Skylanders SuperChargers

Published Friday 15 Apr 2016 11:56pm
Nintendo Wii U

We've played with Disney Infinity 1.0 and 2.0. We've played with Skylanders Swap Force. We've considered Lego Dimensions. Based on my experience with Skylanders Swap Force, I felt that it beat Disney Infinity 2.0 hands down. Disney Infinity's missions were boring while Skylanders Swap Force was really fun. So we sold off all Disney Infinity and stuck with Skylanders. We avoided Skylanders Trap Team after all the poor reviews, but decided to jump into Skylanders Superchargers. Even with Superchargers, I still think it's better than Disney Infinity 3.0 and Lego Dimensions, due to the fun factor. So why just 7 stars?

Simple, Skylanders Superchargers' driving / flying / sailing controls SUCK. The racing mode controls is OK and works as planned. However, in the battle driving mode, it is downright confusing and is the WORST controls I've ever seen in ANY driving game. Seriously, the designer who designed the driving / flying / sailing controls should have been promptly fired. This is the problem: your left and right facing navigation works one way when your vehicle is facing one half of the directions, but the navigation SWAPS automatically (so turning left becomes turning right, and turning right becomes turning left!) when facing the other half of the directions! What kind of a STUPID navigation scheme is that? Honestly, this ONE aspect alone, I've taken out 3 stars, because a good portion of the game is about navigating with vehicles!

OK now that the single worst aspect of Skylanders Superchargers is out of the way, I'll cover all the good stuff.

I believe Skylanders is still the most FUN toys to life game that’s suitable for a wide age range, so if you’re a parent and want to play with your kids, the level is just right for the kids, but yet fun enough for the adults. The characters are endearing and even “evil” Kaos is such an adorable villain! The characters are all appealing and each Skylander have their own personality. Their respective powers are different enough to warrant purchasing – though you probably don’t want to get ALL characters as some power variations do seem to be similar. And of course, the bonus is, all your old Skylanders characters will work with this game, so a PLUS for compatibility and well done to Activision for not leaving old characters obsolete.

Gameplay-wise, the on-foot platforming elements are fun and pretty straightforward, with some crazy-looking villains. You move from chapter to chapter, expunging villains, collect coins and gear bits to upgrade your character’s powers and/or your vehicles. The level variations are good – one moment you’re on 3D platforming, another moment you’re on 2D side scrolling platforming, yet another moment, you’re in your vehicle racing / fighting away. As I said before, the racing elements with vehicles are fine, and is reminiscent of Mario Kart 8 (although not anywhere near as polished). Just get the “arena vehicle battles” out of the way quickly due to the frustrating controls. There’s enough variety in all the levels to encourage you to play through the whole game. I never felt bored in almost all the levels – except one or two optional flying ones where you have to destroy like 50 objects which seem to drag on forever. Of course, if you feel everything is too easy, you can crank up the difficulty to the max, but personally, I don’t play Skylanders for its difficulty.

The storyline is good fun, again, doesn’t take itself seriously, and so makes you feel more relaxed during gameplay. It’s the usual “muahahaha” evil dudes trying to take control of Skylands and the Skylanders are there to turn their “muahahaha” to a “boo hoo”. It’s really cute really, and subject materials are all suited for families of all ages.

As an adult, Skylanders Superchargers provides me with a good break from more serious and intense games such as Xenoblade Chronicles, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate and Sniper Elite 3! Despite the pathetic navigation with vehicles, I’d still recommend Skylanders over Disney Infinity and Lego Dimensions if you desire a relatively relaxed game time with your family, or you want a break from more intense PC games! Recommended but with reservations due to some woefully poor design with vehicle play.

"Recommended but with reservations due to some woefully poor design with vehicle play."
- Skylanders SuperChargers


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