Capture the Villains in Skylanders: Trap Team on the NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet

SHIELD, Gaming News

We might not have the technology to bring action figures to life, but Skylanders is the next best thing. Skylanders: Trap Team, developed by Toys for Bob, is the fourth and latest game in the series. Its brilliantly imagined fantasy universe, characters and gameplay are also an ideal experience for playing on the Tegra K1-powered NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet.

We took Skylanders: Trap Team for a spin on the NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet.

The concept of Skylanders is not only engrossing, but also incredibly addicting. It involves collecting real-life miniatures and using them to play an RPG/action-adventure game.

After launching Trap Team on your tablet, you place one of your figures on the Traptanium Portal—a plastic pedestal that sends whichever character is standing on it to the tablet’s screen via a wireless signal.

It’s up to you which of the myriad figures you’d like to buy and field, and you can swap them out at any time within seconds.

Skylanders: Trap Team allows you to snare and control up to 47 of the game’s villains. After pummeling a bad guy into submission, you can imprison them by grabbing a Trap Key with a matching elemental attribute, which you then drop into the Traptanium Portal.

Two keys are included in the tablet starter pack. Once you’ve got a villain corralled, you can switch between them and your character with the press of a button.

Each figure has certain strengths and abilities—such as armor, speed, critical hit strength, and elemental power. We played mostly as Wallop, a bull-like Trap Master who dual-wields titanic hammers. We also tag-teamed in a few others, such as Chopper, an itty-bitty T. Rex with bionic legs and a helicopter backpack that shoots missiles.

As you explore and battle your way through the Skylanders’ world, you go on quests, uncover secret doors, collect treasure to buy upgrades for weapons, gain XP, and level up, increasing stats and HP. The game plays very similar to Bastion and Brutal Legend.

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Skylanders: Trap Team Gameplay
Actual gameplay recorded using SHIELD’s Shadowplay functionality

Skylanders: Trap Team runs silky smooth on the NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet, and the Pixar-inspired graphics look vibrant and crisp, even at long draw distances. Its rich animated visuals and gameplay really shine on the NVIDIA SHIELD tablet, too. Tegra K1 exclusive visual enhancements include high-end shaders, lighting, post-processing effects and better graphical fidelity overall.

The proprietary gamepad—included with the Traptanium Portal—is nice and comfy, but we had the best experience using our SHIELD wireless controller, as it allows you to adjust tablet settings on the fly, such as game volume.

You can pick up all of the Skylanders: Trap Team gear now, at stores such as Amazon, Game Stop, and Best Buy; figures go for about $10 to $15 a pop.

The Skylanders Trap Team Tablet Edition Starter Pack includes the portal and is available for purchase at all major retailers and etailers. Trap Team and the portal are backwards compatible with all previous Skylanders figures.

The core game is a free download on Google Play, so you can get a head start installing it on your NVIDIA SHIELD while simultaneously adding new characters and Trap Keys to your armada.