Lego Rock Raiders Preview

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No one dies in the Lego world, which is important to remember when you take your gun to the rock monsters - the monsters simply splinter into pieces, and all the pieces crawl away. And besides, they weren't really interested in eating you anyway - they were just after your crystals.

Rock Raiders is one of two games being released for the console by Lego Media (the other is Lego Racers), and it's a 3D action game with some resource management involved. In the seven-minute intro, you're introduced to a spaceship full of Lego men who don't talk so much as make recognizable grunts, moans, and squeals so that people from all parts of the world can understand them. In any case, their ship gets sucked into a black hole and spat out in another galaxy, and they must land on a planet and drill for ore and crystals so that they'll have enough energy to get back home.

You begin by teleporting a bunch of Lego guys down to the mines on the unknown planet and ordering them to drill. The goal is to gather enough crystals and ore to get you home. As mentioned, no one dies in the Lego world, and there are some monsters. When a Lego guy gets too weak, he's teleported back to the ship for recuperation. The PC version of this game is very much about resource management, but the PlayStation version, in addition to having some resource management elements also has a more arcade-y feel and more adventurous missions. Monsters include the rock monsters, ice monsters (who pick up Lego guys and squeeze them), slugs who slime up the walkways, and so on. Mostly, the monsters want your crystals because that's their food, and they'll wreck your nice compound to get it. But they won't eat you.

You'll have a number of vehicles to play with, including a helicopter and a ground vehicle with a big drill. You'll confront lava, water, monsters, and thick walls, but there won't be any unexpected mine collapses to kill you - although some of the missions may include rescuing comrades trapped in a mineshaft somewhere. Weapons you'll have include the push gun (which pushes monsters away), the freeze gun, the laser, the teleporter gun, and dynamite. We're not sure right now if you can use your big drill to drill into monsters, but it sure is a good idea.

Rock Raiders is supposed to launch at the same time the new Lego set does - August of this year. Watch for it then.

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