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Collector’s Corner: Pinfinity’s Augmented Reality Gaming Pins

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PinfinityAR playtest

I am always on the look out for cool new things I can add to my collections. Like these kawaii Animal Crossing Pinny Arcade pins, or the jaw dropping beauties Udon sent my way. A month or so ago, while looking for more video game pins, I stumbled across a site with a very unique concept. What if a pin was more interactive? I love displaying them on my pin boards or lanyards, but what would really put a pin over the top? Pinfinity pins do just that.

Pinfinity blends pin collecting with augmented reality to create the coolest experience. With a combination of original pins and partnered property items priced competitively at $11.99, there is something for everyone in this growing catalogue.

Today I am going to focus on three pins from Pinfinity’s video game collection: Street Fighter regulars Ryu and Chun-Li, and the I Heart Tetris pin. All three are enamel filled on zinc alloy. None of the pins I was sent showed any enamel dips or nicks in the metal work which is one of the first things I look for. The colors were brilliant and true, another plus. After downloading the app, it was time to see the magic firsthand.

When I think of Street Fighter the very first thing that comes to mind is Ryu bouncing in place in his trademark crisp white gi. That familiar animation pops away from the pin and instantly brings a smile to my face. This may be the only way I ever intentionally pull off a Tatsumaki, and I have made peace with that. My only wish is that he had an addition move like the Hadoken or Shoryuken.

Being a female gamer when Street Fighter came out meant that Chun-Li and I spent a lot of time getting our butts handed to us. I like fighting games but that doesn’t mean I’m the best or dream of being on a pro team anytime soon. When Chun-Li came to life on my phone she brought her Lightning Kick to life. Absolutely loved watching this animation play over and over.

Many of us older gamers have fond memories of Tetris. For me, it was the hours upon hours spent burning through batteries on my classic Game Boy with these colorful blocks. Of the three pins I was sent to review, the I Heart Tetris pin is my everything. Not only does it bring the game to life, but when you click on the Bonus Menu there are some links to wallpapers and a photo frame.

Right now the Pinfinity pin selection is small but growing. Street Fighter, Tetris, and Crypt of the Necrodancer make up the in-store video game offerings. Pac-Man pins were featured in the company’s subscription package for December, and I am kicking myself for not getting in on that. And I did spy a recent sign up page for Worms 25th Anniversary items. Exciting things seem to be in the pipeline with Pinfinity. I’m excited to expand my collection and see just how far augmented reality pins can go.

Annette Polis
Annette is an avid gamer and obsessed with Nendoroids. She is that one person you know who actually likes Fallout 76. You may have spotted her streaming or writing about video games elsewhere.