Last October 29, Disney Interactive quietly launched the PC version of Disney Infinity 3.0 on Steam. We’re saying quietly because it went past most people’s radar on account of Steam having a Halloween Sale going at the time, where most people are most likely distracted by the fact that you can snag most PC Resident Evils, the first two installments of The Witcher and a copy of Bioshock 1 and 2 for what you’d normally spend on a single full priced AAA game.
People soon caught on and saw that Disney Infinity 3.0 has not only been released on Steam, but was also available as a Free to Play game. A far cry from Disney Infinity 2.0 where you have to spend 50 bucks just to get the equivalent of a Starter pack. Eventually, people tried Disney Infinity 3.0 and it garnered 300+ mostly negative reviews. Most of it on the account of the DLC model used.
Play Without Limits or Pay Without Limits?
The tagline Play Without Limits was carried on from the console versions, and this is a terrible decision on Disney’s part, mainly because the supposed free to play version on Steam is extremely limited in what it offers to free players. Here’s what you can do if you don’t buy any DLC:
As you can see, the Free to Play tag is misleading, because Disney Infinity 3.0 on Steam is not so much a free game as it is a demo of the actual game. You have to shell out on some DLC packs if you want an experience that is anywhere near a full game. Thankfully, and contrary to what most reviews are saying, the prices aren’t really ridiculous – you’ll normally pay what you would on a full priced game in order to get a full game out of DI 3.0.
It’s important to remember that the Disney Infinity 3.0 itself is not a single game. It’s a hub that serves as a front end for several different games. You have a Karting game, a 3rd Person Action Game, and a Platformer, with each one providing enough meat to be considered a stand-alone game worth full price. The Toybox mode is best considered as a bonus, unlike the console versions where it is the focal point. This is on account of the PC version not supporting the Infinity Base accessory (whether this is a good idea on the part of Disney or not is subject to another discussion. Coding in support is definitely within the means of Disney Interactive, but we don’t know if they’ll get more buyers if people have to resort to buying the figures compared to just digital character purchases for half the price.)
We don’t know if this is intentional on the part of the developer, but there is a very real risk of overspending on Disney Infinity 3.0 on the PC, especially since you don’t have actual figures as part of the equation. If you just buy DLC packs willy-nilly, you may end up needing to buy extra DLC packs because they contain the powersets, vehicles, game mode, mission, or character that you need.
What Do You Buy If You Just Want a Full Game?
The easiest path is to just get one of the Starter Packs. A Starter Pack contains one of the playsets, a couple of characters and discs, and the full version of the Toybox (you can buy assets using blue sparks). It should run you the price of a full game and will provide similar playtime length.
From there, you can buy the Toybox Takeover mode if you want to dungeon crawl using the two characters that came with your starter pack, or the Toybox Speedway mode to race around. Note that you can only race using your available characters (bought ones or the ones that are currently on trial.) There’s a bunch of basic vehicles thrown in as well, but you need to buy discs to get the real cool ones.
What If I Already Have Disney Infinity 2.0 on Steam?
The 2.0 characters are forward-compatible with 3.0, so all you need to do to play with Captain America, Thor, and crew, is link your 3.0 game with the Disney Infinity account you used on 2.0 and your available characters will show up on the game. The only forward compatible content are characters and the discs, none of the playsets will carry over. So keep the 2.0 install if you want to replay the Marvel missions. 3.0 is all about Star Wars and Inside Out for now.
The game is very buggy – many users are experiencing visual glitches, and the constant need to go through the tutorial’s opening cinematic every single time before you can get to the Main Menu. Disney’s still planning to release a bunch of new playsets next year so there’s hope that these bugs will get ironed out eventually, but for now – caveat emptor. Try the game first before shelling out money on the DLCs just to see if you have problems or can enjoy the game despite the problems. For what it’s worth, there’s a bunch of really engrossing and fun games inside the Disney Infinity 3.0 experience even if you’re not the target market (and never forget that the target market is kids.)