The summer holidays may have already come and gone, but parents everywhere will always find themselves searching for new and innovative ways of keeping their kids occupied.

Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit

Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit

And in the form of the Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit, the Japanese manufacturer has brought an exciting addition to the gaming market.

The eye-catching Vehicle Kit is, in fact, Nintendo's first post-release Labo Kit, which was launched in April.

The Labo Kit is a gaming and construction toy platform that uses an extension for the Nintendo Switch console.

Using cardboard cut-outs and other materials, users of the device are able to combine these with the Nintendo Switch console display and Joy-Con controllers to create Toy-Con, which can then interact with game software.

The Vehicle Kit, meanwhile, includes the cardboard parts to make three streering consoles - one is for a car, and the other two are for a plane and a submarine.

Each of these comes with a slot for a key that's built around a Toy-Con.

These pieces vary a fair bit in regards to their difficulty, but the steering wheel for driving a car is the most taxing challenge, taking upwards of two hours to construct.

In truth, the first wave of Labo kits proved to be a relatively underwhelming release, with consumers finding that their appeal was somewhat limited.

Sure, they could be fun at first but the novelty would eventually run out and then the kits would be tucked away in a cupboard somewhere for months.

But already, Nintendo appears to have heeded the advice of consumers and acted accordingly.

That's because the new launch has managed to retain all of the charm of the original kits while being supplemented by an excellent game that has a distinctly Nintendo-like feel to it.

At first glance, it could appear to be little more than a throwback toy, but in reality, it is actually a cutting-edge piece of design.

And yet, it is still ideally suited to kids, who can revel in the hands-on element of the Labo Vehicle Kit.

For example, the first thing you're required to do with Nintendo's latest release is to build the accessories.

This can take a fair while, of course, but at least you'll have the Switch tablet - which serves as an interactive instruction manual - to help guide you through the process.

It's all quite straightforward, really, and so the process won't be nearly as arduous as you may suspect.

And if you or your child has a particularly inquisitive mind, there's even the chance to watch short, interactive vignettes that allow you to develop a better understanding of how the designs work.

Indeed, one of the great things about the product is that it's sure to spark the imagination of children everywhere, helping to develop their understanding of how things function.

In that sense, the Labo Vehicle Kit is a rare - and yet much-needed - mix of fun and education for young kids.

So, what else makes the Vehicle Kit release an improvement on the initial release? Well, another stand-out feature is that it's simply a more well-developed game.

For instance, there is a huge island space that allows kids to explore and, in turn, to learn at their own pace.

Thankfully from their point of view, they are not being dictated to by a list of instructions or even a time limit, thereby giving them all the freedom they might crave.

The island itself is loaded with interesting secrets, but the onus is on the gamer to go out and discover them for themselves.

For young learners, the joy of the game is to be found in this process of self-discovery, which represents an obvious and deliberate deviation from the norm.

Without question, the Labo Vehicle Kit is a notable leap forward, fusing playful learning tools with the type of charm we've all come to expect from a Nintendo game over the years.

And perhaps most excitingly of all, Nintendo thinks it's just scratching the surface as far as Labo is concerned. Mind you, this is a more-than-decent start.

Nintendo Labo Vehicle Kit for Switch rating: 4 / 5

RRP: £59.99 ($69.99)