha Plant Power Slide, Boomer Bill Barrage, Mario’s House & Yoshi, Toad’s Treasure Hunt, Bowser’s Castle Boss Battle, and King Boo and the Haunted Yard. You get the ability to custom-build Mario’s obstacle course using the blocks provided, and Mario even appropriately reacts to blocks, creating sound effects when he punches blocks and collects coins, or dying when he gets hit by a bullet or steps in lava. The kit even comes with Mario’s friends and nemeses, complete with killer mushrooms, those blasted Koopas, Bowser, Yoshi, and many more! The LEGO set says it’s made for kids above the age of 6 but that won’t stop me from adding it to my wishlist.

Designer: LEGO

This SNES Is Now a Nintendo Switch Dock

The Nintendo Switch and its docking station are pretty good looking the way they come from the factory. But that hasn’t stopped people from wanting to customize their game systems to their own liking. If you’re into the look of classic Nintendo game systems, then you might want to build a Switch dock like this one, which a modder built into the case of an old Super Nintendo console.

Nintendo fan and casemodder Imokruok previously turned an 8-bit NES console into a Switch dock, so it was only natural that their next build would be based on Nintendo’s 16-bit SNES. The design is quite clever, turning the cartridge port into a charging dock for the Switch handheld, and adding holders on its sides for docking its two JoyCons. Altogether, it cost about $157 for all of the parts used, which included a defunct SNES purchased on eBay. It took Imokruok about 40 hours to complete the build.

If you’re interested in learning the nitty gritty of the build, check out the full photo gallery and notes, which Imokruok documented over on imgur. Now that they’ve done an NES and an SNES, I can only assume that N64, GameCube, and Wii docks are next on their list. Though if they continue on that course, they’ll need to eventually turn a Nintendo Switch dock into a Nintendo Switch dock.

[via Reddit via Go Nintendo]

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