Skylanders get physical on iOS with Battlegrounds

With two new Skylanders games coming to iOS this November, it looks like Activision is prepared to satisfy gamers of all shapes and sizes with the latest entries in their mega-hit franchise.  In fact, the two games couldn’t occupy more opposite ends of the spectrum.  While Skylanders Lost Islands is a free-to-play offering for the most casual of gamers, Skylanders Battlegrounds looks to satisfy core gamers with its mix of strategy and combat, and a whopping $49.99 price tag.

That may sound crazy for a mobile release, but Battlegrounds isn’t just going to be your run-of-the-mill App Store package.  Players will be able to purchase this one as a starter kit in retail outlets, because like the core Skylanders releases, it includes a physical “Portal of Power” and a number of character figures to get you started.  That’s right – iOS devices are finally getting a physical toy experience in the world of Skylanders.

Skylanders Battlegrounds

Before we get too far into this and you start crying “FOUL!,” gamers who don’t want to shell out the big bucks should be able to pick this up as a standalone App Store purchase for around $5 or $7, according to Joystiq.  Of course you won’t get the toys or any physical goodies for that price, but so long as your able to enter the codes from the console versions of the game (both Cloud Patrol and Lost Islands allow for this, so it seems like a safe bet), then Skylanders fans should still be able to enjoy this with minimal investment.

But what, preytell, will you be playing once you’ve spent your five to fifty dollars?   A game that blends turn-based strategy with real-time combat, placing you in control of two Skylanders at any given time.  Activision described the game to Joystiq as “real-time arena combat” and claimed that “looks like an Xbox 360 game on an iPad.”  That’s a lofty claim, but considering how sharp some games have looked on the iPad 3 lately, it’s a claim that seems within the realm of possibility.

Can’t wait to go hands on with Skylanders Battlegrounds yourself?  You won’t have long to wait.  Activistion is targeting a mid-late November release – just in time to put some of those $49.99 starter kits under the Christmas tree.