Toys to Death: The Fall of Toys to Life Games

Connor Edrington
4 min readDec 15, 2020
Screenshot: Ubisoft

I have always loved the toys to life genre of video games. When the first Disney infinity released I was totally on board.

I ended up skipping Disney Infinity 2.0 as I was not really in a place to get it at the time. I then came back for 3.0, which was a great place to jump back in as the characters and game had improved so much by that point thanks to partnerships with different developers.

The last toys to life game that I purchased was the Star Fox edition of Starlink. I thought Starlink might finally be the toys to life game to make them a relevant genre. Unfortunately, it did not.

The only version of the game that even sold that well was the Switch and most of that is most likely due to the fact it came with a cool looking Arwing.

I am thinking about toys to life again today due to Starlink being the free PC game for Ubisofts Holiday giveaway. I am hoping that people will take this opportunity to get Starlink for free and give it a chance. It’s not a perfect game, but it is fun and has a lot of neat mechanics.

Starlink: Battle for Atlas

Starlink was a really interesting, open world game where you could fly between planets. You went I these planets creating different bases that helped you collect resources, investigate mods to apply to your ship and create drones to protect said planets.

The game had a simple gameplay loop but it was really fun, then with the different pilot’s abilities, the different ships and the different weapons you could attach to the ships, there were always little ways to change up the gameplay.

Then there were space pirates, giant ships to take on in space and abandon ships to explore and loot. The game also got updated with new enemies and a racing mode after a while.

The game was a lot of fun and I really wish more people had given it a chance. In small ways I actually think it was one of Ubisoft’s most innovative games in a while.

Disney Infinity 3.0

Disney Infinity was even cooler with the fact that there was the potential to use characters from Disney, Marvel and Star Wars.

It was a really interesting game by 3.0 because they had brought on additional studios to work on different aspects of the game. An example, they brought on Ninja Theory to handle the combat in the game. This made combat feel so much smoother than it had previously.

Disney Infinity was not just about the story though. Players could also create custom levels with events and story. Did you want to tell a story about Stitch and Luke Fighting a wave of Chitauri soldiers, that was possible within the creative mode of Disney infinity.

Disney Infinity was improving leaps and bounds in each iteration and I was honestly shocked when it was cancelled. 3.0 was so much better than it had any right to be and had taken the ideas from the previous two games and ran away with it. I only wish that we could have seen what a Disney Infinity 4.0 could have been.

Screenshot: Disney

Toys ≠ DLC

I always thought that these games with their solid game play and DLC linked to physical items would usher in a new era of games. It shocks me that people are willing to pay $24 dollars in Call if Duty for a skin and weapons blueprints that they may only have for one game. These were amazing toys/Statues for like half the cost and they could be used inside of games as well.

I still to this day have some of my Disney Infinity and Starlink ships out on display because they are really cool looking collectibles.

I just hope that one day we will see the return of Disney Infinity and Starlink. Until then I will just have to throw in Disney Infinity 3.0 from time to time. I also may have to check out how well Starlink runs on PC.

If you’re a lover of any of the toys to life games, let me know in the comments. Let me know if you’d be interested in seeing additional toys to life content on the blog. Also, If you have a Pc be sure to grab Starlink while it is free on Ubisoft Connect.