After the recent release of the fantastic Lego Movie, expectations for the movie based tie-in game were high. So far all Lego games had been tied to another franchise, so having the game be set in a world that was made to already be Lego was a scary thought. Would the game be able to deliver the same amount of entertainment and comedy as the film while also providing hours of addictive gameplay? Well…
The Lego games have always followed the same formula when it comes to gameplay. Levels are broken into small puzzle rooms with thousands of objects to break and constant waves of enemies attacking the player as they solve the character specific puzzles. It’s a formula that’s managed to survive over ten games and still manages to delight even to this day. But while it is still fun to repeatedly break blocks and solve puzzles, it soon becomes apparent that if you’re going to spend your time smashing bricks to build and solve, you’re going to want to do it in a game that has a bit more variety.
It’s in this gameplay that The Lego Movie Game seems to fall flat. The game follows the movie very closely, having each level be a memorable moment from the film expanded to create a full level. While it’s cool to see moments of the film with the given ability to play through them, it makes you realize the real issue with why the game lacks any wonder. The reason is that in nearly every Lego game, a lot of the fun and enjoyment comes from seeing a world you know and love be reimagined and recreated in brick form, but in the Lego movie everything is already made out of bricks, so all of that splendor is lost.
Another let down is the lack of original comedy. Since the movie has some truly brilliant characters with wonderful sharp banter, you would expect that the cast of the game would also have some witty lines to share, but sadly the majority of the dialogue comes ripped right from the film and any added speech is there only to explain how to progress. Granted there are a few new jokes added to the game, but the humor falls flat on each one, there is a jarring difference between the comedy written for the film and the comedy written for the game. While humor is subjective, it’s still a letdown to see such a difference in quality in writing.
With the release of every new Lego game, there have been improvements that help keep the franchise fresh. For example, in Lego Marvel Super Heroes, the open world was massive and side missions were given out for characters to spend time enjoying. Oddly, The Lego Movie Game has taken a step back when it comes to new features. The open world is gone, replaced with five small hub areas to explore and find secrets in. The massive and secret riddled levels are all now linear pathways that insist that the player sticks to the continuity of the film. It feels like everything is there, but just not fully implemented as much as it could have been.
The Lego Movie Game was an interesting attempt to have a modern Lego game be set in a world made entirely out of Lego. But somewhere along the way the game lost that little bit of magic that made the other games so wonderful to play. While the game is in no way terrible, I can’t help but feel that other recent Lego games have managed to do the same thing as The Lego Movie Game, only better.
Thanks to Premier Comms for the review copy