by Jason Knox
The game starts you off “? With just a spark of inspiration ?.” You travel around as a spark and collect other sparks as you begin to transform into a spark character. This beginning spark scene is the intro to the tutorial and when you are done with the tutorial you will be in your toy box. The ending of the tutorial is really awesome. You will see a lot of the characters that are available for use in the game or that will be available in the near future.
Game play in the toy box basically involves world building. As you work through the adventures, you earn spin tokens that you can use to unlock build pieces. Once you have a collection of build pieces, you can go nuts and build whatever you can imagine! One thing I have been disappointed in so far is that you are supposed to be able to play with up to four people in your toy box. So far, I have not been able to connect to any friends online, so I don’t know whether four-player mode is working. If you are not skilled at crafting your own world, there are several worlds available to download, and you can play in those. This mode is very reminiscent of Minecraft. If you have seen some of the worlds people have created there, I can only imagine the possibilities within the Disney universe.
Game play in the play sets is pretty good. There could be a bit more to them. They are essentially scavenger hunts, with a few bad guys here and there. You can take to in-game characters to get mini tasks within the larger task you are working toward completing.
Our release-day purchase decision was pretty last minute, so we didn’t do much research before heading to the store. Having looked at others’ purchase experiences as well as mine, here are a few things I wish I had known/done before buying:
I don’t know how much longer the sale will last, but Target has the Lone Ranger and Cars play sets at half price. Toys-R-Us has characters at buy one get one 50% off and power discs at buy one pack get a pack for $1.
Playing two characters together in regular game mode requires two characters from the same universe.
You can mix-and-match characters from different universes in the Toy Box. But in regular game mode, if you want to play in the Monsters U universe, uou will need two characters from that movie. (Mike and Sully will work). You will not be able to play with Jack Sparrow in Monsters U, and you will not be able to have Mike sail a ship in the Pirates adventure. (I was very disappointed by this).
Toys-R-Us has exclusive power discs and characters.
Toys-R-Us exclusives are not available anywhere else. It does not appear that they will ever be made available other than at Toys-R-Us.
I give it a B. My children love it. I like certain aspects of it. In my opinion it left a lot to be desired, but it still gets a B because:
1. It can be played across many platforms. As long as you have characters from the same Disney universe, you can play with friends, even if they use a different gaming system. If you have an XBox 360 and your friend has a PS3, but you both have Monsters U figures, you can bring your Sully figure over to his house and play your Sully with his Mike, even though you use different game systems.
2. The potential of the toy box worlds yet to be built, especially due to the cross-platform nature of the game. The possibilities are immense. The potential for a huge online community sharing designs and elements is amazing.
3. The expandability and flexibility of this system makes it open to the addition of other Disney properties. The rumors have already begun about Star Wars and Marvel figures, worlds and power chips. I can definitely see this getting expensive for me!
What would it need to earn an A?
1. More in-depth game play in the adventures.
2. Allow all characters in all parts of the game. (I kind of get why they didn’t. I mean It would be weird to try to get Mater to sail a ship and row a boat and such. But there’s no real reason why it’s not possible).
3. Allow friends to help and assist in Adventure game play online.
What do you think of Disney INFINITY? Are you playing already? Do you plan on playing soon? Tell us about it, and about your Disney INFINITY gaming experiences in the comments.