National Video Games Examiner Patrick Hickey Jr. chats with the team at Playmation to discuss their new Gamma Gear starter pack, which allows players to harness the power of Bruce Banner himself, The Incredible Hulk. Discussing how the set divers from the Repulsor Gear and what the future holds, Playmation shares the exciting new goals for their brand and relationship with Disney.
Patrick Hickey Jr.: How is this set different from the Iron Man one?
Playmation: The Gamma GearStarter Pack allows users to harness the power of the Incredible Hulk to “smash” their way through missions and pound and stomp through battlegrounds with different Hulk moves while earning new abilities along the way. Repulsor Gear is about feeling the power of Iron Man tech, Gamma Gear is about feeling the strength, size and impact of the Hulk. The Gamma Gear Starter Pack also includes a new Smart Figure, as users can now battle Loki to gain all new abilities and unlock a new location.
Hickey Jr.: How do you guys feel like you captured the essence of Hulk?
Playmation: The Incredible Hulk has moves that are all his own. We tried to really capture the physicality of his movements and signature moves like the thunderclap, ground slap, throwing huge and heavy (imaginary) objects and “smashing” his way through missions.
Hickey Jr.: How do they work together?
Playmation: Playmation toys communicate with each other through technology you’re already familiar with such as infrared and radio frequency. The Avenger Gear (Gamma Gear and Repulsor Gear) respond to all kinds of user actions, not just buttons— including movement and gesture. This allows the toys to bring the story to life around you and interact differently based on your actions. All Playmation products can interact with one another. Two pieces of Avenger Gear can sync for robust multiplayer play, like competitive games or completing a mission together.
Avenger Gear connects to the AvengersNet app via BLE, where registered users can see their progress and achievements, learn about locations, missions, and enemies, test out new abilities, and even load the ones they’ve earned directly to their Gear. You can also navigate to missions directly from the app, as an alternate interface. By connecting to the cloud, the app can save your progress to view on any logged-in device, and even deliver new experiences (new missions) to your Gear for different play.
Hickey Jr.: What are your goals for this new addition to Playmation family?
Playmation: Our goal throughout the development of Playmation is to continue to bring kids and families a fun, active, immersive play experience. Our research shows that kids love to run around and use their imaginations while utilizing technology. The launch of Gamma Gear expands that experience in a new way and we’re continuing to build out the Marvel offering with more to come.
Hickey Jr.: What makes the new figures special as well?
Playmation: Each Smart Figure brings custom experiences, as each character allows you to earn a new, unique ability for your Gear. The Gamma Gear starter kit comes equipped with the Loki Smart Figure, who will help users improve battle skills, and unlock new locations with exclusive missions. You can also purchase additional Smart Figures like Black Widow, MODOK, Iron Man and more.
Hickey Jr.: Bottom line, why should someone pick this up?
Playmation: Are you a Hulk fan? We’ve taken all the great technology of the Repulsor and allied it to Gamma Gear a new experience. As you may know, Playmation takes the technology you’re familiar with—smart toys, wearables, Bluetooth Low Energy, the Cloud, motion sensors, and more—and combines them to create a unique experience in which toys interact not only with the kids who play with them but with each other. Along with the system’s companion app, the toys in Playmation update classic play for the digital generation—allowing kids to become part of the story in real life.
The Repulsor is all about precision while Gamma Gear is all about size and strength – it’s a whole new set of moves and abilities to explore and master.
Hickey Jr.: What’s next?
Playmation: As we continue into 2016, new characters, figures and storylines from the Marvel Avengers universe will come into play. Additionally, Star Wars and Frozen systems are currently in development. Each will use the best technologies to create a system based on the different ways that kids play and experience their favorite stories and characters from that franchise.