Building a Universe of
Bricks

A Live Preview of LEGO
Universe from NetDevil

By
Cody “Micajah” Bye

Growing up, LEGO products were always at my fingertips,
whether they were the oversized Duplo bricks or the intricately
detailed Bionicle products that have been released in recent years.
Akin to 3D puzzles, LEGOs were a constant source of joy, frustration,
and relief as my brothers and I pieced together the building blocks
with our little fingers, our father or mother watching over our
shoulder to insure the product was going together correctly. We mostly
had the mid-range toys, the larger pirate ships and Star Wars vehicles
were simply to immense and expensive to put into our farmhouse.

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alt="The 12-foot LEGO brick." title="The 12-foot LEGO brick."
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A shot of the 12-foot LEGO brick.

Upon entering my teenage years, LEGO sets became a thing of
the past, as girls, sports, and video games took prevalence. I never
stopped loving LEGO sets, I merely didn’t have time to
construct the massive projects that would have drawn my attention. For
all intents and purposes, I had forgotten about the LEGOs I had once
spent my time erecting. With my visit to NetDevil, however, my attitude
has changed. A spark of nostalgia has caught in my mind and its
settling in there for the long haul.

The visit to NetDevil studios was an amazingly engrossing
experience, with LEGO Universe (along with Jumpgate Evolution) being at
the forefront of the entire event. At the entrance to the studio, a
12-foot LEGO block stood as a pillar, guarding the entrance to the
developers work area. The NetDevil logo was everywhere, presented
entirely in LEGO blocks. As all the press, friends, and family gathered
to hear about NetDevil’s current projects, the LEGO Universe
teaser video generated the largest amount of cheers.

Before the video was shown and the events of the night took
place, several members of the press sat down with NetDevil’s
producer for LEGO Universe, Ryan Seabury, and barraged him with
questions. Although he wasn’t able to answer a majority of
these questions, he did give some hints about the direction of LEGO
Universe and what kind of MMOG the licensed title will be.

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alt="Ryan Seabury answering our LEGO questions"
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Ryan Seabury answering our LEGO questions.

At the outset, it’s pertinent to point out that LEGO
Universe will be a MMOG – a massively multiplayer online GAME
– and not just a virtual world. NetDevil is working hard to
bring gameplay elements into the world and they don’t want
people simply existing in a world of LEGOs. Seabury specifically stated
that this was a fact because he did not want people assuming that they
would simply be wandering around a LEGO environment. “LEGO
knows their brand and we know gaming,” Seabury stated.
“We sent them our ideas for an online LEGO game, and they
were happy with what they saw.”

With that in mind, when asked the question whether LEGO minis
will be included in the game (the small LEGO people with smiling
faces), the answer was a definite “Yes”. A
player’s in-game character will be a fully customizable
mini-figure, an example of which can be seen on the LEGO Universe
teaser video. “In some of the cross-over IP stuff, like LEGO
Star Wars, I think they did the minis right because they were no longer
these rigid plastic men anymore. The minis came to life and could
really convey emotion, even being serious at times. There’s a
lot of value in that.”

“We also know that people are coming from that LEGO
Star Wars experience and that’s what they expect,”
Seabury continued. “And the mini figures, to me, are iconic
LEGO. When you see the mini figure – that’s
LEGO.”


To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our LEGO Universe Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

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