In an effort to reconcile kids’ ongoing love affair with video games and the growing parental concern over how much couch time children are logging, L.A.’s Toy Quest has come up with a new gaming system designed to gets kids up and moving.
Go Go TV (US$39) is a cartridge-based console that actually puts gamers right in the middle of the action using motion-capture technology. When the game is plugged in, an image of the player appears on the screen. And by placing their hands in certain positions, players control the game play through their movements.
‘You actually see yourself on the TV screen and interact with the characters,’ says Toy Quest president Brian Dubinsky. ‘If you want to fly like Buzz Lightyear, you can. And when you are leaning left, you see yourself bearing left through the clouds.’
Toy Quest will roll the system out in March with eight initial games, to be followed by seven new ones every three months. Dubinsky estimates that roughly half the titles will be based on entertainment properties, and Toy Quest has already secured licenses from Disney and DreamWorks for its launch phase. Each cartridge will retail for US$20 and come with some type of accessory (for example, a gymnastics game might come with a baton), all of which are wireless, relying instead on infrared sensors to communicate with the console.
If the concept behind Go Go sounds vaguely familiar, that’s because Sony came out with a similar product called the EyeToy for its PlayStation 2 video game console in late 2003. To avoid going directly up against such an entrenched electronics behemoth, Toy Quest is targeting a slightly younger three to eight demo.
The hope is that younger kids will be more open to a lifestyle change if it’s encouraged by a cool activity. ‘We know kids are playing video games, and that’s not going to change,’ says Dubinsky. ‘[But Go Go] is about getting them off the couch. [With our system,] the only way to get better at the game is to move more, jump up and down, run through the mazes, catch the butterfly, or whatever. They more they move, the better their score will be.’