The Nintendo-licensed figures announced today serve as both playable characters in Skylanders SuperChargers and as traditional Amiibo figures compatible with future Nintendo-published titles.
Announced figures include Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and Hammer Slam Bowser, both of which boast their own unique abilities and powers when summoned into the Skylanders universe. New characters in Skylanders SuperChargers also pilot their own unique vehicles, and Nintendo’s figures are no exception. Donkey Kong drives the Barrel Blaster vehicle, while Bowser pilots his trademark Clown Cruiser.
Noting that Nintendo has historically been “protective of its franchises,” Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime explains that Activision was given unprecedented freedom in redesigning its characters for the Skylanders universe. Featured characters possess many special moves and abilities inspired by games throughout Nintendo’s catalog. The Bowser variant Magma Bowser, for instance, has a flamethrower attack and can summon Koopa Troopas and Dry Bones characters to assist in battle.
Nintendo’s Skylanders-branded Amiibo feature a dual-compatibility mode, allowing players to twist figure bases in order to switch between Skylanders and standard Amiibo modes. It’s likely that these figures will interact with future Amiibo-compatible releases for the Wii U or 3DS, but specific plans beyond Skylanders SuperChargers were not announced.
Launched in 2011 with Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure, the figure-powered Skylanders series has seen a new release every year since, adding mix-and-match characters with 2013’s Skylanders Swap Force and trappable monsters in last year’s Skylanders Trap Team. The series focuses on the younger crowd with kid-friendly gameplay objectives and a local co-op mode suited for families. Unlockable in-game content is tied to specific characters and elemental types, encouraging players to curate a large collection of figures.
Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and Hammer Slam Bowser will be available after the multiplatform launch of Skylanders SuperChargers on September 20, and are only compatible with the Wii U version of the game.