We were able to get a sneak peek at an unrevealed level included in the upcoming Skylanders: Superchargers at E3 this year which showcased some of the new mechanics and features we will expect to see in the upcoming title. The main focus of this new title is the inclusion of air, water and land vehicles that must be used to progress and complete the game. The vehicles each have three pieces of equipment that come with a figure (eg. a aerial vehicle will include the rudder, wings and a weapon). You can unlock and acquire new equipment throughout each level and equipping new parts can be done at any time during gameplay.
Like with previous games, you must have a Skylander figure on the Portal of Power to play the game, however you now also need to have one of the new vehicles accompanying your character. There are twenty new Skylander characters that will be released alongside the game; each with their own vehicle figure. When a character and their respective vehicle is placed on the Portal, the vehicle gets “supercharged”. Supercharging a vehicle attaches a new set of powerful equipment on it which frankly just looks badass. As far as I could tell, having a supercharged vehicle is better than most of the unlockable equipment, so there is really no reason to not supercharge your vehicle.
It seems that most levels will be comprised of land, air and, as a series first, underwater sections giving the player a diverse set of exploring to do with each chapter of the game. Of course, as the sections imply, you will need to place an appropriate vehicle figure on the Portal to be able to explore each section when required. However, most of the game is played similarly to previous Skylanders games: with your chosen Skylander character platforming around using the unique weapon-set defeating enemies and solving puzzles.
We were also shown the two new surprise guests to the game: Donkey Kong and Bowser which will be available exclusively on Nintendo platforms. To fit with the theme of Skylanders: Superchargers, both of these figures will also include their separate vehicle figures which can then be ‘supercharged’. Bowser attacks with a hammer and can summon Red or Green Koopas to assist in attacking enemies whereas Donkey Kong throws barrels and can launch out of them towards enemies. They both also have alternate forms which gives them new looks and different attacks. Bowser turns into Magma Bowser, which is larger – almost Dry Bowser-esque character, who attacks with his claws and can breathe fire. Donkey Kong can put the barrels onto his fists and attack with them as well as stomp on the ground to make ladders and bricks fall from the sky, similar to what he does in the Gameboy version of Donkey Kong. A elegant feature about the Bowser and Donkey Kong Skylander figures is that they are also convertible to become their respective Amiibos; a feature definitely worth noting about. The base of their figures can turn to switch the figure into its respective mode on the fly.
Turbo Charge Donkey Kong and his Barrel Blaster vehicle is available as part of the Wii U starter pack, priced at $74.99 within the US. While Hammer Slam Bowser and his vehicle the Clown Cruiser will arrive with the Wii and 3DS starter packs, priced at $74.99 and $64.99 respectively. Skylanders: Superchargers will hit store shelves on September 20 in North America and September 25 in Europe on all major platforms.