PS VITA – The title of this game could be a bit confusing. Sure, this is a Lego game after all, but this time around, it has gone way further, in fact, beyond over the duo of Batman and Robin. I’d rather call this as a Justice League adaptation, but this doesn’t make the quality of this game worse, because yes, LB3 is a very nicely done, addictive collecting game!
I was a bit afraid, when I saw that there was a new Lego adaptation coming again. Although most licensed games usually end up very good, this is the third adaptation this year after The Hobbit and The Lego Movie Videogame. Three games in a year!
Fortunately, I didn’t end up disappointed in the latest „Legoing” of the characters from the DC universe; the latest saving-the-Earth story has brought not only surprising additions to our squad (because who would have thought that Lex Luthor of all people end up joining us?!), but also a surprisingly good game in the end, too.
Lego games usually target maximalists: I admit that even I tried to collect every single piece on the levels – and given the fact that even a small area is crammed with them, this can boost gameplay and replayability simultaenously. There are 16 levels, although without an open world like what we saw in the Marvel-universe. (This is interesting, could it be because of an onslaught of Lego games recently?) Brainiac won’t wait for us on a big land, we’ll have to get through small, fixed areas this time around.
Mind you, I used plural: you can play with a friend together, which can up the game’s fun factor even more, especially because all characters have unique skills. It’s worth checking out who does what, but to achieve that, you have to get them first. In order to do so, it’s no surprise you have to collect.
Think about it: you have to collect to get more content, but to get more content, you have to look at every single corner of the levels. Is it a good thing? No worries, the answer is a definite yes, it’s worth taking some time to get everything and everyone.
For a fistful of Legos
… you can get quite a few things. After completing the story, you can revisit each level to find easter eggs, red Lego pieces and extra characters. You’ll find a lot of them.
It was a surprise to see Adam West later on in the game. For those who don’t know who he is, Mr. West was the actor of the cult TV-series from the 1960’s. If you still don’t remember, this quote will probably enlighten you: Na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na Batmaaaaaaaan! (And if you get to that retro level, that’s when it will go even further!)
And what’s old? Well, the gameplay is still the classic tradition seen in other Traveller’s Tales games: destroy and build at the same time – the former is obviously for collecting pieces (you’ll get even more after defeating baddies as well), and the latter one is usually to progress further. The combat system doesn’t seem to be hugely changed compared to previous titles. It’s (sadly?) still simple, but to think of it, this will make the game much more playable for younger audiences.
But what about the shoot’em up stages? Oh yes, there are those as an addition: if you have played of a certain game called Resogun, then you’ll probably smile, because it feels quite similar to that game!
The game’s visuals are very nice, and the PlayStation 4 easily runs it at 60 frames per second, while not lacking in audio either. The music are nice touches to some older themes while the voice acting is remarkable – this is usually recipe for success. Maybe the lack of an open world might be the thing that could push the end result down a bit, but it’s still a great product. Two maximalist players can easily pull that 150+ characters into playable status – but the question is: why’s Conan O’Brien (who picks up some games to review in his TV-show) even in this game? Is it because he’s not an expert in videogames in general?
But to wrap up: Lego Batman 3 might look a bit basic on the surface, but under the hood it’s definitely much more complex. Older players can also pick it up and enjoy – and likely they will, ending up addicted to the game. Worth a look!
+ Addictive, not just for younger players
+ A ton of secrets
+ Sometimes shockingly great hero-villain team-ups!
– Where’s the open world?
– The combat system is a bit basic
– Conan O’Brien… wtf?
Editor: Warner Bros. Interactive
Developer: TT Games
Genres: action, fun
Publication: 2014 November