Header Ads

Skylanders SWAP Force (Hands-On Preview)

Skylanders SWAP Force is the newest release for the highly popular video game and toy franchise from publisher Activision. The game will be available on nearly every console, with three new developers stepping in to create the new game including Beenox on Nintendo Wii, n-Space on Nintendo 3DS, and most notably, Vicarious Visions on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii U. Skylanders SWAP Force figures will be compatible with every version of the game, though different consoles will require unique pedestals to load the characters into the game world, and new pedestals will be required for the new SWAP Force characters. The older toys will still be compatible with Skylanders SWAP Force though, and there will be plenty of new content for new characters and the toys fans have already purchased.

Skylanders SWAP Force takes players to the magical new world of the Cloudbreak Islands. It's here where players will encounter the SWAP Force characters for the first time and learn about their origins and a special ability that allows their top and bottom halves to be interchanged for some unique combinations. The team gains the newfound power after a legendary volcano erupted 100 years ago and the characters were caught in the magical explosion while fighting a dangerous villain. Now Kaos has made his way to the island with a new invention known as the Evilizer that allows him to turn friendly characters into enemies and create some interesting boss battles throughout the game. The Skylanders will be teaming up with the SWAP Force to stop Kaos and save the Cloudbreak Islands. The storyline of Skylanders SWAP Force is full of charming humor and colorful creatures with unique personalities that combine to create a delightful world that young and adult gamers can enjoy together.

The SWAP Force team will consist of 16 new characters with swappable halves. Two of our favorites we got to try out included the Light monster Grilla Drilla, who can dig into the ground and perform other special abilities, and the Undead Rattle Shake, who can utilize ranged firearm attacks and perform double jumps in addition to some other unique moves. Some of the other characters that have been revealed so far include Blast Zone, Fire Kraken, Free Ranger, Freeze Blade, Hoot Loop, Magna Charge, Night Shift, Stink Bomb and Wash Buckler, and the characters can be traded and combined to create over 250 different combinations of monsters to use in-game. The new characters can access new areas that require two characters of a specific element to progress, and each character has exclusive missions in addition to the game's main campaign to add even more replay value to the game. The flexibility of the figures allows players to not only collect and trade them, but even take saved progress of the character that is stored on the toy and bring it to a friend's house to continue playing with the same character, even on a different console. The Skylanders SWAP Force toys disguise some very advanced technology that is sure to make any parent envious from their own childhood of playing with GI Joe and Barbie.

In addition to the new SWAP Force characters, there will be 16 new Core Skylanders characters, 8 Lightcore Skylanders characters and 16 classic characters that will be remade for Series 3 of the Skylanders series and include the all new Wow Pow upgrade power. Each character will be able to access exclusive missions during the game and will gain access to all of the new abilities including the new level cap of 20 and the ability to jump. The new level cap increase allows every character ever released for the Skylanders series to continue leveling and gaining new abilities. Jumping changes the game by adding a new depth of exploration never seen in the series and adds another tactical element to combat with yet another strategy to dodge incoming attacks. There are some platforming sections and mini-games that take require players to use their jumping skills to unlock new hats and statistical buffs, large portions of the game world still won't require any jumping at all to progress, so the new ability simply adds more freedom for all characters including the Giants while exploring the Cloudbreak Islands.

The graphics for Skylanders SWAP Force have obviously improved since last year's release, and the game looks especially impressive when running on the PlayStation 4. The character models are even more detailed in the game when running on next generation consoles, but the character animations are even more impressive. Wash Buckler was easily one of the most memorable characters to watch in the game, as his slimy tentacles allowed the octopus monster to slide across the map, shoot ink blasts at his foes and become the nightmare for every gamer with an underwater creature phobia. The world of the Cloudbreak Islands is also nice looking and clearly a step above the world of the Giants in the last release.

There will be even more content packed into Skylanders SWAP Force when it is released later this year as well. The game will include new hats, new areas to explore, new missions and more. Local cooperative sessions are still a huge part of the game, and players can load into the drop-in/drop-out games seamlessly and with little effort. The game is designed to allow players to join a single player session by placing a new toy on the pedestal without the need to exit the game or access any additional menus and leave the game just as easy. This feature is perfect for the busy parent that wants to game with their kids but can't always sit and play the game for long uninterrupted sessions.

Once the game has been completed, additional difficulties will be unlocked for an even greater challenge including the grueling Nightmare mode for gamers that dare to try it. In addition to the game's main campaign, players can battle in single and cooperative Survival Mode to face off with waves of difficult enemies. Rival Modes is similar to multiplayer Survival, but with each player competing to defeat the most enemies and attain the highest score. Battle Arena Mode is another versus mode where players face off with one Skylanders character battling against another. Ring Out is the final mode and is similar to Battle Arena with the exception that the other player must be knocked out of the ring to win. Each mode adds something different to the game and adds a nice variety of multiplayer options for gamers that just can't get enough Skylanders.

Skylanders SWAP Force looks like another huge hit for the popular Activision series and the most revolutionary release for the franchise. The game adds the most innovative creatures the series has seen with the SWAP Force, who can be switched out for powerful combinations of new creatures. The game's overall presentation has also been overhauled including enhanced graphics, an ability to jump and more features that are sure to please longtime Skylanders fans. Skylanders SWAP Force will be available beginning on October 13, 2013 in North America with the Skylanders SWAP Force Starter Pack available for $74.99, individual Skylanders SWAP Force Figures for $14.99 and Core Skylanders figures for $9.99 each. The most devoted fans will also be interested in the GameStop exclusive Dark Edition bundle that is now available for preorder and includes special characters and packaging. No matter which version of the game you get, make sure you preorder a copy of Skylanders SWAP Force today!

Skylanders SWAP Force is now available for preorder from most major retailers for the MSRP of $74.99 and is scheduled to release for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Nintendo Wii U, Nintendo Wii and Nintendo 3DS on October 13, 2013. Skylanders SWAP Force is not yet rated. For more information on the game, check out the official Skylanders SWAP Force website.

Game Features:
  • Offline Multiplayer 1-2
  • Interchangeable Monsters
  • Jump Controls
  • Online Leaderboards
  • Trophy/Achievement Support

  • Game Information:
    Developer: Vicarious Visions
    Publisher: Activision
    Platforms: PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 (previewed), Xbox 360, Xbox One, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo Wii & Nintendo 3DS
    Release Date: October 13, 2013

    Powered by Blogger.