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Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes Wii review

Holy blocks, Batman! Could this be the best Lego game yet?

Studs are everywhere in Lego Batman 2, spilling out of destroyed scenery, zooming into the Batwing mid-flight and cascading out of completed puzzles. They are small, but are the glue that holds the game together.

Offering endless reward and valuable currency, with the delightful tinkling as they scatter, followed by the chinks as they flow into your coffers; collecting them never gets old. Holy warm glow, Batman!

Lego Batman 2 depends on the studs to disguise its rudimentary puzzles and repetition. This is not bad game, mind - on the contrary, as we'll see - but it's a basic one that's had the makeover of a lifetime. It might sag slightly underneath, but it's a superstar on the outside.

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This sequel takes a different tack to the original LEGO Batman game, with a 'darker' Batman who's adorably grumpy with everyone. As with any Lego game, many of the best moments are in the cutscenes; one-liners, physical comedy, background details by the bucketload and a brilliant ongoing double-act between Batman and Superman. The latter sweeps in to cheerily save the day on many occasions, while Robin cheers and Batman tuts about the ruination of a crime scene or how he could've taken care of things.

Blue Block Scout

To make matters worse, Superman has one moment that totally upstages Batman. You're given control of the big boy scout in the overworld and, as you take off, the opening notes of John Williams' inspired Superman theme sound out. It's an unmistakable sound and as dinky Lego Superman soars upwards, the camera tilting to look at the stars, everything seems perfect. It's a fleeting moment, but one that you try to recreate whenever there's a chance. No wonder Batman is so put out.

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The star of Lego Batman 2 issn't actually the Dark Knight himself. There are lots of characters to unlock, each with a little specific thing that only they can do.

The Batman universe is so extensive that the treats just keep on coming. For fans, the whole game is a treasure trove of references and tributes, with everything from the Silver Age of comics to Christopher Nolan getting a nod.

This is Lego Batman 2's real appeal. The stages are brilliant-looking playgrounds in which you do the same thing over and over, smashing up the scenery to find the doo-dah to open this, or changing into one of many super-suits to interact with that.

New Build

The story is a series of self-contained stages dotted around Lego Gotham, an open world that's a bit empty in places but always has plenty of collectibles and, every so often, villains to be chased down and unlocked.

Outside of that, the key locations look awesome: the lurid neon of Ace Chemicals dominates its low-rent neighbourhood, while Arkham's gothic turrets stand at the end of a long, lonely road.

These sights keep you plugging away at Lego Batman 2, unlocking more and more of its layered secrets. There are concessions in this Wii version, such as the Gotham overworld being split into sections rather than one whole, and certain assets (like cars) are terrible. But such annoyances fade into the background after a short while, and everything else Lego Batman 2 gets right begins to dominate - the smooth animations and their sheer number, the thrill of Danny Elfman's Batman theme as you thwock a thug, the simple joy of blazing down a street in the Batmobile.

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The imperfections are worth bearing with. Few games have production values as high as Lego Batman 2 and although there are many better videogames out there, none captures the magic, the size and the thrills of simple heroism quite like Lego Batman 2.


13 comments so far...
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  1. ledreppe Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 16:33

    I agree with the verdict summary, but I'd give it at least 85. ONM are so hard on the LEGO games these days, I think it's unfair as I always have a blast with them!

  2. Dalekbuster523 Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 16:35

    Sounds pretty good. Any chance of a 3DS review?

  3. Argenthor Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 17:52

    Sounds pretty good. Any chance of a 3DS review?

    From what I have heard, the lack of the open world and other features make it a decent lego game... but not as evolutionary as the console versions.

  4. imbusydoctorwho Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 18:05

    I think this should have got around 85%,as it's the best Lego game yet,and the inclusion of the open world shows developers to take the Wii seriously,and not to make a half baked version of the high def games.
    My only problem with the game,is that the obvious pop-op,and the odd frame-rate issue.
    And for only Ł25 you a bucket load of content,and a free Lego toy,what's not to like?

  5. Donkey Kong Jr. Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 18:30

    Will you be reviewing the Amazing Spider-Man for Wii?

  6. CaptainSnivy Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 19:28

    Sorry, but I'd give it a lower score (73% or maybe in the high 60s). That's because there are just too many glitches in it, some of which can render parts of the game unplayable. For example, we were playing the first level, and on the very first part of the very first level, there was a glitch that meant we had to start the level again (and go through about 5 minutes of cutscenes again that for some strange reason you can't skip), and when you're playing it for the first time and there's a fatal glitch at the start of the first level, that's bad. I spotted about five or six glitches on the first day of playing it.

  7. trigo Tuesday 10th Jul 2012 at 15:30

    i think that the game should of had been rated higher, but why didn't they make it for the wii u

  8. Shimama_king Tuesday 10th Jul 2012 at 18:54

    I love this game but I don't like it (if that makes sense). Its glitchy (for example animals you can ride will randomly disappear mid travel), some of the characters (superman i'm looking at you) are difficult to control whilst flying, the overworld map is terrible and it will randomly freeze for no reason. But its hilarious and just plain fun to play so I can forgive it all these little things and love it unconditionally, if anything it's making me really look forward to Lego City; undercover on WiiU because if its as good as this with the glitches ironed out it'll be one of my favourite games ever.

  9. imbusydoctorwho Wednesday 11th Jul 2012 at 09:53

    But why didn't they make it for the wii u?

    It's because the Wii U is still quite a while away yet,and what would be the point in bringing it to Wii U,when they're making Lego City Undercover exclusively for Wii U,and the 3DS.
    Anyway I should think Lego Lord of the Rings might come to Wii U.

  10. BT383 Friday 13th Jul 2012 at 14:22

    I agree with the verdict summary, but I'd give it at least 85. ONM are so hard on the LEGO games these days, I think it's unfair as I always have a blast with them!

    I agree. Somebody's going through a Bat-table...

  11. Yaldabaoth Friday 13th Jul 2012 at 20:35

    I agree that ONM are a bit too critical of the Lego series. I myself am quite a fan of its humorous adaptions of popular franchises, Lego Star Wars on the DS being one of the first games that I actually became immersed in. I cannot hide the fact that the gameplay mechanics are almost childishly basic, but in a way this is for the better as there are no complicated components of the game that get in the way of the player's hoarding of studs and collectables. Games such as heroes of ruin and freaky forms, while set firmly in different genres, consist of little more than hammering the b button to obliterate enemies and wandering around a basic world in search of new character creation parts respectively, meaning they are just as basic, if not more so, than the Lego games, and yet they achieved higher review scores.

  12. hungry_eyes Thursday 2nd Aug 2012 at 22:17

    The voice acting in this game really added to the experience for me. I hope all LEGO games from now on include voice acting.

  13. gamemaster123 Tuesday 30th Apr 2013 at 17:46

    i think that the game should of had been rated higher, but why didn't they make it for the wii u

    they are

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