Ever since H found out there was such a thing as Anki Overdrive, he has been mad about it. Mad about it. It literally ticks all the boxes for him: exciting, adaptable and so very, very cool.We got sent a Starter Kit plus some extra track pieces and cars to make things even more thrilling. A great expansion kit to get is the Collision Kit as this allows for all sorts of fun because as the cars go over this crossroads type piece they are likely to crash, or nearly collide, with other cars on the track adding an element of unpredictability.
You can get going within minutes. The cars do need a little charging up, but it doesn’t take long. If you have more than 2 cars you can alternate charging, so you can keep on playing. The cars will run for up to 20 minutes on a single full charge, but they recharge quickly in about 10 minutes. I would suggest you get the cars charging first, then download the app (the app is free) onto a phone or tablet and then assemble your track. Hopefully, that way your cars will be ready or nearly ready to go when the other bits are done.
The track is really easy to slot together and it’s held in place by the built-in magnets. It’s easy to create interest by using household items to hold up bits of track to create an incline. The track is flexible and adapts well to this type of ingenuity, which is great because H is a born engineer.
The cars go off round the track very slowly once to map the track and then a little faster to complete the process. Then they line themselves up neatly at the start line. You then race the cars round the track using the phone or tablet to control them. This means that Anki Overdrive is a great mixture of real life racing and video game technology. The cars mostly stay on the track and only come off occasionally, often this is when they crash which is part of the fun. You don’t need to drive the cars as such, as they work with the app via Bluetooth and drive themselves. You do have the chance to accelerate or slow down, using the gearstick on the app and you steer by tilting your device from side to side.
You can play on your own against virtual opponents or against other players on the same wi-fi network. This is a godsend for an only child, as H can still race when there are no playmates around. H has insisted on taking Anki Overdrive away on holiday with us and it has been pretty easy to do. With the exception of the Collision Kit (which is quite wide) it has been easy to pop the bits into a small suitcase. H played with the cars at the B&B, that we stayed in whilst we were in Wales, and they went to Grannie’s house too. The only place we struggled to play with them was when we visited a friend plus her son, who were staying with her mother. There was no wi-fi available and the boys had to content themselves with taking turns.
These cars are all different with different colours, decoration and weapons. As you play you can earn more weapons for your car. You can use your weapons to defeat your opponent, but they have weapons they can use against you too.
The Anki OVERDRIVE is available from Anki OVERDRIVE direct, as well as from Amazon and Harrods. You’ll need a starter kit, which includes everything you need to get going with the game and this costs RRP of £149.99 . Even with just the starter kit there are 8 different track possibilities and two different cars to race with. It might seem a bit expensive, but the quality is really excellent. It’s an amazingly exciting toy and the whole family will want a go. H has played with it for hours and finds it fun as well as being challenging. We would really recommend it and H is already plotting extra track and vehicle additions for his Christmas wish list.