Disney Playmation is the epic childhood toy you wish you had as a kid, and one that you kind of want to try on yourself when no one else in the toy store is looking.
Part child's wearable, part laser tag, and part interactive toy, Disney and Hasbro have teamed up to create a new line of toys and wearable accessories.
Think of it as an anti-video game that encourages kids to be more like, well, kids, with active playtime. Kids can use a smartphone or tablet app to learn their "mission," once they start playing, they have to actually step away from the screen.
The wireless system, motion sensors and wearable technology strike a balance between what children want to do (tap screens and play video games) and what parents want them to do (run around).
At an event this morning in Los Angeles, Disney announced that Playmation will be launching later this year with a playset based around The Avengers. A Star Wars version is coming next year, with Frozen following in 2017. Because who of us hasn't wanted to see Darth Vader and Elsa finally square off against each other?
Playmation's first set, the Avengers Starter Pack, consists of a physical, body-worn costume element — aka the kids' wearable. For about $120, it's launching with an "Avengers" themed starter pack that will include a red Iron Man "repulsor" glove that players wear on their right hand and forearm and four smart toys, including two action figures.
The button you press to shoot makes the glove vibrate. If you flip your wrist up, the light in your palm shoots as well. Hold your arm up in front of you to block, it'll vibrate. Lights will change colors if you're "shot."
The game also features a triangle-shaped plastic disk that delivers instructions to players-- in the voice of Iron Man's assistant JARVIS. The disks also shoot at players, and encourage them to run and duck to avoid being in the line of fire. The arm pieces are armed with accelerometers and shake feedback to immerse kids in the play.
And while kids are able to team up and play together to complete a mission, the Repulsors can also be used like a pair of laser tag blasters to face off against an opponent.
The Playmation toys can also be connected to a free accompanying AvengersNet app to unlock additional make-believe locations and characters, or to download new missions to play out, and it doesn't depend on the internet (the toys do not require a constant connection to a Wi-Fi network to work), so they can take their toys wherever they want and play.
Aimed at children 6 to 12, the toys are also wearable by adults (like me, take a look at these pictures). The first Playmation will be available for pre- order on July 7, and will hit stores this October starting at $120.