A few weeks ago I found myself browsing the local game store, and after losing a battle with temptation, I ended up buying Lego Batman 2: DC Superheros. I know what you’re thinking – a Lego game? You play one you’ve played them all, right? Well, yes and no. Yes, this is still a Lego game that appeals to a younger crowd. However, it’s also one of the best superhero games I’ve ever played. (Spiderman 2 fans, forgive me) Put simply, Lego Batman 2 is pure DC comic fan service, and is the best title in the Lego series.
Welcome to Gotham City
By far, one of the coolest elements of Lego Batman 2, and what separates it from other Lego titles, is the inclusion of an expansive open world Gotham. This alone sets it apart from just about any other Batman game, never have players been able to roam around Gotham as the please, and it feels so right. However, this is no Arkham City, so the level of detail is not quite as impressive, but the play space is a bit larger.
As you can see, the buildings and environment are fully rendered, and not made of Lego bricks. This is actually somewhat important. The dark tone of Gotham City is achieved thanks to the gloomy rainslick surroundings. Only the characters and the items they can interact with are actually made of brightly colored children’s toys.
The Justice League of Lego America
The game’s title isn’t simply “Lego Batman 2″, no the full title reads, “Lego Batman: DC Superheros” which implies two things. One, that this game isn’t just about Batman – two, that the next Lego game featuring Batman will likely be called “Lego DC Superheros 2″.
As it turns out, having old Batman share the spotlight is a good thing, and every DC hero you can imagine can be found in the game, each with their own set of super powers fully intact. Superman can fly, The Flash can run at super high speeds, the Green Lantern has his destructive ring, you get the idea. The huge roster of characters, each with their own abilities, is quite impressive. You don’t see many superhero titles that give you a dream roster like this, and an open city to play in.
Lego Batman 2 is best enjoyed with a friend. The game has co-op support from start to finish, and this includes roaming Gotham City. Player one could be speeding along in the Bat-mobile, while player two soars alongside him in the air as Superman. This is the sort of comic book coolness Lego Batman 2 has in spades. The game isn’t as epic or focused as classics like Arkham Asylum, but gives DC fans a huge amount of content to sink their teeth into. When playing with a friend, the experience is even better than solo, as many puzzles are easier to tackle with a friend, leading to more unlocks for both of you to enjoy.
The Hero Gotham Deserves
Holding Lego Batman 2 back from greatness are occasional performance drops, as well as puzzles that don’t give players a clear sense of direction. There were times where I couldn’t believe that a Lego game had me stumped, only to discover that I had missed some insignificant clue hidden along the way. These problems are frustrating, but they don’t manage to bring the whole game down – even when I was stumped I was focusing on unlocking that next superhero.
Lego Batman 2 is a must play for readers of DC comics, the game is a letter of love to the fans, filled with great voice acting, a deep roster of superheros, and an open world Gotham for players to roam. If you’re a superhero fanatic, what more could you ask for?
[Personally, I'd ask for a Marvel Avengers game. A boy can dream.]