Studied the effects of embodied interface agents and their gestural activity on acceptance and effectiveness of a TV/VCR system. 106 participants (aged 17-63 years) were given information about a VCR either by text, speech output, or an embodied interface agent. Embodied interface agents displayed normal gestures, no gestures, or gestures that were not synchronized with speech output. Participants were instructed to imagine that their VCR's intelligence system had registered a malfunction, and that the text/speech output/embodied agent had been activated to help solve the problem. Afterwards, participants were asked to recall the help information presented, and to evaluate the form in which it was presented. While participants experienced the embodied agents as more appealing than either audio- or text-based help, they also rated this form of help as less effective in getting the problem solved. Furthermore, participants preferred less gestural activity of agents.