“YAAAY FOR SKYLANDERS!” scream the hordes of children excited for the latest addition to the Skylanders series, Skylanders: Trap Team. In this adventure the Skylanders are faced with a great threat as the tiny and annoying bad guy, Kaos has released the worst villains from Cloudcracker Prison to roam free in the Skylands. It’s up to you, the Portal Master to capture and contain all of the villains with the help of the newly added Trap Masters and your new device, the Traptanium!
Skylanders: Trap Team brings, just as it’s successor have done, an abundance of new and varied characters to the series, both good and bad. If there’s one thing that sets Skylanders apart from other titles in it’s genre it’s the sheer amount of fun playable characters within it’s games. It’s impressive roster of characters are fun for all ages and there’s definitely someone there for every member of the family (if it’s a family played game within your household, that is).
Skylanders have typically had quite a fun and captivating storyline, however it feels a little lost in this latest title as players are made to focus more on the new trapping mechanic of the game rather than whats going on around them. It’s a bit of a shame as overall, although they’re usually aimed at the younger audience, Skylanders games had always offered an easy to understand, leave your brain at the door kind of storyline. It was a welcomed break from the usual mind bending plot twists and optional events in most games, however Trap Team didn’t seem to have that, it was just kind of… non-existent.
Graphically, the game’s setting of Skyland is always quite colourful and full of life. It’s not a game where 60fps is essential and most of the target audience will be more than happy with the looks of the game. Likewise, the soundtrack, composed by Scottish composer and music producer Lorne Balfe, who also worked on previous Assassin’s Creed and Call of Duty titles, is as you can imagine fantastic. It’s fun, friendly, bouncy (I think I can call it that) and generally ties the game’s theme up beautifully. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nothing that’ll topple the Halo 2 soundtrack but yes, for this adult-friendly children’s title, believe it or not now in it’s third year it works fine.
Gameplay is as you can expect basic, simple, easy and reliable. There’s no confusing quick-time events or button mashing combos involved, simply place your favourite Skylander on the portal, or in this instance “The Traptanium” and watch your best buddy come to life on the screen in front of you! It’s really magical stuff, that apparently, even for me doesn’t get old. With the new Traptanium portal, you can now also catch, or should I say trap the villains you battle against. Fight against the prison breakouts across areas of the Skylands, and once defeated trap them and make them fight for you! It’s a great new addition to the game and personally I actually prefer the designs of the new villains of the game, opposed to the Skylanders themselves.
Overall, this is a great new title to the series. Skylanders: Trap Team is a fantastic game for new comers to the series AND Skylander veterans. Whether you’re buying it for yourself or as a Christmas present for your children, this is a good purchase either way. Although, buy with caution as once you’ve exhausted the two Skylander’s from the starter pack, you’ll only want to buy more and more and more. It’s an extremely tempting system that has been known to cause a significant empty feeling in some gamer’s wallets as the Skylanders figures aren’t a cheap hobby. You have been warned!