There are countless themes for Lego construction toys, and the same holds true for Lego-based video games. To a certain degree, all have the same basic aesthetic and game play: three-quarters aerial view, and lots of jumping, smashing, and Lego brick-collecting. But if I’ve learned anything from playing Lego Marvel Super Heroes, The Lego Movie, Lego the Hobbit, etc., in their various forms for different consoles, it’s that each video game theme also has certain features that set it apart from the rest, and give it personality.
In the case of Lego Ninjago: Nindroids—available from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Hellbent Games, and TT Games for Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation Vita—much of the game play is reminiscent of Lego Marvel Super Heroes. The player is in control of a group of characters, each with different weapons and abilities. There’s Kai, the Red Ninja with a Sword of Fire, which seems like a great overall weapon; Zane, the White Ninja who has Shurikens of Ice, which are preferable for fighting from a distance; and more. Players generally have the option of toggling between a few different characters, and the availability of ninja is wholly dependent on the storyline, itself based on the first five episodes of the animated TV series, Lego Ninjago Rebooted.
So fans of Lego Marvel Super Heroes will probably find Lego Ninjago: Nindroids similarly appealing. The latter, however, does have its own unique moments, such as levels in which the heroes hi-jack flying mechanized ships and other vehicles. Then the game becomes a shooter, with players utilizing the touchscreen to blast hostile enemies and incoming projectiles. In addition, during the early levels, there are the occasional puzzle-game sequences cleverly disguised by the storyline that has the Lego ninjas escaping from a high-tech building. Once again utilizing the touchscreen, players have to hack a security panel by replicating a pattern of flashing dots across a three-by-three keypad.
Accurately recommended for kids ages 10 and up, the gameplay contains potential anxiety-inducing moments where a single misstep can lead to the avatar falling to its demise or getting disemboweled by laser beams, but is not very difficult overall. Plus, fans of the TV series will likely relish the chance to play as their favorite character. Generally, ninjas are masters of avoiding detection, but Lego Ninjago: Nindroids is worth the effort of seeking out.