Lego Universe Gameplay Footage

A game that I’ve been waiting to hear more about has finally had part of the curtain pulled back. The game is Lego Universe, an MMO based on the Lego franchise. In recent years Lego games have really become a mini-genre unto themselves with games like Lego Indiana Jones, Lego Batman, Lego Rock Band, etc.

Creating an MMO with the Lego brand seems like an interesting challenge. Lego encompasses so many different archetypes: pirates, aliens, industry, army, deep sea exploration. You name it, Lego can enable it. It’s all about unleashing that creativity. But how to do that in a game form?

The first video shows that they’ve nailed the humor and cuteness of the Lego brand. Watching the minifigs respond to the main menu is a lot of fun.

The second video shows that they plan on making this accessible by making it a platformer, which, if done right, can be pretty kid friendly.

As my co-workers outlined in a conversation today, how do you keep the kiddies from encountering a world full of Lego genitalia? It looks like NetDevil decided to do this by sandboxing. In the third video below, about 60% through, the player creates a bat from independent lego bricks. This creates a schematic that can be saved off for later use. As the user is creating the content, they are in a little world unto themselves. This protects everyone else from potential offensive content. The schematic must undergo moderation before it can be made real in the game. This part seems the most labor intensive. Almost certainly they will be using the player base to crowd-source the moderation process. The time that this takes allows them to create an optimized version of the schematic for rendering and store it on the server as well. From there, I guess the model is downloaded to other client machines whenever your creation comes into their view. Cool stuff and I’m interested in seeing how it scales.

CES 2010 Footage: Lego Universe


~ by shaunkime on January 14, 2010.

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