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The Lego Movie Videogame

Hands On With Lego’s Latest Adventure

One of the things that stands out about TT Games’ Lego games is how expressive the Minifig characters are. While the real toys are molded from rigid plastic, the studio’s artists and animators have been able to create their own pliable interpretations that pose and stretch with ease. With their latest game, based on the upcoming film The Lego Movie, they had to take a different approach.

If you watch the CG movie’s official trailer, you’ll notice how the animators have replicated a stop-motion effect that also emphasizes the toys’ innate stiffness. As we learned during our trip to TT Games when we were working on our Lego Marvel Super Heroes cover story, early prototypes of Lego Star Wars flirted with a similar aesthetic. Eventually, utility won over, because the lightsaber moves didn’t really work with such a limited range. That’s changed in The Lego Movie Videogame.

Rather than try and work around the toys’ action-hero shortcomings, the developers are embracing them. When Emmet, the hero of the film and game, jumps around and punches the environments, it looks stiff and weird – but also quite funny

I got to play around with the game in level set in a construction site in Bricksburg. A few of the other big departures from past Lego games were also immediately evident. First, everything in the game is build from Lego elements – including buildings, backgrounds, and the ground itself. Even the explosions are constructed out of translucent bricks and fire-shaped elements. 

Players can also get to experience some of the sensations that come with building with actual Lego sets in gameplay sections that incorporate the familiar Lego instruction sheets. You won’t have to dig around a massive pile for hours, searching for the right block, but you will be prompted to pick the correct element in a series of sequences using a radial menu. I didn’t see a particularly complex model being built (the one I saw basically had you plop down a tree from a variety of other garden-themed elements), but it has potential as a way to break of the action and inspire customization.

TT Games can’t talk about characters aside from Emmet and Vitruvius right now, but they are saying there will be about 90 of them, and that the trailer is a good indication of the crazy sorts of mashups that will be in the game. I wasn’t able to get any word on what the hub world would be like, including either its size or theme.

Fortunately, there’s plenty of time between now and the game’s 2014 release date to snap those pieces together.

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Comments
  • I want more games where you can explore Lego City. Back when I was a kid having a completed Lego City was one of my dreams.
  • Maybe this will break the long running record of games based on movies that are crap.
  • Is there anything legos can't do? (run crisis)
  • A game, based on a movie, based on a line of toys. I'll let you draw your own conclusions.
  • They're making a LEGO movie!?
  • Staff

    Sounds cool!

  • Consider me excited! The LEGO Movie is looking awesome and I love all of the LEGO games. Though I do hope to see another LEGO City sometime after this. Do you hear me, TT?

  • I was expecting "Lego: The Lego Movie: The VideoGame" but close enough I guess :P
  • Looks weird but interesting.

  • This initially sounded stupid, but the trailer got me onboard.

  • Wierd to see them work kinda backwards

  • ...what?

  • Even though it's a movie based game, I have a feeling it's going to be great!

  • Is it CG? The movie, I mean. I was pleasantly surprised by the trailer - it looks more like stop-motion. And it's REALLY hard to replicate that in CG when a computer is so good at in-betweening all your frames. It's also written and directed by the guys who did Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, and stars Parks & Rec's Chris Pratt as the main character, so it should be pretty entertaining regardless. I mean, Will Arnett voices LEGO Batman for chrissakes! I'm just saying, it doesn't look CG.

    Glad that TT is doing this game though. This is basically all other LEGO brands coming together for one thing; it should make for a heckuva game. And also, hopefully *crossing fingers* bring some of that LEGO City Undercover gameplay over to non-Nintendo platforms. That game looked awesome. Shame it was an exclusive to an unpopular console...
  • Hey Bro, I put a LEGO theme in your LEGO game so you can play a LEGO game while you play your LEGO game.
  • Yo dawg, I heard you like Legos... Well, now there's a Lego game, based on a movie, based on Legos. So you can play with Legos pretending to be in a movie about Legos.
  • Wait, since Lego Batman is in the movie itself, and because TT is almost finished making Lego Marvel Super Heroes, could that mean...
  • WHY DOES THIS EXIST AND WHY IS IT SO AWESOME?

  • This is TOTALLY WICKED!!! Thought Lego: The Movie: The Videogame would be a cooler title.
  • That's really cool! Reminds me of Lego Island a little bit.