You get the sense that LEGO video games are at a crossroads right now. Still hurting from the expensive losses from LEGO Dimensions, Traveller’s Tales has reduced its quarterly cadence of games down to about one a year. The last was LEGO DC Super-Villains, and next year brings us the return of LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga.
Should LEGO Star Wars fail – the surest bet of them all – you wonder where Travellers’ Tales takes their video games next. Can they take their games anywhere? But let’s be positive: we have our order in for the game, and countless others will too. If it creates a renaissance of sorts, then LEGO will be looking at other franchises, wondering where to take the next step.
Well, worry no longer, Traveller’s Tales, as we’ve done the work for you. Through exhaustive market research (some would say none, but we vigorously dispute that), we can officially present you with 10 LEGO games that would rake in the cash. Since licencing and demographics are a thing, we’ve neatly broken them up for you: 5 games that could, feasibly be made, and 5 that probably, definitely, won’t. Take your pick!
The 5 That Might Actually Happen
The Pixar Universe
If you’ve played LEGO The Incredibles, you’ll know that you get to make ‘Master Builds’ that take in the full Pixar Universe. Build them and you get a Woody, Dory, Wall-E and others to smash up the world. Woody even gets a Bullseye to ride on – it’s kind of adorable.
There’s obviously a Pixar licence or agreement in a dusty folder in Denmark, then. LEGO are still pumping out Toy Story 4 sets; we’ve had Incredibles sets and now a game. It doesn’t seem like such a great leap.
What would absolutely kill it is a game in the vein of Pixar’s own Toy Story 3, released on the Xbox 360. It was an open world with an amusement park-feel, skitting between Woody’s Roundup and RC driving sections, among others. Now expand that out to all the other Pixar franchises, scooting into space with Wall-E and then rocking up to Monsters University, and you’ve got a game that would sell like studcakes.
Pop into your local LEGO Store and you’ll find one of the best builds that they’ve made in recent years – The Simpsons house. It’s the marrying of the two most popular blocky yellow franchises, and it’s radical, man.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I’ve got a Simpsons Hit & Run/Road Rage hole in my life. Part of the joy of those games was treating Springfield like a real place, getting to chug it around in cars and see a world that we’ve only seen spliced up into episodes. But a full open-world LEGO game that treats Springfield like Gotham or New York in the other LEGO games? Well, that would be something.
The Simpsons has one of the best casts in any franchise, full of potential minifigs. It’s also fun to work out what the character abilities might be. Burping? Nuclear rods? Um, moving backwards into hedges?
Avengers: Infinity War & Endgame
We know it’s a tad on the obvious side, but hear us out.
We’ve had three Marvel titles on the Xbox One, so another wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility, and we haven’t had the chance to round out the Infinity Saga in an Xbox game.
What makes the prospect of an Infinity War & Endgame LEGO game so exciting is the Quantum Realm. Treat the Avengers lab and the Quantum Accelerator as the hub and level-selection device and you have a really strong premise.
With it, you can hop back to sequences in the films; even sequences in the old games. It lets you take the ‘Greatest Hits’ route, recreating all the best moments of the movies. Or you could really mess with reality and see what happens in various ‘what if?’ scenarios. You know, before the What If? series comes to Disney Plus.
It might even let LEGO explore some of the more leftfield Marvel additions like the Jessica Jones and Daredevil series, as well as some of Disney’s new acquisitions like X-Men and the Jessica Alba Fantastic Four movies – because everyone wants a LEGO Alba.
We’re using the term ‘might happen’ VERY loosely here, but LEGO have made an official Stranger Things LEGO set, so, you know, there is at least a straw to clutch at.
While Stranger Things isn’t the most world-conquering of franchises, it’s still hugely popular and there’s one reason why we’d love it as a LEGO game: the Upside Down.
LEGO have been great at turning out environments that can be explored to the nth degree, like in LEGO Lord of the Rings. Now imagine their worlds with a switch that can be flipped to see them through a darker lens. Can’t make it across a creek? Risk switching to the Upside Down and cross a tangle of organic matter to the other side. Lovely!
With a new series hitting screens soon, the time is limited, but we have all faith in Traveller’s Tales. Come on, TT!
It’s already been confirmed that The Mandalorian will cameo in the upcoming LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga game, but we can probably expect, what, a level and a smattering of characters at best? That’s under-serving a show and premise that could easily fill an entire game.
The Mandalorian is a bounty hunter, and that’s always been video gaming gold. In fact, Star Wars: Bounty Hunter showed how it can be done. There’s never been a better opportunity to stealthily get a sequel to that under-rated game. Grab a mark, fly to the corners of the universe to kill/capture it, then claim your ingot.
The Mandalorian himself is ‘a bit LEGO’. Complete a bounty and he bolts on a new piece. You probably don’t need to play anybody else: the Mandalorian himself will upgrade to complete all of the LEGO tasks in the game.
The 5 That Absolutely Won’t Happen, But Should
The Shared Universe of Arnold Schwarzenegger
Imagine a world (trailer-voice) where all of the peak ‘80s Schwarzenegger movies were made by one studio, where licencing wasn’t an issue, and LEGO game could merrily explore adult franchises without anyone questioning what Traveller’s Tales were smoking.
Now imagine that game, as you have dozens of different Schwarzeneggers to unlock, and the worlds of his movies all knitted together into one. Switch to Commando Schwarzenegger, and hike to the jungles of Predator, the post-apocalypse of Running Man, or take a spaceship to the Mars of Total Recall. Avoid Terminators, Predators and the devil himself.
A bit too outlandish? Swap to Junior Schwarzenegger, with his lovely baby bump, and explore the classrooms of Kindergarten Cop, the mall of Jingle All the Way, and bring in Danny Devito as your co-op player (yes, Twins). Frankly, you’d be printing money.
The Alien Saga
Excuse the adult flavour of games we’re suggesting here – there are a couple we have to get off our chest. Or out of our chest, as the case may be.
The Alien saga (feel free to keep this to the first three, and – we insist – please don’t include any games with ‘vs’ in the title) would be a fantastic playground for a LEGO game. Hop into your LEGO Nostromo or Sulaco, fly to the various planets of the franchise, and go explore. We’d even let Prometheus and Alien: Covenant come play.
You know that collection of characters that you accumulate over time in each LEGO game? Wouldn’t it be great if they were raided occasionally by the xenomorphs and you had to go get them back? And wouldn’t chestbursting looks so fabulous in dayglo LEGO?
Here’s our wishlist for LEGO sets, if you don’t mind: the Nostromo, the powered workloader, a diorama of the Kane chestburster scene from Alien, an alien egg, a Facehugger and an alien Queen. Thank you muchly, love TheXboxHub.
The Roald Dahl Collection
We’re not so heartless to ignore children completely. If there was one universe that hasn’t been explored by games but fully, wholeheartedly deserves to be, it would be the Roald Dahl universe.
Quentin Blake did such a fantastic job of giving Roald Dahl’s tales a uniform look-and-feel that it makes a ‘universe’ seem appropriate rather than odd. Turn left from the chocolate factory and you could imagine coming upon the Twits’ house, Matilda’s school, or the Giant Peach.
The cast are magnificent too: Willy Wonka, the Oompa Loompas, the BFG, The Witches, The Enormous Crocodile. This is a vibrant, imaginative universe, and LEGO games revel in them. And anything that could bring the attention of the books to a wider audience, well, that’s okay with us.
The Die Hard Saga
Similar to the Alien saga, this is a game that could pick selectively. Have there been four Die Hards or only three? It’s up to you – we’d go for four. A Good Day to Die Hard can go swivel.
One of the joys of early John McClane is his resourcefulness – his ability to survive when he has barely a shirt to wear and a gun to fire. That sounds like a pared-down LEGO game, and that excites us a wee bit. You need to make what you can with the bricks that you have, and you don’t have many. Survive and slowly make your way through the Nakatomi Plaza, New York, whatever that airport was in Die Hard 2, and more.
As with so many of these lofty pitches, it’s often a ruse to get the LEGO sets we most want. LEGO, are you listening? A Nakatomi Plaza and a New York Taxi with John and Zeus please!
It would have to be voiced by as much of the original cast as they can muster, of course. We want authentic Yippee-Ki-Yays. Ah, now we’ve just made ourselves sad remembering Alan Rickman…
The Xbox Universe
And now for the most self-promotional of them all. We dallied with including a LEGO Forza on this list, but we’ve effectively had one with Forza Horizon: 4 Lego Speed Champions, and then we considered Gears of War. But why pick and choose? Why can’t we go a bit ‘Playstation Allstars’ and bring them all into one sandbox game?
It would be a jarring experience, but who cares? One minute you’d be sailing the Sea of Thieves, the next navigating the joys of a Halo. Let me build cars from Forza, Ghosts from Halo and grapple-swings from Sunset Overdrive and allow me to move from one area to the next at speed. It’d be glorious.
Then we get to make the LEGO set wishlist: we want a Warthog, Ori and a Lancer. Thank you, and goodnight.
We avoided some of the obvious ones. LEGO Mario has recently hit the stores, but do we need a LEGO Mario game? Super Mario Maker has us covered. LEGO Minecraft, too, is readily available, but a game is way too on-the-nose. Minecraft was freely inspired by LEGO, and it shows.
You probably have your own that you’d love to add to the list, whether that’s likely franchises, or not-so-likely. Let us know in the comments: we’d love to hear your ideas.