AppGear, from WowWee, is trying to lead the way in a relatively new market of toys that actively interact with smartphones. AppGear currently has a slate of four games – Alien Jailbreak, Elite CommandAR, Foam Fighters, and Zombieburbz. Each game has toys that are selling now from AppGear’s website, and unlock different activities and stories in-game when used. For example, using a different foam plane with the Foam Fighters app will unlock new missions, locations, and stories, while Zombieburbz puts players in the zombies’ shoes for once, with each zombie figurine having unique missions and storylines. One zombie figurine is actually controllable in real life.
The games work in tandem with the toys, so both are purchased as a pair from AppGear. Most are $9.99, except for EliteCommandAR, which will be AppGear’s flagship product. That game comes with a gun accessory for the iPhone which allows players to engage in augmented reality battles with invading aliens using printable AR markers that can be placed around the immediate environment, or with other players in the area over a Wi-Fi connection. Elite CommandAR is not out yet, but you can preorder it. The upcoming Alien Jailbreak sounds like it will also have accessory-based gunplay, but at a cheaper price.
So, on the downside, you might never you see your smartphone again once your kids can get their hands on these games, but look on the bright side – at least they’ll be moving around!