Nintendo has taken a decidedly old-school approach to content sharing in the upcoming Game Builder Garage.
Nintendo’s latest game creation tool is Game Builder Garage – a unique little tool which feels inspired at once by the level-creating shenanigans of Super Mario Maker, and the more open-ended programming that was previously offered by the Labo Toy-Con Garage. The new game is a fascinating attempt to teach Nintendo’s basic game-making principles and approach in a fun way, through seven step-by-step lessons that then open up into free-form game creation.
We recently got to see a little more of the game in preview and were left pretty impressed by the scope of the editor, the thoughtfulness of the teaching tools, and what it seems possible to create.
Beyond building your own stuff, half the the joy of games like this, of course, is in experiencing the creation of others. In Game Builder Garage, that takes a significantly different form than in titles like Mario Maker.
To get specific, Game Builder Garage has no ‘traditional’ in-game browser where the uploaded creations of others are listed. There’s no menu with developer picks, no search functionality, no voting or user reviews. Instead, the process of sharing is almost entirely divorced from the game and goes old-school – it’s all about word of mouth.
Of a sort, anyway. Game Builder Garage players will have their own unique ID number. You can find out a friend’s number from them outside of the game and then punch it into your copy to see and play any of their uploaded creations. Alternatively, players can post a specific game ID for their creations – and by punching that into the menus of Game Builder Garage, others will be able to download it.
But as I said, there’s no in-game way to do any of this. You can see your IDs and post them online or send them to friends. I’m sure websites will crop up very quickly for sharing Game Builder Garage creations – but you won’t be doing it in-game.
Nintendo likely has a few reasons for doing this, but chief among them is that Game Builder Garage offers a huge amount of customization to the player, allowing them to create their own textures, themes, and whatever else they want. That would make for a moderation nightmare, with Nintendo responsible for anything downloaded through their search functionality – but if you got the game code off twitter, there’s presumably a degree of deniability for them. There will, however, be moderation tools for reporting inappropriate creations.
Game Builder Garage launches exclusively for Switch on June 10.
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