LEGO Batman The Video Game

This is the box art for the (amazing) first LEGO Batman game.

LEGO Batman: The Video Game is a game released in 2008, and it follows the adventures of Batman and Robin (thank heaven they added Robin) as they thwart the evil plots of the Riddler, the Penguin, and the Joker, all of whom are assisted by classic enemies, like Catwoman, Clayface, Mr. Freeze, Two-Face, and Poison Ivy. However, after you reach a certain amount of progress with these stories, you are able to replay the adventures from the perspective of the villains.

This is a really enjoyable game, and I liked it mainly because of the extreme loyalty they had to the real essence of Batman; the plain gray suit, the resourcefulness, the precision -- it was all just a perfect representation of Batman, and it feels like it was based on the old productions as opposed to the (God awful) newer movies like The Dark Knight.

The stories were actually pulled together surprisingly well; my reviewing inspiration, the Wiiviewer, pointed out his confusion at the fact that these were new stories that had never been established before now, and which had relatively little to do with each other at all; but I kind of liked this, because it shows the way in which Batman and Robin can, without a flinch, put down new and formidable schemes and enemies. In fact, it made the game feel like a TV show, which is what you really should feel when playing a game version of the old Batman's adventures.

However, don't get the illusion that the game is an exact copy of the old adventures, because the publishers threw in a new feature: special suits. Batman and Robin (as well as Batgirl and Nightwing, once they're unlocked) can use suit terminals to adopt certain abilities, like flying for Batman or magnetic shoes for Robin, that will allow you to advance through the levels. Although I sort of felt silly playing with these costumes, and a bit frustrated with how often they were used, they were well-made and controlled just fine, so all in all, they added to the game, and it was a successful gamble on their part.

Now you're probably wondering next, "What about this villain side you mentioned?" Well, the whole game is basically divided into a hero side and a villain side. You can be in either the Batcave, which is the hero side where you can play hero levels and access certain things like minikits, or Arkham Asylum, which is the villain side where you can play levels from the villain perspective, and access things like the Character Creator.

Actually, allow me a momentary side note about the Character Creator; remember hoe I've said that the typical Creator bites out loud like a rabid dog? Well, maybe not that. Anyway, this one is fantastic! It has a whole variety of options, plenty to namespaces -- the only thing they were missing was more weapons, but the ones they had were actually highly satisfactory. The Creator is one of the biggest advantages, in fact, to getting this game.

Back to the villain side of things. The most important thing about this is what the villain levels are like, and my response is that they're just as fun, if not more fun than the standard ones. They have delightful puzzles, and they're exciting because of the lack of requirement to keep playing as Batman and Robin for every level.

What about control? Amazing. Everything, even the suits work flawlessly, and don't get me started on the combat. The combat is just like what you would see in classic Batman, except more believable and not as cheesy. One thing you'll love about the combat is the ability to grab. It's not really the playing experience as much as how cool the whole thing is to watch and do. Basically, it just makes you feel superhero-y and awesome.

LEGO Batman: The Video Game is a masterpiece of a game, easily one of the best in the LEGO series. I can say without question that if you like LEGO, or Batman, or neither, you'll enjoy this game very much.