Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure 3DS Review

While shopping for 3DS games this holiday season, be sure to give Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure serious consideration.

What appeared to be a gimmick, a game that works in tandem with a series of plastic action figures, is one of the system's finest titles, a colorful, addictive and well designed platform adventure featuring lots of enemies to pummel, items to collect and characters to play as.

The starter kit, which retails for $69.99, is a bit pricey compared to other 3DS fare, but there's plenty of stuff inside the box, including the game, three Skylanders (out of 32) and the Portal of Power.

Allow us to explain. The aforementioned Portal wirelessly communicates with Nintendo's 3DS. From there, you take one of these toys (the game comes with Dark Spyro, Stealth Elf and Ignitor), place it onto the glowing piece of plastic and the character instantly appears in the video game.

From there, you charge through a series of enjoyable stages, beating up enemies and gathering all sorts of collectibles to complete specific challenges while saving this virtual world from an evil Portal Master named Kaos.

What ensues is lots of platform jumping, destroying objects, locating secret shortcuts and exploring multiple paths.

Return to the hub world, and you can insert another Skylander into the game. In fact, you can store up to two warriors at any given time, and switch between them on the fly by touching the respective icons located on the touch screen, a 3DS exclusive.

Not magic, per se, just a brilliant use of the technology, backed by a smart marketing campaign where players can pick up additional Skylanders at retail stores, where Activision sells packs of three for $19.99. Suffice to say, you'll need to cough up a lot of dough to enjoy the full experience.

Naturally, you don't have to spend a penny more than the initial $69.99, but here's the thing. There's no denying that all of these characters look cool, and that's only the half of it. Each Skylander posseses unique attacks and abilities that prove useful against enemies, allowing them to experience levels in different ways. Slowly, the thought of picking up just one pack gets to you.

That, however, is a true testament not to the concept as a whole, but the actual game, which Vicarious Visions did a wonderful job designing. It's definitely one of the best looking and playing 3DS efforts to date, and we absolutely love the use of glasses free 3D, which doesn't hurt our eyes like games past. Finally, a third party showpiece for the hardware that speaks to Nintendo's vision.

With this in mind, we wholeheartedly recommend Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure, whether you're a kid or, like us, kids at heart.

What's Hot: Fun platform adventure, box includes three Skylanders, excellent use of glasses free 3D, attractive and colorful graphics.

What's Not: $69.99 is a bit steep for a 3DS game, you cannot purchase the game by itself.