Skylanders

The goods! (Blurry, sorry)

I woke up this morning super excited and headed over to Toys R Us.  I was mentally preparing myself for lines wrapped around the building and was ready to knock over obnoxious 9-year-olds and stroller pushing mothers that stood in the way of me and my new obsession. When I got there, I was shocked to see no lines (were they already inside?!) and no small children. The second they opened the doors I ran inside and there it was in all its glory… Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure! What is it? Skylanders is a product that combines my love of toys and my love of video games.

The main concept of the game is to collect various figures and through the use of a portal devise, transport them into your video game.  Not only can you play with these characters in the game, but when you remove the figure, it keeps track of all of the character’s information.  And if you want to go play at a friends house (even if they have it for a different video game system), it’s as simple as taking your figures along with you, and placing them on your friend’s portal.  From there, you can play cooperatively or battle head to head.  Man, this is the kind of stuff I wish we had when I was a kid!

Set up and ready to go!

I got home with the Xbox 360 starter pack, along with a few additional characters and adventure packs, and dove right in. I hit the starter pack first, which included the game, the portal of power, and three figures.  The first thing I noticed was the great quality and detail of the figures. After that, I tore into my additional characters and adventure packs, which provide additional game locations and specialty items.  (I got a pirate location and a spooky crypt adventure pack).  After fawning over the figures, i popped the game in and started it up. The game prompted me to summon one of my Skylanders.  I picked an awesome looking tree man named “Stump Smash”, and placed him reverently on the portal, and was amazed as he was instantly summoned into my game. I was having a blast.  It kind of plays like a Gauntlet style action RPG.  Your character has two different attacks.  I moved my little tree man around and as I approached a small stream of water that i couldn’t cross, I wondered if I had someone else who I might be able to use in this situation.  So I removed my figure from the portal and replaced it with a small spear gun wielding fish man by the name of Gill Grunt.  My tree man was de-summoned and in his place appeared my new Skylander. I walked him towards the water and, to my delight, he swam across.

I played on for a bit, discovering many secrets, some that could only be accessed by characters of certain elements, along with discovering various treasures like hats that boost your stats and additional abilities for different characters. The graphics are really great.  The story and characters are quite charming. I’m looking forward to exploring it further and collecting more figures to bring into my adventure.

It may not be the kind of game for everybody, but to those that have young kids, or who are still young at heart, you’ll find a lot of fun and magic in Skylanders.

Note: Skylanders is available for PC, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, and 3DS.

  • Since not one follower of your blog has made a comment about this game / toy I may as well.

    After reading your post, I thought that you lost your mind. His brain must be fried from the many hours of gaming. Keen must have pushed his own brother down some rabbit hole and Graev landed in lala land.

    So I did some further research. Skylanders is cool as hell. I wish I had something like this when my sons were young. All we had was the NES. Skylanders beats NES all to hell. Gaming sure has evolved into something really cool.

    I am buying two systems. One for each of my sons and their young children. I can’t wait play Skylanders with the grand children this Christmas. I will be the cool grand father for an entire year, LOL!!!!

  • It looks really freaking cool. I’m jealous that I can’t be there to experience it new with Graev. I’m hoping to convince him to stream the game. It won’t capture the same feel as watching it all happen but at least I can watch the game.

  • I do not really understand what this is yet… I am going to spend some time looking into it today but my question is how is paying $60 for the core game with a few characters to start then buying new characters for a fee any different than microtransactions or charging for DLC?

  • From a business model perspective, it is pretty smart stuff. As Biophazar eluded to, they’ve found a way to bring microtransactions to a new genre.

    I’d be lying if I said that I hope this works though. Frankly I hope it is a huge flop… I really don’t want to start seeing EVERY game I buy turning into a microtransactions money-grab.

  • I’d love to read a review about this. I think both my boys (7&9) could really get into this. But right now they are both so into building in Fortress Craft on the xbox I’m not sure if this would grab them.

    Side note: FortressCraft has been impressive. Nothing like a 3$ Indie ripoff of minecraft. But it’s really solid from I have seen so far.

  • Penny Arcade described it as LOL for kids – but far more expensive and with more coaxing to get you to spend that cash.

  • I have to agree with the original poster here.

    I bought this game 2/3 days ago, I had been looking for something for my mates Kids for Christmas and I had seen this on Xbox trailers…

    I thought, that looks pretty cool, they love Pokemon and they love Ben 10 and this is kind of both of that combined, collect your Skylanders and blow up the enemy.

    More researching went in to this, and the initial offset of the game for the kids was a bit pricey, so I spoke to my mate, he looked into it and agrees they are going to have so much fun this Christmas from it…

    Now… my research kind of had me… I got Pokemon back in High School… I ound it annoyingly easily additive. I bought this myself and thought… that Trigger Happy guy looks kool… but I shall try this fish man…

    My god… this is damn fun to play! I am solving basic puzzles, chewing through pretty easy bad guys and having a laugh… it aint stressing me out at all. Not an annoying grind if you play mmo rpgs, just a really casual game.

    I went out tonight and bought 2 packs of 3 figures to add to the gameplay, currently I have mostly been playing Trigger Happy, but have also taken a liking to Flameslinger (a little elf that shoots fire arrows from a bow)

    In all honesty, if you have kids / grand kids / nephews around the 8/10 mark… get this, and play with them!

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