The game series had its cult following, but Disney is moving on.
If you collect Disney Infinity figurines and have any holes in your collection, you might want to plug them now.
Disney on Tuesday night announced the cancellation of its Disney Infinity toys-to-life video game series. Disney also announced that it was shuttering Avalanche Software, the developer of Disney Infinity, and would no longer be publishing video games at all.
Disney Infinity fans still have two new sets to look forward to. Three figures from Alice Through the Looking Glass will be made available this month, and a new Finding Dory-themed play set will launch in June. That will be the end of new Disney Infinity products.
Shutting down Avalanche Software will cost Disney $147 million to implement, according to gamesindustry.biz, and 300 game developers at Avalanche will lose their jobs. The gaming industry quickly rallied around them.
Toys-to-life video games incorporate figurines into gameplay by use of a chip embedded in the bottom of the figurine. Players buy a new figurine, place the toy on top of a sensor that’s connected to a game system. The game recognizes the presence of the figurine and new content in the game is unlocked.
October 2011 Activision led the charge in the toys-to-life genre with the Skylanders series, which was a runaway hit. Disney entered the genre in August 2013 with Infinity, and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment in added to the list with Lego Dimensions in September 2015 .
Nintendo’s line of Amiibo figurines, first released in November 2014, play off the formula by offering collectible figures that can unlock game content in several different games, across more than one platform in some cases.
Disney Infinity 1.0 was themed almost entirely around characters from Disney animated films. Disney Infinity 2.0, released in September 2014, incorporated characters from the Marvel Comics universe. Disney Infinity 3.0, released in August 2015, was themed around Star Wars and The Force Awakens in particular.
Jimmy Pitaro, Disney’s chairman of consumer products and interactive media, said that Disney is now looking at video games purely as a licensing opportunity, according to gamesindustry.biz. The company already licenses out the Star Wars IP for games like Star Wars Battlefront, and the recently announced game from Electronic Arts and Respawn Entertainment.
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