Anki Overdrive Takes Slot-Racing Cars into 21st Century

Lately, there were some voices against the self-driving cars, saying that this is something that completely takes all the fun out of being behind the wheel of the car. Well, wait ‘till they hear about the slot-racing cars and how much they’ve changed from the cars they’ve played with in their youth!

There is a great deal of nostalgia over the old Scalextric and they way those cars used to clatter all over the furniture and emit all those odors. Now, Anki Overdrive brings a completely new spin to this kind of car driving games. Some people say that comparing Anki Overdrive to Scalextric is the same as comparing a McLaren P1 to an Audi Quatro from 1980. This means that both of these games have pretty much similar or related basic components, but that the Anki’s game is so much more sophisticated.

The thing with Scalextric was the fact that it didn’t really have an application in the real world and the full-sized cars, while Anki Overdrive possesses the technology that will be visible in our cars in the near future. This is exactly why some people claim that this game is the first video game out there that’s been programmed for the real world.

Scalextric was being operated by physical hand-held controllers that have been connected with the circuit by wires, Anki Overdrive has the cars piloted by an app for your smartphones! The app is available for download from the app store, and after that, you just have to connect your phone with the cars through Bluetooth. Then, you need to select the race mode and how many players are going to take part in it, and you’re ready for the trial lap, where you’re going to get to know the circuit. Some people claim that this is a real glimpse into the future of real car operating, that are going to be driverless in the near future. Anki Overdrive’s modular track on which the cars are going to run is inked with a special ink and possesses optic technologies which allow these cars to scan it 500 times a second, which allows them to understand their position and to be controlled rather precisely, no matter what the track configuration is.

There are 3 car models: Nuke, Skull and Thermo. You start them by placing them on the start line and pressing the “start” button on your app. You get control over them at that point. People claim that the best races are the ones against the AI, which can take control of all the other cars but your own.

You can unlock various upgrades, weapons, race variants, modes and laps. You do this by racing more and more. The racing sounds you hear are made by your smartphone speakers, making this whole experience like driving an electric car.

The main controls do get a bit restrictive; most of your work involves switching car lanes, accelerating and decelerating, activating weapons and the power-ups. Also, the pace of the race isn’t as brutal as you might expect.

It is wise to set your track near a phone charger, due to the fact that the Bluetooth uses up the battery rather quickly. Another drawback is the weapons, which really aren’t that spectacular as their names make them out to be. Basically, whenever you shoot a rival, you just get a light on top of their car, making it stop.

However, not counting those little bugs, Anki Overdrive really is amazing in the sense that it offers us a glimpse into the future of motoring. It is a game that offers a feeling of a childlike wonder, no matter how old you are. The minimum recommended age for players is 8, but this does not mean that the grownups can’t enjoy it every now and then.