AT&T has re-imagined the classic Snake game in a new, interactive, and wholly unnecessary way in an effort to promote the capabilities of its 5G network. Called Warp Speed Worm, it’s an AR effect that can be used on Instagram and Facebook Messenger video calls.
Snake was, of course, the game of choice on your early Nokia phone. Or, depending on your age and general level of apathy toward high school mathematics, you may recognize it as the game you played on your TI-83 graphing calculator while you were supposed to be learning about coefficients. Not that I know anyone who would do that.
In any case, this newest contribution to the great Snake game genre is an AR filter in which the titular worm is controlled by your head movements. You can play with friends, which AT&T would like you to do on their 5G network, or you can be a total doofus and play on your own using the camera in the Instagram app.
It’s sort of cute — you tilt your head left or right to direct the worm to pick up little game controller icons. As you’ll recall from AP Calculus, the more the worm eats, the longer it gets. When the worm inevitably eats itself, the game is over, and a sad little dead worm crown appears on your head.
I gave the game a try by myself after struggling to understand how to save and use an AR group effect on an Instagram video call. I’ll admit that I missed the physical controls of my calculator and that my neck creaks alarmingly loud when I tilt it repeatedly. I also can’t comment on how AT&T 5G would have enhanced the experience — it worked just fine on my home Wi-Fi.