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Little did we know, but when Traveller's Tales first emerged with LEGO Star Wars in 2005, they would have on their hands not only one of the sleeper hits of the year, but the beginnings of what would become something of a gaming craze. Even without rewriting the platformer rule book, the game won a lot of admiration for its fun, humorous homages to the silver-screen classics, whilst achieving that oh-so-difficult task of entertaining players of all ages. Though the LEGO circus had begun to sprout games thick and fast by late 2009, it didn't trouble LEGO Batman: The Video Game, which turned out to be an absolute corker.
Because beneath its familiarly accessible (it reuses the LEGO Star Wars game engine), light-hearted veneer beats the heart of a truly complete 3D platformer, sporting a whopping 30 levels, a simply chasmic selection of collectibles and superlative structuring that perfectly tailors the experience towards maximising the extensive replay value found within. Its gameplay is a distinct evolution of the formula, not reinventing the wheel but recognising little alterations that needed to be made. Whilst it was easy to appreciate the myriad of characters in LEGO Star Wars, differences were rarely much more than cosmetic, extending as far as perhaps the ability to double-jump or use lightsabers. Traveller's Tales have built all of the "goodies" missions in LEGO Batman around "suits"; both Batman and Robin can make use of outfits that allow the ability to withstand extreme heat, glide, travel underwater, blow things up through demolition charges, and there's even a suit that allows Robin to traverse walls in magnetic boots.
Since the dawn of time, mankind's favourite past-times have been to build, and to destroy. In between conflicts, we've also learned that it's especially fun to do both with bright plastic bricks. LEGO Batman is thus the thinking-man's war game. Not really; it's a family-friendly 3D platformer. But brick-smashing remains a key element in how the game operates; not only does busting up scenery earn you "studs" (the game's currency) but in many instances leaves pieces of LEGO bouncing around, ready to be used to create new and useful objects. These can range from switches, ropes and platforms to aid your progression through the levels, to vehicles you can motor around on, as well as turrets and electrical charges required to defeat bosses. You'll need a keen eye to succeed, as sometimes you're just after a couple of small bricks needed to form that crucial rung in a ladder, whilst observing the scenery is important as by holding square, you can aim a Batarang to take out certain foes or structures that are out of reach.
It may have been released mere months after LEGO Indiana Jones, but make no mistake, there's been a heck of a lot of work done in fleshing this out. Batman's fifteen levels see him teaming up with Robin and travelling all over Gotham City in three mini-stories that chart his battles with the Penguin, Riddler and Joker, and barring the odd flying and driving level designed to add some action emphasis, most will last at least half an hour in length, packing a gargantuan amount of smash 'n' build fun as well as hidden goodies and puzzles. As if this wasn't enough, there are fifteen more stages from the villains perspectives, using Arkham Asylum, rather than the Batcave, as a hub of operations. And if anything, these are even more fun.
They rather cleverly work as a flipside to Batman's stories, so whilst the opening level "You Can Bank On Batman" sees the caped-crusader rushing to the scene of a bank-robbery, it's mirror-level "Riddler Makes A Withdrawal" pits you as The Riddler and Clayface as they go about pulling off the heist. The villain stages feature recognisable settings, but the environments themselves are unique with the gameplay taking you through different locations. Add to this the opportunity to play as an incredibly comprehensive roster of famed underlings such as Mr Freeze; Harley Quinn; Catwoman and Killer Croc, and you've got a dreamy amount of fan service.
The platforming itself still isn't especially refined; climbing ladders is needlessly cumbersome, as is judging certain jumps and the one-button mash-athon combat, though trouble-free, isn't the most thought-provoking or ideally executed. But it doesn't really matter; LEGO Batman impresses in just how much there is to interact with, how many secrets are buried away, just out of sight. There's so much to every level that really each of the thirty is worth a couple of hours of your time individually - every one has ten pieces that form a LEGO model; a hostage needing to be rescued and a unique (and usually hidden) red brick to be found; whilst amassing enough studs to reach "super-hero" or "super-villain" status grants the player a piece towards a large model. LEGO Batman instils in the player a wonderful belief that should you choose to hang around, experiment and delve a little deeper in what you might find, there'll be lots of rewards in store.
...And whilst the Story mode challenges the player to think logically about how to progress through a level, the Free Play option opened up after completing a level allows the player to use any of their unlocked protagonists in a far, er, "freer" manner, granting access to a hoard of areas and actions that were off-limits in the Story. It's the perfect means of extracting replay value; enticing the player by dangling a host of bonuses in front of them, only to be available second time through. As such, there's literally months of play to be had here and compared to the majority of modern platformers, it's absolutely gigantic.
Gotham City looks rather nice in brick form, capturing the streets and various landmarks effectively. On the whole it's as you'd expect from a LEGO game; nothing technically extravagant though nevertheless easy-on-the-eye. Though the level of detail and general activity is very impressive, there is the odd moment here and where the picture seems compressed. Still, the instances when characters scuttle around at light-speed assembling a new construction from scattered bricks is endlessly satisfying, whilst the cut-scenes outline the general plot direction in simplistic fashion, with a well-judged dash of humour. Whilst there's no dialogue and the sound effects are somewhat incidental, the soundtrack is more notable, as it uses Danny Elfman's compositions from the 1989 Batman film, which is a nice touch.
LEGO Batman fares superbly on the PSP, though the portable version does suffer from a couple of minor issues. The first is loading times; upon booting up the game, there are a couple of really quite lengthy waits, so it's best to use the console's stand-by function where possible to avoid having to repeatedly sit through these. Strangely, for a game that is essentially co-op in nature, it features no multiplayer options - not even a local, peer-to-peer setup that would have allowed for some classic drop-in/drop-out gameplay. It should be noted however that the computer-controlled ally is no slouch. It's unlikely that you'll find yourself screaming at the screen as they tend to do the right things during co-operative puzzle solving and can handle themselves in combat.
It's a real pleasure, when all's said and done. The new suits and vehicles add a sprinkling of variety to an otherwise water-tight platform game, and whilst there's still perhaps a slight clumsiness around the edges lingering over from the earlier LEGO titles, Traveller's Tales' trek into Gotham City sees the positives significantly outweighing the negatives. It may not look a world-beater at first glance, but few recent platformers have had as much thought invested in their design, or offered as much longevity and once again, it's a game that those of all ages can enjoy. This is no Holy abomination, that's for sure.
The Lego series of computer games takes a well known film series turns it into a series of levels and populated them with a lot of things that can be smashed apart.
I was a fan of the original Star Wars version, was fun to see films you know so well in Lego form. The let down with the Batman version is that it doesn't follow any of the film franchise rather its merely a selection of levels which uncovers a new charachter each time.
Gameplay is very similar to the others in the series, get to the end of each level, killing the bad guys on the way and destroying everything in sight to get you lego 'bits' at the end of the level you fight the boss who will have some sort of special power. A simple and fun enough concept.
The graphics and movement are smooth as you would expect from such a simple cartoony game.
Each charachter has a special feature which you will need to get through the game or achieve maximum rewards from the game, whether it be flying, fire proof, setting bombs etc.
Each level has 3 extra aims. Getting enough bits, collecting the lego parts and the special red bricks. Each will give you access to bonus items to help you through the game or extra levels. A good way to get a lot more out of the game.
The main story line is simple to complete, being that you can't die in the game. Should you lose all your energy or fall down a big hole you regenerate and lose some of you bits. This makes it a great game for kids to play as they won't lose their concentration by hitting a point they can't overcome.
It does struggle on some levels as the game doesnt explain what is required so it may take a lot of running, driving or flying around until accidently figuring out what to do. Frustrating at times but you can't get stuck in the game so theres always a way out.
The major problem is the loading time, it take up to a minute to load a level. Sort of understandable when its available for much more powerful consoles.
LEGO Batman for the PSP is the latest in a line of games including Lego Star Wars and Lego Indiana Jones. The game focuses on Batman and Robin and their quest to defeat the many villians and bad guys to restore justice.
However, unlike the other Lego games this doesn't strictly follow the storyline of the Batman films. There are three storylines in the game involving the Riddler, the Penguin and the Joker. There are also plenty of other villians in the game on various levels. There are many you will know from the films like Mr Freeze and Poison Ivy and Two-Face.
The levels themselves are quite short, however there are more of them than in previous Lego games. There are a total of about thirty levels in the game. It should still keep you or whoever plays it occupied for a fair amount of time anyway.
When you play the game you will find there are two basic modes - Story and Free play. Both of these modes are set within the same levels, however in free play mode much more of the playing area is accessible to you as you can switch between different characters. Therefore there are far more special abilities to choose from. You can also unlock new characters by completing levels.
The gameplay itself concerns you having to defeat the bad guys and girls, overcoming certain challenges and obstacles by solving puzzles put in front of you. The levels are very well designed too and not that easy to complete so can be a challenge.
I enjoyed playing this game immensely and the vehicle levels are particularly good as you steam around on board the bat bike or in the bat mobile at high speed.
The graphics are quite good as well and nicely detailed. The background for Batman is as you would expect dark and forboding as it is in the films with most of the action taking place at night and the character animations are great.
In between each level you can head back to the Bat Cave where special bonuses are available to you and you bump into Alfred.
My overall opinion is that is well worth getting, espeically if you liked the other Lego games and it will keep you amused for long enough to warrant buying
Lego Batman follows the current trend that Lego seems to be following. Find a successful film series and turn the characters and locations into Lego. Simply enough, and in all honesty the characters and levels in the game look like they are made of actual Lego. Very much like Ronseal, it does exactly what it says on the tin.
The game allows you to follow the paths of either the good guys (Batman, Robin etc) or the bad guys (The Joker, Riddler etc) in a series of short levels where you have a set of simple aims. Collect Lego bits, save hostages, collect some more Lego bits, have a fight with the levels boss, and oh did I mention collect some Lego bits?
On first play through you will notice that you are unable to reach certain areas. Now if you are new to the Lego computer game series you may spend a good long while trying to achieve that impossible jump to reach the treasure. These areas are an unsubtle way of encouraging repeat play. The game allows you to return to levels out of story mode with a host of characters at your disposal all with their own abilities to reach even the most impossible looking places. While this is fun for say perhaps the first few levels of repeat play, it can get a slight bit repetitive meaning that you spend a good period of time just wishing you were at the end of the level rather than enjoying a fun filled gaming experience.
To make matters worse for this game, the PSP seems to struggle to load it. The game is clearly rather large (as it is exactly the same as the much faster version on the Xbox 360 and other platforms) which means that your poor old (or even brand new) PSP spends a great deal of time just trying to get you to the title screen. Large games are not a problem, but when it affects game play so much that you often have chance to go and make yourself a drink between loads that it reminds you of being back in the early 90s and you are waiting for Fifa International to load on your PC from a floppy disc through the ever enjoyable DOS.
Once you are into the game it is fun, if limited in terms of its longevity. As you complete each level, purchase new characters to play with and collect bits and bobs you notice a very handy per cent score ever increasing which tells you how far you have got through the game. So all the time this stays below 100% you have something somewhere to do. However, when this reaches the fabled 100, the game ceases to give the player any reason to return to it as there is no longer anything else to achieve, unless you delete your save for some reason and start all over again.
But Lego Batman is clearly a kids game and should be treated as such. It will provide the younger generation with an interesting platform to play with and with a large number of characters to 'collect' throughout the game youngsters will enjoy the game while it lasts.
For the more discerning gamer, Lego Batman I'm afraid doesn't really differ much in terms of game play from any other Lego game (The Star Wars efforts, Indiana Jones)
The basic principal is the same just with a different cover coating the Lego world. That said, if you enjoy the other Lego games then this will keep you entertained for a decent amount of time before being discarded to the back of a shelf. Worth buying if you can get it reasonably cheap but don't pay too much for it. There are better games out there.
Lego batman is one of three games the lego franchise released in succession. Lego batman is gripping and addictive and I found myself attached to the screen within minutes. Smash and batarang yourway through the 30 level chapters
I bought this game after playing the indiana free roam lego game. I was overly joyed by the game and the playability so decided that I may aswell buy the next in the series.
Lego Batman is a game where you can play as both villians and Heroes, firstly you can play as Batman and Robin, saving the streets of Gotham from Crime. Then you can also play as famous Batman super-villians such as The Riddler and The joker.
After being walked through the main story at the start of a new game, you are transported to the bat cave and given free control. The aim of the game is to complete all of the 15 different hero chapters. Then after completing the Heroes chapter you automatically unlock the equivalent Villians chapter. So you experience both sides of the story.
The ingame achievements are fairly straight forward, in each game there are 10 lego canisters(which glow and are black) to collect. These canisters represent minikit/as I call them a unlockable model.
Aswell as that there are Studs, which are basically like Ratchet and clank Bolts. Like points which can be redeemed for unlockables(cars, vehicles and upgrades).
Then there is also the famed power brick which can be difficult to find as there is one in every level, making it much trickier to find the powerbrick's.
Aswell as that after completing a certain amount of stud's you unlock the supervillian rank, which is basically a rank you can achieve on each level saying that you have mastered the stud amount for that level.
The sound is usually a boring, repititive track which goes on throughout the WHOLE game. A loop which may occasionally be broken when facing enemies it may go slightly upbeat, but apart from that nothing....
This is probally the factor which works the best for Lego batman, as you must go through each level at least twice to attain each and every canister to perfect the level. However after Smashing and breaking everything over and over again it soons become clear it is not hard to earn the canisters.
Just requires some thoughts.
There is a shop in both Arkham Asylum and The Bat Cave, and this consists of....
Suit upgrades such as Icey Batarang(also Robin and Batman suits can be unlocked inside certain levels)
Facts: The facts will give you top secret information about your faviourite playable Batman characters such as(The joker used to be called the Red hood) - Usually much longer.
Playable character: Some characters can only be unlocked after they have been used and completed throughout one of 30 chapters, however there are the additional characters which can only be unlocked via the shop(policemen, Nightwing and Killer croc)
Vehicle's: as with the Charcters after some chapters you can unlock the Vehicles that you opposed or played as, but for certain specific's you can only buy them with studs.
I think this game is tremendous fun to anybody who wants to buy it, however after finding myself attaining 100% completion there is not much to do after 50 hours gameplay. So this would only be for the dedicate gamer, I think the achievements are terrific and addictive and cannot wait for trophies on the PSP.
I would only say the sounds are a let-down.
On the whole however would recommend to any Gamers out there.
Thanks for reading
Also posted on Ciao under same username
After huge hits in the LEGO game franchise in the shape of Star Wars and Indiana Jones, LEGO Batman builds (no pun intended) on their successes, but is not without its flaws.
Batman and Robin must build, brawl and tag-team their way through 15 hero stages, using different outfits with special abilities on their way. You can also play through 15 different stages as many of Batman's greatest enemies, lead by the Riddler, Penguin and the Joker. Once a stage is completed however, you are able to mix and match heroes and villains across all the stages in free-play modes; a necessity if you are collecting all secret items towards bonus levels and abilities.
Playing as the villains is for the most part the more enjoyable experience, the range of abilities that they have brings more depth than playing as batarang wielders Batman and Robin. From Mr Freeze's Ice Gun to the Penguin's exploding penguins, there are much more fun ways to play as a villain than with Robin's magnetic shoes or diving gear.
LEGO Batman does feel like it has something missing compared to earlier LEGO titles; it doesn't have quite the same fun factor and replayable feel that the Indy or Star Wars ones have, but is still impressive nonetheless.
Take control of the Dynamic Duo, Batman and Robin, as you build, drive, swing, and fight your way through Gotham City capturing escaped villains and putting them back in Arkham Asylum where they belong. Battle against legendary villains including The Joker, The Penguin, Catwoman and more to keep the streets of Gotham clean. Then, for the first time, jump into the story from the other side and play as Batman's foes. Enjoy the power you wield as you spread chaos throughout the city.