Each iteration of a new Lego video-game needs a new novelty. In Lego Batman 3 Beyond Gotham it’s the ability to dress up over 150 DC heroes in different outfits, along with exploring the great black vastness of space.
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This means that each character not only has their usual set of attacks and abilities but also an extended set of outfits that bring additional skills and weapons. It really is dress-up gone mad, but in a good way.
It works well with the problem solving, fisticuffs and platforming antics in the main campaign. Being able to switch abilities often creates multiple ways to solve a particular problem and that will make Lego Batman 3 more fun to play as a family.
Getting hands-on with the game recently, Game Director Arthur Parsons took me through my Lego DC paces. We played the third level in the game that not only gave a good taste of those new suits but also some shooting and space station exploration modes.
While playing Lego Batman 3 felt like familiar territory (this is, after all, from the same Lego video-game stable) there was also a fresh sense of joy about each and every DC character we tried. From villains like Lex, Cheetah and Joker to Cyborg, Martian Manhunter, Atom, Bat Mite, Solomon Grundy, The Flash and Wonder Woman there is a real attention to detail that fans will appreciate.
It all looks to be coming together very well and certainly has something to offer families who may already have a few Lego video-games in their collection. The new visuals on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One will attract some players while the ability to play on the go on the Vita and 3DS will be good for others.
Perhaps the only down side here is a lack of anything for Wii and DS owners. This adds pressure on families to upgrade their gaming technology, when other titles like Skylanders Trap Team show that it’s still powerful enough for even very complex experiences.
In my family we like playing these games all together. Two of us take the controls while the others shout instructions. It soon descends into a noisy chaos but is a lot of fun. Even with a never ending stream of these Lego games there is still plenty of appetite in my household for more.
I’ll leave you with my interview with Arthur Parsons who talks through the details of what goes into creating a game like this.