The smells of gaming are coming to your home through an upcoming product called the ScentScape.
The Scent Sciences Corporation is currently working on a product called the ScentScape which will release the smells of videogaming into the air. When plugged into a gaming device, it'll use its internal scent wells to make gamers think they're actually in a game, through their noses.
No games have been officially confirmed for the ScentScape, but for what it's worth an image of the machine shows an association with World of Warcraft. It'll potentially be able to release the smells of the pine forests of Azeroth, the smokey ruins created by Deathwing in the Cataclysm, and the salty air of the beaches where the Murlocs reside.
The ScentScape has been demonstrated on the PC but SSC told MCV it'll also be compatible with other "major formats." It works through USB, and uses 20 scent wells contained in a cartridge that can apparently be swapped out between games. Users will also be able to attach scents to their home videos.
Development kits are being shipped out this month and SSC plans to launch the ScentScape by the end of 2011. It'll cost $70 in North America with cartridges priced at around $24. SSC also says it has a "next-gen product" that will presumably improve on the device within a year.
My initial reaction, and yours, is probably: Do we really need to smell what we're playing? Maybe it would be cool to be riding through a forest on horseback in a game and actually smell the trees and nearby flowers, or be warned that a monster is near by its smell, but it seems like that would get pretty old quickly. I just hope it's not compatible with the Abe's Oddysee remake.