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AppBlaster gun uses iPhone game as augmented reality scope to zap aliens

Heads up, marines. We've got beaucoup movement on the scope, so stay frosty. Pew pew pew -- it's the apptoyz appBlaster toy gun with augmented reality Alien Attack game!

Richard Trenholm
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
Richard Trenholm
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Heads up, marines. We've got beaucoup movement on the scope, so stay frosty, keep both eyes pointing in the same direction, don't mix your drinks... Look out -- aliens! They're coming outta the walls! Pew pew pew -- it's the apptoyz appBlaster toy gun with augmented-reality Alien Attack game. Get some!

I wanna introduce you to a personal friend of mine. This is an appBlaster plastic assault rifle-style toy gun with two pistol grips and over-and-under mounting on the top for your iPhone or iPod touch. It's like a Nerf gun without the Nerf -- which makes clearing up and reloading a lot easier -- while making a mess of the onscreen invaders.

Slot in your iDevice and fire up the Alien Attack game, and you can get to cremating cosmic critters, kicking botty and taking names in augmented-reality combat. Now let me see your war face!

Augmented reality overlays information on top of the real world, as seen on the screen through the phone's camera. Some apps offer data about the place you're standing, or directions to useful places nearby -- this one zaps ET. Welcome ta Urf!

We kind of expected the zapping would involve some kind of clever use of the phone's accelerometer to work out where you're aiming, but the reality is far more ridiculous. The blaster's twin grips pack dual triggers, which control little arms on top of the gun that tap the phone's touchscreen. Game over, man, game over.

The phone's motion-sensors are used to cock and reload the appBlaster, and the two triggers allow for primary and secondary weapons for a bigger bang. Hey ALF -- say hello to my little friend!

Alien Attack is free from the iTunes App Store, with a full version launching on 6 July. The appBlaster goes on sale on the same day and costs a mere £20 -- iPhone not included, sadly. It's on sale at RED5.co.uk or in Selfridges, which we imagine would make an excellent environment for an alien invasion. We wouldn't suggest waving it round on public transport though, as the police tend to take a dim view of that sort of thing.

Now let's take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

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This is my appBlaster. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
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The appBlaster costs £20 -- iPhone not included. Lock'n'load, ladies.

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