Skylanders: Swap Force

Composed By: Lorne Balfe

Distributed by: Activision

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                In the third installment of the Skylanders video game series, Skylanders: Swap Force, we meet the SWAP Force, an elite unit of Skylanders who have protected the volcano that replenishes Skylands’ magic for years.  But when an epic battle catches the SWAP Force in an explosion, they are blasted apart, sending them to Earth and giving them the ability to swap powers.  Players of the new Activision game can mix and match characters tops and bottoms, put them in the new Portal of Power and use them to help save Skylands.

                The musical score of Skylanders: Swap Force was created by Scottish composer Lorne Balfe, who is no stranger to composing action-based scores.  He composed the musical scores of the films Inception, Ironclad and The Sweeney and the video games Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, Assassin’s Creed III and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations.  Lorne Balfe is also no stranger to the Skylanders universe, having composed the scores of Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure and Skylanders: Giants.

                The Skylanders: Swap Force Soundtrack starts off with an action theme featuring fast-paced orchestral music and heavy percussion.  There are various themes present in this score defining each level of the game.  There’s a Celtic theme, a Western theme, a theme inspired by the Orient, a science fiction theme and more.  Orchestral music is mixed with electronic sound to create a fun soundtrack designed to set the scene for the gamer and help them along their journey.

                The Skylanders Swap Force Soundtrack is enjoyable as a standalone album thanks to Balfe’s variety of themes and musical influences.  Having never seen the game in action, I can only imagine that it does much to enhance the gaming experience.  Lorne Balfe does it again, showing off his expertise for creating musical score for action-based video games with the score for Skylanders: Swap Force.


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