On the other hand, dynamic in-game swapping of your collection of figures — and in this case, the parts of the Swap Force figures — also allows for a much slower, more completist-friendly experience that could stretch the main storyline out for as long as most open-world sandbox games.
We were sent a batch of six additional figures to go along with starter pack, and spent the first 12 hours or so completing every side mission or challenge that our collection allowed. This amounted to roughly percent completion in the main storyline. Once we made the decision to plow through the rest of the story without getting sidetracked, the remainder of the game took about four hours to complete. When all was said and done and the credits rolled, the final tally left us with percent completion of the subquests, side-missions, and challenges and Achievements over the course of 17 hours of playing time.
Better yet, figures released with the earlier games now gain the ability to jump in Swap Force , too — adding an extra dimension to old favorites. While the lack of compatibility between Swap Force figures and the older games is essentially a necessary evil of evolving technology, there are a few general gameplay flaws that pop up here and there, too. Swap Force saves your progress according to the checkpoints you pass in a level, but it can occasionally take minutes of playing time to get from one checkpoint to the next.
Leaving the game before you reach the next checkpoint will save the accumulated in-game currency and experience your character has accumulated up to that point, but your progress will be reset to the previous checkpoint when you return to the game — which may erase a decent chunk of playing time. On the positive side, Swap Force manages to improve upon a universe that was already known for being bright, detailed, and fun with some noticeable tweaks to the color palette and other visual elements.
A new multiplayer mode that allows for cooperative and competitive challenges involving you and anyone else currently in your approved friends list i.
DT Recommended Product. New characters need your help, and new dangers await though combat remains very kid friendlythough it can be challenging at times. The toys, meanwhile, are just as detailed and sturdy as they've been in the past, and many of the new characters are instant classicsboth Swap Force and regular Skylanders alike. The clever names for these characters. My favorite so far is the chicken: Free Ranger.
Swap Force toys snap together via magnets, making them a firm fit but easy to mix and match. This was a pleasant surprise; it's a very visceral feeling, and is also a better long-term solution than any system of latches or other potential break-points. There's a satisfying click to the toys when they snap together.
One of the best things about the Skylanders toy line, aside from the marvelous creativity and charm, is just how solid and durable these toys are. I've only had one exception to this, out of our many toys. Chill, a really cool ice-based character who I bought for Giants , lost her head after some hard use.
Otherwise, our Skylanders have been surprisingly resilient given the amount of real world play they endure at the hands of at least one three-year-old terror. With jumping finally added to the game, I have only one real remaining wish on my Skylanders wish-list: Running.
Yes, some of the new characters have movement abilities that allow them to zip forward or coast at a healthy clip, and this is fantastic. But it only serves to underscore how badly I'd like to be able to make each Skylander run.
Swap Force is undeniably more of the same in terms of game-play. Centrally though the game is the same action platforming experience driven by the novelty of real world toys coming to life on the screen. Check out what's new in Skylands:. Weather Forecast. For example, a Fire Skylander has a Fire symbol engraved on the bottom. Enter character name to search
The big problem with previous Skylanders entries was the lack of jumping. It made characters feel unnecessarily prone to gravity. Making movement in a game an integral part of the fun factor is something many games overlook. Of course, wish-lists are tricky. There's the question of balance to consider when dealing with so many moving pieces. Another smaller item I'd love to see added would be a dodge button. I'd love to be able to roll away from an enemy attack. How this would work for younger gamers and how this would impact balance and gameplay overall is harder to predict.
Still, my appetite for a faster Skylanders has been whet by the improvements made to Swap Force. Whereas before I felt pinned to the earth, now I feel confined by speed, or a lack thereof. It's not as big of a deal by any means, but it's an issue nonetheless. The old Portal of Power can't read the new Swap Force figures, so a new portal is required to play.
Fortunately, all your old Skylanders will work on the new portal. And each and every one of them will be able to jump. This brings new life to old toys, which is pretty cool.
There's a dazzling array of stuff to do in and out of missions, a charming new story, and a whole new platforming element that really enhances everything about the Skylanders experience. This is a the perfect kids game, but even older gamers or at least those of us who are still kids at heart will find much to love.