Nintendo is going to milk cows. Yes, you read that right. Real cows. In real life.
Billings Farm & Museum, a famous educational dairy farm in Vermont, noticed that cow milking was one of the games included in #Nintendo's 1-2-Switch game. It also happens to be something they excel in.
Billings Farm is particularly proud of their century-old educational working farm with over 30 Jersey cows they milk twice a day. So when they saw their profession devalued to a mere game on Nintendo's latest popular console, they decided to educate as well as have a little fun.
They didn't actually expect Nintendo to respond.
Billings Farm Director of Marketing, Tom Remp, and farm manager, Alayna Perkins, wrote a cheeky letter to Nintendo, suggesting Nintendo's 1-2-Switch milking game is too easy, and that they should visit the farm to see what it's actually all about. Billings Farm posted the letter on Facebook and tagged Nintendo.
We're one of New England's premier living history museums. We're writing because our farm staff recently saw the cow milking game for Nintendo Switch and decided that you've taken all the challenge out of milking. We have 30 adorable Jersey milking cows that we milk twice a day, and it is NEVER that easy. We also think that you guys look pretty slow.
To this end, we'd like to set up some sort of challenge to pit our team against yours to see who can milk the fastest. If you accept, let us know and we can work out the details. The question is: Is your team brave enough?
Thanks, Tom and Alayna
Nintendo responded within six minutes. "Challenge accepted!" Not at all intimidated, Billings Farm merely said "Bring It!"
Nintendo started booking flights. Billings Farm warned them that they have been doing this for over 100 years. Nintendo responded just as cheekily, "So have we!"
Billings Farm is quite proud of their heritage, having been running the farm since 1871 and promoting sustainability and responsible land use, along with educational exhibits and a living history museum. Likewise, Nintendo has been in the gaming industry for 127 years, starting out in 1889 as a playing card company and branching out to electronics in the 50s-70s, with gaming in the 80s. Both companies have been at their respective industries for over a century, so who knows how this competition could turn out.
Details are sparse about the actual competition. We only know they accepted and began booking flights, with Nintendo telling Polygon that "they’re actually going up there this week." Certainly Nintendo will milk actual cows for the hilarity of it, though the competition could consist of either a race to see whether a real or digital cow can be milked fastest, a race between Nintendo and the farm to milk a real cow, or even a race to see who can win Nintendo's milking game. Perhaps even all three.
I've never milked a cow myself, but I do know that buttons are a lot easier to maneuver than a cow's udders. Although, Billings Farm may find that the game itself isn't as easy to win against the gaming experts.
1-2-Switch is filled with different face-to-face hand-coordinated games, including samurai training, a Harry Potter-like wizard duel, fashion model catwalk on the runway, air guitar, and "don't wake the baby," among others. In a plethora of weird and oddly fascinating movement games, milking cows seems to fit right in. Players use the JoyCon controllers, hand motions, and button presses to stimulate milking a cow. The game provides audio cues and simulates physical cues via the HD Rumble. The player with the most cans filled wins.
It's a cute little event and likely to be a lot of fun for both Nintendo and Billings Farm. The competition will take place on Wednesday, March 29. It will be closed to the public, but they'll still produce a video for everyone to enjoy later.