Blackout – Skylander Review
Blackout is a new core Dark Skylander making his debut in Trap Team. In fact he is the very first core Dark Element Skylander. He comes from the Realm of Dreams where the collective imagination of all creatures in the universe come together to form wonderful dreams and terrible nightmares. When he was young he was recruited into the Dark Stygian, which was a Dragon Clan whose job it was to create nightmares for evil creatures. This was done to hopefully discourage the creatures from any more bad behavior. But the clan found amusement in creating nightmares for others and began to spread nightmares to everyone. Blackout would not stand for this behavior and learned to teleport himself into the nightmares to fight the creatures within. Eventually, the nightmares reached Master Eon who witnessed Blackout’s courage within his own dreams. After helping Blackout put an end to the Dark Stygian, he made Blackout a Skylander who now serves as protector of the Realm of Dreams and beyond.
When you first look at Blackout, you will notice how incredibly dark he is. He certainly looks all black, but when you take a closer look, you’ll see that he shines with a really dark green and blue color. This is because his paint job includes little flakes of color all throughout. Most of his body is covered in these dark green flakes. Under the lights this makes him look shiny and dark green, while in the shadows he looks plain and black. The underside of his belly has dark blue flakes in it making that area shine dark blue in the light. It’s a really cool pearlescent effect that I wish more Skylanders would have. Black out has no weapon or armor to mention. His wings are thin, very detailed and look sharp. He also has a very tall and long horn coming out of the top of his nose that you might think could be used as a weapon. Other than that there is no indication about what kind of attacks he might have.
It turns out that his wings are his main attack. By pressing Attack 1 you can perform his Wing Whip which is a melee attack with a longer than usual range as he reaches a good distance in front of him swinging his razor sharp wings. He even has a combo built into his main attack if you press Attack 1 three times in a row. He will end the combo with a spinning attack that utilizes the long sharp horn on his nose. His secondary attack is called Shadow Orbs. Pressing Attack 2 will shoot out a shadow orb which will leave behind a circle of Darkness energy and shockwaves when it hits it’s target. His third attack comes from an upgrade and is called Black Hole. Pressing Attack 3 will throw out a Black Hole which is very similar to the Shadow Orb, but this attack will pull enemies into the center and hold them there for a bit. If you place a second black hole, you will be able to transport between the two. You can also just hold the Attack 3 button and a second Black Hole will appear at Blackout’s feet, and he will automatically teleport to the Black Hole that he tossed out. There is also an upgrade called Take It Black which will allow the Black Holes to hold enemies longer and do more damage. Another upgrade called Darkness Overload allows you to shoot a Shadow Orb into a Black Hole to create an explosive Eruption. Blackout has one other basic upgrade called Shadow Blade where if you jump and press Attack 1, you will turn into a spinning Shadow Blade. This is much like the end of his basic Wing Whip combo but it lasts longer like a dash attack and you can control where it goes.
At this point, you will have to decide which type of attacks you want to upgrade. You could choose the Wing Warrior upgrade path which will improve the Wing Whip attacks, or you could choose the Prince of Darkness path to improve the Shadow Orb attacks. We chose the Prince of Darkness path but by the sounds of it, the Wing Warrior path would still be pretty powerful. The first upgrade of the Wing Warrior path includes two combo attacks, one being a ground pound combo and the other a charging ahead combo which sounds kind of like a dash attack. The next upgrade called Whip it Up will add more damage to the Wing Whip, Shadow Blade and Warp Speed attacks. While not exciting it does sound like it would be powerful. And finally the Warp Speed upgrade will allow you to hold the Attack 1 button to repeatedly teleport through enemies and pierce them with your horn. The first upgrade of the Prince of Darkness path is called Dark Energy Clouds and it allows the Dark Energy Clouds that emerge from the Shadow Orbs to be much bigger and will damage enemies. The Under the Cover of Darkness upgrade will allow Blackout to receive less damage when hit inside the Dark Energy Cloud. The last upgrade is called Cloud Gravity and it will allow Blackout to life enemies inside a Dark Energy Cloud. It also gives Blackout the ability to move the cloud around manually. We found this path helpful as several Dark Energy Clouds can remain in effect at one time which allows for some constant damage to be delivered to enemies while you might try to get away or get into a better position to fight. The Soul Gem Ability is called Supernova Black Hole. When you can shoot two Black Holes directly on top of each other, this will trigger a Supernova Black Hole. First a very large Super Black Hole is created which will attract more enemies to the center. At the end, the Black Hole collapses on itself and goes Supernova in a massive explosion which is sure to wipe out most every enemy caught within. It’s one of the cooler Soul Gem attacks.
In the end Blackout is probably the best Dark Skylander in Trap Team. However, he’s not really necessary. His melee attack is ok, but you really probably need to choose the Wing Warrior path if you want to use it a lot. Even at level 20, most of his attacks are not very powerful. The Prince of Darkness Path gives the Shadow Orb some good damage ability, and the Dark Energy left behind is critical to wiping out enemies. However, that can take some time to wait for the damage to accumulate against the bigger enemies. You also don’t want to let Blackout get hit, as it seems that his lack of armor may allow him to take more damage than most Skylanders. His soul gem ability to create a Supernova Black Hole though might make him worthwhile. The damage delivered from this attack can wipe out a majority of enemies on the screen and is pretty cool to watch. He’s a cool physical character to have in your collection, and as far as the new elements go, he makes a great introduction. Once he gets all of his upgrades he becomes something worth using.
SkylanderNutts gives Blackout…