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With the release of Disney Infinity 2.0, one of the things I was very excited about was to see how the Toy Box had improved, how much easier would it be to create something of my own and more importantly, how fun would it be to create a toy box. One of the big draws of creating a Toy Box was the chance it could be featured as a Weekly Toy Box on Disney’s Toy Box TV and more importantly, letting other people play my creations.

Every week with 1.0, I’d play through the weekly top 5 toy boxes and whenever I attempted to create my own, I got extremely frustrated and would give up within an hour. It just wasn’t fun.

So when 2.0 came along, with more templates, creative toys and many of the issues from the first game fixed, I wanted to try my hand at creating a toy box regularly for the weekly challenges and with Toy Boxes now being available to everyone as long as Disney approve it (and with my own Disney ID friends), it isn’t like they won’t be use.
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So after a couple of weeks of playing through the play sets, created toy boxes and toy box games, I decided my first proper “challenge” toy box would be created for the Haunted Mansion challenge in October. That would give me a couple of weeks to get to grips with the new toy box after I had unlocked the majority of the new toys.

Deciding how I would undertake this challenge wasn’t too hard, I knew I wanted to theme it on the Phantom Manor, which is the Disneyland Paris version of the Haunted Mansion. There was one big reason I wanted to do this, the Phantom Manor has a slightly different back story which is connected to the Big Thunder Mountain attraction, basically meaning I could get away with adding lots of Lone Ranger themed items into my toy box (all of which had been unlocked). I slightly mixed things up a little by adding some Pirates of the Caribbean into the mix, with the main aim of my toy box to save Captain Jack, who had been kidnapped by Davy Jones and was being held in the Phantom Manor. This also meant I could add some more POTC toys. I wanted to have a general theme running through the toy box and not “too” random. But obviously, Disney Infinity allows for random.

The basic story was done (Yes, it’s a bit weak, but its my first challenge toy box) and I came up with a rough design on paper. I was on a flight back from my holiday and with a bit of free time to kill, I sketched out a rough floor plan on the sick bag (it hadn’t been used!).

I decided I didn’t want too many linked toy boxes, the loading times are annoying but I also knew I wanted to experiment with some different ideas and get some real life practice in. Its much easier to practice with a goal in mind than just randomly placing items and testing.

Very quickly I realised when building is that having a flying character like Iron Man is much easier for getting around the toy box when building. I also discovered its a good idea to try to hide lots of the logic toys away, even though they are slightly hidden, you can place them anywhere, so it makes the toy box look nicer.

With 2.0 bringing in Interiors, I wanted to at least try doing an Interior and to see how it could be used, while the interiors have some uses, I quickly found I wanted lots of the toys from “outside” that weren’t available (here’s hoping for 3.0).

It can be a little frustrating to get to grips for the first time and learning from my mistakes but its much more rewarding when I got it right. Many of the new logic toys make the toy box more playable and hopefully more enjoyable. There are lots of things that could possibly be made easier but with time, these toy boxes are just going to get so much better.

Creative toys can be a great when they work, but understanding how they work can be a little tricky and I decided early on that I had to focus on one style of game and keep to it, I always say its better to do a few things good then lots of things badly. So I decided to focus on enemy waves and sorting out the logic for changing the sky/music, adding text as well as the basic setting up of the game and the ending. Another thing I picked up was not to place the enemies until you are nearly done, my first toy box was almost impossible to edit once all the enemies kept spawning, so when I got the third toy box, I made sure everything was done before adding the enemies and their respected logic items.

I would recommend everyone attempt to build a toy box for one of the weekly challenges at least once. It adds a new challenge to Disney Infinity and keeps you coming back in for more, I was surprised at how many hours I had put into building my toy box without even realising, (there was a couple of nights, I lost track of time and was an hour late going to bed!). And the reason for this was simple, I was really enjoying the whole building process.

If you would like to play this toy box, you will find it here.