Knowing full well that kids love catching them all when there are even more to catch, Activision announced Skylanders Trap Team for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, PS3, and Xbox 360. The latest entry in the franchise follows up last year's Skylanders: Swap Force and introduces the ability to not only buy many, many heroic action figures but also the ability to trap the game's enemies and turn them to the light.
Developed by Toys For Bob, which hasn't led development since 2012's Skylanders: Giants, Trap Team expands the compulsive collectable nature of the game. The game comes with a brand new NFC portal that reads not just the usual Skylanders toys, but new crystal toys. When fighting specific villains in the game like goofy old man Chompy Mage, plugging a trap crystal into the base actually sucks up the villain making them a usable character. There are 40 trappable villains in the game, and you can switch between one trapped villain and one regular Skylander figure on the fly, adding a tag team element to the Zelda style brawling that's the series' signature.
Toys For Bob is adding 60 new Skylanders as well, including the Trapmasters, a new class equipped with giant weapons made of "Traptanium," the same fictional substance the toys for trapping villains are made of. Toys For Bob showed off a brief playable demo of the PlayStation 4 version of the game. While the game showed well, with the same clean cartoon look of Swap Force and light, funny dialogue for the characters, the real allure was the chattering voice of the villains actually coming out of the crystal toy after trapping them. Not having the full features of the regular Skylander figures, the voices in the color-coded crystals adds a nice touch of personality.
When Activision released Skylanders Spyro's Adventure in 2011, it was not a guaranteed success but the combination of near-field communication equipped toys with a Pokemon-infused action adventure proved potent. By 2012, Acitvision predicted that the series would be its next billion dollar franchise. As of February 2014, the series had raked in $2 billion in total sales, roughly a quarter of which was earned following Swap Force's release.