Stuff We Love!

There was a time in the not so distant past when I was the biggest hero in the universe. Seriously. A whole battalion of Jedi Knights had nothing on me. I played so many video games that they probably thought about naming a Nintendo after me or something…

Atari 2600, NES, Game Boy, Game Gear, PlayStation; I had all the systems, and I put them to good use. I saved the robots from Dr. Wily, I’ve rescued survivors in Raccoon City, got my girlfriend back in Double Dragon, Saved Master Splinter AND April O’Neil, and I’ve restored peace to the mushroom Kingdom each time the Koopas come with talk of insurrection. I used to smash my opponents in Mortal Kombat II, Pokemon, NBA Live.

These days I’m more homeroom hero than digital ninja badass, but a few time a month, I schedule early AM dates (or late PM – perspective, folks.) with myself to lay down the digital law on these fools (well at least the fools who are on Xbox live at 4am EST).

Recently I’ve been drawn to Skylanders Giants. This game is AMAZING. Here’s the concept: Action figures… You can’t go wrong with action figures. Not only do I love action figures, I’m addicted to collecting action figures. GI Joe, check. Transformers, check. All the black members of The Avengers (shout out to Black Panther, Luke Cage, Falcon, and Patriot), check…

So Skylanders start with these cool figures that you can play with in real life, but then when you put your figures on the stand that comes with the game, your toy is imported into the video game and you can play with your toy in HD. This technology alone blows me away. If they would have had these 20 years ago, I might not have graduated from middle school. Could you imagine owning an Optimus Prime figure and connecting it to a video game?!?! That, alone would have been bigger than the crack epidemic. Ronald Regan and Ollie North would have been out of business, and Hasbro would control congress.

I ran up on a group of seventh graders last week who had created a spreadsheet with a statistical comparison of all the in-game Skylander Charater attributes. When I asked them what they were doing, they told me that they could create an 8-character team for me that was statistically guaranteed to smash all other teams. Not even Manny Pacquiao is guaranteed wins like that. I’m sold – not only on the concept of Skylanders, but on the reality that the next generation of Stringer Bells will not be drawn to the streets. They will deal in video games, stats, and of course action figures.

— Corn



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