By Kermath Davies
Everything in The Lego Movie Videogame is crazy. Batshit crazy.
If you're going out to buy this, make sure you swing past the cinema and watch the movie first; things will make a whole lot more sense than trying to pick up the controller and follow the storyline.
If ADHD were to be a game, it'd be this one. Non-stop positivity, vibrant colours, highly energetic characters and a plotline that springs off tangent every time you enter a new world.
Usually with Lego games, you don't have to be too familiar with the films they're based off. Developer Traveller's Tales Lego games have covered a number of franchises including Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones, Batman… the list goes on.
The Lego Movie won't get as much attention and you'll definitely get lost in gameplay if you don't know some of the plot, so go see the film before attempting to play. The game does pay homage to characters featured in previous Lego titles, and who doesn't get butterflies when Morgan Freeman's voice booms across the screen saying the most ridiculous lines?
Freeman's character is a wise, old blind man, called Vitruvius, who carries The Prophecy which the main story is built upon. You play as Emmet, an average brick whose found himself in a story where he doesn't really belong. One day after work he stumbles across something known as The Piece of Resistance, the only item capable of stopping Lord Business from taking over the universe. Along the way, Emmet meets heartthrob gal Wyldstyle, who is also conveniently dating Batman. I'm not even beginning to touch on how weird the story gets.
The regions that Emmet travels to are all unique from each other, with great names like Middle Zealand, and each comes with its own set of characters which you can later buy with the Lego coins you collect throughout the game.
These characters are also interchangeable in a semi-open world just before you enter into missions, and there are a few cool side-missions where they can be used to pick up bonus items. There's also a co-op mode where a second player can opt-in any time by hitting triangle on another controller. There's a lot of switching around between characters in the levels so if you have a friend, it'll make things a whole lot easier.
One of my favourite levels is Unikitty's Cloud Cuckoo Land, a reference to Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds. Hearing Morgan Freeman introducing the level is one of the most hysterically ridiculous things I've ever heard. It sets the tone for a Katamari-styled surreal level where everything is perfect; then you arrive and destroy everything!
Unikitty's character is just adorable in the way she gallops and how her face changes in combat. She also features a Rage Mode, turning into a hideous oversized fire-breathing cat, spewing spiders and leaving carnage in her wake.
Batman returns from previous Lego games and his batarangs make multiple targets easy to crack through. I did feel like his intro was cut shorter in the game than how he was first portrayed in the film.
He enters as a saviour at the end of The Old West chapter, scooping the team up in mid-air and flying off into the sunset… much to Emmets dismay when he realises he's Wyldstyle's boyfriend. The movie also makes you realise how much more of a dick Batman is, where in the game he's kind of more badass.The game didn't really deliver the same impact because the scenes were cut so short.
All the bits and pieces of cutscenes taken directly from the movie just feel odd. Sure, the game follows the narrative of the film but it doesn't quite fit with the flow of the game. It's all obviously cut to suit gameplay, but most of the cutscenes have been edited down to almost nothing.
There's a piece from the film in The Old West where Emmet comes across Vitruvius for the first time. Emmet is discovered to be a bit of an air-headed yes-man and Vitruvius makes it clear to him that he's not dumb, but a clean slate to build upon and has become the chosen 'Special One'. This small speech drives Emmet's courage throughout the film and it's skipped out in the game.
The cutscene feeds you enough hard-cut clips to tell you where you're going and what the next step is, but if you're going to put in real content from your own film, then why not go all the way and include a few extra minutes of footage, rather than cutting it into tiny bits and removing all tone and emotion from the characters?
The graphics on the other hand are polished to perfection. Everything is so shiny and all the materials represent the properties they're made of. Everything from the reflective strips on Emmet's jacket to the ceramic walls have an incredibly realistic sheen that makes the game always aesthetically pleasing.
The small stuff is what really grabbed my attention, like kicking around Lego tumbleweeds in The Old West or the great detail of the individual Lego pieces that mimicked the ocean. There's just so much going on that it's impossible to take it all in.
At some points I would just walk back and forth, side to side looking at how the different parts of an object was put together or reflected its surroundings, and then attack and destroy everything. It's guilt-free wrecking and watching the Lego objects break apart was as satisfying as if it were real life, and there's always the pay-out in Lego coins which makes it highly rewarding.
One character I highly recommend for best destruction-to-effort ratio is the Wiley Fusebot, unlockable in The Old West. He comes with a handful of TNT and you'll receive every single coin automatically from everything you blow up, instead of having to run over and collect them. True bliss.
The Lego Movie Videogame is highly addictive. I had such a hard time putting down the controller to write this review because I just wanted to touch everything and attempt to get all the bonus items.These are almost impossible to collect in your first round through the levels, so you'll need to revisit certain areas once you've unlocked the characters needed to get to them.
There are four different types of collectables, but the best one by far is the pants. Referring to the games microcosmic TV show 'Honey, where's my pants?' different pairs of Lego pants are scattered throughout the worlds and upon collecting them, you can change the pair your character is wearing at any of the Dispantsters located at the beginning of every semi-open world in each region.
Each pair comes with its own special soundtrack or ability, depending on where you picked them up. The first you'll pick up are the Disco Pants after completing the 'Everything is Awesome' dance challenge for the first time. When you wear them and hit square, the stupidly happy and incredibly catchy song plays and your pants sparkle. It kind of works because it makes you go back to the challenge to try and perfect your moves, and there's a nice silver trophy for doing so.
Also, you probably won't be forgetting the song anytime soon; there's a reason it's been looked up 10 million times on YouTube.
On the whole, this game is well put-together and goes well beyond what previous Lego games have delivered in the past. It's one of those rare places in media, especially gaming, where paths of different characters with unique abilities can meet without corporate conflict arising, which makes the game tons of fun.
The same Lego formula taken from previous titles might feel unimaginative to the veteran Lego player, but it's tried and tested, and just works.
Although it's not completely 'awesome', you're still going to have a great time.
The LEGO Movie Videogame
:: Publisher: Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment
:: Developer: TT Games
:: Format: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U, PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, 3DS, Vita
:: Rating: G
source: newshub archive