Disney Infinity 3.0 is primed to be a huge merchandise mover for Star Wars and Disney as they cement their place in the “Toys to Life” genre of gaming.
THE FORCE IS STRONG WITH THIS ONE
Building off of last year’s Disney Infinity 2.0, 3.0 is an unabashedly fun journey throughout the Star Wars universe as well as some other iconic Disney landmarks such as the Disney Castle in Disney World and much more.
The premise is simple, yet complex. You purchase the 3.0 game, the portal, mini toy figures, and a small plastic see-through ornament that represents a “play set.” Thankfully, these are all bundled together in one neat starter kit. The $64.99 price tag is reasonable too, just $5 more than most newly released games.
The portal acts as your gateway from your living room to the television. Place your toy onto one of the two player slots and watch that toy come to life on screen. On the third open slot belongs the piece for the play set, which is a campaign with story missions and side missions to run through. The one that debuts with 3.0’s kit is entitled “Twilight of the Republic,” which takes you through the Clone Wars era set between Star Wars Episodes 2 and 3. The pack-in figures include Anakin Skywalker and Padawan from The Clone Wars animated series Ahsoka Tano. Though a bit short in scope, the main missions were enjoyable and brought me back to the first time I played Lego Star Wars a long time ago in a galaxy far far away.
Twilight of the Republic takes you to Geonosis, Tattooine, Courscant, and Naboo. You’ll run into many familiar faces, including Mace Windu, Plo Koon, and many more (including Jar Jar Binks. Yep. Jar Jar Binks. Can you believe they included him? The honeymoon is over, Disney. Not really. Moving on). Foes such as General Grievous and Darth Maul are prominent. The story doesn’t rank among my favorite in the Star Wars lore as it was clearly made to bend a little for the purpose of the game, but I found myself enjoying every moment.
Though aimed at a younger target audience, Disney was wise to cash in on their $4 billion investment by focusing Infinity 3.0 on Star Wars. In cinematic memorabilia history, no merchandise has garnered love or focus than Star Wars. It was only a matter of time before they sold action figures. It’s given me an excuse to dive back into collecting. The figures are slightly different from their Clone Wars-style counter parts, giving off a unique vibe created by the marriage with Disney. I would venture to say that these will be collected by fans that won’t ever touch the game. It was painful for me to pull them out of their original packaging.
The gameplay is simplistic but evolves as the story goes on. Combat varies from character to character, each featuring their own fighting style and special power. While you could probably button mash in certain parts, having a strategy works as well. In addition to the hand-to-hand combat, you must fly planet to planet, often running into skirmishes that lead to fun space battles. While not the most challenging flight simulator out there, you’ll feel some nostalgia here. In the game’s opening moments, you get but a taste of the Clone Wars era, the original trilogy era, and also Pixar’s Inside Out. For the original trilogy era, you get to fly the Millenium Falcon with Han, Chewbacca, Leia, and C-3P0.
After you finish the main campaign missions (or in between missions even), you can participate in RPG-like mini side missions that are often fetch quests or escort missions. These keep the world lively and make for a good deal of activities. I thoroughly enjoyed throwing items into the Sarlacc Pit on one particular mission.
The controls are tight for the vast majority of the time, but every once in a while I would experience slight lag. Load times are long and there’s often texture popping in the more open world portions of the game. This didn’t take away from my enjoyment however.
The other portion of the game is the “Toy Box.” Inspired by Avalanche Studios’ Toy Story 3 for PS3/Xbox 360, this is one of the major attractions of the Infinity games. Essentially, it is a world builder/creator. As you go through missions, you unlock extras to use. For your home base, you can use these unlocked items to decorate and create levels and mini games. Once created, you can upload them for others to download and play through. Think Little Big Planet. I don’t find myself very creative when it comes to building levels and I don’t find it ultra appealing, but I absolutely love the option to do so and I can’t wait to download some extra content to try out from the community.
With Disney Infinity 2.0, the central theme was Marvel Superheroes. This time around, it’s even grander with Star Wars. Inside Out will feature a Play Set and there will also be an Avengers themed Play Set based on this past Summer’s Age of Ultron. I jumped in because of Star Wars and now I find myself going back in time with Infinity 2.0 to play through Guardians of the Galaxy. Though you can’t use Play Sets from Infinity or Infinity 2.0, you can use any character in the Toy Box and open world missions. For example, I can’t use Infinity 2.0’s Star-lord in the Twilight of the Republic set, but I can use him in 3.0’s Toy Box mode to run around in. This helps to justify past purchases as this will almost certainly be an annualized release for years to come.
Playstation users get early access to the Rise of the Empire Play Set that features playable characters like Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia, but owners on every other platform can purchase this in late September. Rise of the Empire takes place during the original trilogy era and will surely hook some of the non-children Star Wars crowd. I am possibly even more excited for the third Play Set, which will release sometime after The Force Awakens hits theaters. That set will include Rey and Finn, though Disney has been tight-lipped about that (understandably so).
For information as to what characters and Play Sets will be available and when, check out our guide here.
Disney Infinity 3.0 makes me feel like a child again. I can’t get enough of it. My bank account is taking a beating. With Disney Infinity 3.0 and Star Wars: Rebels out and Battlefront and The Force Awakens this November/December respectively, it’s an extremely exciting time to be a Star Wars fan. It’s time to make your Toys-to-Life debut.
+ Detailed, charming character models are adorable.
+ Appropriate usage of John Williams’ phenomenal musical score sets the mood beautifully….on second thought, is there an inappropriate way?
+ The choice is yours – be creative with the Toy Box or have a blast running through missions.
+ Superb choice and mix of Star Wars and non-Star Wars characters to bump into.
+ There’s something magical about placing your toy figure on the portal and watching them come to life in the game.
-Load times can be long, despite rough edged graphics.
-Slight lag at times can cause freezing.
Josiah LeRoy is The Geekiverse’s Senior Editor and arguably biggest Star Wars fan. He loves what he does. Join him on Xbox Live for a mission via josiahislegend.
For everything Disney Infinity and Star Wars, especially with thoughts reactions on the upcoming Play Sets, keep it locked to The Geekiverse.