When The LEGO Movie arrived in cinemas, he was able to surprise everyone by his simple but profound language, the immense amount of fan-service and the high rate of fun. All elements that led to a precious background message, in the name of innocence and fantasy. A LEGO film so important could not have a videogame adaptation signed TT Games so much so that The LEGO Movie Videogame did not then wait too long. The sequel to the opera, The LEGO Movie 2, has just landed at the cinema and, as a result, its transposition into video games raided our shelves. With The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame the development team tried to shuffle the cards on the table, once again trying to revolutionize a game formula that in recent years has needed to get old. The result is a title that is halfway between a platform adventure and a mini-management, as always in the sign of a background plot whose core core is the creativity and the sympathy of the iconic bricks.
In a distant galaxy far away
As a tie-in, the plot of the video game inspired by The LEGO Movie 2 traces the narrative process that we could recently admire in the new feature film directed by Mike Mitchell . After the events of the first episode, then, the campaign leads us to explore the recesses of the expansa galaxy LEGO: the advent of a new enemy from the Sister System the treacherous General Sconquasso throws our heroes and the world in which they live in chaos.
Several protagonists who had animated the previous adventure of Emmet walking around the worlds in brick version, in fact, were kidnapped: the various Batman Unikitty Benny and Barbacciaio have been brought in arrogance into the Sister System, in which the queen Wello-Ke-Voglio with his deadly army, ready to to disgrace any intruder on the planets that make up the system.
In the role of Emmet, Lucy and new heroes – there is also Rex, new entry of this second chapter also at the cinema – the player must then make its way through the Sister System and its various sections , exploring a very large number of worlds LEGO in search of lost friends and new allies that allow the hero to defeat the evil Sconquasso.
The main plot then winds through many of the explorable planets, presenting a rather univocal structure halfway between Kingdom Hearts and Mass Effect : each world / planet, in fact, has unique characters and some sub-plots to be completed. The player's goal will always be the same: collect enough special bricks to open the portal necessary for teleportation to the next realm.
Through a simple but compelling process, the game takes us through ever-changing scenarios, introducing a growing number of supporting and antagonist players, all without ever losing the humor of a typical LEGO brand. The narrative of the videogame, moreover, traces that of the film also from the conceptual point of view: the whole story is told by Lucy's voice over, which traces with memory the events that the player experiences scenario after scenario.
This expedient, however, reduces the dialogues in-game or even in some cutscene to the bone: in this way, in many scenes, LEGO bricks almost seem to go back to basics, putting aside the dialogues and letting the expressiveness and mimic the beating heart of their comedy. A poetic that we have appreciated not a little, especially because very often the need to create a more mature product and introduce dubbing has – in many cases – dampened one of the funniest aspects of TT Games productions: the innocent and carefree awkwardness of actions and gestures rather than words.
From the point of view of game design The LEGO Movie 2 picks up strongly the gaming economy of LEGO Worlds : the management element, which praises creativity and farming of ever new objects, it turns out to be the beating heart of production, wisely alternating with the exploration of pure adventure and mixing everything with the narrative compartment that we have already described. A similar choice winks at the entire gaming infrastructure but it is, in our opinion, also the best element to allow the title to shake off the weight of the years and the uncomfortable legacy of its predecessors, all too crystallized in a open world formula that has not always generated satisfactory results.
In order for the experiment to work, however, The LEGO Movie 2 had to make some necessary renunciation in terms of detail and level design, offering players a plethora of worlds very different from each other but (in some cases) not entirely technically inspired, with textures much less defined than the stunning backdrops that produced as LEGO Avengers DC Supercattivi or Star Wars they had proposed to us
To fully appreciate the universe of bricks proposed by the most recent work of the British team, we must look at LEGO The Movie 2 Videogame with the eyes of a curious and dreamy child: we will find ourselves faced with a boundless number of extremely wide and colorful levels, a visual vortex able to catch the eye and to close one's eye towards some timid graphic yielding. But even for the players older than the years, looking for a satisfactory challenge level from a playful point of view, there are plenty of content.
Every LEGO world, in fact, parallel to the main quest, includes several secondary activities divided between the mission and the collection of collectibles. In order to complete each 100% realm, it will be necessary to find every kind of brick, recovering elements scattered along the immense maps. On the narrative side, however, the secondary quests will be visible on both the map and on the screen through large question marks: depending on the tools available, which can be recovered during the progress in history, you can satisfy certain requests to obtain special bricks
The central core of the gameplay of The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame embraces, therefore, the mechanics of the Worlds chapter rather than those of platforming that characterize the games of past editions: the alternation between the open world and armored levels, thanks to which it is possible to continue in the countryside, is replaced by a constant and indispensable exploration. In each world the task to be completed is always the same, although very often the modalities change and the amount of activity increases with the progress of the gadgets available. The purpose of the advancement is to obtain new tools to add to your inventory to overcome the puzzles that you encounter along the way.
The classic model of interaction with the environment, which consisted of destroying certain objects and constructing new ones from the respective ones. rubble, is replaced here by a management menu that has a myriad of variants and potential. You can switch between the main objects, useful not only to build but also to fight, operate levers or find hidden elements, but it is the construction editor to be the most stratified and complex. Through the collection of small bricks, which will always be necessary to have a good stock to operate the buildings, you can give life to useful objects in every way in the progression: trampolines, electric generators, vehicles and anything else alternated with other effective gadgets useful to overcome the puzzles, both during the platform sections and during the spectacular boss fight as they had never seen in the LEGO videogame franchise. With the progress of the story, obviously, these options are expanding more and more, at the end of the campaign, the available inventory will be overflowing with characters and equipment useful to give vent to your creativity in the free roaming sections.
It is possible to construct buildings, adorn them with stickers, to give life to objects of all kinds in a title that praises unbridled creativity and tries to combine the managerial character with a compelling storyline. The result is a title not perfect from all points of view, less solid graphically, with some slight drop of frame especially in the most agitated boss fight – in which it will be necessary to exploit the skills in their possession to dismantle mammothousous aliens ravenous .
Small flaws that, however, are made to forgive in the name of fantasy and fun: a carefree and light philosophy that we feel rewarded because, net of a basic simplicity that gives a nod to a very young audience, sub-layer of activities present in The LEGO Movie 2 houses the same, important message that the two original feature films try to transmit. Long live the game, long live creativity.