Tomorrow we will finally get to see what is brewing with Disney Infinity 2.0 at E3. We obviously have had many hints and tips regarding more figures joining the line up and its going to be pretty interesting to see what else DI has in store for us. However, we can’t really forget that Skylanders will also be showing whats up their sleeve. Disney Infinity was the new kid on the block last year, so it had a little more attention then the seasoned vet who created the industry. This year on the other hand, it feels like both of these guys are coming out swinging!
It was Activision that created the ‘Interactive Gaming Toy’ genre with Skylanders back in 2011, so in a way you have to give them some credit for paving the way for Infinity. However, this doesn’t mean they are responsible for how awesome Disney Infinity is. Although both games are in the same category, they really aren’t the same type of game. Skylanders is an already prebuilt game where the hero goes up against the bad guy. You are in control of all your heroes and you can choose to play them at anytime. Disney Infinity is a game with prebuilt games that can only be played with their corresponding heroes/villains and they also follow a story to go up against the bad guy. There is also another section of the game that is not prebuilt. Instead its up to you to build and add infinite gaming possibilities, and use any hero/villain you like, figure wise. Even though both these games have their differences, one thing they share is having some pretty cool collectable figures.
So why do I think these two games are duking it out? It has to do with the “Interactive Gaming Toy” genre that I mentioned earlier. They are the only two games in this category and this means the market share is up for grabs. There is so much opportunity to cash-in, that now they need to step up their game and fight for our precious dollars. In late April, Disney reported the category growing 79% in just the last two months of 2013. Those are the busiest months of the year. That shows you that even though many people believe they will oversaturate the market releasing more new figures, people are still spending their buck on this stuff and there are no signs of stopping. So what do these guys have to do to win this war? Its time to give us some amazing games and quality new figures.
What will Skylanders be bringing to the table? Heres a brief run down…
FIGURES: They will be introducing new Skylander figures known as Trap Masters. They all will be yielding these crystal colored weapons that not only make them look amazing, but it adds a higher quality look to the figures. I get the feeling that this may make them more expensive, but I hope I’m wrong. There will be a total of 50 new figures (not including variants/lightcore) added to the existing roster of 175 figures. 16 will be Trap Masters, 18 will be all new Skylanders, and I’m assuming 16 will be reposes.
GAME PLAY: You will now have the ability to play as villains in the game. Aside from the 50 new figures you can play, you will also be able to play as 40 villains that you “trap” throughout the game (Thats right! You can finally play as Kaos). There will also be new levels, character powers, and level cap increases to help you spec your figures as you please. Of course this will be a new chapter in the series so expect a brand new story line.
INNOVATION: There will be a brand new portal and trap crystals to add a “Toy-to-Life” aspect to the game. You will now use these clear crystal totems known as Traptanium Crystals to trap the villains in the game. The new base has a slot where you will insert the crystal and this will trap the villain. The portal also has a speaker that simulates the villain actually leaving your TV screen and into your living room. Its a cool little addition to the game. It definitely adds the feeling of trapping the villain in real life, at least for the little guys. Is it just me or do these trap crystals remind you of poke balls?
What about Disney Infinity? Heres what their arsenal looks like in brief…
FIGURES: The Marvel Universe has joined the ranks of Disney Infinity. They will be adding many figures from the popular Avengers and Spider Man franchises. Also rumored to be included will be the Guardians of the Galaxy. They will be introducing at least 20 new Marvel figures and an unannounced number of new Disney property figures (Maleficent and Merida already confirmed). Aside from the new figures, they also will be introducing 80 new power discs.
GAME PLAY: Brand new Marvel playsets will be introduced. The announced Avengers playset has been confirmed to be four times larger then the Incredibles playset, which was Disney Infinity’s largest playset in the first game. All figures will have a level cap increase to 20. The toy box has been improved tenfold! The building will be much easier. There will be automatic toy box builders to help the little guys as well as adults create a toy box of their liking. New challenge paintbrushes will make building challenges and games in the toy box easier. You will now be able to customize your own “pad” or hang out if you will, by simply adding a door to an existing object and you can build within the building. You will have new structured play that will allow for more fun within the toy box. Lots of cool new features! I think I missed a bunch!
INNOVATION: There will be new pyramid shaped discs to allow new toy box structured play. These discs will be like mini playsets where you will play with its designated figure in a 4-5 hour adventure. Once you beat the adventure, it unlocks what they call skirmish mode which allows you to use any figure within these structured game discs. Already confirmed are two Marvel toy box discs that contain a dungeon crawler game and a tower defense game. Two other toy box discs confirmed are for two different Disney properties. Although we aren’t clear yet, its been rumored to include a Maleficent and Merida game. New types of power discs will also be included. Two new discs known will be “team up discs” that summon another character to fight with you, and “costume or skin discs” that change the appearance of your figure in-game. Those team up discs totally remind me of summoning the Genie or Mushu in Kingdom Hearts.
So as you can see, both these games are swinging really hard!
What about all the PR with both these games? Who’s winning that war? I feel Disney Infinity is taking the lead on this mater, although Skylanders is closing the gap with recent announcements. Skylanders had their press conference to announce Trap Team back in April 23rd in New York. They released the game trailer, release date, new base and trap crystals, and a few new figure reveals. Disney Infinity had their press conference to announce Disney Infinity 2.0: Marvel Super Heroes a week after on April 30th in Hollywood. They released the game trailer, six new figures, a playset, tons of details regarding their new playset and toy box features, and a few power discs. After these events, Skylanders went silent, while Disney had more reveals thru an event in San Francisco. Two new figures were revealed with Maleficent and Merida joining the six Avengers. As far as information about new content and collectables, Disney has given us more. Skylanders has been recently revealing a few new Trap Master figures via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. They even made a new figure available for pre order that isn’t supposed to be available at launch, but with the preorder you will get it that day! So Skylanders is putting up a fight.
E3 will definitely be a war zone! They both are going to fight for some attention at this event. Skylanders recently threw a big punch showing their new exclusive giveaway at the event. A special Traptanium crystal containing a rare different colored villain that will only be available at E3. More details about the game will be revealed tomorrow. Disney just recently announced that there would be 40 new Disney themed power discs and shared what a few look like! No word on their exclusive giveaway yet! Also PS4 owners will have a DI 2.0 collectors edition exclusive, that will include Hulk as a timed exclusive. More answers to come tomorrow!
Not to mention these guys have both their booths right up against each other! If theres any indication that there is a war zone, we shall see tomorrow at the expo!
So what will it look like tomorrow? Who will win this war? I think if they both continue to give us great games and quality figures, they both will! They continue to make kids happy and lots of fans are enjoying the new content and collectables. These two new games are going to really swing for the fence! But they are swinging with the most important intention in mind…their fans! I still think it will be a massive war tomorrow, but they both will be fighting for all of us!
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