- Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
- Developer: Traveller's Tales
- ESRB Rating: E 10+ (Everyone 10 and Older)
- Genre: Action Adventure
- Pros: Ambitious World, Strong Voice Work. Great Characters, Incredible Replay Value
- Cons: Camera Issues, Unrefined Graphics, Repetitive Puzzles
While most of the LEGO games have worked off the well-known plots of hit books or films like "Harry Potter" or "Star Wars," "LEGO Batman" was completely original and it's follow-up takes the opportunity to not have to stick to a predetermined template to offer what could be considered the first open-world LEGO game. There are still story missions, but the traditional "Hub-Level" structure of previous LEGO games has been replaced by a massive world to be explored for hours on end, especially as the unlocking of new heroes allows new areas to be accessed. Oh yeah, this not just a Batman adventure as Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Superman, and more of your favorite DC icons join the Dark Knight and the Boy Wonder.
Boasting actual voice work for the first time in the LEGO franchise (cut scenes were always made up of pantomime action in the past), "LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes" tells an icon-packed tale in which Lex Luthor and The Joker have teamed up together to finally take over Gotham. Stopping them will require not just Batman and Robin but the entire Justice League.
The game starts in a relatively straightforward manner as you get used to controlling Batman and Robin, who each come with different skill sets and different suits that can be found in the game to help the player complete puzzles. For example, Batman can find a suit that makes him invisible to sensors or carry explosives to blow up objects in the environment. Robin can find one that allows him to access his acrobat past or another that makes him magnetic. By starting out by allowing the player to just get accustomed to the title character and his partner-in-stopping-crime, the developers allows the game to build organically, introducing the other heroes slowly instead of just throwing players into a title filled with different heroes.
While there's more story (and voice work to support it) than there has been in any LEGO game before, the basic foundation of "LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes" will be familiar. Like all LEGO games, it's about collecting, destroying, and exploring. While the past LEGO games have held replay value beyond their campaigns by forcing players to unlock characters that would reveal collectibles on levels that can't be accessed the first time, "LEGO Batman 2" has a massive open world that's just begging to be explored. You can wander around Arkham Asylum, climb buildings in Gotham, or even plays games in an amusement park. The ambition of the world in "LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes" is something I never thought I'd see in a LEGO game.
With ambition comes growing pains. There are elements of "LEGO Batman 2" that feel unrefined. Vehicles can be hard to control and the camera can't quite keep up with them. Superman brings an amazing flexibility to the world by his ability to fly but, once again, it creates a few camera issues. There were also times where I just wanted to know where to go next to push the story forward instead of wandering Gotham trying to collect studs and it's not always easy to do so. And some of the levels contain bizarrely-hidden solutions to their puzzles. You'll often have to search environments just to figure what to destroy next in order to move forward.