Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham Review

LEGO-Batman-3[1]It’s that time of year again. Another triple-A Lego game has been released; and this one looks like a doozy. The first Lego Batman game was my all-time favorite as it wasn’t too long, and it wasn’t too short. Plus, this was before Lego Batman 2 introduced a “hub world” to pick levels from so it was 10 times less complicated. Now, we have a third installment which worked more as a bridge to the first 2 than the original sequel, but more on that latter.

Keep in mind; that even though this is technically a “Lego Batman” game, you’re going to spend more time exploring the DC universe and it’s original characters more than the caped crusader to any extreme. While the story does start off with the dark knight and his trust sidekick you’re quickly thrown into a Teen Titans situation while Robin & Cyborg conquer a handful of levels along with Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, and even working together with The Joker. I swear, you play more as The Joker than Batman himself which makes me wonder why they didn’t abandoned the Batman title and generalize more like Lego Marvel Superheros released sometime last year.

Much like the rest of the Lego series from the development team known as Traveler’s Tale; the game is obviously geared towards children even though the lack of explanation at certain puzzles will aggravate even the most experienced gamers (such as myself). I mean, seriously, do they know that a 25 year old man with an extensive gaming history gets stuck at least once on every level? How am I supposed to know that I have to break that lamp and build something out of it? I thought I broke everything on this level!

While the puzzles start off simple, it’s not long before you miss one breakable thing and spend 30 minutes searching the level, overlooking the obvious several times. This is doubled during the second playthrough known as “Free Play” whent there’s an arrow pointing to a minikit that you can’t reach unless you’re on the other side of the map. Seriously, simplicity becomes complicated. But if you’ve played any other Lego game you should be used to this by know.

The great thing about this game is the characters. No matter who’s your favorite absurd DC hero, you can find them in one of these three games. Even this game has reached out to the extended like Green Loontern while throwing in extras like Kevin Smith, 1966 Adam West’s classic Batman, and even Ace The Bat-Hound! Hell, there’s even a character of Batman with Green Lantern’s ring.

If the regular story isn't up your alley, the 1966 styled bonus level will bring a smile to your face.

If the regular story isn’t up your alley, the 1966 styled bonus level will bring a smile to your face.

While the mini-figure cameo game is at an all time high, it’s going to take a lot of troubleshooting levels to find all the characters pieces. That’s if you don’t have to do some odd ball task in the hub world to find the character you’re looking for. The problem with these onslaught of characters is that unless you look up the list, you probably won’t find “the best” character until you’re at 99% and ready to put down the game forever. Seriously, I can’t picture anyone playing a Lego game past 100%. By the time you spend 30+ hours to conquer the game, you’ll want nothing to do with it when you’re done.

Besides the aggravation that’s bound to come to the seasoned gamers, all of these games are really a must play. Of course it’s a perfect co-op game for me and the girl or the kid. Great for any family or someone who just needs a break from The Master Chief Collection with some casual gaming. Just keep in mind that the story is geared towards children and doesn’t feature any depth or really make any sense at time but that doesn’t slow the fun down one bit. Compared to the the original two games, I highly recommend playing them in order, even though the story line is non-sequential at all. Or at least giving the first one a go before this being overwhelmed with how much there is do to in this game. I mean, this is even the first Lego game to feature DLC achievements (that I know of).