Zyro was an interesting Kickstarter campaign that never took off, even though IMHO, it sounds like a fun gaming drone concept.
The Zyro™ DroneBall on Kickstarter
The next time you’re headed to the park to play a game of ball, forget about the ball. A new startup called Zyro wants to replace tennis balls, soccer balls, hockey pucks and frisbees with a special aerial drone designed for sports and multiplayer gaming.
Zyro’s creators — a team of engineers, drone enthusiasts and rugby players — recently launched a Kickstarter campaign seeking $50,000 in funding. They dream of creating games centered around a frisbee-like quadcopter drone with a protective shell that keeps players safe from the drone’s dangerous blades. The current project is only destined to ship to the US and Canada, but if this becomes the sport of the future, who knows?
There are two ways to move the Zyro drone to play. You can use a handheld wand to point it in the direction you want it to go, using similar gestures to swinging a tennis racket or throwing a baseball. If you own another drone already, you can also use it to control a Zyro with the help of a remote control. Imagine being able to play a game of soccer where instead of humans kicking the ball around, players control drones that kick a smart ball around and, hopefully, score a few goals in the process.
Players use the Zyro mobile app to choose games, set virtual boundaries for the playing area and more. The drone can be set to fly from zero to 25 feet in the air, and on fields ranging from 7×7 feet to a full-size football field. You can only play with up to eight people, however, so those bigger courts might prove to be unwieldy for some games.
Check out some of the product features:
Ricochet Zyro off virtual walls in the sky
- Choose your game – pong, soccer, chase or more
- Dodge, soar and bounce within the invisible court
- Hear the action live as Zyro zips, pings and whips
Easy to set up, soar and score
- Box to sky, no assembly required
- No master drone skills needed
- Fly and auto land inside the invisible court
Play solo or up to 8 players for team competition
- Swing and spin Zyro with a wave of a wand
- Pass and ricochet Zyro between players
- Create your own rules, field size and game
Get your own drone in the game
- Attach Zyro Drone Remote to your own quadcopters
- Choose teams and pass Zyro between drones to score
- Don’t Drone Alone!
While the Kickstarter campaign failed, the Zyro team isn’t quitting just yet. You can follow the latest by visiting the Zyro Games. I’ve got my fingers crossed on this one, it’s a gaming drone that I personally wouldn’t mind owning.
The brainchild of veteran engineers, drone enthusiasts, and rugby players, Zyro was dreamed up out of the desire to find an entirely new way to play outdoors. The team started up the project based on a decade of experience building the Gumstix, Inc. electronics that are used in drones. Zyro is based in Redwood City, CA.