You’re unlikely to have missed that CES was going on last week, and it coughed up a few gaming bits and pieces. One of these was a demo of the rather shiny-looking Lego Universe. The all-seeing record-o-brain of GameTrailers was there, and it delivered the five walkthrough videos you can see posted below. It shows the character creation, glimpses of the world, the importation of Lego constructs, and so on. It’s interesting that you can see a lot of the seminal Lego Star Wars design influence in there. It’s going to be for kids, it seems, but also for very big kids. A mixture of the basic run-about-smashing-stuff fun of the previous Lego games, with co-op building, competitive building, action stuff such as racing and combat, all combined with the user-generated input that Lego is clearly going to inspire in generations of plastic-brick-layers. Go take a look.
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Posts Tagged ‘lego universe’
These still aren’t properly in-game, but they’re nevertheless a lovely target for Lego Universe to aim for. Apparently the idea of “build” underlies this latest release of images and, according to LEGO themselves, it “represents the power of building and customization that is core to the LEGO Universe experience.” And furthermore “players will be able to build with an abundant supply of virtual bricks. And they’ll be able to add these creations to their own personal space or to areas within the game’s diverse environments.” The game is due some time in 2010, and is being developed by NetDevil in conjunction with the toy brick geniuses themselves. Go click on the images below for full size shots.
The official Lego Universe site has some images of the game “in action”. They all look at little concept-y to me, but if it’s a rough approximation of what we can expect from the game then I’m interested. Gleaning what little we can from this shots, we can see that it’s going to have a Lego minifig spin on the traditional avatar creation and customisation, while the game is probably going to feature collaborative building projects of some kind – we can see a monument and a rocket here.
It’s also going to feature pirates and ninjas. Which makes sense. Could this be the next big thing for Lego videogames? It’s certainly intriguing, and the idea of being able to construct things from virtual Lego and then port them into the game world makes this an interesting overlap with the Second Life world-building themes that usually get left out of game-like MMOs.
Reuters have revealed some of the first details on the LEGO Universe MMO, having talked to project director Mark William Hansen. From what we’ve managed to gather from this article and early discussion of the project at GDC, this could be the first children’s MMO with mass appeal. Crucial to its success will be getting this bit right:
Most social online worlds have their own currency or monetary system, and Lego Universe will also require users to spend virtual money to buy virtual bricks. But rather than winning or beating an opponent, players build capital by spending time in the game.
“The more a child plays, they collect more coins and more bricks. The more you play, the more you get to build things,” Hansen said.
If it can be a game purely of building and simply economics, it might just avoid the level-grind trap. What’s most fascinating, however, is the news that there will be a fully fledged LEGO building system in the game, and that users will even be able to order their creations and have the actual plastic kit delivered to their door…