I'd like to start off by thanking Fandads for the opportunity to write a review for Disney Infinity. That being said, I was initially apprehensive to purchase this game at its $75 price point.
My youngest son is 6, and he has Skylanders and enjoys it. The problem is every time he goes by the Skylanders display, which are very visually striking and always grab your attention, he wants a new character. I'm assuming it is because of the monetary success of Skylanders that Disney saw a golden opportunity to base a game loosely off the same "base and statue" model.
Well, I had narrowly avoided purchasing this game until my nephew's birthday recently. Upon the suggestion of my sister, I purchased my nephew two of the characters for his game. When my son saw them I was immediately suckered into purchasing it for my two youngest for the Xbox. On the upside, I was able to purchase it on sale for $59.99 which was a little easier to stomach.
One of the first things that caught my eye was that the suggested age for this game is 10+, which kind of struck me as odd because I thought this game would be geared to a younger age demographic.
My kids were ecstatic with me surprising them with this game and couldn't wait to unbox it. At first glance I was impressed with the detail of the statues. The starter pack come with the 3 portal base, the hexagonal skin, a bonus "power up" disc, and the statues for Sully, Mr. Incredible and Jack Sparrow. I had also purchased Violet because I was made aware that in order to play with two players you needed two statues from the same set.
The intro for the game is very Disney-esque and shows Mickey creating all the different worlds that you can travel through within the game as well as some that are expected in the near future. The intro also touches on the possibilities of what can be created with some imagination, which is also a very big focal point in this game.
As far as game play goes there are two basic modes, the playset and toy box. The playset focuses on missions and vary greatly from world to world. Now when I say "world", each set of statues is specific to their own playset, so the Incredibles can't play in the world of the Monsters University. Also as mentioned earlier, if you want to play with two players in a world you have to have two statues from the same world. I found the controls to be a little clunky which can become an issue for younger players when trying to complete some of the challenges that are scattered throughout the worlds, so expect them to come to you for help on some. One of the other issues was how there were player specific challenges, so in order to play these you needed that specific statue. Overall though the play set campaigns should provide several hours of challenges and exploration for the kids.
Now the toy box mode was more of an open ended world where you can create about any type of environment you want. This mode reminded me a lot of Minecraft or the create mode in Little Big Planet, both which my kids are big fans of. In this mode you utilize many of the items you collect through your travels in the playset mode which makes it very nicely intertwined. My 6 yr old boy and 8 yr old girl took to this feature very easily and were building in no time flat. I have also seen there are several toy box levels that are available for free downloads and I'll be interested in exploring those too.
Now on to the part that makes me worry about the hit my bank account will take in the very near future: the add ons. You can purchase some characters individually for around the $13 range, but these don't allow you to access the playset mode. In order to unlock the worlds you need to purchase the sets with the hexagonal skin piece and these will set you back about $35 but they come with two statues also. Now if you consider all of the different worlds Disney has to use not just counting the animated Disney and Pixar movies but at some point maybe incorporating Star Wars and the Marvel franchises, it's a lot of worlds to be purchased! Disney has also already launched store exclusive items at Gamestop (Jack Skellington) and Walmart (Toy Story set). It looks like they will be exclusive to that store for about a month. I did get a really nice Jack Skellington poster with my preorder that I got suckered into at Gamestop though!
Now thrown in for good measure is the blind packs of discs for items and power ups. These packs are around $5 and you get two random discs that when placed under the statue unlock an item or power up. Two discs can be placed under the statue while on the base. Mind you Disney thinks it's blind packs will be "fun" because you don't know what you are getting and then you can trade with your friends. Along with these discs has been the Infinity storage cases for your characters as well as cases to store all the duplicates of discs which you're bound to collect!
Overall I do like this game and my kids are always looking forward to playing it at my house. I believe that it should provide my kids with several hours of enjoyment with the winter months almost upon us. I guess the $35 playsets work out to be a little cheaper than a whole new $60 game. And while I do look forward to what Disney has in store for their playsets (Lone Ranger at launch? really Disney?!?) I also can't help but hope that they will be adding the Star Wars and Marvel playsets in the very near future, for my kids of course!
Of course you're wondering about that for your kids Chris. Thanks for that great review. We're going to look into out goodie bag and send Chris a little something as a thank you for his review.
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