China’s SmartX is launching a toy-game hybrid experience today that allows you to use your smartphone to control a Galaxy Zega toy tank in a multiplayer battle.
It’s a lot like the racing car games from Anki, but in this case, you can battle your friends using sci-fi toy tanks on a magnetic, snapped-together battlefield or on any surface where you want to fight.
Shanghai-based SmartX wants parents and kids alike to play together with the Galaxy Zega tanks, which connect to smartphones via Bluetooth. I saw a brief demo with a lot of shooting and mayhem.
Above: Galaxy Zega tanks can be controlled via smartphone apps.
“I wanted to find a way to play with my young son and not let him be isolated behind his smartphone and tablet,” said Tango Yang, CEO and founder, SmartX, in a statement. “I started my company SmartX to solve that problem, developing toys that combined the appeal of online mobile games with the interaction of a real-world toy. We think Galaxy Zega is a new form of recreation that appeals to young kids like my son, their parents, and even big kids who have always loved the strategy and competition of mobile games.”
The palm-sized tanks are called Zegas. Players shoot their opponents with lights to gain points and earn up to 30 more skills. You can disable other Zegas with “oil spills,” freeze an opponent, and use other skills to gain an advantage. You can fight to gain points, skills, longer lives, and other treasures.
Above: Galaxy Zega
Two Zegas come in the Galaxy Zega Starter Kit for $150. Each tank has a name, personality, unique strengths, and weaknesses. A magnetically-connected, snapped-together battlefield is included with the starter kit, though Zegas can run on any surface to make the experience even more exciting.
An accessory, the X-base, adds an extra level of excitement, as a Zega can drive over the lighted X-base to gain more points, skills, or treasures. Game modes include capture the flag or survival.
“We wanted to make Galaxy Zega a fully-developed game that is different every time you play it. We’ve built in more than two dozen special skills that make Zegas powerful and unique. We created as many different powers as we could think of to add more variety and bring the best of the mobile games to life,” Tango said.
The starter kit will be available in stores soon in North America. SmartX launched the Galaxy Zega in 2015. The kit comes with 12 tracks and 16 walls.