We got a chance to stop by the WowWee showroom on sunday, and they had some
amazing things on display. WowWee is the maker of the popular Robosapien robot,
a programmable, state-of the art toy robot. But the Robosapien was not the
star of the day today. It was the Alive Chimpanzee.
Basically, the Alive Chimpanzee is a fully animatronic chimpanzee head, that
looked so real it was scary. It was unbelievable.
The first animal to come out of the jungle and into your living room is a highly
detailed, realistic-looking, life size bust of a Chimpanzee. Cutting edge Facetronics
technology enables the Chimp to duplicate the signature sounds and movements
of his counterparts in the wild. The Facetronics Chimpanzee was developed by
George York, a Hollywood special effects expert now affiliated with WowWee.
York specializes in creating the finest and most innovative animatronic creatures
and prosthetics in the entertainment industry. With over 16 years of experience
in the special effects industry, York can replicate the likeness of virtually
any character imaginable. With realistic skin, hair, and moving features, this
Chimp is so real, it"s UNREAL!
His head will turn to look at you, and every
one of his features moves, just like a real Chimp, from his eyes and eyebrows
to upper lip. You"ll find it hard to believe that he isn"t ALIVE! The Chimp
is fully animated, interactive and communicative, has full puppeteering control,
and has a fully autonomous mode as well. His sound and touch sensors, along
with his IR vision system, allow him to interact with you. Based on that interaction
he will shift between a happy/curious mood, a playful mood, a fearful mood,
or even an aggressive mood if you are too rough! For tech lovers five years
and older, the WowWee Alive Chimp will be available in December 2005, for an
approximate retail price of $130.
According to the guy giving the demo, they are working on a Tiger head, and
eventually a human head.
Also on display was the Roboraptor. This looked like something right out of
Zoids. It's a 32 inch long robotic raptor with touch sensors and moods. Pull
its tail and it gets angry and snaps at you. Rub his chin to calm him down.
Sound and touch sensors are all over his body. The design on this was really
At 32 inches long, Roboraptor is a realistic robotic beast who is easily controlled
and mastered with a remote control. Roboraptor"s fluid biomechanical motion
allows for three bipedal movement gaits- predatory, walking and running. Multi-sensor
environmental awareness allows Roboraptor to hear, see and feel people and
the environment around him- he has multiple touch sensors in the head and tail,
while sonic sensors detect sound and direction. Look out- Roboraptor has a
strong jaw with powerful snapping action. With three distinct moods: hunter,
cautious and playful- Roboraptor will keep you on your toes. Go near his face
when he"s hunting and he"ll behave aggressively; touch his face when he"s playful
and he"ll nuzzle your hand. Ages; 6 and up Retail: $120 Available: August 2005
The flagship WowWee product, was on display in it's upgraded form, the Robosapien
Robosapien 2 now comes with color recognition, so it can follow a red ball
as opposed to a green ball, and also features a great "learning" system where you can record posed movements instead of entering them on a keypad. No word yet on whether or not it obeys the three laws of robotics, or if it is programmed to hunt and kill Sarah Connor.
For 2005, WowWee introduces Robosapien V2. Robosapien V2 brings the fluid
movement and biomechanical agility of Robosapien to a whole new level. Gaining
a whopping 10" in height, Robosapien V2 now has full range of motion and the
ability to pick up, drop and throw objects with his finely tuned precision
hands. Advanced agility allows him to bend over and twist from side to side,
so he can now sit, bend, lie down and stand up. Robosapien V2 will interact
with his surroundings, and even responds with a"real voice"...Robosapien V2
Fully equipped with infra-red radar vision, Robosapien"s V2 moving
eyes with blue LED lights can detect obstacles, track movements and take objects
handed to him.
Sensory features include a vision color system that enables Robosapien V2 to
recognize objects and skin tones; he can wave when he sees you and reach out
to shake your hand. A stereo sound detection system allows him to respond and
react to noises in the environment. Robosapien V2 comes equipped with"laser"
tracking; trace a"laser" path on the ground and he"ll follow it. And, Robosapien
V2 couldn"t carry the Robosapien name if he didn"t possess a one-of-a-kind
attitude-filled personality! Robosapien V2 is so advanced he can even control
his new friends- Roboraptor and Robopet. Ages: 6 and up Retail: $250 Available:
Lastly we have the Robopet, a trainable robot dog. Think of it as a less
Robosapien V2 has a new best friend- Robopet! This biomechanical Robopet is
extremely expressive with lifelike animations and digital animal sounds. Robopet
is easily programmed with a remote to perform sequences of movements and tricks.
Robopet walks, crawls, sits down and stands up, runs and jumps, and can perform
an array of pet tricks including lying down, rolling over, begging and howling!
Robopet is trainable and responds to positive and negative reinforcement. Multi-sensors
allow Robopet to be aware of his surroundings. He is able to avoid obstacles,
respond to sounds- even function as a guard dog! When it is time to take Robopet
for a walk, use the"laser" light leash on the controller to mark a path for
Robopet to follow. Robopet requires seven AAA batteries. Ages: 6 and up Retail:
$90 Available: October 2005
There were some other products on display that we didn't get a chance to
check out, but be sure to check out the WowWee homepage at http://www.wowwee.com/ for more information.