Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure

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"Spyro's Adventure" redirects here. For Game Boy Advance game sold in Europe as "Spyro Adventure", see Spyro: Attack of the Rhynocs.
Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure
Developer(s) Toys For Bob
Writer(s) Alec Sokolow
Joel Cohen
Marianne Krawczyk
Composer(s) Lorne Balfe
Series Spyro
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows
Nintendo 3DS
PlayStation 3
Xbox 360
Wii U
Release date(s) Microsoft Windows, OS X, Xbox 360
AUS 20111013October 13, 2011
EU 20111014October 14, 2011
NA 20111016October 16, 2011
Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 3, Wii
AUS 20111013October 13, 2011
EU 20111014October 14, 2011
NA 20111016October 16, 2011
JP 20130712July 12, 2013
Wii U
JP 20130712July 12, 2013
Genre(s) Role-playing, action adventure, platform
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure is the first video game in the Skylanders series. It is a video game that is played along with toy figures that interact with it through a "Portal of Power", that reads their tag through NFC and features the voices of Josh Keaton, Dave Wittenberg, Darin De Paul, Joey Camen, Audrey Wasilewski, Keythe Farley and Kevin Michael Richardson.

Skylanders Spyro's Adventure was published by Activision and developed by Toys for Bob. It was released on October 12, 2011 in Australia for the PC and October 13, 2011 on other consoles. The game was released in Europe on October 14, 2011, in North America on October 16, 2011, and it was released in South America (including Brazil) by Neoplay on December 15, 2011.[1][2]

Japan eventually finally saw a release of this game, being handled by Toys "R" Us and Square Enix and was released for the Wii, PlayStation 3, Nintendo 3DS and the region has also received a unique Wii U port exclusively (instead of having an Xbox 360 release), being released on July 12, 2013, which was nearly two years after its release in the western regions, thus making this the first Spyro game to be released in Japan in almost 10 years, since Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy.[3] It is also the final Japanese release of Spyro the Dragon series to be owned by Vivendi SA (Formerly Vivendi Universal).

Activision announced that as of June 3, 2012, the game had been the top selling console and handheld video game worldwide for 2012.[4][5] As of March 31, 2012, Activision has sold over 30 million Skylanders toys, and sales are expected to exceed $500 million by the end of the year.[6][7] A direct sequel, Skylanders: Giants, was released in 2012 for the Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 3, Wii, Wii U, and Xbox 360.

This is the only Skylanders game to be released on PC.


There are 32 standard characters and 8 different elements under which characters are classified. The 8 elements are Magic, Water, Tech, Fire, Earth, Life, Air and Undead. When the character figurines are placed on the "Portal of Power" peripheral, they appear in the game. The "Starter Pack" has three characters to start with – Spyro, Trigger Happy, and Gill Grunt. Each character has specialized statistics in areas such as health and speed. The player can also find hats for the characters, which further affect statistics.[citation needed] Special Elemental Gates require a Skylander with the corresponding element to pass through. With two players, only one player needs to be controlling a Skylander of the correct element.

In addition to the standard character figures that are available for purchase. There are also limited edition Gold, Silver, Crystal, Chrome, and Glow-in-the-Dark versions of certain characters.

3DS version[edit]

This version of Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure is more of an action platformer than its console counterparts. Players have to complete levels by gathering crystals, which lets them unlock more levels. Each level is littered with crystals, obtained by going towards the end of the level, or by completing a variety of tasks, such as defeating a certain number of enemies, or finding items. Whenever the player finds a crystal, an enemy awakens and a time limit starts. They have to defeat enemies, and get clocks in the level to get more time to ward off the chasing enemy. Unlike other versions, characters can make a jump, and a double jump.[8] This version of the game is set in a different realm in Skylands called the Radiant Isles, and a different force of darkness is faced under the command of Hektore. Unlike the console versions, the starter pack for the 3DS version comes with the Skylanders Ignitor, Stealth Elf, and Dark Spyro.[9]


For generations, the Skylanders did their thing - using their magical powers and machinery to protect Skylands and the Core of Light. But using his Hydra an evil tyrant called Kaos has destroyed the Core, frozen and banished them to Earth. Now the Skylanders must find a way to get back home, find the elemental sources, rebuild the Core and banish Kaos.


The game begins with a village in Skylands being ravaged by a massive tornado. A small, bookish fellow named Hugo mentions the destruction of the "Core of Light" and the death of "Master Eon". Suddenly, Spyro (provided by the player) appears and proceeds to save the villagers still trapped in the village and brings in Trigger Happy and Gill Grunt.

Following the rescue, the player is introduced to the ruins and some of the game's backstory is explained- the world of Skylands has been protected for a long time by the Skylanders. Each group of Skylanders is led by a Portal Master- a being able to teleport Skylanders, weapons and even magic where needed to keep Skylands safe. Alas, the last of the Portal Masters- Master Eon -was coming close to his death and, to make matters worse, an army of darkness attacks. Their leader is Kaos- a Dark Portal Master -, who is determined to spread the Darkness- the ultimate malevolent force in Skylands -as well as destroy the Core of Light. Unfazed by Kaos' hollow threats and willing to fight to his last, Master Eon sends the Skylanders into battle. They prove more than capable of smashing Kaos' army, a point that Glumshanks- Kaos' troll butler -is quick to point out. Unconcerned, however, Kaos unleashes "Plan Z"- he sends a large, hydra-like monster into battle, which single-handedly kills Master Eon and destroys the Core of Light. Compounding matters is the fact that, without a Portal Master, the Skylanders are leaderless and (even worse) Kaos banishes them from Skylands, which causes them to shrink and become semi-petrified due to a separation from Skylands' magic. The player (who is now the new Portal Master) is tasked with restoring the Core of Light.

To restore it, however, the player must collect several mystical objects. Chief among them are the Eternal Elemental Sources- the sources of Fire, Water, Earth, Air, Tech, Magic, Life and Death that exist in Skylands. This is no small task, as Kaos is quick to notice and sends all of his minions out to destroy the new Portal Master and the Skylanders which Spyro recruits along the way. Despite his best efforts (among them creating dark copies of Skylanders), Kaos fails to stop the player and (with the help of several other characters met along the way) the Core of Light is restored. Humiliated and weakened, Kaos and Glumshanks retreat to the Outlands- Skylands' most desolate place. Not wanting to leave anything to chance, the player and the Skylanders journey to Kaos' Fortress, where they engage the Dark Portal Master, the Dark Skylanders and the Hydragon- a half-hydra, half-dragon monster that was responsible for breaking the Core of Light and killing Master Eon -in a massive battle.

In the end, Kaos is defeated. While he is unconcerned about being banished again, Eon's spirit informs him that he is being banished not to the Outlands, but to Earth. Hugo gladly sends Kaos to Earth, where he is apparently made the new chew toy of a dog.


Toys for Bob was given the opportunity to revive a Vivendi franchise, and they chose the Spyro the Dragon franchise. Paul Reiche III noted: "attempts to revive broad-audience mascot franchises haven't seen predictable success in the game industry. Just creating a new Spyro game after the traditional fashion was unlikely to work" and reinventing the character as a "really gritty, strange otherworldly Spyro" didn't seem like a promising idea. Reiche says he had considered integrating technology with toys and games for a while, and it was the kind of concept that was so outlandish that it was the most promising idea the team sketched out for the brand.[10]

The game's original working title was Spyro's Kingdom from June 2009. The game was originally going to be a mature Spyro game with a much darker tone, that also included blood, but the developers of Toys for Bob lost their enthusiasm and felt that this direction did not feel like "Spyro".[11] They spent six months on a variety of different directions with Spyro, and with the time and budget given by Activision.

Executive producer Jeff Poffenbarger stated that the game is geared more towards younger gamers who have no prior knowledge of the Spyro character.[12]

A screenshot from the game.

To enable the game to work with the toys, the base of each toy contains an RFID chip[13][14] which communicates wirelessly with the portal when in near proximity to inform the game which toy is currently active. The RFID chip also retains several key stats including gold, level and upgrades purchased and won through gameplay. Due to the use of RFID, the toys are portable between supported platforms while retaining their stats, allowing players to use their characters in other player's games with all upgrades in place.[15] Additionally, two figures can be placed on the portal simultaneously, for cooperative or versus play.

The game's original score was written primarily by Lorne Balfe, with some additional compositions by Andrew Kawczynski and Pete Adams. The main theme was written by Hans Zimmer.

The game's main story was penned by Alec Sokolow and Joel Cohen, both of whom worked on Pixar's original Toy Story film.[16] The game was originally revealed to be exclusive for the Wii,[17] but was eventually released on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, iPad, iPhone, the Web, Microsoft Windows and Macintosh computers.

According to the Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bathia, Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure "is testing apparently very well with kids", who are the game's target audience.[18]

Nickelodeon of Europe and Activision had worked together to help sponsor a tour called Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure Live to help promote the game, ranging from September 10–11 at Liverpool, Williamson Square to September 17–18 at London, Westfield Stratford.[19]


Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings (PC) 93.00%[20]
(3DS) 84.29%[21]
(X360) 80.95%[22]
(Wii) 80.18%[23]
(PS3) 79.23%[24]
Metacritic (3DS) 82/100[25]
(Wii) 81/100[26]
(X360) 78/100[27]
(PS3) 77/100[28]
Review scores
Publication Score
Destructoid 8/10[29]
GameSpot 7.5/10[30]
Giant Bomb 4/5[31]
IGN 8.0/10[32]
Nintendo World Report 9/10[33]
Gaming Nexus B+[34]

The game has received generally favorable reviews. GameSpot gave it a 7.5 out of 10, praising its family-friendly gameplay and role-playing-style character progression, but criticized the lack of online multiplayer, the cost of buying a complete set of figures, slapping Spyro into the game, and for finding the Portal of Power peripheral to be temperamental.[30] Nintendo World Report gave the game a 9 out of 10, praising the Wii version for its gameplay and production values, and the 3DS version for its accessibility to younger gamers and overall design.[33] Gaming Nexus gave Skylanders a B+ and praised the game for taking the Spyro franchise to a younger audience once more, though noted that the game has a few flaws.[34]

Destructoid gave the game an 8 out of 10 saying, "It's not the most complex game on the market, but the innovative gadgetry and authentic thoughtfulness on the part of the developer stands out in a market so used to churning out the same old crap."[29] IGN gave Skylanders an 8.0 out of 10.[32] Skylanders was nominated for two Toy Industry Association awards: 'Game of the Year' and 'Innovative Toy of the Year'.[35]

ZTGD gave the game 8.7 /10 in a positive initial review (October 2011)[36] and their follow-up article on 4 January 2012[37] noted a worldwide shortage of additional toys to the starter pack trio, an issue the manufacturer, Activision, warned of in November 2011 due to the significantly higher-than-expected demand.[38]

Giant Bomb reviewer Jeff Gerstmann gave the game four out of five stars, stating "Skylanders is probably aimed at kids, but whatever. I am a legal adult...and I think it's still pretty cool."[39]


During the first quarter of 2012, Skylanders was the third most profitable game in North America and Europe, including sales of accessories and figures. According to Activision's internal estimates, sales of Skylanders toys exceeded those of the number one action figure line at the time, Star Wars.[6]

Over 30 million Skylanders toys have been sold worldwide. Toy sales from the first game were two to three times higher than Activision had originally expected, prompting the making of a sequel.[40]

As of December 2012, the Skylanders franchise sold more than $500 million in retail sales in the U.S., inclusive of accessory packs and figures. In 2012 alone, Skylanders Giants, the sequel to Skylanders Spyro's Adventure—the #1 best-selling kids' game of 2011—generated more than $195 million in U.S. sales.


Activision announced a sequel, Skylanders: Giants, which was released in October 2012.[41] A Web game called Skylanders: Universe was created as well but was discontinued on 29 April 2013.[42] A second sequel, Skylanders: Swap Force, was released in October 2013. A third sequel, Skylanders: Trap Team, was released in October 2014. A fourth sequel, Skylanders: Superchargers was released in September 2015.

On May 3, 2012, An illustrated novel titled: Skylanders: The Machine of Doom has been released on eBook applications, that is set as a canon prequel to the first Skylanders game. It was written by Cavan Scott under the pen name, "Onk Beakman".[citation needed] It was published by Grosset & Dunlap and released as Paperback on August 3, 2012 in the United Kingdom and on September 6, 2012 in North America.[43][44]

A second illustrated novel titled: Skylanders: Spyro versus the Mega Monsters, will not only be a sequel, but it is to be the first of a Mask of Power series of the Skylanders novel brand franchise. It was released on January 10, 2013.[45][46]

Activison had commented on the possibility of a Skylanders movie and TV series as something that they could see themselves looking into in the future.[47] However, on May 30, 2013, Activision confirmed that there aren't any plans for a Skylanders movie adaption nor a TV series, with Activision's vice president of the business unit adding that "the video game is the movie."[48]


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