LEGO Builder’s Journey Review – TheXboxHub

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I’m an Android guy, and have been since my Sony Xperia S. I’d never sway to the iPhone side now after nearly ten years of Android phones, but my loyalty was tested when LEGO Builder’s Journey was announced as an Apple Arcade exclusive. I held true though, and now, less than two years later, LEGO Builder’s Journey has released on Xbox consoles after receiving plaudits on Apple and Nintendo Switch.

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Developed by Light Brick Studio, this is actually the first LEGO game to be designed in-house for Xbox consoles. Hard to believe when you consider the sheer amount of LEGO games available on consoles: from the licensed games such as LEGO Batman, LEGO Marvel Avengers and LEGO Star Wars to the Grand Theft Auto stylings of LEGO City Undercover, each one until now has been externally developed. All great games in their own right but after my time with LEGO Builder’s Journey, I hope it isn’t the last from this new studio.

In comparison with other LEGO titles, Builder’s Journey is a world away from them. Presented as a series of 3D dioramas, you control a little LEGO boy on this inspiring and uplifting journey. He isn’t a minifigure though, rather a series of smaller LEGO units designed to imitate the appearance of a human.

In fact, unlike almost every other LEGO game, absolutely everything in Builder’s Journey has been made from LEGO. There are no faux buildings or environments here, every single one of the dioramas looks like it has been fully designed in LEGO. And they look stunning, at times photorealistic with how the light reacts to them. Even down to the way the water travels downstream; it clearly is a series of colourless LEGO pieces but the way it looks and the way it moves ensures it is instantly recognisable as water.

It isn’t all about style though, there is some pretty good substance to LEGO Builder’s Journey too. As the little LEGO boy, you are accompanying your father. Firstly, at the beach where you learn the ropes of how to play through creating a sandcastle together. Then, you go on a bit of a hike together, before returning home after camping out under the stars. These early moments are truly heart-warming.

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But you aren’t directly controlling these LEGO characters. Instead, you must create a path for them through whichever diorama is currently on screen. For the vast majority of the time you are placing one of two singular studded bricks down for the little LEGO boy to jump onto. They cannot be placed so far from each other that he cannot jump between them and in true LEGO style, can only be placed on top of other studded areas.

The gameplay will change up to keep things interesting; there are puzzles to solve, bridges to build and more. There are even light bricks to place to help illuminate the way when things get tough. That may be leading slightly into spoiler territory.

It isn’t all fun and games between a father and son, but the rest of the story is best left unspoiled. The less you know going into LEGO Builder’s Journey, the more enthralling and emotive the story will be. Tissues at the ready though.

At times, I had to question myself; how am I understanding the story being told through LEGO pieces and no speech? The only answer I had was that it has been so carefully crafted that it doesn’t need speech. Sure, some parts are open to interpretation, and it may depend on your past experiences how you understand certain aspects. But there won’t be a single moment where you question what exactly these little bits of virtual plastic are trying to tell.

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The journey may be short – lasting only a couple of hours – but LEGO Builder’s Journey proves that LEGO games don’t need to descend into silliness and collectathons to be enjoyable. Here is one of the most emotionally impactful stories in gaming in 2021, and it is done through the medium of LEGO in a very special way. LEGO Builder’s Journey is a huge tangent from what has been before, but it is also one of the best ever LEGO games.

Go on an emotional adventure with bits of plastic in LEGO Builder’s Journey on Xbox

I’m an Android guy, and have been since my Sony Xperia S. I’d never sway to the iPhone side now after nearly ten years of Android phones, but my loyalty was tested when LEGO Builder’s Journey was announced as an Apple Arcade exclusive. I held true though, and now, less than two years later, LEGO Builder’s Journey has released on Xbox consoles after receiving plaudits on Apple and Nintendo Switch. Developed by Light Brick Studio, this is actually the first LEGO game to be designed in-house for Xbox consoles. Hard to believe when you consider the sheer amount of LEGO…

LEGO Builder’s Journey Review

LEGO Builder’s Journey Review

2021-12-05

Richard Dobson





Pros:

  • Beautiful 3D LEGO dioramas
  • Emotional storytelling featuring bits of virtual plastic
  • Clever puzzles
  • Effectively shows another side to LEGO games

Cons:


Info:

  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game go to – Light Brick Studios
  • Formats – Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Switch, PC
  • Version reviewed – Xbox Series X
  • Release date – 25 Nov 2021
  • Launch price from – £16.74


TXH Score



4/5

Pros:

  • Beautiful 3D LEGO dioramas
  • Emotional storytelling featuring bits of virtual plastic
  • Clever puzzles
  • Effectively shows another side to LEGO games

Cons:

Info:

  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game go to – Light Brick Studios
  • Formats – Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Switch, PC
  • Version reviewed – Xbox Series X
  • Release date – 25 Nov 2021
  • Launch price from – £16.74


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