Poll Results: Games that Use Toy Tie-Ins to Unlock Game Play

Last week we asked our readers, "How do you feel about games that require you to buy toys to access game content (Skylanders, Disney Infinity)?" Nearly half of those who voted said that this practice of tying toys to video games to unlock access to characters, levels, and other game content is a complete rip-off for consumers. Around 299 votes were cast, and of those 45 percent (139 votes) indicated that game-toy tie-ins are complete and utter rip-offs to consumers.

Around 25 percent (76 votes) indicated that they "didn't care" one way or the other; 14 percent (43 votes) said that some legal action should be taken against companies that make these kinds of games; nine percent (27 votes) said they didn't like the practice but admitted that they would buy into such a game if it was "fun"; and six percent (19 votes) said that they love games like Skylanders and Disney Infinity.

Thanks to everyone who voted in last week's poll! A more in-depth discussion of the results can be heard in the latest episode of Super Podcast Action Committee.

We'll have a new poll later in the week.

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  1. 0
    Andrew Eisen says:

    Ah, so you wanted a "so long as the toys are reasonably priced, I'm cool with 'em" option.  Fair enough.  In the future, if you feel your opinion is not represented in the poll responses, leave me a note in the comments section or Shout box.


    Andrew Eisen

  2. 0
    Monte says:

    Except as i mentioned, even if we only limit it to only those kinds of toy tie in games i STILL don't think they are a rip-off, even though i think that Skylanders and Dinsey infinity ARE rip offs; Thus the same dilemma applies. I have no trouble with the idea of using toys to access game content, i just hate how high Disney and Skylanders have set their prices; if their prices were more reasonable then I would probably think they were good games… Really i find the practice to be not that much different from DLC. The first choice did not apply because i don't think that marketing model is a rip-off, but the last choice did not apply either since it felt like it implied that i like Skylanders and Disney Infinity, which I do not

  3. 0
    Andrew Eisen says:

    Except, again, I wasn't asking about "toy tie-in games in general," I was specifically asking about "games that require you to buy toys to access game content."  Pokemon Rumble U does not count because the toys do not unlock otherwise inaccessible in-game content.


    Andrew Eisen

  4. 0
    Monte says:

    You kind show my point by assuming "it's a rip-off" sounded like what should fit my opinion. I do not agree, since i DON'T think toy tie in games by their nature are rip-off's, I just think Skylanders and Disney IN PARTICULAR are rip-offs(which is what i tried to say with my first post)… thinking that i should say "its a rip-off" would means you think that i should be basing my entire opinion on just Skylanders and Disney, and not on Toy-tie in games in general(which is what the poll was supposed to be about)… the last option didn't really apply either; while i like the idea of toy tie in games, I felt like the answer implied I like Skylanders and Disney infinity(since they were directly mentioned in the answer); which i do not. I like the model, but hate how its been executed by those games.


    I actually would count Pokemon Rumble U as a toy tie in game; Just because the toys are extra does not mean they are not part of the game. When it comes down to it, toy tie-in's are not really all that different than DLC except that you have a physical object rather just a downloaded character. Furthermore, You are rather limiting the discussion to JUST Skylanders and Disney infinity because they are the "only examples", when the discussion should be about Toy tie in games in general… We are talking about what is essentially a new genre of gaming, not just skylanders and Disney Infinity. Yes Skylanders and Disney infitiy are ripp-offs but that does not mean that ALL toy tie in games NEED/WILL BE rip-offs. It could be done better by a future game (or a current game if we count Rumble U)…

    Heck I would even say it may even be ok for the toys to be required to unlock levels if everything is reasonably priced. I mean if you bought a game for $20 then you should not expect to get $60 worth of content. That's where the toys come in… you get the initial game for $20(getting $20 worth of game content), and then spend $40 on various toys and NOW you have $60 worth of game content. In a way, i think this model is fine for marketing since its sort of a "pay what you want" kind of model (don't want that water level? then don't buy the water character and save $5). The only reason skylanders and Disney infinity are ridiculous is not because they use this model, but because they charge absurd amounts for it. You're spending HUNDREDS for $60 worth of content.

    Personally, if i was in the position to do so, I can actually think of a few ideas for games myself that I might like to make using this kind of model. Only difference is i would try to not exploit the model, and try to keep things affordable while still trying to make a modest profit. Heck i know my cousin's Kid really enjoys Skylanders, and if I know well enough that if i were a kid I'd probably enjoy these kinds of games too; They just need to be less pricey. 


    I feel the same about games with In App purchases. I find nothing wrong with the model, but when a game exploits the model to charge $50 just to unlock a character, then THAT game in particular is a ripoff… its especially true when the game takes into account that their are plenty of Kids who not pay attention to how much they are spending, or make it possible waste the premium in game cash that is hard to get in game and is usually bought (really, only ONCE did i see a game that had a cancel button to stop accidental spending)… rip-off games like this are common, but i don't blame the model, I blame the how the game abuses it. For instance, I liked how Plants VS Zombies 2 handled the free to play, IAP model. Only thing i felt I needed to spend money on were a few of the premium plants, and considering I got the game for free, i felt those plants were reasonably priced.

    Really, what i am saying is that you got to keep the genre/model of the game, separate from specific titles. A particular title may exploit a model, but that does not make the model bad. Its all in the execution.

  5. 0
    Andrew Eisen says:

    I don't know how you got that.  The poll specifically asked about "games that require you to buy toys to access game content" and used Skylanders and Infinity as examples.  That's a pretty narrow question.  In fact, Skylanders and Infinity are the only examples I can think of.  (It wouldn't cover Pokemon Rumble U because that game does not "require you to buy toys to access game content.")

    What other toy tie-in games where you thinking of that you wouldn't consider a rip-offs?


    Andrew Eisen

  6. 0
    Monte says:

    The ripoff option sounded too much like a blanket statement about ALL toy-tie in games. I mean the poll was a general question about toy-tie in games, which mentioned Skylanders and Disney infinity as examples; but they are just two games, not the entire genre. I would agree that Disney infinity and Skylanders are rip-offs, but i would not say that toy tie in games in general are a rip-off… hence why i didn't feel like that answer fit.

  7. 0
    Jordan C.D says:

    I agree, the poll i felt was really subjective in how you could answer. If he had just done 3 options "Like" "middle" and "dislike" it would've been more informative if you ask me. 

  8. 0
    Monte says:

    Eh, i didn't vote because i felt like none of the poll options fit my opinion. I'm fine with the practice and i even like the idea of games with a tie-in toyline; but i don't like how Skylanders and Disney infinity have executed that idea. They simply charge too much. $75 for the game plus $10-15 for each toy? That's absurdly expensive. Bring down the price of games to something more like $20-40 and make the toys no more than $5 each, and i wouldn't really have any complaints

  9. 0
    Andrew Eisen says:

    All three of those options were among the possible responses.  Regardless, there's always the comments section and our email (SuperPACpodcast@gmail.com) if you feel your opinion can't be appropriately expressed by the available responses.


    Andrew Eisen

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