EyeToy: AntiGrav Review
So far the EyeToy has been used to play mini-games or to add your picture to a game. Finally we now have a full-fledged game that is designed to use the EyeToy as its controller, AntiGrav. AntiGrav is a futuristic hoverboarding game that evokes memories of the countless snowboarding games out there sans the mountain. The gameplay is pretty standard and straightforward for the genre, but itís the way that the game is controlled that makes it stand out from the rest.
|Doing some high-flying stunts.|
Previous EyeToy games have all displayed your image onscreen, thereby putting you into the game. At first glance AntiGrav appears to be a standard game, though. You pick your character from your usually line-up of ravers and thrashers and then play from the perspective of a third-person chase camera. You will notice one difference between AntiGrav and other extreme boarding games in that there is a bullseye in the lower right-hand corner of the screen with a head and two hand icons. This represents how the EyeToy is tracking your movements, and as you move your head and hands the corresponding icons in the target area do as well.
Your head is used for steering Ė move your head to the left and you will turn to the left. The more you move the tighter your turn will be. Jumping over obstacles or ducking under bars is accomplished by moving your head up and down respectively or more accurately by jumping and crouching down yourself. Your hands are used for several tasks. The first is for braking Ė placing both hands out to your sides will cause your hoverboard to slow. Next you can use your hands to grab the rings which appear on your left or right as you go zooming past. They can appear in high, low, or mid vertical positions, so you need to reach high to grab the high ones and grab down low for the lowest ones. Finally your hands play a major role in stunts. Youíll have the opportunity to go flying off of cliffs, jumping off of ramps, and going up the sidewall of a half-pipe and then pulling off stunts while you are airborne. Moving one or both of your arms in different sweeping motions will trigger corresponding tricks that you can string together into long combos as long as you stay airborne. Needless to say, all of this arm waving and head-bobbing is a decent workout and long sessions can lead to sore deltoids.
When it works, controlling AntiGrav can be a fun experience pretty much unique in home video gaming. Youíll find that you get a lot more into a game when you have to lean with the board to make it through a course. On the downside things donít always work perfectly. First of all, for some reason AntiGrav requires significantly more light than other EyeToy games. Lighting conditions that donít even phase other EyeToy games can send AntiGrav into pause mode and leave it there until you turn on more lights. Also, the game can sometimes lose the tracking a bit and no longer focus on your face. This can make for some frustrating moments when midlevel you find yourself controlling steering with your neck. Lastly there is sometimes a delay between your movements and the onscreen result. Most of the time you can try to compensate for this by starting a move or jump early, but this is very difficult when it comes to catching the rings. Even when you can see them coming and put your arm out, you can find yourself inexplicably missing the first ring as if your hand passed right through it.