Content Type: Gaming Reviews
Date: June 25, 2018
LEGO The Incredibles is an action adventure platformer available from retail stores and for download from the PlayStation Store for the PS4. Superhero animated film The Incredibles made its cinematic debut on November 5th 2004 which was met with a critically acclaimed response and earned over $600 million at the worldwide box office followed by two short films titled Jack-Jack Attack and Mr. Incredible and Pals that were both featured on the home retail release of The Incredibles on March 15th 2005. In the intervening 14 years between the cinematic release of The Incredibles and its sequel; there were actually three videogames including The Incredibles on PS2, Gamecube and Xbox amongst other platforms as well as The Incredibles: When Danger Calls which used a mini-game approach on PC and Mac that both released in November 2004, while The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer released in November 2005 on PS2, Gamecube, Xbox and other platforms. LEGO and The Incredibles have been paired together as a tie-in for The Incredibles 2 as part of the LEGO Juniors range featuring Elastigirl’s Rooftop Pursuit, Underminer’s Bank Heist and The Great Home Escape LEGO sets. Can LEGO The Incredibles create a quality debut pairing of LEGO and The Incredibles in videogame form, while successfully representing both films it is based upon?
The story revolves around both of The Incredibles films starting with the beginning of The Incredibles 2 as the Underminer is up to no good with the Incredibles family and Frozone attempting to prevent Underminer’s latest plan. However, it is soon established that superheroes remain outlawed as they are apprehended by the police instead of being cheered for trying to save the day. However, Winston Deavor wants to convince the police to allow superheroes to return. Therefore, Winston and his sister Evelyn recruit the Incredibles family to fight crime in numerous districts around the city in an effort to show how superheroes can make a difference in the day-to-day lives of everyday civilians.
The story spans 12 chapters of adventure and puzzles spread across both films with classic LEGO gameplay such as deconstructing objects and constructing a super speed ramp for Dash to rapidly climb the outside of a tall building, using Mr. Incredible’s super strength to knock through the surface of an object to have an affect on the surrounding environment, utilising Elastigirl’s stretching ability to create a bridge for other characters to walk along or something else that is capable of being utilised to reach the next area of the level.
Free play mode allows the player to revisit each completed level in any order in an attempt to utilise the skills of each unlocked character by switching to characters that cannot be used during the first playthrough of the story chapters, therefore attempting to find which character’s abilities paves the way for progression beyond a difficult puzzle and finding out what is hidden beyond an alternative route such as a gold brick or family build.
There are lots of additional activities beyond completing the 12 story chapters comprising of a bonus chapter titled Omnidroid Rampage, numerous crime wave missions, various challenges such as rebuilding fire hydrants that had turned into ice cream fountains, rescuing civilians, finding all incredibricks, destroying anti-superhero posters and much more, checkpoint time trials available in free play mode, achieving True Super status, saving civilians that have been taken hostage or are trapped, unlocking 113 characters, collecting 120 minikits with 10 minikits to be found per story chapter and 210 gold bricks. 12 red bricks that can be unlocked by building a specific Pixar family build followed by solving a puzzle to earn each red brick such as x2, x6, x8 and x10 LEGO stud multipliers, stud magnet, pick up detector, classic mode, swing mode, invincibility and more besides.
Character design is excellent as it reflects that of not only what you would anticipate from a LEGO game, but also The Incredibles films as there are 113 unlockable playable characters which can be unlocked as you play and purchased using LEGO studs that are collected throughout the game. Characters can use their unique abilities to unlock different areas of levels such as Elastigirl’s stretching to form bridges between two platforms separated by a wide gap, wrapping around objects and gliding, while Frozone is able to freeze water; Mr. Incredible possesses super strength and can throw any ally to a higher area; Violet is capable of invincibility through forming a force field that can also contain another character allowing two characters to move beyond a toxic spill that would otherwise be impossible and a separate power of invisibility to sneak past enemies; Dash moves at super speed; Incrediboy (Buddy Pine) is capable of flight; and much more besides. Every character has their own unique personality in the sense of how they approach situations and how comedic or serious they are, alongside a range of melee weapons, attacks, super attacks and much more besides.
There are over a dozen unlockable characters from Disney Pixar films including Bing Bong (Inside Out), Dory (Finding Nemo), Flik (A Bug’s Life), Lightning McQueen (Cars), Linguini and Remy (Ratatouille), Luxo Jr and Ball (Pixar), Merida (Brave), Miguel (Coco), Russell and Kevin (Up), Spot (The Good Dinosaur), Sulley (Monsters Inc.), Wall-E (Wall-E) and Woody and Bullseye (Toy Story). Each Disney Pixar character is unlocked by finding and building a Pixar family build within free play mode as a particular family build corresponds to unlocking Disney Pixar guest characters.
Character creator is unlocked very early on as Edna Mode’s house will appear on the map as a fast travel location. Enter Edna Mode’s house and find her in her costume concept art room before standing on the left or right panel and pressing O to begin creating a hero. Character creator effectively allows players to mix and match components from gradually unlocked super heroes and villains; comprising of 11 categories including hat, hair, head, attachments, cape, torso, arms, hands, hips, legs and super powers such as ice, electric, fire, water, earth, strength, psionic, magic, techie, gadget, animal and light, alongside a character name as well as the option to randomise a character.
In the same approach that previous LEGO games have reflected the environment design of their subject matter; LEGO The Incredibles is inspired by its cinematic counterpart as it includes 10 districts within a vast open-world city including the city park, docks, downtown, financial, industrial, outer Municiberg, residential, tourist, urbem heights and waterfront which can be explored on-foot and by vehicles.
LEGO and The Incredibles are such a natural combination to retain the trademark humour of LEGO gaming. After completing the first chapter; when attempting to prevent the theft of ice cream during a crime wave mission, a rescued hostage insists he will never eat ice cream again before going against his promise within a matter of seconds.
LEGO The Incredibles has pre-order downloadable content named the Parr Family Vacation Character Pack that includes Bob Parr, Helen Parr, Violet Parr, Dash Parr, JackJack Parr and Lucius Best in their vacation costumes.
LEGO The Incredibles will not be ported to Vita; however LEGO fans looking for a Vita native portable experience can find exactly what they are looking for in a dozen or so LEGO games which are both available at retail or via download, although remote play is a consolation for gamers looking for a portable version of LEGO The Incredibles. LEGO The Incredibles’ remote play performance is excellent as it produces the quality of graphics, audio and general performance from the PS4 version. As with previous LEGO games such as LEGO Worlds, LEGO City Undercover and LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2; split-screen multiplayer is displayed in split-screen during remote play, although it would have been much better to have the player using remote play to have their own full Vita screen with the other player having a full television screen. Remote play controls have not been appropriately optimised as accelerating and braking when driving a vehicle has moved to the top right and left of the rear touch pad and centring the camera when on-foot is re-mapped to the bottom right of the rear touch pad when it would have been better to have accelerating and braking when driving a vehicle re-mapped to R and L respectively. However, it does not detract from a comfortable and enjoyable remote play experience.
The controls are appropriately mapped to the DualShock 4 controller with the control scheme consisting of pressing X to jump or accelerate; holding O to build LEGO objects or pressing O to interact with an object or character; pressing triangle to switch from controlling one character to a nearby character or holding triangle to enter the character wheel; pressing square to perform an attack or holding square to perform a super attack; pressing R1 or L1 to cycle through to the next or previous character; holding R2 or L2 to accelerate or brake respectively when driving a vehicle; changing the direction of the left analogue stick or alternatively pressing up, down, left or right on the d-pad to move your selected character or steer the vehicle you are driving; changing the direction of the right analogue stick to pan the camera or pressing R3 to centre the camera; pressing the share button takes you to the share feature menu; and pressing the options button to display the pause menu. Tapping the touch pad displays a fully 3D map of the environment your character is currently situated on, while vibration occurs when performing super attacks and on-target ranged attacks, although there is no light bar support which could have produced an alternative HUD to display your character’s health.
Graphically, LEGO The Incredibles 2 possesses excellent character models and animations of characters from both films complimented by some wonderful graphical effects that reflect the abilities of each super hero and villain such as Dash’s super speed, Elastigirl’s stretching, Frozone’s water powers and much more besides. Every character has a charming appeal to them; not only as they are all constructed entirely from LEGO but also as they are faithful recreations of characters and the scale of environments that would be anticipated from Disney Pixar’s The Incredibles films, alongside a day-night cycle and weather conditions.
The presentation of the game is solid with a great user interface across various menus such as the main menu, options menu and gameplay menus with support for navigation via the left analogue stick, directional pad and face buttons, although it does not include support for navigation via the right analogue stick and touch pad. Menu backgrounds focus on the powers of each member of the Incredibles family, alongside comedy cameos from villains and civilians.
Some of the voice-over cast consists of archive voice-overs from both films including Sarah Vowell voicing Violet Parr, Huck Milner voicing Dash Parr, Eli Fucile and Maeve Andrews both voice Jack Jack Parr, Sophia Bush voices Voyd, Jason Lee voicing Syndrome, Bob Odenkirk voicing Winston Deavor, Catherine Keener voicing Evelyn Deavor, John Ratzenberger voicing Underminer and Jonathan Banks voicing Rick Decker. Edna Mode actually being voiced by the writer and director of The Incredibles film franchise Brad Bird and some of the Disney Pixar guest characters are actually voiced by their original voice-over artists such as Owen Wilson voicing Lightning McQueen, John Goodman voices Sullivan and Dave Foley voicing Flik. The voice-over artists that have replaced the original voice-overs from the films have provided excellent performances to retain the authenticity of the characters from both films including Jeff Bergman voicing Mr. Incredible and Bob Parr, Ally Johnson voicing Elastigirl and Helen Parr and John Eric Bentley voicing Frozone and Lucius Best in place of Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter and Samuel L. Jackson respectively.
LEGO The Incredibles’ soundtrack comprises of heroic and climactic music directly from The Incredibles films composed by Michael Giacchino who has composed music for blockbuster films (Jurassic World, Dawn and War of the Planet of the Apes and Star Trek trilogy) and videogames (Call of Duty, Medal of Honor and T’ai Fu: Wrath of the Tiger). Michael Giacchino’s music from both films is complimented by additional original music composed by Ian Livingstone returns having composed soundtracks for LEGO games such as LEGO DC Super Villains, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2, LEGO Marvel’s Avengers, LEGO Dimensions and LEGO The Hobbit, alongside Codemasters’ F1 and Grid series, Total War and Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds. Further music collaborators include Rob Westwood (LEGO Batman 2, The LEGO Movie Videogame, LEGO The Hobbit, LEGO Jurassic World, LEGO Marvel’s Avengers and LEGO DC Super Villains) and Simon Withenshaw (LEGO City Undercover and LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2).
Sound effects include a variety of characters walking, running, jumping, gliding, climbing, throwing, using their unique abilities, punching, kicking and performing super attacks on enemies, enemies fighting the Incredibles family, driving vehicles, building and collecting LEGO studs. There is no DualShock 4 speaker implementation which is surprising as it could have produced particular sound effects such as unlocking a new character, alongside earning a gold brick and family builds.
The trophy list includes 52 trophies with 40 bronze trophies, 9 silver trophies, 2 gold trophies and 1 platinum trophy. Around a quarter of the trophies can be earned naturally during the first playthrough as there are a dozen or so story based trophies. Easier trophies include The Best bronze trophy for achieving true super on any level; the Better Than the BBQ bronze trophy for completing your first family build; the Bold! Dramatic! Heroic! bronze trophy for creating a custom character; and the No Capes! bronze trophy for creating a custom character with capes. There are trophies which require for particular characters to be paired together such as the I’m You, But Stronger! bronze trophy for pairing Buddy Pine with Syndrome and achieving certain objectives such as the Senior Citizens Arrest bronze trophy for defeating a district boss with a senior citizen and the Just Keep Swimming bronze trophy for completing an underwater race as Dory. The rest of the trophy list centres around achieving and unlocking pretty much everything the game has to offer which includes harder trophies such as The Best of the Best silver trophy for achieving true super in all levels by collecting a huge quantity of LEGO studs; the Kitted Up silver trophy for collecting all minikits; and the Key to the City gold trophy for achieving 100% completion. It is estimated that depending upon skill and a good trophy guide to provide some helpful tips that it would take between 25 to 35 hours to platinum the trophy list.
There are no difficulty levels, although characters will immediately respawn after dying in combat and there are some puzzles that require changing to another character in order to gain access to certain areas or generally progress. These gameplay elements result in the difficulty curve for the story missions, crime wave side quests and challenges being only as hard as the player would find the puzzles, exploration and combat. There are some tricky puzzles in LEGO The Incredibles; therefore it is not necessarily going to be easy to progress through every level, while achieving 100% completion is hard given the scale of the environments that need to be explored to find minikits, gold bricks, rescuing civilian characters, family builds and much more besides. The difficulty curve is rather appropriate given the appeal of LEGO to a wide audience and age range from young children to adults.
Split-screen multiplayer allows a second player to join in at any given moment via drop-in/drop-out multiplayer and play co-operatively, while each of the levels see both players working together within the same environment to figure out puzzles and overcome obstacles. Co-operative multiplayer is presented in vertical split-screen which works exceptionally well; allowing players to usually explore two completely separate areas of the same level or hub area without restriction to their location, movements or actions, unless there is a requirement to be within a certain area before progressing on with the story or crime wave missions. However, one player cannot explore the open-world hub area when the other player enters a story chapter and a crime wave mission must be agreed upon by both players before it begins.
LEGO The Incredibles allows both players in local co-operative multiplayer to aim, punch and fire at the other player in a friendly fire kind of way that is immediately available from the beginning. However, rather surprisingly, LEGO The Incredibles does not feature a dedicated competitive multiplayer mode even though LEGO Ninjago: The Movie Videogame and LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2 have previously featured multiple competitive gameplay modes. For instance, the Incredibles family and their allies such as Frozone could take on enemies such as Underminer and their enemy sidekicks in a 2 vs. 2 battle or 1 vs. 1 with each player able to switch between their predetermined characters as each player or team attempts to defend an objective whilst the opposing player or team simultaneously attempts to overthrow their defence of the objective.
LEGO The Incredibles’ replayability includes replaying levels to collect minikits, incredibricks, gold bricks, unlocking characters including over a dozen Disney Pixar guest characters and more besides which you may have been unable to do so during the first playthrough without having access to a certain character’s unique ability. Revisiting levels in free play mode as different characters you have unlocked with unique abilities in an attempt to find which character can solve a puzzle and unlock whatever may lay beyond it, while there are huge quantities of crime wave missions and challenges within the 10 districts of the open-world hub. There is a natural satisfaction of creating your own characters and collecting LEGO studs as well as deconstructing particular objects and constructing multiple items that are of use to reach the next area of the chapter. Split-screen co-operative multiplayer is always fun to play with a friend, especially as both players are able to independently explore separate districts of the vast open-world environments; however it is lacking the split-screen competitive multiplayer that was introduced in LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2 and LEGO Ninjago: The Movie Videogame. LEGO The Incredibles represents exceptional value as it collectively contains more than enough replay value throughout each gameplay element to keep players returning for many story mode playthroughs or continuous exploration as unlocked characters for dozens of hours.
- Title: LEGO The Incredibles
- Developer: TT Games
- Publisher: Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment
- System: PS4
- Format: Blu-Ray Disc/PSN Download
- Cross-Buy: No
- Cross-Play: No
- Players: 1-2 (Local Co-operative Multiplayer)
- Hard Drive Space Required: 14.54GB