The Chicago-based startup has created SymGym – a modified combination of the stair stepper and seated rowing machines common in gyms. It acts simultaneously as a game controller and resistance-based strength training system. Pushing against the machine’s handles and pedals works as a dynamic controller that adjusts the level of resistance according to gameplay. If you’re going uphill in the game, the step controllers become more difficult to push with your feet, while picking up heavier objects will make the arm controllers harder to push than lifting lighter objects.
It can emulate a Playstation or Xbox controller, so you could attempt to play just about any game. It tends to work better with old classic games like Pac-Man or Asteroids or games that are specially designed for it. An online gaming platform where SymGym users can challenge and play against each other via the cloud is in development at the moment.
SymGym’s ability to emulate a controller across multiple gaming platforms could make it more versatile and accessible to a wider array of consumers. The company hopes to launch a product designed for use in homes or gyms later this year. Final pricing for the machine has yet to be decided.
The promotional video below.