Entering the third year of the Skylanders is a very exciting time. They took the world by storm in 2011, they proved they could move forward in 2012 and we are now ready for the next chapter in 2013. Activision has been busy and ready to move the franchise forward.

The timing couldn’t be better as this year the Skylanders will see their first real competition in the form of Disney Infinity. While there are many differences from these two games, the basic mechanics for bringing toy characters to life are quite similar. So it will certainly be interesting to see how it could affect sales.

Competition or not, however, the new Skylanders are sure to impress. This year’s release will include the SWAP Force. The SWAP Force will be joined by many old favorites as well as many other brand new Skylanders.

Distribution of Skylanders characters

There are currently 56 figures planned for Skylanders SWAP Force. Not all of them will be available on launch day, but sooner or later you will see them. Within these 56 characters you will find a number of subsets. They are divided into four groups:

  • 16 members of the SWAP force
  • 16 New Skylanders
  • 16 Return Skylander
  • 8 Skylander LightCore

At this point, many of these Skylanders’ names have yet to be revealed, but that will come over time.

Swap members of the force

As you’d expect, SWAP Force members are the highlight of this game.

What makes them special? They are special because the figures themselves are actually exchangeable. The figures come in two pieces (held together by a single magnet), an upper half and a lower half. You have the freedom to mix and match any upper half with any lower half of a SWAP Force character.

Plus, not only can you swap figures, but you can also play with your new creation in the game!

While there are only 16 of these special characters, you can create a whopping 256 variations if you have them all. This “simple” mechanic is sure to provide hours of fun.

Known SWAP force members

  • Explosive zone
  • Fire Kraken
  • Free Ranger
  • Freeze the blade
  • Grilla Drilla
  • Cyclone
  • Load Manga
  • Night shift
  • Blend the rattle
  • Increase indicator
  • Stink bomb
  • Wash the Buckler

Name the characters

Naming these new Skylanders isn’t as difficult as you might think.

Each of the 16 characters comes with a two-part name. The first part of the name is always associated with the upper half of the character while the second part is always associated with the lower half.

Take Free Ranger and Night Shift for example. If you were to swap their upper halves, you could make Night Ranger and Free Shift.

So not only will each combination have a unique (sometimes comic) name, but the combination of certain skills can greatly affect how you play.

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