Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad Mini 2
Replay Value Rating:
It was bound to happen. Welcome to The LEGO Movie Video Game.
It plays easily and intuitively, with the first stanza doubling as an interactive tutorial. The game opens up in step with the actual movie storyline; fans should enjoy Vitruvius being one-upped by Lord Business from the get-go. This level also gives players an idea of the basic controls: default gestures for moving and such. There is a combat element, and taps control attacks from a distance and melee style attacks from up close. One nice aspect is the ability to change the gesture movement controls to a more organic virtual joystick. This is then combined with a stack of buttons that effect the same actions as the aforementioned free taps. Protagonist characters also have special weapons as well, and further on there is a bit of puzzle-solving that needs to occur before one is able to make progress.
The player-controlled character has a set amount of damage that can be sustained before succumbing to failure, so knowing how to move is a valid part of strategy. "Studs" can be collected, and used to procure extra characters and bricks that are unlocked down the line. There are also Gold Bricks, which can dip into one's real-life wallet.
In the end, the main goal is finish the level and move on. Cool. There's 45 of them, so there is plenty of playing to be done.
Secondarily, there are other elements that come into play. A major one is the Achievement System, which gives awards for reaching specific thresholds. Stuff like clearing methods and time splits can earn coveted cups.
The developer has done a good job of allowing the dialogue and game story frame the gameplay. It feels familiar, but not necessarily predictable. The graphics are expectedly LEGO-y, with block art making up the core of the environment and characters. The animations match that seen in the movie, and everything feels pretty well constructed. A lot of it is the same though, which might grate on some folks nerves.
What is great is that one need not necessarily be a fan of the franchise to enjoy The LEGO Movie Video Game, but it unashamedly helps.