Is everything really better when portrayed in tiny, blocky form? When Traveller's Tales first introduced us to the Lego character game with Lego Star Wars, we were pretty sure anything with Lego in front of it could do no wrong, but then Lego Indiana Jones came out earlier this year, proving that while they can still be entertaining, some franchises translate much better than others. Now the third pop-culture to Lego translation has appeared in the form of Lego Batman, and while it certainly seems like an easy win, so have so many other Batman games over the years, and look what happened there. Let's take a look at what happened when the game reviewers took apart Lego Batman block-by-block.
LEGO Batman is unique from past titles in the building blocks' franchise. The story isn't based off a movie or even a comic-book plot. This is an original tale. That gives Traveller's Tales some latitude, since there's no need to follow a well-known plot. There isn't even a direct tie-in to a particular Batman universe. This isn't Batman of movie fame, the campy TV show or the comics. It's Batman from the toy shelves, which means a sort of hodgepodge of ideas and a myriad of costumes meant to sell extra action figures. It translates well into LEGO, though I wonder if the original four movies wouldn't have made for better source material.
Indy and Star Wars could do silly, but where in either would you find a man-penguin and cat-lady robbing a natural history museum while riding dino skeletons? Indy rode the occasional bike, but then we guess Batman's crocodiles, ice-cream vans, military mechs and walruses would seem a tad out of place inside the Well of Souls. His loss. Bouncing bricks here (sign there's plenty of building to be done) guarantee that fun is about to kick off. GameDaily
Where LEGO Batman excels over previous LEGO games is its variety of missions. The hero missions are cool, complete with exciting vehicle segments (including a fun ride in the Batmobile) and different characters to control. Villains also get their share of the spotlight. Not only do you control The Joker and the Penguin (among others), but they also get their own missions. From stealing an ice cannon to facing off against an impatient Commissioner Gordon, these stages are just as much fun as the heroes'. Don't be surprised if you find yourself growing attached to Joker's antics with his electrified hand buzzer. Finally a Batman game worth playing.
The only gripe I had with LEGO Batman is that you really can't play it alone; the A.I. partner isn't particularly helpful and while it does an adequate job of being in the right place when it comes to cooperative puzzles, it spends most of its time just sort of standing around. But the real joy of a LEGO game is heading out with a friend to smash stuff up and grab scads of loot, so it's not that big of a deal.