Jungle
Skylanders Giants

Skylanders Giants

(Activision)
Platform(s): 
Ship Date: 
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Grade:
A+
Players: 
1-2
Did You Know?

The new portal for the game now has a USB plug that connects to the game system for unlimited play.

Back in my day collectable figures were little eraser pink wrestlers. Can’t quite recall what they were called. If you wanted true interactivity there was a show on Sunday mornings where, if you owned a very pricey starship gun, you could shoot at the screen when red target points popped up and on the back of your starship gun you could accumulate hit points. The points were good for nothing and the show quickly disappeared, but that was as close and exciting to actually being in a game as you could get. Then years later when the NES came out there was the more expensive model that came with a robot. I never owned it and I don’t ever recall knowing anyone else that did, but apparently if you owned it and a certain game it could interact within the game. Obviously it wasn’t that great.

Skylanders Giants is not a new innovation, in fact it’s a sequel to the original game. For me it brings the best of both worlds into play. For starters there are tons of small collectable characters that you can purchase and they all have their own in game attributes. Special powers and abilities if you will. Secondly, by placing them on the portal for the game they come to life on the screen. That’s pretty amazing. What else is pretty amazing is that when you upgrade each individual character their toy counterparts act as memory card that saves all of their in game upgrades. You can remove them form the portal and place them back on weeks later and you pick up where your character last left off experience and ability wise. That’s pretty awesome.

Apparently if you owned characters from the first Skylanders game you can still use them in this new world. There are also old characters that have returned in this sequel in new designs and with new attributes. As a parent who shells out the dough for video games, and let’s be honest, sometimes they can cost an arm and a leg, it’s nice to know the game is backwards compatible. I’d rather buy the older, less expensive figures to see if my kids take a real interest in the game. If they do, have at it, with your allowance money of course. Just kidding, I thought this game was pretty spectacular and would probably buy the characters as well.

The world of Skylanders on the inside is, well, awesome. I’m a long time RPGer so I know how difficult it can be to operate a system that requires you to have so many characters that you’re forced to rotate them in and out between battles and boss fights. With Skylanders Giants you can play one character and when you’re ready to change up it’s as easy as removing the character from the portal and putting a new one on. Some of them have a cool light feature when you place them on the portal (by the way). The game is designed so that at times you have to switch out the characters. For example, in the game there is a dead zone, one where only the undead Skylanders may enter. In the starter pack you get an undead Skylander named Cynder. Like Cynder the other two Skylanders, one a Giant named Tree Rex, also have their own respective area’s where only they, or another character of the same sub-genre, can enter. This makes the game world of Skylanders Giants an endless possibility of game play.

With each character you get different attributes, as I’ve stated. Tree Rex can pummel enemies with a huge claw hand, perform a diving elbow move, even shoot lasers. Cynder performs some of the same moves form the first Skylanders game, like shadow dash, but also comes with new attack methods that are pretty awesome. Jet-Vac, probably my favorite, can suck in treasure, blow out air like a gun, and that’s just the beginning. There really seems to be an endless amount of possibilities for this game which gives it a definite replay value depending on what new characters you bring into the game. It’s exciting stuff, plus game play was easy enough with straight up attacks and brain puzzles. Easy controls as well. This is the perfect game for kids or adults who have a love for video games. I highly suggest.

 

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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