Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Too many pieces?

The Lego 'insert movie or franchise name here' series has long outperformed other licensed games by lampooning its source instead of emulating it. Travelers Tales was not bound by the standard movie game shackles of having to follow the plot and not change anything so they could make excellent games that were funny on top of being fun to play and they did it for quite a while without any spoken dialogue. This has worked for around thirteen or fourteen game. So what went wrong with The Lego Movie Videogame?

Simple - this is the first title that actually had to follow the movie it was based on. Part of the fun of all the other games was seeing something real turned into Lego, Lego Mola Ram still being my favorite. Look at this smug bastard:


The Lego Movie already was *gasp* made of Legos so step one of the parody is already taken away. Add to that the standard movie game restrictions of having to follow to plot without adding too much to it and cannibalizing sequel material and you get a standard movie game: it's boring. When compared to the exceptional Lego Marvel, it's just no very good at all.

Characters have less interesting powers and yet you drag along six or seven at a time in later levels. Hub worlds make little sense as they don't fit into the plot. This is fine because they are much smaller than in previous games, anyway, so you don't spend much time in them. Story levels are less interesting because, I assume, they are saddled with movie events. Truth be told, I haven't seen the movie, but it is either blame the source material or Traveler's Tales is losing its touch. I would like to believe the former.

From a next gen box perspective it just doesn't look very good. Lego Marvel had moments that reminded me that I was playing the game on my new shiny hardware. Lego Movie does nothing of the sort. Even the cutscenes, cribbed right from the movie, are not as clean and smooth as from the last game. It pains me to say it but this game is just not worth playing. If you need a Lego fix, and who doesn't, wait for Lego The Hobbit. Lego Gollum will be quite sad if you don't.


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