As The Joker might ask, ‘Do you like LEGOs, Batman? ‘Cause I think LEGOs are going to like you!’
If you do like both LEGOs and Batman, then LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes should catch your attention like a Bat-signal. This time, Lex Luthor and The Joker have teamed up and are running amok in Gotham City. The Dark Knight sure has his hands full, but, fortunately, he has his pals in the Justice League to give him a hand.
The sequel is chock full of blocky fun and sports some new features we haven’t seen in a LEGO game. One such important new addition is voices. That’s right, it’s the first title that no longer leans on pantomime to propel the story as seen in the numerous prior LEGO games. Though Mark Hamill isn’t in the game to reprise his famous Joker from the ’90s animated series, the voice acting is top notch and adds plenty of genuinely funny, kid-friendly humor. It really captures the feel of a Saturday morning cartoon.
Another big addition to the LEGO series is the implementation of an open sandbox Gotham City that’s rife with Arkham Asylum escapees. If you are looking to play the game past its initial story (which is rather short), you’ll be spending a lot of your time zip-lining through the Gotham skyline. There are tons of puzzles to solve, rewarding players with collectible golden bricks. There’s also a rogue gallery full of villains to capture, which adds them to your post-game playable character roster. Sandboxing Gotham is a nice touch to the game, but Traveler’s Tale haven’t implemented a mini-map, so it’s often hard to zero in on specific objectives or villains you want to fight.
Despite the addition of a sandbox Gotham City, the game is still structured like a typical LEGO game. A majority of the game’s story takes place in episodic levels and the Gotham overworld connects the dots of the narrative.
For those of you unfamiliar with the numerous titles in the LEGO series, they’re largely driven by a combination of platforming and puzzle-solving, and this sequel’s core is no different. In LEGO Batman 2, you’ll step into the plastic-molded boots (are they really boots?) of Batman and Robin (most of the time) who have to use every gadget at their disposal, including a variety of super suits, to solve puzzles to get them through each level. There are a few other characters you’ll also get to play as during the story. You can switch between characters on the fly if you are playing by yourself, which you will need to do to get through the game.