Lego Batman

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In many ways the Lego games hark back to a bygone age of video gaming.  They tap in to a sense of gameplay purity that is most often associated with Super Mario Bros.

However Batman manages to just slightly miss the mark.  It’s hard to put your finger on exactly why since all the gameplay mechanics that made Star Wars games so enjoyable.  Indeed the overall gameplay is expanded on, improved and tightened up.

The problem is possibly a cultural one.  The Star Wars games exist within a certain cultural backdrop.  A cult status and overall familiarity that the off kilter humour tapped into so well.

Batman is something more vaguely remembered on kids TV with Adam West.  And while the game is very definitely tapping in to that incarnation of the caped crusader it is something that is only vaguely remembered from childhood.

The game is played over three episodes each of five levels and again each played twice.  Once from the dynamic duo’s point of view and then again as the super-villain.

Ultimately it comes down to this, the game is designed as a co-op experience and the AI doesn’t rise to the occasion in single player mode.  With two players one can hold off the opposition while the other works on solving a puzzle.  In single player you need to do both while the AI player routinely gets in your way.

Add on to that a certain frustration in solving some of the puzzles.  Especially later on.  It’s no that anything here is at all difficult or in anyway challenging.  It’s that often times what you’re looking for isn’t immediately visible leaving you with a feeling of not knowing where to go next.

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