Anki DRIVE, featured in Apple's latest iPhone keynote presentation is now available. The starter kit runs $199.95 and comes with two cars and a special racing track. Each vehicle drives itself with artificial intelligence, while players can control the vehicles for interactive fun. Anki DRIVE is described as the first video game in the real world.
Two expansion cars are available separately for $69.95 each. The action is powered by a free iOS app, which wirelessly connects to the racing cars. Each car has special weapons for battle on the track, and evolves intelligently over time as racing experience accumulates. Players can race against friends or the artificial intelligence built into each independent vehicle brain.
While the Anki DRIVE website currently lists the product on backorder, it can be shipped from the Apple Store online in 24 hours. Apple retail locations also have the Anki DRIVE set up so iOS fans can check out the system before buying. So far, reviews on the Apple Store are overwhelmingly positive, with one consumer describing Anki DRIVE as "slot cars - evolved." Build quality is top notch and the game even features an active tutorial that teaches gameplay while the cars are in motion.
The track itself measures 3.5 by 8.5 feet and easily rolls up for storage when not playing. The cars are rechargeable, and since they can drive themselves, there's no hopping off the track. The Anki DRIVE app is compatible with the iPhone 4s and later, iPad 3 and later and the iPod touch 5. While a complete Anki DRIVE system with four cars is not cheap at $340 (not to mention the iOS devices needed to control the cars) the game looks to be a hit this holiday season.