The cleverness and creativity that goes into a Lego game always kind of blows me away, even when the only ones I’ve ever really played were on my crappy phone. This morning I had the privilege of playing Lego’s upcoming new Batman game, Beyond Gotham on an actual PS3. Moving on up!
Calling it a Batman game at this point feels a little misleading. While the narrative does focus on Batman and Robin’s adventures in space, this is really a Justice League jam. According to the representative I talked to, a large part of the story revolves around all the various Lantern Corps, so it's going cosmic in a big way.
Gameplay-wise, it’s pretty much the same old Lego action. Linear levels, little mini challenges only certain character abilities can conquer, tons and tons of Lego collecting, it’s all here. The game occasionally shifts into vehicular levels. The one I played was a double stick bullet hell type, but there are others as well.
All anyone really cares about is characters, anyway. I only saw a small sampling of Beyond Gotham’s over 150 character roster and even that was enough to blow me away. Killer Croc and Solomon Grundy (complete with flies buzzing around his rotting head) are both massive. Plastic Man can turn into an airplane. Atom can get into tiny places. With the press of a button, Superman can turn into Clark Kent. If you want to get back to being Superman, no problem. A Lego phone booth magically shows up and you’re back in action. You can even play as Krypto.
But the absolute best was playing as Adam West. Because Adam West. You can’t play as Burt Ward, though. Because Burt Ward. (Actually, I don't know this for a fact - he just wasn't in the demo.) But you can play as the ‘60s Batman and Robin. When they hit bad guys, you get all the BLAM! and KAPOW! action you could ever want. They even get their own ‘60s Batman bonus stage.
I had a lot of fun playing around with Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham, even though I totally sucked at it, and I think the representative grew irritated with my inability to not die a lot. It’s probably going to be a massive hit when it comes out sometime this fall.