Our family recently had the opportunity to test out the new Skylanders Imaginators game, which was released in mid-October. My panel of testers (my four kiddos) have tried the game out on the Wii U for the past two weeks, and I asked them to share their thoughts about the game to help you decide whether it might be right for your family. My crew consists of a girl and three boys, and they range in age from 11 down to 6. All were able to play the game to give their thoughts. The boys are pretty big Skylanders fans, but this is the first game that has really captured my daughter’s attention enough for her to get into it. My husband and I also played a little, but mostly the kids hogged it! I asked them to each give me some details about what they liked about the game, and also one or two things that they didn’t like quite so well, just to give a little perspective. Here’s what the kids had to say in their Skylanders Imaginators review (followed by a few opinions of my own):
Hannah (age 11)
- I liked how you could create your own Imaginators. I liked being able to be creative and design my own instead of trying to buy a Skylander to unlock certain things.
- The game part is fun going through different options with the characters, and unlocking different options for the characters you create.
- Overall, I really liked the whole game.
- Some of the voices and other Imaginator options were limited until you unlock them.
Matthew (age 9)
- I liked how you could create your own Skylanders any way you wanted to. I liked how it started you with a few body part choices to start out with, then you could pick lots of different things from there. It’s cool that you can choose your own weapons and abilities, and you can change stuff whenever you want.
- You can unlock new abilities when you defeat Doomlanders, which are the bosses of the game.
- I think the Senseis are pretty cool because they all have different Sky Chi attacks. A Sky Chi attack is a special attack that only Senseis get. The Senseis are all new Skylanders for this game that aren’t in any other games.
- I think the last level is a little funny because Chaos’s partner is doubting him, saying he won’t help him in the last level. It was really cool beating Chaos and beating the game. Then his partner starts working at the Skylanders’ Academy and helping the Skylanders defeat bad guys. After beating the game, now I can try beating it on a harder level.
- When you get an Imaginate chest, sometimes it takes a while for it to show up and open.
- You only have limited color choices for the Imaginators’ clothes. They might not have your favorite colors.
Andrew (age 8)
- After you create your Imaginators, you can always change what they look like.
- Some of the characters in the game are funny.
- I like the Senseis in this game. They are really special because they are the only ones that can bang battle gongs. That makes special enemies show up, and when you beat them you get a big prize.
- I like that you can play as Chaos in this game. You can’t do that in other Skylander games.
- You can’t switch the weapon on the Imaginators you create once you choose it.
Zachary (age 6)
- I like building the Skylanders and choosing their stuff.
- I like going on the adventures and beating the bad guys.
- My brothers won’t let me play on my own profile! (We’re working on this one!)
Mom (age…older than the rest of them 😉 )
- This game seemed to have some cool changes from the older versions. It’s a familiar platform with familiar characters that the kids enjoy, but there’s enough new going on that keeps the kids interested.
- There are multiple skill levels to choose from when playing. That makes the game challenging enough for the 9-year-old pro, but also simple enough for his novice 6-year-old brother to play without a ton of help.
- All the old Skylanders from the previous games work in this one. That’s good news for a family like ours where three boys have asked for Skylanders for the past few birthdays and Christmases, and have built up quite the little collection. Nice to know they won’t just be gathering dust with the new game.
- The Imaginator component of the game is super cool. They get to strategize and create their own Skylander character, with infinite different options, including weapons, attacks, body styles, hair, clothing, catch phrases, voices, and more. It’s crazy how much they can choose, and my kids got a huge kick out of that. They can save their Imaginators and play as them using the Creation Crystals. They can edit and re-customize most components of the Imaginators whenever they want (they just can’t change the basic type or their weapon).
- I bet we’ll see some decent deals on the game around Black Friday, if similar patterns hold true to previous years. The game could be a fun bargain gift for kids of a wide age range—keep an eye out!
- As with all the Skylanders games, the initial cost of the game can be low compared to the cost of the “add-ons.” In this case, the Sensei characters are all new (and pretty cool!), and the Creation Crystals that allow you to save the Imaginators can also be purchased separately. They’re not a bad price point to ask for as birthday gifts ($10-$15ish), or even for kids to save up their allowance…but they can certainly add up. To me that’s the one down side of games like this, although when all four kids enjoy it and can play together, it helps even out the cost.
Overall, our family gave Skylanders Imaginators a pretty hearty recommendation. They loved the creative aspect of the game, along with the actual game play. They ranked this one as their favorite among the most recent three or four Skylanders releases, even above Swap Force, which had previously held their top spot. They have also enjoyed seeing the Senseis and the Academy in the Skylanders Imaginators show on Netflix recently (a pretty savvy marketing move if you ask me—I’ve got a house full of the target demographic, and they’re eating it up!). Especially if you can snag the starter pack at a bargain price, I’d recommend this game for kids ages 5-12 (and possibly older or younger too!).
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post–Activision provided our family with a Skylanders Imaginators set to facilitate this review. All opinions within the review are honest and our own.