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Colors Live Turns Your Switch Into A Drawing Tablet, Stylus And All

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Jens Andersson is a Swedish programmer who created the drawing app Colors, something you’ve probably heard of if you’re artistically inclined and you own a Nintendo handheld. The original Colors was released on the DSi and sold fine, but the series didn’t truly take off until the release of Colors 3D on the Nintendo 3DS. It remains one of the biggest selling digital-only titles on the device, with over 300,000 copies downloaded.

In its heyday, Colors 3D was practically a required download on the 3DS to show off what it could do. People were creating incredible works of art — and with three-dimensional depth you could see! Paintings you could walk into, faces you could almost touch. How do you top that?

You don’t, and the Nintendo Switch has no 3D mode, so Andersson considered the Colors line over with. “Many people have asked me to bring Colors to Nintendo Switch,” he says. “However, I didn’t really want to do that, unless I could make a better version than Colors 3D.”

Andersson figured the introduction of a stylus pen — a real one this time — would be the necessary improvement. But he had no idea how to pull that off until an inventor friend in Hong Kong contacted him to show off the pressure-sensitive stylus he’d rigged up. This pen uses an audio signal to approximate pen sensitivity, so it can run off any device with a headphone jack. The Switch just happens to have one.

Now Andersson and his team are working on Colors Live, to be launched on the Nintendo eShop later this summer. It really will come with a pen, but the team needs an extra financial push to produce the first batch. Enter Kickstarter!

A $41 pledge gets you one Colors SonarPen and a digital download of the app, to be delivered when they’re completed. Increase your pledge to $62 and you’ll gain access to the beta version, which is currently being debugged on Windows and is compatible with Wacom and Huion devices (the final version will be exclusive to Switch).

If you want a pen (and this reporter sure does), you’ll need to hurry. There are only three days left on the Colors Live Kickstarter campaign!