Without question, Angry Birds Star Wars II is full of new and unique gameplay that makes it one of the best games of the year. It doesn’t stop there though, as you can now zap new characters right into the game using something called TELEPODs. This mean that if you don’t like your character lineup you’ve been given for a particular level, don’t worry, swap them out! With the TELEPODs technology and “Character Swaps”, you can now set your own attack lineup! This feature has actually been requested for years in the Angry Birds community, and it’s interesting to see how Rovio has included it.
What Are TELEPODs? How Do They Work?
In the most basic of terms, TELEPODs are small figurines or action figures. They are sold with a small clear stand that has a magnifying glass built in. On the bottom of the figurine is a unique QR-code.
When you want to use a TELEPOD, click the “T” button in the upper-left corner of the level screen. A pop-up will instruct you to place the figurine on the stand, and position the stand over the front-facing camera of your device. Then… BOOM! Like magic, that figurine will take the place of the existing character in the slingshot!
Also, a small “T” will appear in the corner of that character’s button in the Character Swap Bar. We will talk more about in-app character swaps below.
Rules and Restrictions
No good feature comes without rules.
Foremost, you cannot change your allegiance. That is, bird-side TELEPODs can only be used in bird-side levels, and likewise for the pork-side. Even though **spoiler alert** Anakin becomes evil, you can’t trade out his Pod Racer character with a much more powerful Sith Apprentice TELEPOD.
Next, you cannot use the same TELEPOD twice in a single attempt. So if you start with a level with three Qui-Gon Jinn in the lineup, you cannot use TELEPODs to use three Obi-Wan Kenobi. You may use multiple different TELEPODs to change the lineup, however. So instead of three Qui-Gon Jinn, you can use one Obi-Wan Kenobi, one Podracer, and one C-3PO for example.
Note: If using in-app character swaps (more below), this restriction is lifted: You can use the same character swap multiple times in a single level.
The final significant restriction is that TELEPOD data require an Internet connection. This makes sense to help prevent fraudulent use of this technology. If you are not connected to the Internet, you cannot “zap in” your TELEPOD. If you lose Internet after importing your TELEPOD character, you may use it (with the above restrictions) without needing to re-import until you close and re-open the game.
How Do I Get TELEPODs?
TELEPODs are made by Hasbro and available at most major retail stores, such as Walmart and Amazon. They come in packs of two or more, sometimes random and sometimes as part of specific sets. If you want to collect all 32, it takes quite a bit of time. But if you are hunting for specific characters, this list may help you. An asterisk (*) denotes that the specified character can only be found in that specific set. (Special thanks to @SnTrooper.)
- Star Destroyer Set: Darth Vader(*), Droideka(*), Padme Amidala(*), Jedi Youngling(*), Captain Panaka(*), Zam Wesell(*), Darth Sidious, Stormtrooper, Anakin Skywalker Podracer, Luke Skywalker Jedi
- Death Star Trench Run Set: TIE Fighter Pilot(*), Luke Skywalker Pilot
- Endor Chase Set: Biker Scout(*), Luke Skywalker Endor
- Battle of Geonosis Set: Battle Droid(*), Mace Windu
- Bounty Hunters Set: Jango Fett(*), Obi-Wan Kenobi
- Duel with Count Dooku Set: Count Dooku(*), Anakin Skywalker Padawan
- Darth Vader Pig Carrying Case: Chewbacca(*)
- Jedi vs. Sith Multi-Pack: Darth Maul(*), Qui-Gon Jinn(*), Darth Sidious, General Grievous, Yoda, Anakin Skywalker Padawan
- Miscellaneous 2-Packs: Anakin Skywalker Sith Apprentice, Boba Fett, Jar Jar Binks, R2-D2, Princess Leia, Han Solo, C-3PO are only available in these randomly paired 2-packs.
What About In-App Character Swaps?
Character Swaps are the only “Power Ups” in Angry Birds Star Wars II. In addition to physical TELEPODs, Character Swaps can be earned and/or purchased in-game.
By completing certain achievements in-game, you will earn Bird Credits or some number of Character Swaps. As we said above, in-game Character Swaps can be used without some of the restrictions of TELEPODs.
Bird Credits are your in-app currency. Credits are earned through normal gameplay, but can also be purchased from Watto’s Shop. Prices are 150 credits for $1.99, 400 for $4.99, 1000 for $9.99, 2250 for $19.99, 6000 for $49.99, and 15000 for $99.99. (Worried? Be sure to see our post about restricting In-App Purchases.)
If you want to purchase in-app Character Swaps, you have a few choices. There are always some characters “on sale” for heavily reduces prices. There are also a few cleverly named packs, created and compiled by Rovio. But most likely, you’ll be interested in purchasing an individual character.
Even here, you have options. Once you find the character you want, you may purchase 10, 30, 100, or unlimited usages. Note that the credit cost varies by character. Some are quite cheap, such as 10 Obi-Wan Kenobi for 300 credits. Some are costly, such as Darth Vader for 3500 credits (the Force is strong with him).
Interested? Here’s Some Jedi Training
So, we got your attention now, did we? Well, we’re going to give you some tricks and tips about using this technology.
First and foremost, every normal level can 3-starred without the use of Swaps. Our walkthroughs are living proof of that.
Next, not all levels will benefit from Swap technology. Indeed, some levels are set up with such a specific strategy in mind that the starting lineup is as good as any.
Now, let’s assume you have a level with a couple lowly Qui-Gon Jinn. Nothing against him, but he’s not particularly strong. At the least, you can swap out Qui-Gon for Jedi Luke, whose lightsaber is much stronger and lasts longer. If you are only attacking for brute force, Chewbacca has a lot of force! If you need to attack a high structure, Leia’s pulling and Padme’s pushing tractor beams will bring it tumbling down. And if the attack needs to go a long way through a lot of debris, Mace Windu’s boomerang lightsaber will slice through blocks like butter.
On the Pork Side, most characters are already quite strong. However, a few stand alone in terms of their powers. Darth Vader and Anakin Sith Apprentice are remarkably strong with the Force, able to throw nearby blocks great distances. If a lightsaber attack is needed, Darth Maul has two and General Grievous has four! And Darth Sidious’ lightning hands are extremely useful against metallic blocks and chains.
Have more tips? Let us know below!