Lego Indiana Jones Hands-On

We grab our fedora and whip for another hands-on look at the Lego-isation of the resilient Dr. Jones.

It's only a matter of weeks before Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the next big-screen adventure of everyone's favourite archaeologist, is released. LucasArts will follow hot on its heels with Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Trilogy on practically every current gaming platform available. We recently managed to snag some time with the PlayStation 3 build of the game, and it's clear that developer Traveller's Tales has so far managed to re-create the same charm and accessibility that made the Lego Star Wars games so appealing.

Lego Indy is just as accessible as the Lego Star Wars series.

For the uninitiated, Lego Indiana Jones breaks down the content of the first three films into six episodes per film in the same way previous Lego Star Wars games did with each of their source movies. Our last hands-on with the game focused on the first two levels of the Raiders of the Lost Ark section, so we decided to jump straight into the first level of the next section, based on the second film, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. This scene takes place in a Shanghai nightclub, where a white-suited Indy is poisoned by some Chinese gangsters. A mad scramble ensues with the good Indy trying to grab the antidote. As in previous Lego games, you can switch control between characters on the fly (the supporting character in this opening scene is the singer Willie Scott), and another player can jump in at any time.

Cooperation between the playable characters seems like it will be as big a part of this game as it was with Lego Star Wars. You have to exploit the various capabilities of each of the characters to solve puzzles and defeat enemies. It's particularly important in this level, because the Indy character is handicapped due to the poison and is unable to jump to the same height or perform his normal attacks. Gangsters have surrounded Indy, and you will need to throw fake blue antidote bottles at the baddies until they spill the real thing. Willie has to carry most of the burden here, and although she doesn't have the same strength as Indy, she can jump greater distances (something she shares with the other film characters in the game). She also has a piercing scream attack that can shatter glass, which is useful for grabbing an essential item to get out of the room.

Once down to street level, Indy and Willie are joined by Short Round, who is needed to crawl into small spaces and grab some vital car parts for the trio's getaway. There's a small taste of vehicle action here. Indy can drive the completed car around a short distance and slam into enemies, which is good fun if a tad brief. Finally, the trio moves into an airport, where after a bit of light puzzle solving, Indy, Willie, and Short Round make their getaway.

The next level we played--the first in the Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade section--showcased much of the same cooperative action as the Shanghai section. This one takes place in Venice, with Marcus Brody and Elsa joining the action. Both Brody and Elsa share the same special move, which is the ability to "decode" special tablets that can unlock certain doors. This takes the form of a basic Simon Says-style minigame where you have to repeat a specific pattern that occurs on the tablets. Starting on the streets of Venice, the level moves inside a large library before heading underground to follow Indy and Elsa. The finale of this level takes place on the canals, with Indy jumping into a small speedboat to chase down the baddies.

Fans of the Lego Star Wars series will be happy to hear that apart from some small additions to gameplay, Lego Indiana Jones feels very much like those games. That is, it's cheery, easy to control, and just a little taxing on the old synapses with the occasional tough puzzle to conquer. Indy himself is a fairly durable character to play, and his whip acts as a standard attack as well as a way to cross large chasms, pull levers, pull enemies closer to him, and more. Indy and the other characters can also pick up and use objects in attacks--chairs, spears, swords, and even guns can be used (although guns have limited ammo). There will be more than 60 playable characters in the final version of Lego Indy, and the ability to mix and match Lego pieces from various characters will also make a return.

Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures will be released in early June on the PS3, Xbox 360, PS2, Wii, PC, PSP, and DS. Check back soon for our full review.

Discussion

45 comments
akiwak
akiwak

I have a 4 year son and he likes watching me play video games. I think this is kid friendly enough so I don't get in trouble.

Gorthin
Gorthin

hope its fun and humorus mabey theyll add something like the bounty hunters minigames they had for LS2

wogglies5
wogglies5

I've always like the 'Lego' series(star wars) for its humor etc., I think this is going to be a great game like the others! Cant wait!

Zarroc96
Zarroc96

@wolffman92: There are only 7 Harry Potters. Oh, and I can't wait for the game to come out! It's gonna be awesome!

Noodle001
Noodle001

though it seems childish i was enjoyed myself verry well with lego starwars! can't wait to get this one !

FlashCharge
FlashCharge

Enjoyed the lego star wars game hope Indy is a good and playable.

wolffman92
wolffman92

When the 8th Harry Potter movie is released(2011), they will make some sort of LEGO HP game that would be great. think of all the characters you would have in that.

wolffman92
wolffman92

To MRxMADxMONKEY: When they say over 60 characters they probably count Indy like 5 times because he has different outfits. In Lego Star Wars, Leia had her golden bikini, Marion will have her white dress from Raiders

pletsky
pletsky

I'm a big fan of Indy, so i'm surely want to play this one ;-) (but on PSP)

pinksandcocaine
pinksandcocaine

If you add "Generic Tribesman", "Generic Nazi" and so forth there's quite a bit. I love Indiana Jones and I'd like to try this, but after the Star Wars titles I've played I'm just getting so tired of this concept... I feel like I've been playing the same game with expansion packs.

MRxMADxMONKEY
MRxMADxMONKEY

I don't remember much about the Indiana Jones movies, but I don't see how they plan on getting over 60 characters from Indiana Jones, I can only think of 20ish. Any chance they'll be cool and toss in Spider-Man with a lego whip / web? =)

R3last
R3last

I can't wait, it will be awesome (now just get me Lego Batman and my collection will be complete!!). Makes me wonder if the new movie wasn't included becasue of spoilers or just production issues.

R3last
R3last

I can't wait, it will be awesome (now just get me Lego Batman and my collection will be complete!!). Makes me wonder if the new movie wasn't included becasue of spoilers or just production issues.

Bruuin
Bruuin

Honestly, I can't wait! I thought that the humour in lego star wars was awesome and the story telling was a nice new twist on an old favourite. If Indy is at least it's equal I'll be thrilled but I have a feeling it'll be better!

loveexousia
loveexousia

Indiana Jones... I never see he gonna hit in my country. If this game can not speak like start wars it will bad for story.

jonzilla_basic
jonzilla_basic

This is going to be awesome. Just picked up the special editions of the Trilogy today!!!!!!! YEEEEHAAAWWWW

sonynhater
sonynhater

Yipee! i cant wait to get this and see the Movie!!!! :D

SeanHorton
SeanHorton

As an Indy fan, I must say I'm very excited for this one. Let's hope the other next-gen Indy game is still in development, I'd like an original adventure to go with these classics. An adaptation of Kingdom of the Crystal Skull would be much appreciated.

Proman84
Proman84

Can't wait for this and the movie, of course ;) !

Tenordruid
Tenordruid

"I gurantee you a sequel of this game is coming for indiana jones 4. ill wait for indiana jones complete saga." I doubt that will happen but who knows. If anything DLC might be possibel for a few dollars or so. I heard in an interview that they are looking into it but after they work on the Original adventures.

Wii60Joe
Wii60Joe

No XBL?!? i was hoping it was like Starwars the complete saga where you can do Co-op online

Wii60Joe
Wii60Joe

killzone_gamer Looks like a fun little game, but i'd be suprised if it commands a full price tag. its going to be $50

killzone_gamer
killzone_gamer

Looks like a fun little game, but i'd be suprised if it commands a full price tag.

bush66
bush66

Looks like fun, can't wait to play it.

LaNoOm
LaNoOm

I gurantee you a sequel of this game is coming for indiana jones 4. ill wait for indiana jones complete saga.

Devvy01
Devvy01

ready to crack my whip!

GuitarHero171
GuitarHero171

The title of the game is "the original adventures". does that mean they're gonna come out with an expansion with the forth movie when that comes out?

rjpear
rjpear

Agree 100%...They are well done, and very fun!!! And this is a great topic!!!

lukiat
lukiat

Yeah, the star wars saga was great, this looks SUPERB!!

nunes123
nunes123

THESE GAMES ARE ALWAYS FUN

pigfish2
pigfish2

if you have save file for lego star wars the complete saga will you be able to mix and match with peices from that as well?

Pete5506
Pete5506

These games are always fun

ocdog45
ocdog45

these games are always fun

summer_star17x
summer_star17x

can't wait for this game. it's gonna have awesome co-op :)