Sunday, 26 March 2017 09:16

REVIEW: LEGO Worlds (Xbox One)

Written by Stacefacemayhem
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Most of us, I’d confidently say, have some sort of LEGO inspired memory. Whether it be reminiscing about yourself as a child spending your Sunday mornings building your own original designs, unboxing the newest limited edition kits they have now while bonding with your child as you create it together or like myself still smiling from the memory of my father rounding a corner, stepping on a pile of our little friends, swearing loudly in his thick British accent while clutching his foot like it needed amputation. My point is LEGO evokes memories.

LEGO Worlds is a sandbox, open world production created by Traveller’s Tales and developed by Warner Bros. It has ability to play singular, with a local friend, or 2 player online.

Now as a reviewer, I’ll admit, even as an adult, I LOVE LEGO games. Coming back to my theme of ‘memories’, playing the story driven, LEGO franchise of games has always encapsulated that feeling of creativity, problem solving and imagination, quite well. So, it made sense that the next logical direction would be in Minecraft’s footsteps and actually let you create without restraint.

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The minimalistic story centres around an adorable, little astronaut cruising through space. Due to a meteor impact, they crash land on a planet and must repair their ship to continue their travels to become a master builder. Once you have completed tasks on that opening world to fix your ride, you are given free range to travel to a variety of worlds, each different, and each itching to be explored. On each world there are tasks, challenges and rewards to complete, earning you an illustrious, golden brick. The more gold booty you collect the faster you level up as a builder and open up the galaxy enabling for you to roam further to new worlds, for even more new discoveries.

The charming elements of previous LEGO games are all there. The Narrator has the brilliance and humour of David Attenborough, popping in and out with quips and tips, however despite having so much character for a disembodied voice, he sadly isn’t present very often. The landscapes are bright, fun and engaging, whether you are riding a pig through a lollypop land or swimming through the green, slimy waters of a swamp, you can’t help but appreciate the detail (...for little plastic bricks). Each world is unique, even when at first appearances some seem similar to another, you just need to peel back the layers and see what you can find.

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The game provides you with many tools to help complete challenges along the way. The discovery tool is by far the most useful, allowing you to imprint and memorise items for later use. Despite saying this, the most FUN tool was definitely the landscaping tool. With this you can dig holes in a variety of shapes, create mountains out of molehills, and flatten any terrain for smooth sailing. When I had completed all the gold brick tasks, I often went of a destructive rampage on a planet till I got bored, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It really is that fun ruining worlds as much as exploring them! The creative juices were flowing... that is I just psychotically flattened an island to make it a barren wasteland. No biggie.

After a few hours, and your eyes have gotten over the awe that is the diverse biomes, the game starts to teeter like those large towers you would make as a kid, revealing its weaknesses. Aiming the tools can be quite touchy, even after adjusting the sensitivity. This makes it hard to imprint moving objects or be accurate when building designs. The camera is impossibly annoying at times, with it constantly sticking to the walls or in the ground of the environment. In one instance, after digging a massive tunnel, the camera lost my position and transported me back to the surface, making me have to run all the way back down again. I also find it hard to believe that it doesn’t even have a lock on for enemies, as fighting is quite sloppy with the touchy controls and wavering camera. It is needed and a must patch.

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Adding to frustrations is the fact it takes 100 gold bricks before you are allowed to access the free building mode. Even something as simple as swimming off the map is irritating, I thought to myself “Should that even be possible?”. Now all these flaws are only minor, however the whole time in the back of my mind, I was wandering if children could brush them of as quickly as I did. At the end of the day, this is mainly aimed at children, with the perk of being enjoyable for adults too.

And as an adult you soon start realising the very lather, rinse, repeat style of gameplay. Go to a world, do a few tasks, get golden bricks, leave for the next planet and do it again. Nothing mind blowing, the genius part is in the fact you stay on that planet for ages, tinkering around making things and changing the terrain.

Despite a few gripes, overall, LEGO Worlds is quite an enjoyable experience. You can definitely appreciate the homage and love that has gone into stirring up the imagination you had as a child. A few technical flaws can get in the way of gameplay, however after sinking many hours into it, I know for sure I will sink many more, as there is still so much more to explore. This is one bricky mess you do not need to clean up after.

Additional Info

  • Review Score: 3.5 / 5.0
  • Release Date: Out Now
  • Platform: PC, PS4, XBOX ONE
  • Developer: Traveller's Tales, TT Games Publishing
  • Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
  • Genre: Strategy, Multiplayer, Adventure, Puzzle