Published on April 15th, 2014 | by admin
LEGO The Hobbit PS4 Review
Summary: LEGO The Hobbit is a fun game with a sturdy gaming engine but it definitely doesn't give this genre anything new.
LEGO The Hobbit
Developer: TT Games
Distributor: Warner Bros
Format: PS4 (Reviewed) – Available on PS3, XBox 360, XBox One & PC
Release Date: 16/04/2014
Reviewer: James Wright
The gaming world has truly gone LEGO crazy with Warner Bros releasing another game with LEGO The Hobbit that is just two weeks after the release of The LEGO Movie Video Game and also coincides with the release of The Hobbit, the Desolation of Smaug on Blu-ray, DVD and UltraViolet. It’s truly Hobbit and LEGO madness!
LEGO The Hobbit also captures the spirit of both movies with even a great flashback scene to the Dwarves of Misty Mountains. It’s just a shame that this is only two thirds of Peter Jackson’s retelling of The Hobbit but the whisper is, The Hobbit: There and Back Again may be available as a DLC late this year for this game. From Hobbiton to Erebor, there’s some great locations and exploration to be found in this game.
Like the films, the main protagonist is Bilbo Baggins but in true LEGO fashion, you get to control a plethora of Tolkein’s wonderful characters as you make your way to the dreaded dragon known as Smaug. Developers TT Games also ensure that the game is oozing with humour and I love how they have interpreted certain scenes from the film with their trademark bumbling LEGO humour. Without spoiling the game, there’s a great scene between Kili, Tauriel and Legolas, especially their love.
In essence, LEGO The Hobbit is simplistic adventure game with puzzles thrown into the mix and is aimed at the younger gamer but it’s really a game that can be played by all. These puzzles generally require the player to solve them in tandem with another character. If you are playing the game solo, the AI will assist but as with other LEGO titles, adding another person to the mix makes the game considerably more enjoyable. I also have a confession to make and as a person from Generation Y, I actually found some of these puzzles a little challenging!
As you hack and slash your way through the world of The Hobbit, you need to collect items in order to further your cause and you can even craft your own items, provided you are a Dwarf. With that said, the Dwarven characters are the true stars in the game, especially their abilities like being able to move objects or even make a dwarf ladder. TT Games have really captured the spirit of these characters from the films.
They also have the ability to mine loot which allows them to build special LEGO objects with some useful (e.g. a catapult) and some truly bizarre. This feature is borrowed from The Lego Movie Videogame which introduces a mini-game and requires the player to build the item in a set time from a blueprint. Finding these blueprints or schematics is another part of the LEGO puzzle.
However compared to LEGO Marvel Super Heroes of late last year, The Hobbit version of this franchise feels a little less polished with the gameplay being a tad more clunky. Also at times, the graphics looks a little dull in some places with repetition playing a key part but with that said, there are some really impressive scenes in the game as well.
When it comes to the gameplay, The Hobbit definitely starts on a high and quickly dives into the stock standard repetition of smashing things together, collecting items, building new items and fighting a never ending army of enemies. Thankfully it does start going up again. For me, I think we’ve had a little too many LEGO games of late and TT Games probably need to revitalize their franchise with some new gaming mechanics.
Even though I may sound a little harsh, the game is still solid and if you haven’t played a LEGO title for quite some time and you’re a fan of The Hobbit, than you’ll definitely get your money’s worth from this title, especially as you can revisit areas in order to find all the secrets. This only adds to the longevity of the game.
Graphically, LEGO The Hobbit is a mixed bag that is very reminiscent of LEGO The Lord of the Rings which is understandable but I was hoping for something a little more special on the PlayStation 4… something more next-gen. It is missing that edge that LEGO Marvel Super Heroes had and it doesn’t help with the muted and earthy colours when you are underground.
The outside scenes are great, especially the barrel scene but overall there is something lacking. Thankfully the soundtrack is brilliant as it’s directly taken from the film and the voice acting is quite impressive which does help set the mood of the game thanks to Martin Freeman, Ian McKellan, Benedict Cumberatch and even Elijah Wood.
LEGO The Hobbit is a fun game with a sturdy gaming engine but it definitely doesn’t give this genre anything new. It features some fun cutscenes and follows the first two movies closely and hopefully once the final film has been released, we’ll see some additional DLC. So yes, LEGO The Hobbit may not be the greatest game due to its repetition but the humour in the game is really first class and you cannot help but smile and laugh when the silliness begins!
Maybe TT Games could do LEGO Game of Thrones next!