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New game gadget makes perfect scents

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Smell your way through games

Love the smell of napalm in the morning? You might catch a whiff of exactly that the next time you hurl a fireball in World of Warcraft.

At least that's the hope of Scent Sciences Corporation, the outfit responsible for creating the ScentScape game peripheral. Due out worldwide this coming Christmas, it's designed to help immerse gamers even further into interactive experiences by blasting them with -- terrifying as it sounds -- game-oriented aromas.

Via a USB connection, this newfangled attempt at smell-o-vision packs 20 'scent wells' into a cartridge that emits odors -- such as pine, ocean and smoke -- based on feedback from the particular game you're playing. No word if that includes the less enjoyable scents (ie. undead hordes, bear dens) too, but at least the thing includes a control knob for adjusting the intensity of the smell.

The system will retail for $70, with specific cartridges costing $24 apiece. And while it's only been demoed on the PC, Scent Sciences is planning to support home consoles as well.

"ScentScape performed very well at CES this year and was very well received by those getting a live demo," company CEO William Wiles told game site MCV. "We have some ideas to enhance the product in the future and also have a next-gen product that will be out within one year."

So what games will work with the ScentScape? Scent Sciences has yet to reveal a full list of compatible titles, but a World of Warcraft-branded promo image indicates that you'll probably get a chance to sniff your way through Azeroth. If you dare.


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