Lasting First Impressions
Taking on the toy/video game market that Skylanders had first secured, Disney Infinity brought the world of famous Disney characters to life and allowed players play as their favourite Disney characters in pre-packaged stories and worlds. It was a huge hit. Naturally, we expected Disney to follow up their successful new franchise with a new version and, since they also own Marvel and all their characters, what evolution to the franchise would make more sense than Marvel Superheroes? Enter Disney Infinity 2.0, complete with Iron Man, Black Widow, Thor, and a slew of other Avengers and Marvel characters.
One of the smarted things that Disney did with Disney Infinity 2.0 is make sure the toy base was backwards compatible. Unfortunately, if you are upgrading to the next generation version of the game and are playing on a different family of console (for example, Disney Infinity on PS3 and Disney Infinity 2.0 on Xbox One), then the base is not compatible and you will need a new one. All characters from the original game are fully compatible with the new game, but the old Playsets are not. Playsets are pre-packaged worlds and sets of missions designed for specific characters, such as Cars, Pirates of the Caribbean, and The Incredibles. If you want to continue playing in your Pirates of the Caribbean playset, you will still need to go back to the original game. At first I was a little surprised at this until I thought about the technical issues that Disney would have had to do to make sure all the old content was in the new game. This would also open up a whole new can of worms as this franchise continues into 3.0 and 4.0 versions. Having every single playset available in all versions of the game would eventually make Disney Infinity a massive endeavour. Though, I could see these playsets becoming available as downloadable content in the future. Let’s see if Disney takes that route or not.
Disney Infinity 2.0 feels just like jumping back into the original game. Only as a superhero this time and that’s really where the fun starts here. The starter kit comes complete with the Avengers Playset and three characters: Iron Man, Thor, and Black Widow with many other Avenger characters available as additional purchases. Unlike the other Toy based game, Skylanders, Disney Infinity does not design stories for specific characters. Once you choose the character you want to play, there is no reason to actually switch out characters. I am still a little disappointed in this aspect of the game but, honestly, as soon as I started playing as Iron Man, I really didn’t want to stop. He can fly! He can fly fast! And it is so very cool. That being said, the disappointment came from the fact that there is no real reason to keep buying new characters to play with in the game. Once your favourite character is obtained, there’s no incentive to buy more. Then again, the incentive truly comes from the fact that these are characters that everyone loves and, even if you don’t play with them in the game, the toys are beautifully crafted and deserve to be in any fan’s collection.
Playing the included Avengers story as Iron Man brought me incredible joy. Once I realized he could fly by holding down the jump button, and that he could fly really fast by holding the right trigger, I was having the most incredible fun. The Avengers opened up to me and I could see how much more content this game has over its older sibling. Since we now have flying characters, the world may not be larger in ground cover, but there is a great deal more game play vertically. The highest point in this New York is the very tip of the Empire State Building and, of course, there is a collectible up there. In fact, there are so many collectibles in the game and I didn’t even want to continue with the multitude of quests, just so I could fly around and collect things. I felt like a kid again.
That’s really what Disney Infinity is all about and Disney Infinity 2.0 is no different. In addition to the many playsets that can be played, the Toy Box returns allowing players to collect pieces and create their own worlds and their own games to play and share. After completing a particular Disney created story, there is an entire world of new adventures to be had in the Toy Box. This is what puts this game into a category of its own. Literally endless adventures are awaiting players of all ages. Racing games, Tower Defense games, and more can all be created using the Toy Box creation engine included in every Disney Infinity 2.0 game disc. Players’ creations can also be shared with the world so your adventures literally never end.
Disney Infinity 2.0 returns the fun and adventure we started with all our favourite Disney characters last year, but now we can have that fun as our favourite Marvel Superheroes. Seriously, who hasn’t dreamed of donning the Iron Man armour and streaking through the sky, zapping opponents with his energy beams? Or swinging through New York on Spider-Man’s webs, or even being the bad guy as Green Goblin or Venom? Disney Infinity gives players all these options and more. This is a venerable play room ripe for endless adventures. Only your imagination is your limit. What will you build?