Lego The Incredibles review – the Pixar family | Gaming
Pixar’s latest animated movie is out in cinemas this week, but it’s also been turned into a video game in this new Lego tie-in.
If you’ve played one Lego game you’ve played them all. But depending on where you stand that’s not necessarily a criticism. It may be a little overused at this point, but we enjoy the familiarity of the Lego video game formula just like we enjoy James Bond films and watching England lose at penalties (oh, wait!). No game is exactly the same though and while none have been outright bad there has been quite a bit of variance in quality, mostly due to how long the game has been in development and how well the property in question fits the template.
Superheroes always work the best, because they have such a large range of recognisable characters with very different abilities. The Incredibles is essentially superheroes, but to compensate for the fact that the universe is very much smaller than Marvel or DC this is really The Incredibles and friends. Not only does it incorporate both movies, but it also features an extended cast of characters from a range of other Pixar movies.
Most Lego games also have a unique gameplay gimmick or two and here it’s the idea of teamwork being extra important. Considering the best bit about Lego games is always the offline co-op that’s not much of a deviation, but it’s just enough to ensure that Pixar fans, at least, will be happy.
This game was actually released last month in America, but only this week in the UK because the film itself was delayed until after the World Cup. If you are planning to see the movie though we would strongly advise not playing the game until afterwards, as it begins with the second film and quite clearly spoils everything – at least in terms of major set pieces. We haven’t seen it yet but judging by its trailer, and the way the events of the first film are handled, it seems to replicate the action very well, even if it does sideline the more serious elements of the plot.
The story levels work exactly the same as they always have, with fixed camera views and a selection of characters that are used to solve the simple, but satisfying, puzzles. Mr Incredible is super strong, Mrs Incredible has a flexible Mr Fantastic style body, Violet can turn invisible and create a force field (we’re surprised Disney even made an Incredibles sequel after all this time, considering how much more difficult it’ll make a live action Fantastic Four reboot), and Dash has Flash style superspeed.
Other major characters, such as baby Jack-Jack and Samuel L. Jackson’s Frozone, also turn up but a lot of the other unlockables are non-powered side characters of little obvious interest – hence the Pixar cameos. The teamwork gimmick is fairly simple too and involves two characters working together, such as Violet creating a force field to protect Dash or Mrs Incredible turning into a trampoline for someone else to use.
Generally, the game seems to be aimed at the lower end of the Lego age range, although there’s more puzzles than many of the other titles which means any very young children will probably need an older helper to get them through it. Not only to work out the puzzles but to explain why certain bits don’t work the way they’re supposed to because, as usual, the game is filled with low-level bugs.
The vehicle handling is also as bad as always, so there’s no change there either. But that’s a shame because a lot of effort has clearly gone into the open world and there’s now a new concept called crime waves, which is a more open-ended set of linked side missions that help give the impression that the city is a little more dynamic than usual.
But really, the new features are rather minor and the only other slightly different element is the way character customisation is handled via Edna. Lego The Incredibles always seemed destined to be a minor entry in the series and its appeal really begins and ends with how much you like The Incredibles and other Pixar films.
The best Lego games, such as last year’s Marvel Super Heroes 2, owe much of their charm to their irreverent scripts and genuinely witty dialogue. But there’s less scope for The Incredibles to go off-brand and so a lot of it ends up seeming rather workmanlike as a result.
But the one thing about Lego games is that if you don’t like the current one you can be sure another will be along shortly after, and we’re quietly optimistic about this Christmas’ Lego DC Super-Villains. And if you’re not interested in that, well, we’re sure something else will be turn up after that too…
Lego The Incredibles
In Short: More competent than incredible, this middle-of-the-road tie-in replicates the films well enough but doesn’t mesh with the Lego formula as well as some other properties.
Cons: Very familiar gameplay and content, with not enough variety outside of the Pixar cameos. The usual rubbish vehicle handling and technical issues.
Formats: PlayStation 4 (reviewed), Xbox One, and PC
Publisher: WB Games
Developer: TT Fusion
Release Date: 13th July 2018
Age Rating: 7
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