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LEGO City Undercover : The Chase Begins Review

Cart: Lego City Undercover The Chase Begins
Cab: Nintendo 3DS
Coin: TT Fusion

Just when we needed another reason to prove why scoring videogames is a pointless exercise, along comes Lego City Undercover: The Chase Begins.

The game has a load of technical faults and problems, forcing the reviewer who has to score the game to knock ‘points’ off here, there and everywhere meaning the score ends up being nothing more than a totting up of technical bullet points. “Hmm, well the draw distance is poor, that knock of a point, but the game is still enjoyable, so that adds a point…”. Catch my drift?

Luckily for me, I don’t have to do any of that; all I have to do is tell you if the game is any good. Luckily for you, it happens to be just that: good. To show you just how soulless most reviews are I will show you where most reviewers would be taking and adding points to their all-important ‘final score’, just for fun.

Set two years before the Wii U version of the game, which actually references this game a lot, this starts the story of Chase McCain and Rex Fury, with Chase getting to the bottom of a story that is more fragmented (boo! points removed!) and aimless then the Wii U game, a situation which is not helped by the fact that there is only voice acting in the cutscenes, with dialogue provided by text bubbles (boo! points removed!).

You know you want to play this

You know you want to play this

This means that the game has to rely on physical jokes to get in laughs, which it also doesn’t do as well as the Wii U game. There are still a few funny moments, however (Yay! Points added!).

The game shares the same open world as the Wii U, which is an impressive feat (Yay! Points added!), although the lower res (Boo!) and choppy framerate (Boo!), coupled with an awful draw distance (Boo!) make this look like a poor relation. The return of the evil of fogging (Boo!) is a disappointing, if understandable trade-off to get the game running.

However, despite all these minor problems, the game is fantastic fun – and so I will stop with the teasing now. Racing a tiny Lego car around the city never gets dull, and the game uses the features of the 3DS well, with sections where you have to hold and move the console as a scanner and scope, with these bits never outstaying their welcome. There is plenty to do in the city, with millions of bricks to find, lots of missions and masses of smaller quests and mini quests.

The controls, and feel of the game is spot on, even in the occasional platforming areas, and like in the Wii U version, having a map on the second screen really helps keep you ‘in’ the game.

Lego City Undercover: The Chase Begins may not be as impressive as the Wii U release, it may have lots of technical problems, and it definitely doesn’t have as much charm or humour, but crucially, it is just as much fun to play, and you may spend more time exploring the slightly more pixellated and wonky game on the 3DS than you will the pristine Wii U version.

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Editor and founder of VoxelArcade and The Smartphone App Review. Favourite games: Uridium 2, Frontier: Elite II, Sensible World of Soccer, Far Cry 3, Zelda: Ocarina, Metroid Prime, Solar Quest, F-Zero GX, Monkey Island 2 and Tetris.

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