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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Throwback Thursday: Lego Universe

The Award for Most Frustrating Beta Ever goes to Lego Universe! 

Such an adorable game. The Mini-Figs were so cute.  The world and environments were everything you would wish for.  But.

As happens in a beta, many, many things didn't work.  Expected.  You expect to play, give feedback, see what other people think, share tips.

In this beta, you had a very limited in-game ability to say anything in chat.  You could only use certain words and phrases.  Certain letters of the alphabet!

Problematically, the forums were run the same way.  Every comment was moderated.  This doesn't mean what you think it means. They didn't removed anyone's posts, they just never let them show up.

As adorable as it all seemed, I got highly frustrated with the inability to provide feedback in game and out.  In a rare for me bit of snit-ishness, I sent some emails directly to the Support email, then I walked away from the Beta and the game.



Dear Lego Peeps:


The Imagination globes that I pick up have stopped registering so I am unable to complete "builds" and quests.

 

One of the Nimbus Station Quests to talk to Melodie Foxtrot is not able to be completed because her Survival mini-game "is not available in beta"

 

My Character’s hair keeps disappearing whenever she is near objects such as walls

 

The purple "infected bricks" have an extremely low drop rate this evening.  I was picking them up left and right on Sunday and tonight I could only get one after killing over 15 Stromlings.



Bugs:

 

Extremely laggy today in Avant Gardens/launchpad area/Nimbus Station

 

Game Crashed in Nimbus Station Rock Concert area while attempting to access vendor there.

 

Embarrassed Mini-fig does not wear his Party Pants to dance once you get them for him.  He wears nothing.

 

My character name, which I have been using (so I know it is an approved name) was not approved at any point in the play session.  My name remained the auto-generated name.

 

Words I could not use to help other players:

Spacebar

Twice

Cove (to say where Pet Cove is!!!! Aggghhh!!!)

Please reconsider the limited vocabulary useable in the game!

 

Did you change it so I cannot use "i" to open my backpack?

 

Suggestions:

 

My character was deleted from Thursday so I've extra opportunities to do the starter area.

 

Venture Station

 

I'm hoping you put in a cutscene to introduce the game, and to let the player know they are on a space station that is falling apart.  I realize you have the plaques but they are easy to disregard especially if you're new to this game, or as the case may be, a new gamer altogether who may not think of examining all objects.  I think some players with slower computers may have trouble with the screen shake here as well.

 

Achievements--you give achievements here for reading plaques, looking through binoculars and finding all three types of ship parts.  Completists will want to know these are available and this is the area to introduce them to the fact that you have an achievement system in game.  The game announces you've gotten your first achievement in Avant Gardens, but if in fact they can be had in Venture Station, it needs to be known.

 

I think the directions for movement are very good here, with the onscreen mouse and confirmation that the player has performed the correct action.  Today was extremely laggy though and these did not show up right away.  I would expect heavy traffic at launch and this might be something to think about.

 

Avant Gardens:  I think you should take the Gold Bricks and Pets out of this area and only introduce them to areas in Nimbus Station and beyond where they will have access to pets.  I think having these in this beginning area creates confusion and frustration.

 

Spiders:  I would suggest you make it clear how a player can get the gas mask that allows them access to the back of the spider nest as soon as they enter the area or when the quest is given.

 

Property:

 

I would like to be able to see someone else's home to see what is possible before I attempt to build my own.  I need a simplification of the building process in this area.  It is easy to look at real Lego bricks and see what you need to build, but in this property area, I cannot see how they fit together.  I need to read the tutorial, but that level of help needs to be right in the game so play isn't interrupted,

 

I'm glad to see all the faction quests working.  It adds another layer of depth to what is really a fun game.

 

At login my character had her chosen name displayed properly rather than the auto-generated one.

 

She tried the AG Survival for her last faction stamp.

    -kicked out to login screen several times after being defeated

    -was partnered with herself one time

    -had a message to talk to the quest npc a couple of times, but after disconnect to login screen the npc's question mark was still greyed out so had to try instance again

 

Finally was given mission completion and went to Nimbus Station to turn in the four faction stamps.

Game froze with  a close-up of the quest npc cheering after selecting the Venture Faction.  Tried backing out to select mini-fig screen, then going back in which put the game back in normal perspective. 

 

The Venture rep and the Venture NPC would not speak with my character, or interact at all.  Also in achievements the Join Venture was not marked.  The quest to collect the stamps or turn them in was gone.  Tried logging all the way out and back in.  Still not able to get recognition of completion and joining the faction.

 

 

Started a new character.  Her name was approved almost immediately, however her name on the screen remained MemeLoudTrout (auto-generated) rather than my chosen name.

 

I'm noticing a lot of people in the Venture Explorer stuck at the first steps and I cannot answer their questions about how to jump because I cannot say "w" to jump.  :( :( :(    People who are used to the WASD control scheme will be familiar with using the w and spacebar simultaneously with the mouse, but a new gamer will have trouble possibly and I'm picturing little hands at the keyboard and perhaps they might not have the finger span to do the actions.

 

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