Nukotoys links digital apps to physical games

August 22, 2012 8:07:32 PM PDT
Video games have been around for decades, and collectible trading cards for longer than that. But nobody has ever brought the two together in one game, until now.

Sprawled out on the carpet with an iPad, 10-year-old Jordan Levy is playing the new Monsterology video game, "There's a portal and you have to get over there and you fight other monsters to get there," Jordan explained.

And how do you fight monsters? With other monsters of course. And you get them by buying packs of trading cards.

Jordan's 8-year-old brother Ezra has quite a collection, "Some cards are better than others, like this unicorn, it can go pretty far and it's pretty good at fighting," Ezra said.

Monsterology and the new Animal Planet Wildlands are the first games to use a new technology from a company called Nukotoys that recognizes a paper card placed on the surface of an iPad.

"The cards spring to life," Nukotoys Co-CEO Rodger Raderman said. "So now not only do I have a paper version of an ice cyclops, I have a real, beautiful, 3D, fully animated ice cyclops that I can move around."

The trading cards actually use touch technology to communicate with the iPad. A conductive ink on the cards transfers the energy from your fingers to the iPad's touch sensitive display.

"Video games are great, but there's nothing like holding a physical card," mom blogger Ana Picazo said, noting that the kids are captivated by the colorful artwork and competing to collect the rarest creatures.

Walmart, Target, Toys R Us, and Apple all sell the cards, two dollars for a three-pack, or four dollars for seven.

The apps are free for the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.


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