Which Star Wars character did you want to be growing up? Maybe Leia, maybe Luke, there’s definitely some Boba Fetts out there — all understandable, but LittleBits is looking for kids who want to be the unsung heroes of the Star Wars galaxy. Someone has to be out there building those lovable droids, right? LittleBits is hoping to find the droid builders of our galaxy with their new Droid Inventor Kit, an electronics set that lets kids build their own working R2-D2 model.
If you’re not familiar with the brand, LittleBits makes building little electronic gadgets kind of like putting together Lego sets. Instead of needing a bunch of solder (not kid friendly!), LittleBits puts individual sensors and components, like the battery, motion sensors, motors, speakers, and so forth, on individual blocks that can be snapped together. The companion app makes it easy to identify and control each of those parts to make the finished product move around, light up, or make sounds. It’s entry level robotics, with the hope that kids will be inspired to go on to studying how the real things work — and maybe get that first soldering iron when they’re a little older!
The Droid Inventor Kit is the same deal, but kids will get to build R2-D2! The set includes six blocks, the LittleBits version of a circuit board, and the R2-D2 frame. From there, it really is like building a Lego set, but you get a working droid for your efforts! Better yet, one of those blocks is a proximity sensor that can be used for Force control. Put your hand near R2’s back, and the proximity sensor will pick up that movement and push the droid forward. There’s plenty of other cool tricks the droid can pull off, so it’s a set ripe for experimentation, too.
The LittleBits Droid Inventor Kit is available now for $100 online or in stores — if you want to get the kids an education holiday gift that won’t be looked at like broccoli, this looks like an awfully good choice!