Back in October 2011 Skylanders hit the shelves with instant success. Two years on – with $1.5 Billion in the bank – the third game Skylanders Swap Force is here, however competition has emerged with the recent arrival of Disney Infinity…
In this Parent Guide we’ll let you know what both games are about and guide you through their suitability for kids, commenting on their playability, fun factor and most importantly pocket money value.
The evil Chaos is giving the Skylanders a hard time by trying to destroy their nice little world. The aim of the game is for players to utilise the Skylanders’ magical powers to battle through numerous challenges before eventually getting to battle Chaos.
The gameplay of Skylanders is like a story and with each physical character you unlock a different part of the Skylanders world. The interactive nature of the game, which allows physical figures – when placed on the Portal of Power – to appear on screen is simply brilliant and the new Skylanders Swap Force game takes this to the next level by allowing you to mix up characters top’s and bottom’s. If you want to learn more just check out this Geekdad review.
Disney Infinity is looking to curb Skylanders success and get in on the action; according to debut sales figures of $30 million they dont seem to be doing to badly. The basic concept is the same, you buy a character figure and when placed on a ‘base’ it is transported into the on screen Disney Infinity toy box.
Having two modes of play available in Disney Infinity, Play Set and Toy Box, is the major difference between the two games. In Play Set you go through a story mode with characters of the same film whereas in Toy Box characters from all the Disney and Pixar films can play together. The Toy Box mode is great fun for playing crazy games and going on adventures with a variety of characters. You can also personalise your world, mimicking some of Minecraft’s playability.
Are both games suitable for children?
Both games are rated PEGI 7, which means they have little in them for parents to worry about. Common sense media comment on the fantasy violence in Skylanders as a good way for parents to discuss video game violence http://www.commonsensemedia.org/advice-for-parents/impact-media-violence-tips
In a similar way, much of the action in Disney Infinity surrounds defeating ‘baddies’ in a variety of ways. Sometimes characters will use weapons or other attacks to overcome opponents that – due to their toy nature – will break apart and disappear when defeated.
Pocket Money Value
The nature of the games’ character figure add-ons mean that once you’ve bought the starter pack children may feel like they have to collect all the figures. This doesn’t need to be the case however; the starter packs for both games (priced at around £50) have more than enough playing time within them to entertain for a good few months. If children do want to buy additional figures then they are around £10-£15 each which can be saved up for with pocket money on Roosterbank.
Disney Infinity vs Skylanders – Our Verdict
Skylanders has established itself as the top game for kids and the release of Skylanders Swap Force sees an ambitious expansion of Spyro’s world. By bringing in over 50 new characters fans will get a whole new level of entertainment. If kids are already fans of Skylanders it will be likely they will want to stick with the franchise as it’s only getting better.
For Disney fans, the Infinity is pretty exciting, in the same way you can play Lego with all your favourite characters you can now go on virtual adventures with Jack Sparrow, Mr Incredible, Sulley and co. Disney lovers will be well entertained but we don’t think it can better Skylanders. There isn’t much between the games on price either so it will eventually come down to each child’s personal preference.
What are your thoughts on the games? Do your children play Skylanders or Disney Infinity?