Published on July 21st, 2013 | by Greenie860
Lego Legends of Chima: Laval’s Journey Review
Summary: A good title for the younger gamer, with some replay value like all previous Lego titles have
The Lego series has become a firm favourite among film fans, parents, and kids with crossovers like Batman, Lord of the Rings, and Star Wars and have proved to be entertaining aswell as offering great gameplay. As entertaining as those games are, the franchise has not moved on very far from the template it laid down with the very first title. With the release of Lego Legends of Chima: Laval’s Journey the gameplay has not moved on that much with a title that lacks the movie tie in and a risk of being lost in the crowd without much promotional material.
If you have played a Lego game before then you will know exactly what to expect from Laval’s Journey. You control a single character at a time from a cast of many, but you can swap between them and at times you are forced to in order to progress forward, as each one has unique special abilities in making solving environmental puzzles that much simpler.
The main character is called Laval and has a deafening roar, that can help clear obstacles. His eagle pal, meanwhile, can soar over great chasms that are too wide for Laval to get across. It’s not particularly complex and the game is linear and points out what you should be doing at certain points. Like all Lego games ut this is family friendly fun and not pitched to the hardcore gamer thus being pitched at a wide audience.
Equally as easygoing is the platforming and fighting. When you’re not figuring out how to move forward in this colour-filled, tribalistic 3D world you’re smacking enemies about with your sword in a button-mashing frenzy. After foes are vanquished, you leap from one platform to another, wall jump, swing on vines, and tightrope walk across ravines. Any element of danger is absent as it’s impossible to fail a stage, and dying only loses you a few of the studs you picked up along the way.
Those people who are familiar with previous Lego games will easily feel at home with the style of gameplay on offer. It’s simple enough for the younger gamer to master and for the seasoned gamer there is plenty of collectables to find. Many of the levels contain hidden secrets and fetch quests that help unlock Red Brick cheats along with additional character tokens. Once these are found the new items can be bought using the in-game currency of Lego Studs. TT like to add something new to each Lego Video Games they create, for Laval’s Journey CHI power-up is the new addition. Once full, the CHI meter can be activated to allow characters harness the power of CHI to pull off extra powerful moves. CHI is littered throughout Chima in the form of CHI droplets or from CHI pools so you cannot go too far without coming across them.
The only major issue for me with Lego Legends of Chima: Laval’s Journey, though, is the unfamiliar and uninteresting narrative. Comparing to the older Lego games without the fun of spotting all of the in-jokes from the various Indiana Jones movies or chuckling at the what-if situation of Han Solo running about during the battle of Naboo, the familiar and largely unchanging gameplay is increasingly difficult to ignore. The younger gamer will probably enjoy the chance to play with the (I gather quite successful) Chima characters, but the teenager or adult playing along with them will find the Saturday morning action cartoon voice-acting quite simple and un-inspiring
Which is, of course, totally at odds with the strength of the series: bringing together multiple generations of players in a shared love of a universe through the power of video games.
It’s not a terrible game to actually play – it looks nice enough, it handles well, and the gameplay is fine – but the lack of an established world puts in sharp relief the unfortunate fact that the Lego series hasn’t really changed in over eight years, and it’s starting to become really obvious.