I said I’d check it out as I like gadgets (that’s an understatement if ever I’ve written one) and being first to review stuff and well, here we are. The device itself, called the Apptoyz appBlaster, is a handheld gun style add on for an iPhone or iPod touch and gives you a kind of new gaming experience altogether.
It works alright, but feels foreign at first – I guess that it because traditionally you are grasping the device, now suddenly you aren’t connected with the touchscreen interface at all, the gun is.
It uses two felt tipped strange triggers to tap the screen for firing and bombing so the experience is sort of more like using a crosshair on a FPS, only much more disorienting.
I say that because not only do you have this new gaming experience to figure out but the games developed for use with this toy use Augmented Reality as well to add to the confusion. Enabling the camer the monsters are ‘placed’ in your home or office or wherever you blast monsters.
This made me whirl around the room like a lunatic trying to destroy what was eating my somewhere inappropriately. I got dizzy quite quickly then discovered that you can set the playing degrees from 90 to 180 or what I was on – 360. Maybe that setting is for the younger ones?
In all, I didn’t connect with the gaming experience so I have to say it fails for me personally on that level. This would have to be done in the comfort of your home as well, and most of my gaming is spent in transit and I ain’t gonna slick this six shooter on my back. But what works for me is the potential of Augmented Reality!
I don’t think it has really taken off yet and that we have seen the limits of what it can do for gaming, but I think the potential is definitely there – you have to see it to understand. It is walking looking through video into your own life as the movie plays, or some crazy crap like that.
But if you are looking for a different gaming experience with your iPhone or iPod touch then this could be just what you are looking for, it is functional, has been executed well and provides a unique experience much like what is available in the Nintendo 3DS augmented reality functionality.
The following games are currently available to download and use with the appBlaster;
Apptoyz site claims there are more games coming soon which will add value to owning the device, so it if this style of thing appeals to you then give it a crack.
Here is a YouTube video of the actual gaming experience that makes it easier to see to what you will experience.