Thursday, April 17, 2014

Video Games - Adventures in Disney Infinity (Wii version)

This week Walmart had a big sale on all the Disney Infinity starter sets (normally $75 but this week was only $49).  So we made a fairly impulse buy and picked up the Wii starter set (and Rapunzel and Woody as Futureshop was selling them 2 for $15).  This was mostly because my wife realized I like to game and wanted a game that the entire family could enjoy.

A little more background about our gaming environment at my house.  I am a big gamer and no matter what my wife tries, she cannot stop me from gaming.  I've tried to get her to game with me with mixed results.  Tabletop wargames were totally ineffective and MMORPGs too.  We did find some common ground in Age of Empires 3 (and Age of Mythology before that) and the Civilization games (when Civ 5 went on sale a few weeks ago on Humble that was a godsend!)  Unfortunately Penny couldn't really join us when we played as she just didn't understand and couldn't really participate in any way.

One thing Penny did like was Disney movies though and she knows many of the characters that are available in Infinity.  We figured Infinity would be a good way that we could play something that Penny could relate to.  Unfortunately the Wii version is kind of limited as there is no online capability but we could still build stuff in the Toy Box mode and at Penny's age (she's only 3.5 years old) she won't know any better.

The game plays very much like any 3d platformer just with Disney characters.  My favourite aspect of the game so far has been the world building in the Toy Box.  Penny watched me play as Rapunzel as I worked through the Mastery challenges and really wanted to play but the Mastery challenges were out of her league.  So I fired up a toy box and built her a simple cave complex (we managed to land the Cave of Wonders entrance so it looked pretty cool) with a room full of smashable crates at the end.  I told her she had to get through the cave and then smash the crates (she liked watching me smash stuff while I played through the Mastery challenges).

She was quite frustrated at first as she wasn't holding the controller properly and couldn't maneuver Rapunzel the way she wanted to.  I showed her how to hold the controller properly and how to use the analog stick to move Rapunzel and what button to press to smash things and before long she was able to move through the cave to the room of crates and start smashing.  When she cleared the room she asked to do it all over again.

Her video game skills are still developing but seeing how quickly she learned to move Rapunzel around was encouraging.  As I play with the Infinity Toy Box I'm excited to make more challenges for her.  Penny on the other hand is more excited about getting Anna and Elsa after I ordered them online as no stores in town had any.

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