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LEGO Pirates Of The Caribbean 3DS Review

Blow me down! Cap'n Sparrow's had the LEGO treatment!

LEGO Pirates Of The Caribbean 3DS review: LEGO Pirates Of The Caribbean is a solid little adventure title. The game of the films of the theme park ride blends charming - if simplistic - sword-fighting, puzzling and platform action alongside a daffy retelling of Disney's swashbuckling blockbuster series.

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It packs all four of the Pirates Of The Caribbean films into one cartridge so you'll hop across familiar locations from the movies - from the decks of the Black Pearl to pirate strongholds and desert island retreats.

Avast Array

Just as in every other LEGO game, you're presented with a huge roster of both familiar and not-so familiar characters from the Pirates movies, each with their own unique abilities. The challenge is to find the right man, woman or barnacled bilge rat for the job.

As always, you need to build LEGO blocks into useful objects, but now suitably-equipped characters can fire cannons, grapple over chasms and blast out-of-reach targets. There's even a suitably swashbuckling duelling mini-game, in which you mash buttons to match on-screen prompts.

Alongside the main Story mode, there's ample opportunity to revisit areas in Free Play once you've unlocked new characters in the course of your travels. You'll need your newfound abilities to overcome previously insurmountable obstacles if you want to get your hands on the huge number of items that are tucked away in the game - these grant access to new weapons, characters and clothing.

You can earn even more goodies via LEGO Pirates's StreetPass mode, which is similar to Super Street Fighter IV 3D's passive battle system. Here, you pick a character, set a range of Rock, Paper, Scissors-style moves over three rounds, and your handheld will then duke it out with other nearby players.

Fish And Ships

Every LEGO character is packed with personality - Captain Jack Sparrow's drunken swagger and Davy Jones's fishy beard are all present and correct - and the whole thing looks and sounds a treat. The 3DS's meaty innards give the whole thing a beautiful sheen, mixing the gorgeously lifelike piratey locales with a smattering of LEGO bits and pieces. Pirates Of The Caribbean might make subtle use of the 3D effect, but it really brings you into the action.

Really, the main downside is the lack of co-op play, which has worked so well on home console LEGO games. Without this, the simplicity of the series' basic components becomes all too apparent as you progress and, you'll only need a tiny bit of brain-power see you through the game.

If you love the Pirates movies, there's probably a bit of extra mileage in this lovable LEGO retelling but, truthfully, its familiar brand of solid family-friendly entertainment is better suited to the younger crowd.

This is an edited version of a review that appears in the June issue of Official Nintendo Magazine which is out now. You can buy it here or if you want to receive a future issue before it reaches the shops, subscribe and get Monster Hunter Tri.


9 comments so far...
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  1. The_Legend_not Thursday 12th May 2011 at 18:13

    Looks cool. But i'll wait to see if it gets a better review on other platforms :D

  2. boofan25 Thursday 12th May 2011 at 20:15

    hmmm i feel a bit stumped in that lego told us in the comercial that the first ever footage of the 4th and upcoming film however the game is released a day after the film so i dont feel conned but i do feel that lego and possibly disney have lied to us :roll:

  3. imbusydoctorwho Thursday 12th May 2011 at 21:38

    Looks cool and that but with Dead or Alive out next week,I rather have that.

  4. ploiper Thursday 12th May 2011 at 22:30

    shall be getting this as soon as i can next week, cant wait.

  5. dm_1782 Friday 13th May 2011 at 09:12

    Looks cool. But i'll wait to see if it gets a better review on other platforms :D

    To my knowledge most reviews are showing the 3DS to be the better version even over the console versions. Possibly because its a handheld and the 3D is supposed to be quite good especially when it comes to the platforming parts which it makes easier because of depth of field.

  6. ledreppe Friday 13th May 2011 at 10:32

    Finished the story mode last night. I really love this game, the 3ds version is probably the best version, as it not only has great 3d visuals but also makes use of street pass where you can have pirate duels after setting up your characters. Ok, I would say if you're tired of the Lego games then you're not going to like this as it offers very little that is new to the Lego genre. But I'm really enjoying it and look forward to the next Lego game, whatever that may be (Harry Potter Years 5-7!?).

  7. Argenthor Friday 13th May 2011 at 13:08

    Sadly co-op is one of the main draws which makes up for the lego games simplicity. Ah well, at least we are seeing bigger games on the 3ds!

  8. olrodlegacy Saturday 14th May 2011 at 18:51

    The graphics are better than the Wii version - How is this even possible?

  9. ledreppe Sunday 15th May 2011 at 23:41

    I fully finished this game the other day, and while I agree with the review on the whole I think LEGO Pirates deserves a score in the 80% region. LEGO games have been getting a bashing lately, and I can see why but long-time fans like me get more enjoyment from these games than a lot of other 80%-90%+ rated games that ONM go on and on about, but people like me never play and wouldn't find as interesting.

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