HolograFX review: Star Wars-style holograms in your living room
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HolograFX: Star Wars-style holograms in your living room

Is HolograFX from John Adams the best of a new generation of ‘App Toys?’

HolograFX review

Category: App Toys – toys which utilise the power of a smartphone or similar device.
Expect to pay: Around £30
For: Boys and girls aged 8 and over
Will suit: Children who are interested in tech, recording home videos and putting on shows

THIS new generation of playthings known as App Toys are being foisted upon us left and right. It is of course the attempt by traditional toy makers to “get down with the youth” and ensure youngsters are not completely console-fixated by the age of eight.

By offering a physical toy which harnesses the power of iOS or Android devices, you have something that will hopefully persuade kids to stop glaring at screens and get back into the real world via play. HolograFX isn’t really a game, it is more of a show and like any show you do need to put in a fair bit of practice if you’re planning to dazzle any onlookers.

With the HolograFX app downloaded on your iOS or Android device, you place said smartphone within the game and are able to project 20 different holographic illusions.

Holograms were once the preserve of science fiction films like Star Wars, but now kids can also film themselves using the smartphone camera, via the HolograFX app, and project themselves onto the play-set to become the star of their own holographic show.

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With HolograFX’s various bits and bobs, kids can conduct up to 20 different optical illusions

There is a play element in the form of a story – pre-recorded characters come to life as holograms and players can help the hero Jett save the world from the forces of Selektra (or just film themselves fooling around, which we found to be much more fun).

If ALL the promises on the outside of the box came true in a straightforward manner and we’d had no issues with our Android device and storage issues with an iPod touch (this app is a whopper) then we’d definitely be going all guns blazing with an annoying “11/10” or a “It’s 101% brilliant” (I hate it when folk do that) but, there are glitches and niggles, and so we only got about half our holographic experience.

HolograFX costs less than £30 and for that, considering the performance it offers, it is a right crowd pleaser. When the crinkles on both iOS and Android apps are ironed we think a price of £50 could be justified.

Verdict

“We like what it does but want it done better (unfortunately this reviewer’s Android or iPod Touch devices didn’t work well with the toy). Get one for boxing day boredom busting so you don’t have to put on any kind of show/recital for elderly aunts – just wow them with this.”

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About Peter Jenkinson

Toyologist Pete Jenkinson regularly writes about toys in national newspapers like The Sun and The Mail. This super-dad has an unmatched passion and dedication for trying and testing the latest, coolest and most interesting offerings from the world of toys.