Lego Dimensions Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Story Pack
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Lego Dimensions: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Story Pack is an optional expansion pack for the Lego Dimensions video game. The violence is cartoonish in nature, though, ending with explosions of Lego pieces. While the actual game is easy to pick up and play, parents may want to help younger kids when building the physical Lego toys, which can get a bit complicated and run the risk of them losing smaller pieces. As it's part of the Lego Dimensions line, other characters and toys from the line can interact with this Story Pack (and vice versa) using special abilities, which could compel players to buy more from the series.
What's it about?
LEGO FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM is the second full story expansion of the Lego Dimensions game. This time around, players get to step behind the wand of Newt Scamander and his magical adventures in America. Based on the movie of the same name, the Story Pack contains six brand-new levels retelling Newt's quest to recover his mystic suitcase and all the unique creatures he has hidden inside. Of course, being part of the Lego Dimensions series, Newt doesn't have to face this trial alone. Thanks to the compatibility of past and future Lego Dimensions releases, Newt can team up with some multidimensional allies, including Batman, E.T., Sonic the Hedgehog, and even fellow Hogwarts alumni Harry Potter and Voldemort.
Is it any good?
This adventure brings a whole new bag of tricks to the fantasy toy/game franchise that capitalizes on popular film franchises, and it works. The main story takes place over six levels, from Newt's arrival in New York to the epic battle against the Obscurus, as well as many other (spoiler-laden) highlights from the film. After finishing the story, players can still explore the open world of 1926 New York City, duke it out in the Battle Arena, and take Newt and his Niffler accessory into other Lego Dimensions worlds. While Newt has a lot of the abilities of the other Harry Potter characters, he brings to the table his unique ability to dive into his briefcase as well as a new "Creation" keystone, which can summon one of Newt's fantastic beasts to help out in certain puzzle situations.
While the Story Pack is a lot of fun to play whether or not you're a Harry Potter fan, it's hard to deny that Hogwarts alumni won't get an extra kick out of the expansion. Aside from the oddball bits of trivia that pop up, the interaction among these Newt, Harry, and He Who Must Not Be Named incarnations is fan service at its best. One minor downside to the Story Pack is the pressure to buy more Lego Dimensions accessories to get the most out of it. This is nothing new to the series, as Lego Dimensions and other games in the "Toys-to-Life" category regularly encourage fans to buy more stuff to unlock a broader experience. But this just seems to stand out a little more in this particular expansion. On the first level alone, you'll find a number of places requiring the use of specific abilities from characters in other franchises. While the "Hire a Hero" feature, where players can "rent" a character for a few seconds at the cost of some Lego studs, helps keep this from being much more than an minor inconvenience, it's still that little bit of extra pressure to rush out and buy more for the game. Still, even if you only have the Lego Dimensions starter (required for this, and all, expansions and accessories) and the Fantastic Beasts Story Pack, there's more than enough content to keep players busy. Whether you're a Muggle (or a No-Maj), a wizard, or a world-renowned magizoologist, the Lego Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Story Pack is sure to entertain.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about consumerism and budgeting. With so many packs available to purchase, how do you prioritize what to buy, and how do you resist the marketing push to buy everything?
Talk about creative thinking. How does building and interacting with the physical Lego toys get players more immersed in the game, and does it inspire creativity outside of the game?
- Platforms: Nintendo Wii U, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
- Price: $49.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Not available online
- Developer: Warner Bros. Games
- Release date: November 18, 2016
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Friendship, Misfits and Underdogs, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- ESRB rating: E10+ for Cartoon Violence, Crude Humor
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.