Wrex the robot dog
September 11, 2008 Based on a similar concept to the now defunct Aibo, Wrex The Dawg is the latest robo-pet from WowWee and his moods are distinctive. Ill-mannered Wrex was styled using discarded mechanical and electrical parts and is designed to be any kid’s mischievous robotic pal.
According to Alex Barton, Interaction Design Manager of WowWee in Hong Kong, Wrex was created as a way to “spoof” other robotic pets on the market. “His looks and personality are therefore quirky and a little dysfunctional,” Barton said. Wrex is able to scoot around, play and obey commands and run like a real dog. He can turn his head, twitch his ears, pant and even wag his tail. And like a real dog, Wrex The Dawg can also perform tricks including “shake paw”, “play dead”, “beg” and “tail chase”. Wrex is also capable of losing focus and of releasing the odd bit of gas. He displays three moods (happy, angry and crazy) and three desires (exercise, call of nature and hunger). The moods are expressed using his nutty slot machine eyes. Wrex has nine motors that power a wide range of body part movements, including the tongue, ears, mouth, legs, tail and more.
While Wrex can be reprogrammed using the control panel on his back, he is just as likely to misbehave and act like a cat, perform wild actions or even disobey your commands all together. The remote control is styled on an industrial crane with large dials and buttons which makes it very simple and easy for kids to use.
WowWee’s Wrex The Dawg costs USD149.99 (it will be available on Australian shelves from October). Earlier this year WowWee teamed up with Pixar and Thinkway to create a line of Disney robotic toys, while other toys in the WowWee stable include RoboReptile, Robosapien, RoboRaptor and RoboPet.