Some of you probably read that title and are thinking, “hold on, a second Tiger, Disney Infinity and Skylanders are supposed to fight to the death.” And you’re right, fight to the death they will and each with its own positives and negatives, but Disney Infinity has launched with a huge advantage: being compared to Skylanders.
Disney Infinity has the luxury of coming after two huge entries to the Skylanders franchise, Skylanders: Giants and Skylanders: Spyros Adventure. You may be thinking how could this be an advantage, as Skylanders has dominated the “collectibles come to life” video game market? Truth be told, Skylanders is the top selling toy at Toys R Us, putting it ahead of regular toys like Beyblade and Transformers. And why would Disney chase down such a retail giant?” It’s simple: even a small slice of that Skylanders pie backed by established Disney characters — that already have a rabid fan base — is likely a win-win scenario for the big D.
On the day Disney Infinity launched I took a trip down to a few local retailers to see how Disney would be displayed and what the overall reaction would be, and I was quite surprised with my findings. First thing I noticed was that Disney Infinity was placed right next to or right across from existing Skylanders displays. So any child with their parents that went to the store looking for a Skylander was also greeted by Sulley from Monsters, Inc. The other thing that I noticed was parents and children walking over to the Disney Infinity display and exclaiming “look it’s the new Skylanders”.
A father even went as far as to round up his wife and kids to show them the Disney display and immediately went to try out the toys on the portal that was set up. If you’re someone who’s on the Disney Infinity team you have to be thinking “mission accomplished” right about now.
Skylanders is fueling the buzz of Disney Infinity simply by association. People that know nothing of Disney Infinity assume it is the same as Skylanders and quickly equate that as a great thing, an angle that works heavily into Disney’s favor. Some (if not all) parents will end up buying Disney Infinity just because they see wholesome Disney characters and something that their kids will like just as much as Skylanders without even doing research on it.
Skylanders being an already established franchise really is the best thing to happen to Disney Infinity and Disney has to love that.