Join gaming leaders online at GamesBeat Summit Next this upcoming November 9-10. Learn more about what comes next. 

Spin Master has launched its Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone, which combines the fun of a kid’s drone with an augmented reality game.

Toronto-based Spin Master said the $150 drone is now on sale at U.S. retailers, including Barnes & Noble and Amazon. The toy is one more example of the convergence of digital and physical gadgets. By combining a drone with a game, the company hopes to differentiate its product from scores of others on the market.

Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone is the first to deliver an immersive augmented reality (AR) game experience where players fly a physical drone in an interactive 3D digital universe. Using a BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) enabled smart device and the free Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone app, the drone flies over a tracking map.

Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone

Above: Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone

Image Credit: Spin Master

That map enables visual and spatial tracking so you can see a 3D augmented reality world on a smartphone or tablet screen. The app is available for download on iOS and Google Play. I downloaded the iOS app and tried it out. The drone is super lightweight, with four quad rotors.


Three top investment pros open up about what it takes to get your video game funded.

Watch On Demand

You set it down on the mat, and focus the app’s camera view on the drone. The camera recognizes the drone, and once it does so, you can tap a button to make the drone rise. Then you learn how to maneuver the drone back and forth. Basically, you put your finger on the screen and swipe in a direction you want the drone to fly.

In the game, Air Hogs pilots are challenged to lead a team of heroes through endless search and rescue missions and challenges to save the world from attack by alien forces. Your job is to fly the drone over certain spots indicated on the tracking map. As you do so, you can see animations on the screen, such as a soldier snaking down the rope coming down from the drone.

“With Air Hogs, Spin Master created the RC flight category. Our history of disruptive innovation continues with the new Air Hogs Connect platform. It pushes the boundaries of a remote control vehicle by combining it with one of the most talked about technologies today – augmented reality,” said Nick Beliaeff, vice president of production at Spin Master, in a statement. “This is where innovation meets entertainment.”

Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone blends reality and animations on a smartphone or tablet screen.

Above: Air Hogs Connect: Mission Drone blends reality and animations on a smartphone or tablet screen.

Image Credit: Spin Master


GamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. How will you do that? Membership includes access to:
  • Newsletters, such as DeanBeat
  • The wonderful, educational, and fun speakers at our events
  • Networking opportunities
  • Special members-only interviews, chats, and "open office" events with GamesBeat staff
  • Chatting with community members, GamesBeat staff, and other guests in our Discord
  • And maybe even a fun prize or two
  • Introductions to like-minded parties
Become a member