Friday, July 29, 2016

Yooka-Laylee Toybox Demo

Yesterday, Playtonic Games has released the playable toybox demo of Yooka-Laylee for those who backed the game's kickstarter. The backer-exclusive demo is played through the Steam on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

"The Toybox has been created from scratch for our backers and is not a traditional ‘demo’. In particular, the environments you see in the final version of Yooka-Laylee will be far more vast and detailed than the intentionally-simple playground you’ll be able to jump around in this week. There are also far more moves, animations and general polish included in the main game."

Monday, June 20, 2016

Skylands Academy Forum Update

With the Skylanders Academy television series in the light, and on its way to its debut on Netflix this Fall, the Skylands Academy Forum is itching for more active members who are major fans of Skylanders. Portal Masters can also talk about the upcoming Skylanders: Imaginators game and what has been revealed so far.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Skylanders Academy TV series coming to Netflix

The Skylanders television series first mentioned back in November 2015 is finally revealed by Activision. Its network will be on Netflix and will air around the same time as the release of Skylanders: Imaginators. I am personally excited that Spyro will finally have a lead role AND be in an animated tv series at last. :D

The animation company responsible for the beautiful screenshots below of the show itself is TeamTO, the same French animation studio who did other international projects.

Santa Monica, Calif. - Activision Blizzard, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) announced that "Skylanders Academy," the first production by Activision Blizzard Studios-its newly-created television and film studio-will premiere in Fall 2016 on Netflix, the world's leading internet television network.

"Over the last five years, millions of families around the world have welcomed Skylanders characters into their homes. Now, they'll be able to watch their favorite characters come to life on Netflix," said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. "We couldn't have found a better home for 'Skylanders Academy' and look forward to sharing our extraordinary characters with Netflix audiences around the world."

The series follows the heroic adventures of the Skylanders team, a group of heroes with unique elemental skills and personalities who travel the vast Skylands universe, protecting it from evil-doers and showing the next wave of Academy cadets how to do things the "Skylander way." Created by Toys For Bob, the $3 billion Skylanders franchise has sold through more than 250 million toys since pioneering the toys-to-life category in 2011, and earlier this month Activision revealed Skylanders Imaginators, the latest innovation in the franchise.

"'Skylanders Academy' gives us the opportunity to approach narrative storytelling with the same level of quality and excellence that millions of Skylanders fans have come to expect from the game," said Activision Blizzard Studios Co-President Stacey Sher. "We're inspired by our fans' excitement for these characters and have worked hard to bring these characters to life with stories our fans will love."

Activision Blizzard launched its studio last year to create original content based on the company's intellectual property, and "Skylanders Academy" is the first production by Sher and studio Co-President Nick van Dyk. The two-season Netflix partnership is another important step in Activision Blizzard's strategy of enhancing its franchises and broadening their appeal.

Produced under the supervision of showrunner Eric Rogers ("Futurama"), "Skylanders Academy" features the voices of Justin Long ("Alvin and the Chipmunks," "Ask Me Anything") as Spyro, Ashley Tisdale ("Phineas and Ferb," "High School Musical") as Stealth Elf, Jonathan Banks ("Breaking Bad," "Better Call Saul") as Eruptor and Norm MacDonald ("Saturday Night Live") as Glumshanks. Additional voice talent includes The Diamond Minecart, Susan Sarandon, Daniel Wu, Parker Posey, James Hetfield, Catherine O'Hara, Bobcat Goldthwait, Chris Diamantopoulos, Jonny Rees, Harland Williams and Richard Horvitz.

Sher and van Dyk are joined by Sander Schwartz, the Emmy award-winning producer of animated hits including "The Batman," "The Aquabats! Super Show!" and "Justice League: The New Frontier," as the show's executive producers. "Skylanders Academy" is animated by the internationally acclaimed TeamTO studio in France.

"Activision Blizzard Studios' enviable mission is to work with our extraordinary portfolio of franchise intellectual property and bring it to broader audiences on new platforms," said van Dyk. "We're excited to reach this strategic partnership and for the future of 'Skylanders Academy.'"

Imaginators at E3 2016

I was able to once again go to E3 this year to play some Skylanders: Imaginators. Here are the results, and some press gameplay.

Skylanders: Imaginators + E3 2016

The game of Skylanders: Imaginators was officially revealed today on June 1st. :) Along with the reveal, came a legion of new characters and a new gimmick that features creating our very own Skylanders in the form of Imaginators.

Portal Masters can unleash their imaginatons like never before when Skylanders Imaginators launches on October 16 in North America! Skylandes Imaginators gives kids the power to create Skylanders and bring them to life for the first time in an all-new adventure with a compelling storyline, puzzles, battles, and a new lineup of heroes and villains.

Since the inception of Skylanders, kids around the world have imagined their own Skylanders characters. Towys for Bob, the orignators of Skylanders and pioneers of Toys-to-Life, is back as the lead development team. Skylanders Imaginators will offer fans more choices than ever before with infinite possibilities to create. Now fans can create their own Skylanders with endless combinations of powers, abilities, catchphrases, and much more that deliver hours of replayable fun.

The story of Skylanders Imaginators takes place long ago when the Ancients used a mysterious power known as Mind Magic to create everything in Skylands. With it, they conjured into existence anything that they could imagine. However, they soon learned that in the wrong hands, it could be very dangerous, and so they sealed it away so that it could never be misused. After discovering this ancient secrete, Kaos has unleashed the power of Mind Magic into Skylands once again - and he is using it to create an unstoppable army of Doomlanders, the likes of which have never been seen! Now it's up to Portal Masters to create Skylanders Imaginators from their own imagination to stop Kaos and his evil Doomlanders before it is too late. And to help train them, Eon is sending the greatest mystic warriors of all time - the Senseis!

Skylanders Imaginators supports the 300+ character toys from all previous Skylanders games - including *insert name of each game here* - that kids can enjoy in the real world and in the virtual game world. As plays add new Skylanders to their collection, they expand their in game experiences.

  • Create your own Skylander - For the first time, their imaginations to life and create their own Skylanders, called Skylanders Imaginators. With endless creation options of powers, abilities, catchphrases, appearance and much more, kids can build their very own creations out of their imaginations, or use the randomize feature to allow the game to choose parts for them.

  • Creation Crystal - Skylanders Imaginators introduces a new toy type - a Creation Crystal. This vessel allows players to create and transport their unique Skylanders to consoles at anytime, anywhere! Creation Crystals are elementally aligned. Portal Masters can create one character per Creation Crystal.

  • Meet the Senseis - The Skylanders franchise continues to offer engaging characters that kids love to discover as they play the game. Skylanders Imaginators will introduce new guest stars to Skylanders called Senseis to fans. Senseis include 20 new characters and 11 former villains. Each Sensei is a master of one of 10 powerful Battle Classes (e.g. Knight, Sorcerer, Brawler, and more).
    - Being the master of these Battle Classes, only Senseis have the ability to unleash Sky Chi - the ultimate Battle Class super move. Sensei Skylanders have a master-to-apprentice relationship with newly created Imaginator Skylanders. This is supported in-game through the Sensei unlocking of unique Imaginator weapons, the increase of Imaginator level caps, providing access to special areas in the game, as well as the unlocking of new Secret Techniques for Imaginators of the same class.

  • New Storyline and Gameplay - Skylanders Imaginators features an all-new adventure-filled, comedic and charming story with fun new characters, as well as returning franchise favorites. The game delivers a diverse and dynamic story-driven gameplay experience, focused on the magic of sparking imagination, inspiration, and excitement of kids as they create their own superheroes - all set within a variety of compelling new environments. Additionally, Skylanders Imaginators will support local co-op multiplayer. Players can place two Creation Crystals or two toys or a combination of the Crystals and toys on the Portal of Power to maximize the fun!

  • Returning Core Characters - Skylanders Imaginators also will feature fan-favorite characters who make an appearance in both the storyline of the game - and the upcoming Skylanders Academy television series!

In addition, Crash Bandicoot has been confirmed at E3 2016 to be in Skylanders: Imaginators, and the announcement of remasters of the first three Crash Bandicoot games will be on the PS4.

A wormhole has opened in Skylands and the great Aku Aku appears! He has come to announce the once-in-two-decades Synchronization Celebration--a time when all of the worlds align perfectly. All the inhabitants of Wumpa Island are having a party and they want to invite the Skylanders. But with Kaos on a quest to take over Skylands using his army of Doomlanders, the Skylanders must focus on stopping his evil plans. Never one to shy away from danger, the legendary marsupial Crash Bandicoot leaps through the wormhole to join the Skylanders in the ultimate battle against Kaos!

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Skylands Academy Leaks + Fan Forum

Leaked logo of Skylanders Academy featured on Eric Rogers' Twitter page

Skylanders Academy Lead Writer, Eric Rogers, has recently started leaking some details on the upcoming animated Skylanders series that is set to air Fall 2016. From his twitter page, Rogers has been replying to eager fans without spoiling too much, this includes:

In honor of the upcoming Skylanders Academy, I created a forum for Skylanders fans aka Portal Masters: Skylands Academy.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Ori and the Blind Forest Definitive Edition

Moon Studios recently released the Definitive Edition of Ori and the Blind Forest, in which fans can play new optional difficulty settings, Behind the Scenes, Theater, and Concept Art, two new areas and abilities. The Xbox One version of the game has just been released, while the Steam and PC additions are still under the works.

"We wanted to make the Definitive Edition a celebration of sorts for our players and fans, and welcome them into the journey that we went through from the beginning to the end of the development process. All of these things make Ori very special."