If you have younger children or if you frequent real-world video games store, you’ve probably heard of Skylanders by now. They are everywhere—and people are fighting over them.
This is my tale of gathering them. A quest of many, many purchases…
I am a consumer whore
I’ve always known I was an achievement whore. I am someone who tries to get all achievements in a game, whether or not the process of earning them is actually entertaining. I just have a need to have all achievements and see “100% complete” in my games. Since I like toys and figurines, Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure was the death of me (read: death of my wallet).
After I got the game, I powered my way through it and finished it that same weekend. After that, I started buying more toys—in this case what I call IRLDLC (In Real Life Downloadable Content, for the acronym-impaired)—to collect ’em all (on a side note, Skylanders is nothing like Pokémon. I don’t, however, have anything against the bush-dwelling creatures of Nintendo’s world), just so I could level them up, unlock everything and have a really cool shelf.
I actually stopped at 14 out of 32, with the 4 “expansions”, or single Skylanders that come with an additional level and two magical items, and I’m still looking for those rare ones. Oh yes—there’s rare alternative figurines on top of the normal ones. They don’t look different in games (which is ten kinds of dumb), but the toy itself is different. From clear to chrome, see-through red or blue to glow-in-the-dark, all the major toy and video game conventions in the last year saw the birth of a rare Skylander. eBay is a great way of finding them as well, if you want to spend at least 10 times the amount of the non-“rare” versions.
Now for Giants and Swap Force
But all this is old news, since the sequel, Skylanders: Giants, came out last October. With 8 “giants”, 8 new Skylanders, and 24 old ones in new postures with one additional power-up, some that have “lightcore” (a couple of LED lights in the toy that light up when near the Portal of Power), my collection of toys went up to 35, with some duplicates (old ones vs. new). I even have some variant versions. Sad, I know.
And now, the next sequel has been announced: Skylanders: SWAP Force, I’m already excited and happy to see that they intend to keep this milk cow (killing it would’ve been dumb, but you never know with game companies…) The game will have a new portal and another 8 new figurines, 24 returning favorites from past generations (again reposed), and 8 “SWAP” figurines: roughly the same size as the Giants—these creatures have legs and torso that can be detached and reassembled with whichever one you want, creating an almost unique Skylander. Your favourite will be easier to find, since you can customize it the way you like. Obviously finding all eight is going to be a tedious and expensive task. With Giants, it’s already been four months and some Giants are still unavailable.
So whether you have an army of pre-teens at home or you’re an avid figurine collector, or even if you just miss the days of games like Gauntlet Dark Legacy, Champions, or even Diablo, This game is for you. Just, like I said, make sure you have a bank account to back it up.