News Article

Disney Infinity Producer Outlines The Features Available To Wii U Players

Posted by Andy Green

Nintendo UK interviews John Day to find out more about the game

Disney Infinity is now available on a plethora of platforms including Wii U, 3DS and Wii and there are a range of toys and playsets you can buy to beam into it for some virtual fun.

To help give players a feel for the game and how it plays, Nintendo UK has interviewed Disney Infinity producer John Day who outlined the two modes and the key features on Wii U.

We split the game primarily into two pieces. The first are what we call playsets, We have a number of playsets available, we have playsets for Monsters University, Pirates, The Incredibles, as well as the Lone Ranger and Cars. Now in a given playset you play within a single universe, so when you play in Cars you are a car or one of the Cars characters and you're in Radiator Springs and you do things that make sense for a car, like racing, doing stunts and tipping over tractors and stuff. Whereas if you're playing Pirates it's a completely different play style, you have one of the pirates characters and you sword fight, you sail a ship and the Kraken eats you, [there's] a lot of exploration and treasure hunting and it's very different from anything you do in Cars.

These worlds never really meet each other I can never take Jack Sparrow and put him in the Cars playset, nor does McQueen ever go in the Pirates playset. But in the second half of the game, in what we call the toybox, that's where all these things come together. The toybox is an editable world where the player can build everything from the terrain to the sky, they can bring in buildings and different bits and set up their own games where they can mix and match all these different universes together.

Day also went through some of the features that can only be found on the Wii U, thanks to the GamePad:

In addition to all the word editing features that you can use on the tablet, you also can manage your player's toys. A player can equip something in their hand and they can also wear a pack on their back, and on any other console you have to stop the game and open a menu to manage this. On the Wii U it's all handled on the tablet touch screen so I can do it very quickly on the fly while I'm playing the game using that tablet. We also fully support the take away of play feature of the Wii U so you can play the game using just the tablet and take it as far away as the signal will allow you to, which no other console supports.

We recently sat down with Mathew Solie, one of the other producers of Disney Infinity, to talk about the new game and the direction the franchise will be taking in the future. You can read the full interview with him here.

The video interview with John Day from Nintendo UK, which includes a few clips of the Wii U game in action, is below.

[via youtube.com]

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User Comments (39)

ricklongo

#3

ricklongo said:

@Mqblank Heh, I came here to ask the same thing.

Seems like this has the potential to be a fairly large title. It really shouldn't go unreviewed.

Einherjar

#4

Einherjar said:

Its most special feature is, that it can directly interact with the real world. No, really, it can burn holes into your wallet...
Jokes aside, i hate these cashcow games. I hated the whole skylanders line and i dont see my opinion changing with this stuff.

AJSjedi

#5

AJSjedi said:

My wife and I picked this up last week with a bunch of extra figures and playsets (thank goodness as they were still on sale at toys r us at the time) and we can both honestly say it's been worth every penny. Make no mistake, the games is geared towards children, but if you like Disney or the Pixar movies plenty of fun can be had. Yeah, it get's pricey, no doubt. But how is it different from tons of other games and a ton of DLC. At least with infinity you get something physical to hold in your hand, the figures are cool little collectables in their own right.

As far as the games themselves we both like all of them, but my favorite so far is Lone ranger and my wife likes monsters university.

We never had an ounce of interest in skylanders, but as I am pushing 40 and she is 41 and we enjoy being big kids this is perfect for us. You get at least 6 hours per playset, and then you think about toybox mode and the money you dropped doesn't seem bad at all for the content you are getting.

I would say gameplay is very much platform, with exploration and "combat" thrown in, but nothing over the top. Great family game, even though we don't have kids (just us fighting over it)

My only regret is I hear the wreck it ralph figures won't have their own playset which SUCKS, I wanted to play in that world. Toy story will have it's own playset, and I'm holding out hope for a tron figure or playset but I'm thinking that will be in Disney infinity 2.

Mqblank

#6

Mqblank said:

@AJSjedi I really hope they do a Wreck It Ralph playset as I may be tempted by that. TRON would be awesome though.

Banker-Style

#7

Banker-Style said:

I got it last week and it's an absolutely brilliant game,it's a bit glitchy,but nevertheless way better than Skylanders.Hopefully Nintendo Life will review it.

AJSjedi

#8

AJSjedi said:

@Mqblank
I know they are coming out with a few more figures as well, of course their is Sorcerer Mickey and jack skellington (nightmare before Christmas), but I've seen where they also plan on releasing rapunzell, Phineas and ferb or something (not interested in those) and two characters from "frozen"...whatever that is, never heard of it.

If you go into the hall of heroes in the game, you can see who is planned, though I suspect it would not be impossible to add on to those with some update. Keeping my fingers crossed for light cycles and discs!

aaronsullivan

#9

aaronsullivan said:

My first impressions were very positive as well. The kids haven't seen it yet, and I almost leveled up a figure by accident so I stopped.

My little girl is very creative and she will go gaga over the toybox mode and my younger guy will go nuts over many of the characters.

Myself and my 30+ brother were having a lot of fun just running around placing stuff down and shooting at each other and messing with each other.

I'd love to claim one or two of those figurines and put 'em up on my inspiration shelf when programming.

The future possibilities are also staggering. It's a WAY more solid and interesting idea than the endless button masher that is Skylanders, though I have to say we never did dive into that one.

aaronsullivan

#11

aaronsullivan said:

@AJSjedi
Love Rapunzel from Tangled myself. That would be fun. Frozen is the new Disney movie coming up. Looks pretty great so far. There is an animated short that's a teaser out there that is actually very very funny in its own right.

Whopper744

#12

Whopper744 said:

@AJSjedi Me and my wife are 24 and are loving it as well. Didn't have a bit of interest in Skylanders either. I see you are also a baseball fan from the looks of it so we might have a bit in common. :p It's cool to hear other Adults have been enjoying this. I'm hoping Ralph comes soon.

rjejr

#13

rjejr said:

At about 1:28 in the video, is that the little red flying robot from Black Hole?

This game is based on Toy Story 3 toybox mode that the Wii version didnt get. Had a lot of fun playing that with my kids.

Im waiting for next year when Im guessing the Vault or Classics releases, when I can play Disney stuff - Bambi, Thumper, Dumbo, Pinochio, Jiminy Cricket, Tinkerbell, 7 Dwarves, et al. Nothing against Pixar, but PotC and Lone Ranger aren't working for me. Whats wrong w/ Jungle Book, all great characters in there? Im guessing the newer Disney stuff - Lion King, Aladin, Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Tarzan - will be 2015.

Ild buy a Maximillian toy.

GiftedGimp

#14

GiftedGimp said:

Me & The missus have brought this towards the kids christmas presents and will be picking up playsets over the next few months.
We've both had a little look at the game, or games really as it depends on the character/s and the toybox mode and both of use came away feeling it's a game with massive potential over skylanders and both actually look forward to playing it along with the kids.

sinalefa

#15

sinalefa said:

I know the Wreck-it Ralph set is coming. So after they make something from Ducktales, I will be able to part with my money.

I would also like to wait until they fix possible bugs.

Drobotic

#17

Drobotic said:

I'll try to see if I could save up for this since my birthday is coming soon.

AJSjedi

#18

AJSjedi said:

@rjejr
That's an opinion I've read a lot. People asking why no classic Disney and mostly Pixar. The only theory I have is that since it's geared towards kids they figured start with more recent stuff. But i'm sure if this gets as big as I think it's going to get, I have no doubt eventually we will see more of the classics. How cool would it be to play as the love bug in a cars world? (NOT the Lindsey lohan love bug!) or to play as the cat from outer space in something...OOPS i'm showing my age...gotta run!

daveh30

#19

daveh30 said:

@sinalefa
There actually isn't going to be a Wreck it Ralph set. Ralph and Venellope are going to be sold as characters only, so they will only be playable in the Toy Box mode. The only full playset still coming is Toy story. They've already announced everything that will be released and stated that they can't add in further characters or playsets beyond whats already on the disc. They're going to do multiple game releases instead...

sinalefa

#21

sinalefa said:

@daveh30

Thanks for that. It is a bit of a bummer. Hopefully they are not going for the old "yearly installments at $60 a pop" approach.

C-Olimar

#22

C-Olimar said:

I really, really like the look of this game. If I had a vast amount of disposable income I would get it but I'm 17 so...unlikely

rjejr

#24

rjejr said:

@AJSjedi - How cool would it be to play as the love bug in a cars world?

Or Tim Conway from the Apple Dumpling Gang. Or Jan Michael Vincent as The Worlds Greatest Athlete. Or Kurt Russel as The computer who wore tennis shoes.

Theres a very good reason Disney switched back to cartoons in the 90s. ;-)

GiftedGimp

#25

GiftedGimp said:

@daveh30 Course they can do other playsets and support for addition characters via the dlc route.
Wether they choose to or not is another thing.

unrandomsam

#26

unrandomsam said:

How much does it cost for the lot ? (£500 ? £200 ? £100 ? - that is the most important thing and always something that reviewers are not up front about).

daveh30

#27

daveh30 said:

@GiftedGimp the interview I saw, the developer said it was "impossible". I take that to mean they've chosen not to, because it's certainly not impossible.

unrandomsam

#28

unrandomsam said:

Power discs (From Wikipedia) - That is going be astronomically expensive to acquire them all.

3 series is 60 in blind packs of 2

"Power Discs are discs that can be placed on the Infinity Base along with their characters to add new elements to the game. Characters can be powered up via the use of up to 4 different Power Discs at a time. These discs can alter the terrain, add special vehicles to the game or alter a character's statistics. One Power Disc is included with the Starter Pack whilst additional discs are sold in blind bags each containing two discs.[10] Overall there will be 20 power discs available from the launch of Disney Infinity in August 2013, however there are plans for 3 series of Power Discs in total.[11]"

unrandomsam

#29

unrandomsam said:

Jeff Cork of Game Informer said that to purchase all items at the launch (the game, all launch toys and power discs) it costs a minimum of AUD$460

That is probably presuming you don't get any of the same power discs twice.

daveh30

#30

daveh30 said:

Actually, allow me to revise my previous statement. Not everything has been announced. He stated that there is still more to be announced, but nothing further beyond what is already on the disc will be released for this version of the game. Every character that has been announced so far has a spot for a statue in the Hall Of Heroes with their name on it but if you look around outside the Hall, there are at least 13 more pedastals (including one where the Crystal Lightning McQueen shows up. I was disappointed he didn't have a statue until I found that tonight) and a large empty open area where a dozen more could easily be put. That being said, Wreck It Ralph and Penellope have already been announced ( along with Sorcerors Apprentice Mickey, Jack Skelington, and a few others) as Toy Box only characters. Currently the only additional confirmed Play Set is Toy Story.

MadAdam81

#31

MadAdam81 said:

The toys themselves are top quality - great value for that alone, let alone what you can do with it in the game.
There are a few minor bugs, more amusing than annoying and no game breaking ones.
I've git all the figures, but the value alone in the starter pack is great, with 20 hours gameplay in the 3 included play sets alone, as well as hundreds of hours in toy box mode.

fortius54

#33

fortius54 said:

I am so glad I picked this up on the Wii U and not the PS3. It is so much easier changing weapons on the fly with the gamepad. It makes a world of difference.

Peach64

#35

Peach64 said:

This game would be perfect as a digital game. A shining example of how physical media is going to be holding us back in the coming generation. I'm sure when everyone heard about this, they immediately imagined constant additions being made.

ACK

#36

ACK said:

From what I've seen, this is struggling to sell in my area. The Wii U is the only version with low stock anywhere nearby and every store has an aisle overflowing with figures. This will not inspire a Skylanders-style frenzy.

As someone who immediately saw the immense potential, I feel the problem is largely with the figures. They are generic, bland, and entirely uneccessary. Quality, yes, but what kid wants another licensed movie figure that isn't even as versatile as their numerous other Disney toys. From a kid's stand point, they've gotten those figures in Happy Meals and promptly lost them in the sandbox several times over.

Of course, you could say the same for Skylanders, but the appeal of those figurines is entirely tied to their originality. A kid always needs just one more because they've never seen the likes of Wham-Shell or Ninjini or Drobot before. That's all that matters to them; kids have no eye for quality. And they certainly don't understand collectibles, though they love to collect distinctly unique items.

Likewise, they really fumbled the decisions regarding style and character roster. Most of those figurines look worse than your average rendition of the same characters. (I really think they should have committed to a stylized look for each franchise/set as opposed to the whole roster.) Also, the fact that those franchise are relevant and prominent severely hinders their collective aspirations. Those licenses may fill the toy aisles because they sell consistently, but those aren't collectors buying and that makes them old hat to those who do.

Add it all together and most are going to see Disney Infinity as a ruse to convince them to re-buy all these lame Disney toys at a premium. The history of Disney-licensed games doesn't help.

Skylanders succeeded because it was different and committed to being unique. Didn't hurt that the gameplay was instantly accessible and universally gratifying. Many didn't wince at the toy investment because your average kid's game was lesser in quality and content out of the box. Kids weren't bothered by begging for more characters because they were used to being limited to 3 or 4 character choices.

Unfortunately, for all it's groundbreaking design ambitions, the average consumer doesn't see it as much more than a cash grab. What is it? A digital toy box requiring expensive, unwanted figurines? A patchwork platformer combining dissonant franchises? An obtrusive marketing gimmick to pressure me to buy more modern Disney junk?

(Take a second and reflect on the current cynical videogame market. Those same concerns are apparent with hardware such as the Wii U, which appears to be selling people what they already have - a Wii and a tablet/handheld.)

You know, my perceptions mean so very little, but I don't foresee happening with Infinity. This game is going to bomb. Wrong licenses, wrong toys, wrong prices... Wrong company. Seriously, other companies (like Nintendo) could pull this brazenly grandiose plan off. The Disney name is just too loaded.

These figures are going to be at clearance prices by Christmas. Please consider saving your money and watch how the market plays out, you will not be left behind.

AJSjedi

#39

AJSjedi said:

@ACK
Where do I begin? First off let me say clearly this is not mean to offend. However, you sound like a marketing persona, and a bad one at that. I have to disagree with all your principles. You come off sounding like someone with a grudge against disney.

It has been established the roster is the way it is because it's targeted toward the younger generation. They are more familiar with pixar films / characters than classic disney ones.

Regarding skylanders figures, what exactly are they. Everyone I know who looks at one asks themselves that. Where as when you look at disney you instantly know exactly who or what it is. And saying they are poor quality? They are not meant to be "toys" you play with. You mentioned kids not wanting to buy things they already have...umm call of duty anyone? When they come out with new toys from a line already released they don't seem to have any trouble selling them.
One last thing also regarding skylanders, only little children seem the least bit interested, where as with infinity I've seen / read / heard more adults talking about this than kids. That is why you see so many items at the store, everyone is enjoying this game.

Again nothing personal but your points come off as bitter and biased. I copied this to your other article as well not to upset or anger you or bait you into an argument, but for the sake of discussion

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