Anyone with a child at home or on their Christmas shopping list has probably heard of Skylanders, thanks to last year’s hit video game “Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure.” For folks that are new to the popular video game, the game features a small table, referred to as the Portal of Power, which allows the player to choose what character to play as during the game. While some Skylander figures are included in with the game, fans have the option of chasing down new characters by purchasing them individually or packages of three.
For 2012 the folks behind the game, Activision, have already release a follow-up to the title, “Skylanders: Giants.” The new game has a separate storyline and brings new characters into the mix. Anyone who owned the original game and does not need a new portal can spend less money by purchasing a “Skylanders: Giants Portal Owner’s Pack” for the Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, or PlayStation 3, but folks who are new to the series will need a complete Starter Pack, which includes a portal, some characters, and the important giant figure.
It is important to note that while the Portal Owner’s Pack and the Starter Pack will have a particular console dedication, like Wii, Xbox 360, or Playstation 3, that the individual characters, three packs, or expansion packs, are not locked to one specific console. The designation is there on the Portal Pack and Starter Pack because the game is included, and for obvious reasons it is not transferable between consoles.
Of course, new Skylanders characters are available in Series 2, but some familiar faces also get a slight upgrade as well. If there is a fan on your list, getting a list of the characters already owned is a must to avoid duplication. However, Activision has done everyone a favor, because the figures from Series 1 are playable with all their upgraded abilities in the second game. Plus, shoppers who are careful can still find original “Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure” characters at a cheaper price than the new figures.
Just like the first game, the new title features a few different expansion packs. The expansion packs include a new character, a building, and one or two magic items. The building is placed onto the portal and a new mission becomes available for the player, and the items can come in handy in different missions throughout both games as well.
A few of the new “Skylanders: Giants” figures are bigger than the first series, which is where the giants come into play. The giants are useful for finding new areas in the second game and are required to advance through certain levels, which is why one is included with the new title.
Factors that helped the original game get popular, like new figures and a collectible aspect, are back for the second game as well. The first game was met with overwhelming popularity which made the new characters hard to come by, and unless Activision is better prepared this time around, shoppers could find empty pegs hanging in the video game departments of their favorite store this year as well.