Anki Overdrive

anki overdrive

The Anki Overdrive

The Fast and Furious franchise, spanning over eight films across the decade and four continents in the course of its story, is an international hit. It’s especially popular among auto enthusiasts, gawking at every noticeable model its cast wields, ranging from muscle cars, Japanese tuners, and supercars, to straight up classics. The latest movie is no exception, inspiring merchandise of different types, including toy cars. One such example of a company is Anki, makers of the Overdrive, Fast and Furious version. 

This slot car set contains a miniature replica of Dominic Toretto’s Dodge Charger. Fans will recall that the cyber-terrorist Cipher coerced the Charger into fighting the hulking International MNX of Luke Hobbs. With this set, you can relive and somehow recreate the thrilling ice-cold battle in the Siberia that involved a submarine along a glacier field, about to be broken by said submarine.

Backed By Amazing Technology

Three Carnegie Tech graduates founded Anki, a San Francisco robotics company, in 2010. The company brings mere objects to life, and their Overdrive series is a testament to this. The Overdrive series features an array of different interactive software and hardware mounted to model cars. These work in conjunction with mobile devices. It’s quite a futuristic take on the slot car mold. The Overdrive line, revealed to the world in 2015, is an improvement to their original Drive line released in 2013. Both lines had been on the receiving end of accolades, and have enjoyed generous sales figures.

As for the set itself, it comes with 2 straight pieces. One has a gimmick that whoever drives alongside a certain spot will get hacked, resulting in speed loss; and four curve pieces. It also comes with two overpass brackets, guard rails, tire cleaner, and a charger fit for four cars.

The cars are operable on mobile devices such as tablets, requiring an app and doing the necessary scans to read the cars for control. The track pieces latch on by magnets. These pieces consist of plastic film, which you would need to scan before a race. You can race them in a friendly competition, or complete a campaign based on the film. Furthermore,  you can use your existing Anki Overdrive cars, if you have any. To top it all off, the set has real voices from Hobbs and Toretto!

The Anki Overdrive Experience

The set provides quite a futuristic experience, as you will have the privilege of piloting a drone from your own tablet or phone. Overdrive touts itself on being a real-life video game, making use of software on mobile devices, but with real-life elements added into the mix. Up to four can play in a track. However, the prerequisite is that  you must have an Anki account. To get it, simply download the official app for free from either Google Play or the App Store.

The cars stay glued to the track most of the time, even lining up by themselves at the start of a game. Playtime can be lackluster, as a full charge offers 20 minutes game-time, may seem plenty, but can easily come and go in a fun session. Conversely, it only takes 8 minutes for a full charge. This is quite a short time in comparison to most electric toys.

With enough expansion, this set may offer a good time for the whole family, provided all have a device and their own Anki account. Its cars are characters all their own. This means they have their own unique appearance, strengths and weaknesses. In addition, they have their own unique weapon. Thus, it is imperative to choose the car that suits your play style the most. However, you can switch around cars for more variety. There are still standard weapons, along with the unique weapon. These relate to a resource called “energy”, which you should manage throughout the game.

Expansion Possibilities

Additional track pieces are also available. These consist of the same materials. In addition, they have the same flexible rubber-like material, and have the same magnetic end clips to fasten into other pieces to make a whole track. The accompanying app also has additional modes, such as King of the Hill, a game of keep-away, and Time Trial, a no-fuss mode where you can practice and set blazing times around the track. Additionally, additional cars are available.

All in all, the set, and the line itself is a great example of how playtime can be revolutionized.  TheAnki Overdrive line is the future of the toy car. Although with its imperfections, which are usually related to the software, the Anki Overdrive line is the perfect set for a futuristic toy racing experience. It still is a toy line, although all the high-tech stuff may incite people to think of other categories, one being an experiment in AI.

anki overdriveAnki Overdrive

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