I am vengeance. I am the night. I am LEGOs.
How many LEGO games are up to now? It seems like we've been buried under Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Pirates of the Carribean, and Batman minifigs. We've beaten the little LEGO villains and goons to bits and pieces, we've collected metric tons of LEGO pieces... haven't we played this game before?
While the big boy console versions of LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes pushes the brawler, puzzler, looter genre forward with an open world, this PlayStation Vita version sticks to the level-by-level format seen in previous LEGO games.
While that might be disappointing to some looking for a little advancement on their shiny new handheld, the saying goes: "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." LEGO Batman 2 maintains the replayability, simplicity, and childlike joy the LEGO series has built itself upon.
Laying the foundation brick-by-brick (I'm sorry), Batman and Robin will play through levels with solitary players switching back and forth between the dynamic duo to use specific suits and powers. Hazards like electricity or toxic goo require specific suits to pass.
In one section of the game, Batman and Robin head to the ACE Chemical plant to thwart a nefarious plot by The Joker. In the first level, Robin uses a magnetic suit to walk up a wall to build a grappling hook point for Batman to ascend, before switching to a hazard suit to clean up chemical spills. In the following section, Batman uses a stealth suit to sneak past laser security cameras before switching to a power suit with explosive bats to knock a tower over and create a bridge.
These levels are even more entertaining when you unlock other DC Super Heroes (there's that subtitle) like Superman, The Flash, and Green Lantern. Hidden collectibles and easter eggs are locked behind doors and traps that require specific powers to open. Going back through these levels with Batman and Robin to collect more bits is entertaining enough, but playing with Superman's flight and lazer eyes makes it a joy.
Despite that, Batman 2, like any other LEGO game, is a shallow affair. Adults will find the experience lacking beyond hour five. Being a fan of the Dark Knight helps, with tons of characters, villains, locations, and special suits I swear I used to have in action figure form.
We're talking about the use of The Animated Series theme song and the very cartoony slant in cutscenes and dialogue. We're talking about the way Batman doesn't trust Superman, but how Robin is eager to call the Man of Steel at a moment's notice. We're talking about the massive stock of Kryptonite Batman has in the Batcave. We're talking about a slow-down, zoom-in final baddie takedown popularized by the Batman: Arkham series.
Justice League and Freeplay modes are also entertaining fantasy for longtime fans of anything DC. The unique character trophies add more to the LEGO magic and creating your own superhero is a fun distraction.
The Vita screen makes each minifig and LEGO piece sharp and colorful, but holy grainy prerendered cutscenes, Batman! I don't think I've ever seen uglier prerendered video. I wanted to skip every single cutscene in the game. I kept hoping they'd start looking better, but they really stuck out like a sore thumb.
On the Vita, you could do much worse than LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes. It retains the now classic LEGO magic, there's a ton of fan service, and there's loads of replayability with alternate characters and extra modes. Hey, if you don't help Batman save Gotham City, who is? The Flash? PFFfffftttt.