If you need any further proof that Lego Dimensions was designed to bridge the generation gap, then you need look no further than the recently released Wave 4 content including a pair of DC Comics heroes, a sweet and sour duo from the 1980’s Ghostbusters film and a Midway Arcade Level Pack that not only delivers the standard goods in terms of levels and content, but also packs in a literal arcade of more than 20 classic games.
I recently wrote that my first experiences with Lego Dimensions made me feel like a kids again. From building the sets to interacting with long-lost pop culture friends, the game pulls an astounding number of properties into a lengthy romp that, to quote Powerman 5,000, shows players “what it’s like when worlds collide.”
Since Lego Dimensions launched last fall, a collection of content packs have released in waves boasting new characters, vehicles and even the occasional Level Pack that, as the name suggests, inserts brand new levels and adventures into the game. There are currently five waves of DLC planned and, last week, Wave 4 finally dropped.
For folks looking to expand their Lego army, this collection includes a trio of new characters, each with their own vehicle that, like all Dimensions vehicles, can be transformed into three different crafts. From the DC camp come Superman and Aquaman, which is pretty good timing considering the fact that Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice opens in theaters this week. The Dimensions team even put together a trailer to celebrate the occasion, which you can check out below.
These bad boys can be dropped into any area of the game just like all Lego Dimensions characters. Superman can fly, dive underwater, take plenty of damage with invulnerability and use his laser deflector ability to solve puzzles. Aquaman can dive, which is actually how I discovered that Lego Dimensions has some extra secrets hidden underwater. You’ll also be able to grow plants to reach high areas or solve puzzles with his Atlantis and Hazard Clearner abilities. Their vehicles are as fun as ever to pop into the game worlds, though it seems a bit odd that Superman’s default craft can fly. I think he’s already got that base covered without mechanical assistance.
As for the Ghostbusters content, Stay Puft is adorable as you would expect and he can ride a freaking Terror Dog around the level to cause extra chaos. If you like playing as a baddie in these toys-to-life games, you can’t get much more diabolical than a rogue snack piloting a demon pooch.
The major draw for Wave 4, though, is the Midway Arcade level pack. Right off the bat you get Gamer Kid as a playable character, one of the most versatile figures in the entire set. You can press a button to swap out his retro-themed T-shirt, then press another button to activate abilities including super speed, super strength, laser vision, invisibility and invulnerability. It’s also rad that his slam attack boasts sound and visuals ripped straight out of a classic arcade cabinet.
Gamer Kid’s vehicles include an arcade cabinet (more on that later), and the car from Spy Hunter. As for his new levels, you’ll be thrust into a dark and scary cityscape where an old arcade suddenly springs to life. Characters from classic Midway arcade games are now causing chaos all over the city, so it becomes Gamer Kid’s job to beat the stuffing out of them and lock them back in their games.
To do that, you’ll need to solve a handful of puzzles and then achieve a modest score in games like Joust, Gauntlet and Rampage to beat individual areas. It’s a neat spin on the standard Dimensions quests and it utilizes those arcade games well. As you unlock games within Retro Kids’ level, as well as throughout the levels in the remainder of the game, you’ll also unlock them within the pack’s free play world.
Like every major level in Lego Dimensions, you can spend even more time in each property’s hub world. The Midway Arcade level, unsurprisingly enough, boasts an actual arcade where you can play any of the cabinets you’ve unlocked. And similar to the way the core game mashes together dozens of properties, the Midway Arcade level smashes together all sorts of video games. You can tackle a life-sized Marble Madness course, take your favorite vehicle on a spin through a skate park, race across a Championship Sprint track, explore a Lego-ized Gauntlet maze and more. There’s lots to see and do here, with cameos and surprises basically piled on top of each other.
Also, I can’t overstate how cool it is that this set includes an actual arcade. Once you find their unlock station in the game world, titles like Defender, Road Blaster, Toobin, Blasteroids and Cyberball will be available to you in unlimited access. Just boot up the cabinet and play through any of these arcade classics.
And that really drives home the point I was making earlier about how this Wave 4 content aims to further bridge Dimensions audience of players both young and old. Everything here boasts that family-friendly action and humor that the younger crowd can enjoy, but I doubt any 11-year-olds are going to recognize any of these arcade games or maybe even the original Ghostbusters, assuming someone is bad at parenting and has not introduced their kids to that film yet.
It’s easy to imagine a parent sitting down to play this new content with their kid while explaining these were the games they used to pump quarter after quarter into back when arcades were still around. It’s even cooler that, within a modern game like Lego Dimensions, folks can then boot up those classic games to let their youngsters experience a little gaming history firsthand. I wish the Midway Arcade level itself had been a bit beefier, but it’s hard to gripe when the rest of the package is so robust.
This review based on a copy of the content provided by the publisher.
Platforms: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U
Developer: Traveller’s Tales
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
ESRB: Everyone 10+