Ring…Ring…Hi! This is Jonathan Ablebody the LegoLand Duty Manager. Congratulations, you have just bean hired as the new LegoLand Trainee Park Manager. Lets meet the rest of your staff. There’s Professor Voltage the park scientist and inventor of new rides, JP the parks chief mechanic, Bob Longtree the parks chief landscaper, and who can forget Rosie Brickolini a cousin to Mama Brickolini from Lego Island and the master Chef of LegoLand.
The objective of LegoLand is to build a working theme park using rides, attractions, restaurants and landscapes from four different themes including LegoLand, castle, wild west, and adventure themes. You have to keep the guests happy and pass the inspection by the park inspector who gives you several tries to fix the things that he thinks are wrong with your park. And you have to do this while suffering ride-stealing aliens and the loss of all the money from the gate.
LegoLand is effectively a Lego version of any other theme park building game, but what makes this one different and better is that it is both geared more towards kids, and there really are LegoLand theme parks around the world. There is one in California, Windsor England, and Billund, Denmark. And what makes this game really neat for me is that one of the highlights of my youth was visiting the park in Denmark while my Dad was stationed in Germany with the Army.
There are ten levels of game play plus a tutorial and a free play map. Each of the ten levels of the game opens with three things on the map: the main gate, a mechanics hut and a greenhouse. Your job as park manager trainee is to build up the park from there. Jonathan will give you some instructions, such as to put up a power station to power your rides or to put ten trees in the western part of the park.
Yes, as you can tell there are some educational aspects to this game. Such as putting each type of tree from the castle theme into the castle section of the park and making sure you have enough rides, scenery and food kiosks. There are also traditional challenges such as designing your roller coaster track or laying out the path for the log flume, or the jungle boat ride or even my favorite – the car driving ride.
I actually had a funny experience while I was at LegoLand with the car driving ride. I was in Denmark, as I said earlier, and there was this car driving ride where they would give you a driver’s licence when you were done. Before you went out to your car you were supposed to grab the flag from your country so they could give you instructions in your native tongue. Well, they were out of US and British flags so these two nice British kids gave me a flag from a country they told me spoke English. I believed them because there was a small British flag in the top left corner. Unfortunately, it was the colonial flag of Hong Kong and hence my instructions were in Chinese.
So there I am happily driving around waiting for my turn to get some driving instructions and my parents are watching me and laughing so hard they were crying. I can only imagine what the guy was yelling at me, probably stuff like ‘if you don’t listen your not going to get your license,’ but it all worked out in the end. Well at least as far as I was concerned they game me a LegoLand drivers licence. And when you complete the LegoLand game, you also get a printable award proclaiming you as the Best LegoLand Park Manager.
Overall, LegoLand is a very fun game and I highly recommend it to anyone with a Lego Maniac in their house. It combines the fun of Legos with the fun of building a theme park. And while it was developed for kids, I had a good time trying it out. It was especially nice not to have to wait until my nephews went to sleep to get to try it out. All that said, I am happy to give LegoLand a well earned 4 GiN gems.