This self-contained level follows, more or less, the episode of The Simpsons with the chilli cook-off in it. So Homer has to get there, taste various chillis, then have his weird psychotic episode where there’s a coyote and a golf shop and the sun breaks. Then there’s a lighthouse.
You know the episode. Everyone knows the episode.
In Lego Dimensions, there are obviously changes and bits missing, but it’s pretty good regardless. For those keeping count so far:
Another of the complete, almost but not quite standalone Lego Dimensions expansions finished!
Adventure Time was even better than the Back to the Future one – longer, more “fan service”, funny, and so on. There was a bug about two thirds of the way through which made the game crash each time I reached that bit, but aside from that it was excellent.
I also loved the cel-shading effect on the graphics. It was also used in the Scooby Doo secton of the main Lego Dimensions story, but here – perhaps due to the colour palette being generally much brighter – it really stands out. At first it looks a little odd, but you soon get used to it.
I’ve a two-part complete playthrough here:
My daughter and I also played the Adventure Time hub world a bit too. That is also fantastic, not least because of Lemongrab, who makes an appearance. Also: toilets.
Yes, this totally is being classed as a separate game. Why? Because it was a separate purchase, a separate story, and not even part of the main game. No I haven’t changed the rules – I’ve always stuck to this.
Sparsely following the plot of the first film – or at least, a handful of points from the first film – Marty McFly, his skateboard, and the DeLorean of Time smash Lego items while going back to 1955 and trying to return to 1985. Attempting to go back to the future, if you will.
As a fan of the film I was pleased with some of the inclusions and references, but disappointed the entire level, including time spent building the physical Lego models, was just 45 minutes long. There’s nothing in the game about Marty’s mum, no Under The Sea, and no Biff Tannen.
Still, I did enjoy it, and owning a Back to the Future character does mean I now have access to the Back to the Future hub world, which seems to have more content than the level did (including more than one time incarnation of Hill Valley), so that’s OK then!
And of course, I have a pile of gold bricks and minikits to return and collect.
Completed Lego Dimensions, certainly. We’ve beaten the final boss and seen the credits. Yet we still have almost ONE THOUSAND gold bricks to accumulate and haven’t even used two of the Lego characters we bought.
Now, unlike most other Lego games, I can’t really discuss the content too much as Lego Dimensions has its own story rather than retell that of a film or something. It isn’t a fantastic story, but some of the levels may perhaps be spoilers if I went into a lot of detail. I will say, though, that it’s very funny. There are references, and cross-overs, that surprised and delighted me. One-liners, events, and “wrong character” comments like Batman quoting Ghostbusters or Lord Vortex (the big bad guy) claiming he’d have gotten away with it too if it hadn’t have been for you meddling kids.
The game is huge too, as barely any levels came even close to completion and the “hub” hasn’t been touched at all yet. I wasn’t joking about the thousand gold bricks either.
Building the real-world Lego as part of the game turned out to be fun, and to some degree shuffling characters around on the portal is a nice extension to the standard Lego game formula. It does get a little annoying in some levels where puzzles require a lot of character swapping in addition to position swapping, but we (that is, my daughter and I) found moving the portal nearer the sofa helped there. Unfortunately, the cable is a couple of feet too short to sit it on the sofa between us, and with a USB extension cable the portal won’t respond half the time, but we coped.
Now we’re finished with the main story, I’ve a Sonic Level Pack to break out.
Oh! And this turned out to be my 104th game completed this year! That’s two whole 52 Game Challenges! Woo!
Well, where “recently” is “any time in the last couple of months” and “things” is “games I’ve not completed as I’ve already posted about those”. In no particular order:
Spec Ops: The Line (Mac)
This was free, but only if I played it enough to get £1 credit back from Green Man Gaming. At first, I really struggled as it misdetected my PS4 controller and everything literally spiralled out of control – see this video, in particular from the 7 minute point:
With that fixed (I used a mouse and keyboard instead), I then worked through the first level, or mission, or whatever. It’s OK, but nothing special. It’s also difficult to play with an Apple mouse, because you can’t click the left and right buttons at the same time. I don’t know if I’ll play it more.
Paper Mario Sticker Star (3DS)
A lot of people seemed to be quite negative about this, but I’m really enjoying it. It removes almost all of the RPG elements (perhaps this is why it has the reputation it does), but the story and the combat are great and it looks lovely. Also, that Wii U one is out now and I thought I’d do this while waiting for that to magically appear in my possession.
Letter Quest Remastered (PS4)
Incredible Boggle/RPG hybrid. You’re given a bank of 15 random letters, some worth more than others (sort of Scrabble-like) and you make words out of them. The more powerful your word, the harder your attack is on your foes. You can level up abilities, making 6 letter words worth more, or double letters more powerful, etc. and it’s very addictive.
Assault Android Cactus (PC)
I set my Steam Link up again and this is one of the titles I played, having heard good things and getting it for virtually free in a recent Humble Bundle. It’s not bad, but I don’t think – so far at least – it deserves all the praise. It’s just a quite bland twin stick shooter with average graphics but with some great characters. I’m enjoying it, but not as much as I expected to.
Lego Dimensions (PS4)
I actually bought this a while back, but still had Lego Marvel Avengers on the go. With that finished (although not 100%ed) my daughter and I broke it out and yes – it is excellent. Jumping from world to world (we’ve had The Simpsons, The Wizard of Oz, Ninjago and Doctor Who so far) is great, and the references to other Lego games (such as the Joker Titanbot rematch) are awesome too. Playing shuffle-the-characters on the portal is less fun, though, but we’ve negated that a little by moving the portal to the sofa between us.
Pokémon Y (3DS)
With over 70 hours on the clock now, and still about 30% of my Pokédex unfilled, there’s a lot of game here. Not least when you consider I “completed” it at around the 35 hour mark.
This has been some time in the making! I bought Lego Marvel Avengers months ago, played about half of it, then got sidetracked with Pokémon Y. As with other recent games (and Pokémon), I’ve been playing it with my daughter, and although it didn’t start out as well as Lego Marvel Super Heroes, the “endgame” content is just as good. Well, it should be – it’s almost the same.
Completing it came as a bit of a surprise, actually. I thought we had at least another “film” to go, but it turns out that Avengers: Age of Ultron is the final bit of the game. As for the gameplay, it’s pretty standard Lego stuff, and – as I’ve said before – that’s just fine.
It’s a shame there are no (or at least, appear to be no) X-Men in Lego Marvel Avengers, and I suspect some other characters are missing too, but that doesn’t really matter. Will I complete it 100%? Perhaps not this time round. I want to move onto Lego Dimensions, and pottering round Manhattan and the helicarrier again isn’t that appealing, even if the tasks are different.
My daughter and I did spend a good while in Hobbiton–sorry, Barton’s Farm which absolutely isn’t a clone of Hobbiton in any way, playing a game where she summons a vehicle and I steal it from under her nose. It was hilarious.
Also hilarious: Squirrel Girl in Squirrel Hulk-Buster Armour. Oh my.
I’ve said before that I’m a big fan of Lego games. I buy all of them, and for the last few years have enjoyed them even more as I’ve played them in co-op with my daughter. For some reason, I’d never got round to picking up Lego Lord of the Rings (even though it’s pretty old now) until around New Year, when it was on sale on the 360 shop for about £3. I’d have preferred a Wii U or PS4 version, but neither exist. I’d also have preferred an actual physical version, but for £3 I can cope.
Coming to this after Lego The Hobbit, I can see it’s very similar. The overworld is almost the same, and some of the locations are – at least without a side by side comparison – identical. It’s fun, as all Lego games are, but it’s pretty far down the list when it comes to which is best. Although not unusual for a Lego title to be bug-ridden, Lego Lord of the Rings crashed completely several times, and on at least four occasions one of the characters got trapped in scenery and we had to restart the level. Twice, blocks that had to be pushed off cliffs froze in mid air, so we had to restart the level, and once we were unable to even start a level as it wouldn’t trigger. Pretty disappointing.
The quality of the levels themselves were not of a great standard either. Some were great, of course, but a few were truly terrible. The swamp level, with Gollum setting fire to things and you having to navigate through safe paths and put the fires out was an exercise in extreme patience as it just went on forever. The hiding from black riders and dragons (again this happened in the swamp, but also elsewhere) caused tedious stop-start gameplay, not conducive to enjoying the levels. In fact, we had to do the swamp level twice due to a bug mentioned above.
There were also too many fights of the form “Kill three of these” then “Kill five more” then “Kill seven more”. Repetitive and dull. Sorry, Traveller’s Tales. At least you’ve not done a Lego game as bad as this since!
All that said, it was still – on balance – actually pretty good. As always, it shines in two player and the source material and gags add to the enjoyment. We’re not going to 100% it this time though. Too many bugs and annoying sections have put paid to that.
That’s it – 100% done, all the trophies, the lot. And it was a lot of fun too. Like the last few Lego games, I played it entirely co-op with my daughter, who loves dinosaurs and this got her into Jurassic Park itself. She bought herself some Jurassic World Lego the other day too! We spent 28 hours reaching 100%, although it does feel like a lot longer and that seems a little short for a Lego game. It wasn’t the 60+ hour epic the likes of Lego Star Wars III or Lego City Undercover, anyway.
The last bit of mopping up involved picking up the remaining minikits in some of The Lost World and Jurassic World levels, including a couple of annoying ones that were on “into the screen chase” levels. Far too easy to miss them and you can’t go back without restarting the level.
With it done, we can move in to Lego Lord of the Rings next. Hopefully once that’s completed Lego Marvel Avengers will have come down in price!
We have now 85% completed Lego Jurassic World. We’ve managed to pick up all of the red bricks, all the races, rescued all the workers, completed everything on all four game maps, and have most of the amber bricks within the levels. All the vehicles are unlocked, almost all the characters and dinosaurs are unlocked, and we “just” have to work through all the levels again mopping up the last few amber bricks and the majority of the minikits.
Really itching to get this put to bed now. It’s not that I’m no longer finding it fun, far from it, it’s just that I picked up Lego Lord of the Rings stupidly cheap recently and want to get that done before we can move onto Lego Marvel Avengers, which came out last week.
My daughter loves Lego games and loves dinosaurs, so it was an obvious choice to get Lego Jurassic World at some point. Even if I do keep calling it Lego Jurassic Park.
She’d not seen the films, but the game did mean she could watch the films without being too scared, and we have watched the first one now. One thing I hadn’t realised until we played this is how the T-Rex, rather than being the frightening terror she appears to be, is actually the hero of all four stories. In Jurassic Park, she provides an escape from the gallimimus stampede and rescues Alan, Ellie and the kids from the velociraptors at the end. In The Lost World, she’s only trying to save her baby and goes at great lengths to do so. In Jurassic Park III she sees off the spinosaurus helping everyone get away, and in Jurassic World she defeats the Indominus Rex. Uh, that might be a spoiler.
As for the game itself, it’s more of the same sort of thing you get in any Lego game. No surprises there, but you can be actual dinosaurs! Ace. Obviously, we’ve only finished the main game (albeit all four films), but we’re working through the extra gold bricks and so on. It’s more fun than Lego The Hobbit, so we’ll probably stick at Jurassic World a bit longer.
I think this might be in my top three most played 3DS games now, and I’ve not even touched the Mario themed option. I got stuck on a boss, then powered through a few more levels, then got stuck on the previous boss again when she cropped up later with another monster at her side. Too hard. I’ve been trying lots of dragon combinations and came close once to besting them, but then one of the two baddies almost completely healed both of them and that was it. Maybe some grinding is in order. Or some different dragons again.
Lego The Hobbit (Wii U)
We completed it, but since then we’ve been mopping up stuff. It’s pretty slow going though, and we haven’t even revisited any of the levels yet. Daddy Pig seems to voice half the characters in this, which is slightly absurd. Especially the blacksmith’s wife. With her beard. Hmm.
Ninja Usagimaru: The Gem of Blessings Demo (3DS)
A not very good puzzle game. I got bored before the demo even finished, to be honest.
Fairune Demo (3DS)
There’s a game called Witch & Hero on the 3DS which is the most ridiculous concept ever. You walk into baddies to kill them, but when you do, you take damage – meaning you’re inevitably going to die. It was rubbish.
Fairune seems to be by the same people and has the same mechanic, only instead of protecting a static character on a single screen, it’s a flip-screen RPG of sorts. And somehow, I’ve gotten a bit hooked on it. I’ve finished the demo and now will almost certainly buy the full game. This surprised me.
Chibi-Robo: Zip Lash Demo (3DS)
Everyone loves Chibi-Robo, right? And taking pictures of real things to include in the game and collecting junk just to tidy up because he’s a cute robot that does that? Awesome, right? Then why is this a slightly crap platformer instead of any of that? How disappointing.
The Legend of Zelda: Tri-Force Heroes Demo (3DS)
Well, I tried to play it. But it said no. I was in some sort of lobby and there were a couple of people to talk to and I found if I ran into a wall a ball fell from the sky and I could play keepy-uppies with it for a while but then that was it. I assume I needed some friends online to play with.
Badge Arcade (3DS)
No way am I giving money to this, but so far, I’ve not needed to. I’ve done well enough in the practise crane games to rack up a few free plays, and so far I’ve bagged about 12 badges. Not that I can use the badges because I’ve barely any space left on my home screen. I was hoping it would expand again, as it does when you hit about 80% full, but not this time. Boo.
And that’s another Lego game done. Not 100%, yet, but the story is complete. Like Lego Marvel Super Heroes, I completed it in co-op with my daughter, but we found it somewhat shorter than that game. There’s obviously a lot to do still, not least with the new mechanic of finding “loot” (like ingots and wood) with which to make stuff. This time round, there’s even more reason to smash all the things.
The plot was sort of how I remember the book to be (I’ve not seen either Hobbit film), but sadly ended abruptly at the point where I assume the second film finishes. Since there’s no third film yet, it’s not included in the game – and I’ve heard they’re not making another Lego title to continue it even when it’s out. Shame.
Similar to Lego Marvel, Lego The Hobbit has a massive overworld to explore with lots of errands to run and characters to help. Unlike Lego Marvel, none of your characters can fly (at least, none I have yet) so it’s not as much fun to get around. You can use warps where birds carry you to set points, but it’s still often a trek – higgledy piggledy o’er hill and dale – to get to where you want to be. There’s clearly a lot of characters, but a tiny amount in comparison to Lego Marvel. They’re all easily confused too, with SO MANY DWARVES all with different skills but they all look the same. Gah!
All that said, and the bugs taken into account (It’s a Lego game – of course it has bugs), it was still a lot of fun. I think we’re down to just three Lego games now – Lord of the Rings, Jurassic World, and Dimensions. Best get on them, then.
Been a while since I did a roundup, so this covers several weeks…
Lego Marvel Super Heroes (Wii U)
My daughter and I completed this some time ago, but the post game mop-up is huuuuge. Not only is there the usual Free Play of levels, but there are loads of other smaller levels you unlock, and hundreds of events around the world map. We’ve 230/250 gold bricks now, so the end is in sight.
Lego Jurassic World Demo (PS4)
Oh god I think we need to get this. We’ll probably get the Wii U version though, because co-op screen-each play is the way to go on Lego games. I know the PS4 version looks better, but screen-each!
Puzzle & Dragons Z (3DS)
Slow going on this. I only do a single level every now and again, so although I’m getting there, it’s taking a while. I am enjoying it, though!
The Pinball Arcade (PS4)
Picked this up when it was on sale. It’s not something you can complete, but it’s pretty good. I got the first two “seasons” cheap, and although some are recycled from Gottleib Pinball on the Wii, it’s enjoyable. Some more than others, of course. One thing which is annoying, however, is that your users on your PS4 can’t share leaderboards, making the leaderboards essentially useless.
Pix the Cat (PS4)
Saw this described as Chu Chu Rocket x Pac Man Championship Edition, but it’s not quite that close. In fact, the main arcade mode isn’t really interesting me and I was pretty disappointed… but Nostalgia Mode? Bloody awesome. It’s more puzzle based, and a lot of fun. So mainly I’ve been playing that.
Some sort of Minecraft looking but more survival based game. Which appears to literally be a reskin of some Unity asset pack demo game released as a “new” title. Cheeky. And utter tripe.
I think this may actually be the first Lego game I’ve completed entirely in co-op. Lego Batman 2 and 3 were both mostly co-op, but Lego Marvel Super Heroes I’ve played only in co-op with my daughter. Which is nice.
There’s a lot of mopping up bricks to do, as usual. We’ve done some, after finishing the story, but we’re still only at around 52/250. Finding the rest is going to be a pain, as although most of them are on the New York City map, it’s often not clear what you need to do when you get to them. Of course, a fair few are going to come from redoing the levels again in Free Play. Having said that, in recent games I’ve not bothered going for 100%. I think Lego Harry Potter 2 was the first where I didn’t, and although I had a pretty good stab at it for Lego Batman 2, I haven’t tried at all for Lego Batman 3. I really should. It’s a lot of fun.
Anyway! This is telling you nothing about this game. Which there isn’t a great deal to talk about, actually. It’s more Lego super heroing, only with Marvel characters instead of DC ones like Batman 2 and 3. Like Batman 2 there’s a massive open hub world (New York City), which seems more dense and full of life than Gotham. The split up mini-hubs of Batman 3 were a step back, I thought. There’s also a handful of things to do on the SHIELD helicarrier, up int he sky above the city.
The story revolves around Galactus heading for Earth, and Doctor Doom, Loki and Magneto (as well as a few other less important baddies) seem to be taking advantage of this for a project of their own. As, variously, several Avengers, the Fantastic 4, Spider-Man and a few X-Men, you progress through the levels trying to beat these baddies and take back the Cosmic Bricks they’re stealing. The levels are all pretty standard Lego fare – different characters can activate different things, access different areas, or destroy or build certain types of blocks. They’re pretty varied, with settings underwater, in the Statue of Liberty and on a space station, and the characters you use are swapped frequently so you don’t get bored with the same ones.
The star of the show is Deadpool. He shows up for some of the bonus levels, and has his own room on the helicarrier where you buy found red bricks and watch the in-game movies and so on. In one of of the main levels, Doctor Octopus smashes through the Daily Bugle offices, and then in a bonus level later Deadpool narrates (with silly voices) as you, as Agent Coulson and Doc Ock, have to tidy up the mess. It’s very funny, and a memorable moment.
There aren’t any real surprises in the gameplay, and it’s a shame that two player “screen each” play sometimes makes the framerate nosedive (more so than in Batman 3, in fact, and that was bad at times), but it’s a solid Lego title and probably one of the best too. Although they’re all pretty great, truth be told.
Now I just need to find copies of Lego Lord of the Rings, Lego the Hobbit, and Lego Jurassic World and I’ll be up to date. Apart from Lego Dimensions (so called because your wallet needs a 4th dimension to hold all the money needed for it) which is out soon. Sigh.
You know pretty much what to expect with a Lego game. You know there’s a series of levels with fixed characters and loads of secrets you can’t get see or access, some sort of hub world with more secrets you can’t see or access, a lot of silliness, and approximately two thirds of the game locked off until you’ve finished the story.
Then it’s back to the earlier levels with new characters and abilities you didn’t have previously to attempt Free Play mode in order to find some of those secrets and unlock even more characters and abilities, mopping up minikits and red and gold bricks along the way. Usually a third run of the game is then necessary too.
Lego Batman 3 doesn’t deviate from these blueprints set out in so many previous Lego titles. It refines them, modifies them, expands on them, but the structure is ultimately the same. You’d think, after playing what must be almost a thousand Lego games, I’d be bored of the formula and seen everything Travellers Tales have to offer, but no – they keep coming up with more addictive and playable titles.
The main improvement over Lego Batman 2 is the massively increased roster of characters. Even in Story Mode, you get to play as most of the Justice League (but not Hawkman – there’s a running joke about him being trapped under the Hall of Justice), a pile of villains, several Lanterns of assorted colours, and more. Once you start unlocking more characters, you realise there are hundreds of them, including Daffy Duck as the Green Loontern, 60s Batman TV series characters, and even Kevin Smith. Travellers Tales have also fixed one of the main complaints with previous Lego Batman titles – cycling through all the various suits for the characters. Now, most of the time, standing where the suit is needed and pressing A will swap you to the correct costume automatically – very useful!
Sadly, the open world of Gotham City is absent, replaced with several small hubs: the Batcave, the Hall of Justice, the Watchtower, some Lantern homeworlds, the Moon, and so on. Although there’s a lot to do, probably as much as in Gotham overall, it’s not as impressive. I realise they couldn’t just stick Gotham in there again, but why not Metropolis or Coast City? The latter especially makes sense given the Green Lantern-focussed story.
Oh yes! The story! At the end of Batman 2, Brainiac was en-route to Earth, and in Batman 3 he nears it and starts turning cities into bottle cities and then shrinks the entire planet. Several of the early levels are then set in these cities which as well as being shrunk, are entirely constructed from Lego (which is borrowed from The Lego Movie The Game of The Lego Movie: Lego The Movie Lego Game). Brainiac has used the combined power of all seven coloured Power Batteries to do this, and it’s up to The Justice League, who, teaming up with DCs Most Wanted Villains (And Cheetah), have to reverse the damage and defeat Brainiac.
As always, the game is filled with humour. The dialogue is funny, and a lot of the “background action” with other characters doing stuff while you’re supposed to be paying attention to the foreground action is not to be missed. There are loads of nice touches that make you chuckle too, for example the character select screen. Hover over Batman and you can hear him singing “Nanananananananana Batman!”, but do the same over other characters and… “Nanananananananana Plastic Man!” and “Nanananananananana Cheetah!”. Every level also has an Adam West minifigure that needs rescuing, with plenty of cheesy puns and one-liners from him (the actual Adam West providing the voice too) as he awaits your assistance.
The best bit is a bonus level accessed from the trophy room in the Batcave. There’s a Lego set of Bruce Wayne’s manor office from the 60s TV show, complete with bust you punch to reveal batpoles behind – just like in the series. Pop down the poles and you’re suddenly in a Lego episode of Batman from that era, complete with comic book cut scenes and biffs and zonks as you fight. Adam West narrates the short plot, and most of the TV series baddies make an appearance. Even The Joker has badly applied white make-up over the top of a barely hidden moustache – just like Cesar Romaro did, famously because he refused to shave it off for the part. Batman and run around carrying a bomb, as a callback to the film of the series, and naturally, the level ends in a dance number. Of course.
There’s a lot to like in the game, and although it has the usual Lego game bugs (I broke one scripted sequence, and I managed to get stuck behind scenery twice), it’s definitely one of the best of the series. I’ve completed about 30% of it so far, but have barely touched Free Play mode, so I’ll be a while yet!