Sunday, September 20, 2015

Skylanders SuperChargers Launch Day

Well folks, it is finally here!  Skylanders SuperChargers officially launches today in the US!  I figured I would take this time to cover my plans for the video schedule and answer some other FAQs as of late.

Skylanders Trap Team Research

First off, I have frantically been working to complete the Skylanders Trap Team Research Series, see also Upgrades and Attack Damage, lol.  I have actually done it, minus the Minis and a few others.  You can see all of the upgrades here:

Skylanders Trap Team Research - Upgrades

Skylanders Trap Team Research - Villainography

Skylanders SuperChargers Blind Playthrough on YouTube, Coop Playthrough on Twitch

Next up, let's talk about my plans for SuperChargers!

With Trap Team, I did something no one else has done in Skylanders, at least on the YouTube front.  Instead of doing my usual blind playthrough and directly uploading the videos to YouTube, I opted to do a "Blind Stream" of the game.  I literally played thru the game blind via live streams on my Twitch Channel.  The folks who checked it out really enjoyed it, and then of course I exported the videos over to YouTube.  The end quality wasn't as good as usual due to the stream bit-rate restrictions, but it was still a lot of fun.

This year, I am going to go back to my old formula AND maintain the stream concept.

With the introduction of online gameplay (not just racing, but coop) I will do the following:

-Skylanders SuperChargers Blind Playthrough via Xbox One uploading to YouTube


-Skylanders SuperChargers Coop Playthrough via Nintendo Wii U with viewers on Twitch


-Skylanders SuperChargers Online Racing with Friends and Viewers -Stream and Upload

So, as you can see we have a diverse mix and I do indeed plan to play with some of you I have come to know over the past 4 titles in the Skylanders series!

If you haven't already done so, I encourage you to sign up on the Skylander Club can connect with other Portal Masters and find friends to race with on your platform! - Skylanders Fan Forum

Skylanders SuperChagers Purchase Plans

Starter Packs

Now, this gets really interesting.  We have more characters than ever in the Starter Packs, but we have a lot of duplicates.  Here is my tentative plan

I have pre-ordered the Dark Edition for the Wii U.

I will get the 3DS Starter Pack.

I will get the Xbox One Starter Pack.

I really want Dark Bowser, but I'm trying to think of a way to justify the price of another Starter Pack...Ironically, if I had to pick 1 DK and 1 Bowser, I would want Dark Bowser and regular DK...funny how that goes.

If there is a good sale, and stock, I might spring for the Dark Wii Edition.  I could always upload a playthrough of that game, but I honestly haven't seen anything of it...I would like to gauge my purchase on the more immersive 3DS game (you can race online while you can't on the Wii), but with scalpers AND amiibo fanatics on the prowl, this may be a hot commodity.  I remember last year with Trap Team it was difficult to get a Wii U Dark Edition at launch.  Will there be low stock of the Dark Wii Edition, or will it be shelf fodder.  Will scalpers pick it up, or will regular buyers not justify the high price for basically a single character and his vehicle?  At this point, we just don't know.

Official Route

As for Day 1, here is my route:
-TRU: Legendary Hurricane Jet-Vac and possibly Dark Wii Starter Pack
-Target: Nitro Stealth Stinger
-Best Buy: Steel Plated Smash Hit
-GameStop: Frightful Fiesta and Dark Wii U Starter Pack

Skylanders SuperChargers Collection Plans

As always, 2 of each Skylander would be great...I can take both paths and never have to reset and loose precious and time consuming progress.  However, where there are not "specials, or alt-decos" on tap, I will likely not be able to finance a 2nd figure for everyone, let alone vehicle.  This is why I am a fan of having Darks, Nitros, Legendaries, and characters like Frightful Fiesta and Easter makes buying that 2nd one much more justifiable.

So, needless to say, I hope to acquire as many as possible, but will restrain myself to my favorites and those that are practical should it become necessary.

Skylanders SuperChargers Storage

This is a serious issue...If you are a seasoned veteran, you probably have Skylanders in your gaming room, on your consoles, strung across the living room, displayed in the kitchen, and some stored away under your bed...The struggle is real!  I am a bit concerned with parking for the vehicles, lol.  My tentative plan is to go the el-cheapo route and score some more of the under $1 "shoe boxes" from Target.  These are simple Sterlite storage containers with a click-lock lid and they get the job done, while leaving max fundage for Skylanders.

Is it Really Blind?

Oh yes, rest assured it is.  While some YouTubers have played a level or two and taken part in some races, others have simply watched some of the footage from Activison or other outlets...but me, all I've done is consume the B-Roll footage the PR team sent out.  This is largely highlight reel type material.  I've not watched the infamous chapter Lou played thru in the summer, I haven't digested any leaks, and I haven't read any descriptions...I'll be going in knowing as little as possible.  The only area I have good intel is the cast of Skylanders.  I personally just enjoy this approach much, much more...If I know the entire cast, plot line, and all the twists the game simply looses some of its appeal.

I plan to put a priority on the blind, solo playthru, but after completing a few chapters I'll hit up some friends and viewers for a coop approach.

Depending on how the game is structured, I will also work upgrades and other game modes that may be present into the mix earlier.  I have yet to find a perfect balance for how to approach things, largely due to so much content being locked, or tucked away (ie you want to fully ugprade someone, but their Soul Gem is in the last chapter etc).

What Does it All Mean?

Well, if you read all of that...thanks, you are who I cater to in this crazy YouTube life.  I do things a bit different than most.  I still prefer to focus on the details and attempt to provide viewers with a more intelligent playthrough.  I have a M-F job with long hours, and other interests.  Video games are an outlet to have fun, relieve stress, and just enjoy some down time.

I have been offered various partnerships, but since I read the contracts, I have never signed off on one...If you were unaware, you can take a partnership and radically grow your channel.  I'm not sure the subscribers gained are legit, and people claim they make more money, but I'm kind of here for fun..and I don't like to Skype with people who have names I can't pronounce that use a CC email to 15 other YouTubers telling each of us how unique we are with the same cut-and-paste compliments to go over any negotiations.

The partnerships, in addition to pumping more subscribers and requisite views to your channel, offer some tangible benefits, namely cross promotion (although they always tout their expansive sound effect database and collaboration tool kit).  No one likes to talk about cross promotion, but it is real, and it sucks for those on the flip side.

Let's say you have a YouTuber you really connect with (maybe me for instance?!).  Let's say they have a playlist of Skylanders SuperChargers that has the complete game and each installment is one chapter.  You caught Ch 1 and had stuff to do, so the next night you come in and watch Chapter 2.  You think, "Oh hey... a short chapter, I'm going to check out Chapter 3 too!"  You scan over to the sidebar with the playlist and instead of seeing Chapter 3, you find a ton of videos from other channels...You think, "Hey, this is supposed to be a playlist for this series, what is the deal?"  Well, that is cross promotion at work.  A lot of times if you use Auto Play you can go straight from the channel you want to watch, to the channel that is cross promoting.  It isn't really "recommended" channels for you, it is channels that are paying to be in another channel's playlists.  Head off to a partnered mega-channel's playlist and tell me if you see any vids lurching in the top slots of their playlists...if you do, they'll only be from larger partnered channels.

Basically, to put it in laymen's terms, partnered channels cross promote to both increase their view share and decrease the view share of their competitors.  It is a vicious cycle and very frustrating to not have videos measured by their own merits.
I've come to realize, more and more the past few years, that I could actually have a much larger channel by just yelling, raging at the game, and throwing in ridiculous animations and sound effects...that is simply not my style.  I have my own delivery and feel I have a niche audience that shares my mindset.

Despite the trends others follow, I just keep doing my own thing.  They say it is always best to swim with the current, but I feel like I'm that guy on the bank looking over at the mountain in the distance...I invite you to come with me...especially since that stream leads to the mouth of the cave that the bears hibernate in...

Long story short, SuperChargers is here...I hope it is awesome...I'm not changing my style...Let's have some fun together!!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Skylanders SuperChargers iOS Starter Pack

Wanted to play SuperChargers on your iPhone?
Now you can!
And yes, with Online Co-op and Racing!!

This fall, Skylanders SuperChargers will continue the franchise's leadership on mobile by bringing the full AAA game to fans via select iPads, and for the first time ever, the iPhone and iPod touch on October 25 in North America.

The game offers fans a new cloud save feature which allows for portability between multiple Apple devices for a true on-the-go experience. Simply save your progress via cloud save and pick up your progress on separate devices as long as you're logged in under the same Game Center account.  Now fans can seamlessly enjoy the same robust gameplay-driven adventure as its console counterpart wherever and whenever they want.

The Skylanders SuperChargers Starter Pack for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch will include everything necessary for fans with those devices to create the full Skylanders SuperChargers gameplay experience out of the box, including a Bluetooth portal, an embedded Bluetooth controller and a built-in stand. Upon download, players will get Instant Spit Fire and Instant Hot Streak for free with the download, while in-app purchases will unlock Instant versions of Dive-Clops, Dive Bomber, Super Shot Stealth Elf and Stealth Stinger.

Dive-Clops in Action!

The full Skylanders SuperChargers game experience, including online co-op and multiplayer racing, is playable on iPad Air, iPad Air 2, iPad mini 2, iPad mini 3, iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPod touch 6. Fans with iPhone 5/5C, iPad 3 and iPad 4 can enjoy the single-player Adventure Mode, local co-op and head-to-head racing in split screen.

SuperCharged Shark Tank!

Currently Playing

  • Skylanders Imaginators
  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
  • NBA Playgrounds
  • Minelogix-Minecraft PC
  • Stardew Valley - PC
  • Wii Fit U (Wii U)
  • Animal Crossing amiibo Festival (Wii U)
  • Yoshi's Wooly World
  • Animal Crossing New Leaf 3DS

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