Title: LEGO Worlds
Platform: PC PS4, Nintendo Switch and Xbox One (reviewed)
Developer: Traveller’s Tales
Publisher: Warner Bros.
Release date: Out now (Switch release TBA)
tl;dr: Relive your childhood.
Price: $20 / £20
Family Focus: Click here for more information.
Let’s get this out the gate first: this game has no story. None. The main goal of the game is basically to explore various worlds, collect as much stuff as possible, and build whatever you can throughout the LEGO-ified galaxy. Additionally, throughout your building frenzy, you’ll come across NPC’s whom will ask you to do things for them in order to earn the gold brick they’re holding.
With a game lacking story, LEGO Worlds lives and breathes on gameplay. As players land on their first planet, they are rewarded with their first tool, the Discovery Tool. This tool lets players copy (a.k.a. discover) things, living or not, which can be stored in your inventory to use elsewhere on the planet, or on a new planet altogether. Some items are purely for display, and some will be quite useful to solve puzzles and earning Gold Bricks across the LEGO-ified universe. Among the other tools, which are given to the player within the first hour of play, players will be able to use a Landscape Tool, Copy Tool, Paint Tool, Build Tool and Free Build.
My main issue with the game is the control scheme. While the first few tools are easy to pick up and use, other tools, such as the Building Tool, are quite cumbersome and frustrating to use. Building a wall can be annoying and dizzying as the camera is quite clunky. When you can’t properly see where to set a LEGO piece, it can lead to frustration and having to re-do in order to successfully clear the NPC’s request.
After earning enough Gold Bricks, players can leave the planet they’re on in order to explore more of the galaxy. Unfortunately, the UI makes it confusing and fiddy to use. Instead of words and instructions, the interface is filled with icons lacking descriptions, so you have to guess which one means what, and what will let you unlock and move to a different planet. Sure, the confusion can be short-lived, but returning to the game after a while can bring back that initial frustration.
While I love the freedom to explore planets and build stuff, trying to fulfil the wishes of NPCs can prove problematic. While some items can be built or replicated if you’ve discovered them, in some cases the item itself originated from a different planet. A few hours goes by and you manage to find something you needed… for someone… somewhere. Trying to keep tabs on who needs what can lead to losing track of things.
It’s a LEGO game, so if you’ve played any LEGO-fied game in the last 10 years, you know what to expect: Cuteness overload. LEGO characters look cute and up to stuff; much like one of TT’s latest outings: LEGO Star Wars The Force Awakens. Lack of proper voiceovers is a missed opportunity, however. While your character and the NPCs don’t actually have voices, there’s a narrator who will guide players throughout the diverse planets. Problem is, he sound like a poor man’s imitation of Sir Patrick Stewart’s Charles Xavier.
I’m baffled that they didn’t include voiceovers for at least the player’s characters or NPCs that ask you to do things, considering the last few LEGO games, TT Games have had proper voiceovers. Lack of voiceovers can at times provide confusion as to what the NPC wants or needs.
While I was never a huge fan of the Minecraft-genre (I hated Terraria), as a kid who grew up with LEGOs, I was actually looking forward to playing LEGO Worlds. Unfortunately, as much I wanted to like it and having a premise that sounds enticing, the execution falls flat. The user interface for the navigation is clumsy and confusing. Most of the tools are pretty simple and easy to use, the Building tool is cumbersome and dizzying due to the confusing camera, as it’ll sometime re-position in awkward spots or even through the game’s environments.
- Diverse worlds
- LEGO cuteness intact
- Absolute shit controls
- Odd glitches
LEGO Worlds is for everyone in the family. There is some comical violence, however if you don’t provoke NPC’s, you can avoid violence altogether.
This review is based on a review copy of the game provided by the publisher for the purpose of this review.