Tuesday, May 10, 2016

R.I.P. Disney Infinity... is Amiibo next? Hmmm

Disney tried to get in with Disney Infinity and stay up on what hit big for Activision (via the Skylanders series) but with the recent news from Disney... reveals that it didn't work out the way they'd hoped as far as growth is concerned. Why? Well... they are not only ditching the toys-to-life franchise, they are also getting out of the game publishing business.

Dang... that's cold.

Does this mean they are completely done with gaming? Ummmm... its a bit more complicated than that. Instead of developing and publishing games themselves... Disney plans on sticking to licensing-only, think of what they did with Star Wars Battlefront published by EA. This isn't a bad thing as long as the games are done right.

If Disney ditched the toys-to-life franchise due to analysts like Liam Callahan (NPD game industry analyst) believing that sales will decline in the genre this year (2016)... it may cause some to wonder how it will affect Skylanders and even Nintendo's Amiibo. I think it would impact Activision more than it would Nintendo (i'll explain), don't worry. 

While Amiibo can be used for games... they are not a requirement for the games for the most part, and one of the only games I know of that truly requires Amiibo is the "Mini Mario and Friends Amiibo Challenge" (and that's free).

Beyond fans of the series losing out on the next installment of a game some have invested heavily in, Disney's Avalanche Software (not to be confused with the Just Cause series developer...Avalanche Studios) is experiencing something like an avalanche as their doors are being closed as a result of the decision. That's 300 or so people out of work... talk about a bad day. I hope that the team bounces back and goes indie to deliver their own unique games. I won't say that its something that Disney should be hated for if they are trying to cut their loses before it leads to greater loss but I think it could've been done differently. According to the chairman it wasn't an easy decision... but that doesn't make the situation for the fans and dev team any better. 

"This was a difficult decision that we did not take lightly given the quality of Disney Infinity and its many passionate fans..." - Jimmy Pitaro | Chairman of Consumer Products & Interactive Media (Disney)

From a business standpoint... when support begins to decline or is lacking all together, things like this can and will happen, so support what you enjoy to keep it alive and well (if you can afford to).


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