Thursday, October 17, 2013

Anki Drive - Mixing real life race cars with videogames

If you grew up playing with slot car race tracks (and dreaming of those amazing Scalextric tracks and cars) you'll now that these days, younger generations won't be that much enthusiastic about cars running on a track. But what if you ditched the tracks completely, and added a smartphone remote control to the mix - together with the option to use "weapons" to destroy your opponents? That's what Anki Drive is about to do.

The game is similar to the many "car racing/destroying" games. The only difference is that you have real cars running around a real racetrack, and you can either play with friends or let the computer take over the other vehicles. Yes, the cars zoom around the track magically, and each time you fire your weapons in your smartphone, it affects them in real life.

You can control how fast your car goes and can choose which "lane" you want by turning your iPhone, but even if we were just looking at computer controlled cars battling each other it would be fun enough.

While it doesn't come cheap ($199) it might be the excuse you were looking for to lure your kids from the "digital world" back into the real one. In any case, just imagine at the possibilities... such a game can easily be updated to add new behaviors and "weapons", for example a "sticky glue patch" that when dropped would slow the pursuing cars by 50%... Hope they will make it hackable so other developers/fans can mess around with it as well (or else, I imagine someone will reverse engineer the bluetooth protocol they use. :)

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