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So a Jedi, an archaeologist, a superhero, a rockstar, a wizard, and a pirate walk into a toy store...note 


"LEGO Adaptation Game" is a catch-all term for a loosely-connected series of Multi-Platform Video Games made by Traveller's Tales, based on combining the license for LEGO with that of another work, generally a film, as tie-ins to licensed toy lines based on the same films LEGO is producing and selling around the same time. With few exceptions, the games are action platforming games with the characters and stages all consisting of LEGO interpretations of the licensed work in question, with tongue-in-cheek, often parodical Cutscenes poking fun at both those works and the fact that they are made out of LEGO bricks. They generally follow the original work's story, but with a Denser and Wackier tone.

In these games, death is just the character falling apart and, if it's a Player Character, reforming with just the loss of a few small round LEGO bricks referred to as studs, which are the currency in these games.


The real meat of the games is the quest to 100% Completion; while simply completing the levels are typically a stroll in the park, many collectibles and rooms in every stage are initially inaccessible until the player acquires a character with a specific ability (like super strength or the ability to destroy metal objects). Replaying stages and exploring overworlds with these new characters reward players with more collectibles and playable characters (often numbering in the triple digits per game) until players hit the magical 100%.


Games in the series:

(In the order each subseries debuted)Related LEGO games include LEGO Rock Band, LEGO City Undercover, and LEGO Dimensions. Many of this series' crossovers have also made the jump to animation - LEGO Batman: The Movie - DC Superheroes Unite is even a straight-up adaptation of the LEGO Batman 2 game.

The games are rife with numerous shout outs, much as you'd expect from a franchise affectionately parodying popular films.

The remaining LEGO Adaptation Games provide examples of the following tropes:

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  • 100% Completion: The main story modes are usually quite short, but the meat of them is collecting every item and character to fill out the completion meter. Unintentionally Unwinnable in some of the DS versions because apparently, some minikits are missing.
  • Adaptational Badass: Most characters that never fought in their source material become capable of kicking some major plastic butt.
  • Adaptation Deviation: An example in The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame: Lucy doesn't get kidnapped by Mayhem unlike in the movie. This may be because she and Emmet are unlocked as player skins at this point.
  • Adapted Out: Many of the games usually have some characters or scenes missing, despite being in the original source material.
  • Adorable Evil Minions: Pretty much anything evil automatically becomes quite cuddly, or at least Laughably Evil, when turned Lego.
  • Affectionate Parody: Any serious moments from the series they were taken from are changed to light-hearted comedy.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: There are many "characters" in the games that aren't really anything but alternate outfits for the characters. Some, however, do have slightly different properties. Later games, including Marvel Super Heroes and Jurassic World, give each distinct character only one slot in the selection grid, which rotates through the available outfits for that character, so that the overall size of the grid gives a more accurate idea of how many actual characters there are.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • If you're in cursor mode, you don't have to worry about any enemies harming you due to being unable to take damage there, so you can continue your task unimpeded.
    • Starting in The Hobbit, going through free play now lists the individual segments of each level, as well as which collectibles still need to be found in each segment.
    • Starting in Jurassic World, the Free Play character select menu includes a list of what abilities each character has to make it easier to figure out who can solve what puzzles.
    • In the earlier games, enemies would often attack and interrupt you while you're building something. At some point, Traveller's Tales made it so that you're invulnerable to damage while building, which was a godsend.
    • In the bonus levels that involve collecting every stud in the level (such as Wayne Manor/Arkham Asylum in LEGO Batman), death will not cause you to lose studs as it would in normal gameplay, as to avoid an Unintentionally Unwinnable situation.
  • Art Evolution: As the series goes on, several of the series' visual elements have been updated or refined:
    • The mini-figures themselves have noticeably more detailed designs, and their Black Bead Eyes now have a white dot to make them more expressive.
    • Almost every character has unique animations for actions such as standing and running, while in earlier games most characters shared similar animations.
    • The UI has been updated in multiple ways: character portraits now feature the character doing their idle animation rather than a static picture, the portrait border went from a static circle to varying depending on the game, and multiple characters now have unique crosshair designs.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Averted for the most part. Most of the time AI partners can hold their own in a fight and if two levers need to be flipped or two buttons need to be stepped on, they'll automatically head to those levers or buttons.
  • Autosave: These games have consistently had it where most game-state saving comes from automatic triggering by entering new sections, finishing levels, and collecting hub items.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Whilst characters are dismembered, the characters are still plastic Lego pieces, and as such they just bloodlessly experience Literally Shattered Lives.
  • Bottomless Magazines: Everyone that fights with a gun follows this, with the sole exception of non-default weapons in Indiana Jones.
  • Built with LEGO: The name of the game(s) is taking various franchises and recreating them with varying amounts of LEGO, particularly making it where if it's made of LEGO, it can most likely be interacted with in some way.
  • Butt-Monkey: Each series of games tends to have one, who will fall victim to most of the comic injuries and pratfalls.
  • The Cameo: Surprisingly, Doctor Who has been briefly represented in three of the games: LEGO Marvel Super Heroes (The TARDIS), Lego Batman III: Beyond Gotham (Weeping Angels), and the series got a level pack in LEGO Dimensions, with occasional cameos in the main campaign. Also, Doctor List reused the Twelfth Doctor's hair and face in LEGO Marvel's Avengers, which was released two months after Lego Dimensions.
  • Cap: In the earliest games, the stud counter capped at 4 billion, and there was usually an achievement for reaching this cap. This cap was removed in later games.
  • Character Customization: Beginning in LEGO Star Wars II, you can mix-and-match pieces from any unlocked character to make your own creation.
  • Character Exaggeration: Pretty much the point of the games is emphasizing and exaggerating character traits for comedy.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The games use visual shorthand so you know what you can do. Silver objects have to be blown up with explosives, red and black ones can only be manipulated by evil characters, and so on.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Half the fun is going around beating up NPCs and destroying random objects.
  • Conspicuously Light Patch: Being made of LEGO bricks is a sign that it can be destroyed or interacted with. Most games have exceptions in the form of bonus levels that are completely Built with LEGO, meaning the patches are a bit less conspicuous in those instances.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Dying just makes you lose LEGO studs followed by an instant respawn on stable ground. These aren't meant to be Nintendo Hard games unless you're trying to get 100% Completion, which sometimes demands a No Death Run.invoked
  • Developers' Foresight:
    • When distance-tagging (the ability to tag to another character without standing next to them) was introduced, you may have thought about using this to tag yourself out of falling to your death. However, if the death has already been registered by the game, you'll lose your studs anyway and you will be left at 25% health (12.5% in LEGO Batman) as a punishment.
    • No matter who you select as your starting character for a Free Play stage, the game will make sure to hand you a character from every required unlocked ability you have for your stage roster. This way, you are always able to grab every collectible that you can in a stage playthrough, provided you have at least one unlocked character for a class.
  • Die, Chair, Die!: Destroying all (and we mean all) the level furniture is not only possible and enjoyable and but also distinctly necessary, and generally one of the game series' trademarks.
  • Double Unlock: How you get virtually everything extra. You have to do something to make the character (or the Red Brick) available to you (in Lord of the Rings you unlock characters by completing levels; in Harry Potter you find characters scattered within levels and in Hogwarts) and then you have to use studs to buy them. You have to actually look for the character on the map in Lord of the Rings, as if to make up for the ease of the first unlock. Saruman nearly qualifies as a case of Guide Dang It!.
  • Downloadable Content: Starting with LEGO Harry Potter Years 5-7, the games have had extra characters available as DLC. New copies of the games sometimes include codes to download these characters for free.
  • Drop-In-Drop-Out Multiplayer: Every game has it where a second character will always be present not just for teamwork puzzles but also so a second player can easily join in whenever they want and also easily leave when they want.
  • Dungeon Bypass: In some levels of the comic games, using a flying character can get you to a puzzle near the end and bypassing a lot of gameplay.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The first few entries in the series did not feature dialogue in the cutscenes (aside from the occasional simlish), and were pantomimed instead. This was dropped from LEGO Batman 2 onwards, and the games now use a mix of lines from the source material and original voice acting.
  • Everything Fades: Dismantled LEGO pieces and opponents eventually flash for a moment and disappear.
  • Fixed Camera: For the most part. Averted with open worlds starting with LEGO Batman 2.
  • Flash of Pain: Being hit causes a character to flash red.
  • Follow the Money: In games with large hubs/world maps, the game gives you a trail of ghostly or holographic studs to guide you to your destination. Of course, since they're not real, they're not actually worth any money - unless you activate a cheat. The normal version with real studs is also used.
  • Forced Tutorial: Tutorial animations pop up frequently throughout The LEGO Ninjago Movie Videogame and each cannot be skipped until they play through once. And then it happens when each ninja learns their Spinjitzu element, which all share the same hold-button-and-hover-over-target controls.
  • Funny Background Event: The games are chock full of scenes where half the comedy is stuff happening off to the side or in second-long moments from the peripheral of the main stuff in the forefront.
  • Global Currency: LEGO studs are used to buy anything and everything, no matter what world or era the stories are based on.
  • Gratuitous Disco Sequence: A Running Gag in the earlier games; each game contained at least one disco gag in it. Unfortunately, this wore off over time (meaning LEGO Marvel 2 passed up its chance to use "Guardians Inferno").
  • Ground Pound:
    • Any character with a melee weapon can perform a Shockwave Stomp by jump-attacking.
    • It's required by bigfigs or super-strong characters to perform a Ground Punch to break floor-mounted cracked walls.
  • Guide Dang It!: While the levels themselves are pretty easy to beat, finding all of the minikits and hidden bricks can get to the point of frustratingly obtuse, reaching Trial-and-Error Gameplay levels that make it much easier to just use a guide.
  • Hammerspace: Characters have weapons that grow into its size when taken out and shrink when put away. When walking while pressing either button for that, the weapon grows to size or shrinks away in the character's hand.
  • Hub Level: Each series has its own. In later games that expand to a Wide-Open Sandbox, there's usually a section of the world that holds most of the Hub functions like shops and character customization.
  • Idle Animation: Everyone has their own animations for when left standing a few seconds, and there's actually quite a bit of variation. Characters will scratch their head, point their weapon, or twirl around.
  • Lighter and Softer: Even when the games enter somewhat dark territory, they're always much lighter and more kid-friendly than their source material
  • Literally Shattered Lives: This being LEGO, every character falls to pieces upon defeat. Also, when a character or enemy is frozen into a block of ice (across several games), they can be killed in one hit when the ice is broken.
  • Loads and Loads of Loading:
    • Any of the PSP versions of the games can fall into this.
    • Oddly enough, the 3DS versions of the games fall into this as well. Considering that 3DS games are cartridge-based, unlike the Wii or PSP, the fact that these games have loading times nearly as long as those of LEGO Island 2 is rather perplexing, especially when compared to other games on the system such as Ocarina of Time 3D or Super Mario 3D Land, which have very short loading times. Worse, not only are these loading times long, but they are also very frequent.
    • In general, the open worlds in games such as The LEGO Ninjago Movie or LEGO The Incredibles suffer from incredibly long load times.
  • Mind Screw: The Rule of Funny means quite a few scenes get rather strange visually, but adding the visual cheats like "Disguises" and "Boss Disguises" can turn them outright bizarre.
  • Mission Control: Introduced at the same time as the minifigs' ability to talk, from LEGO Batman 2 onward, is a designated character that directs you where you need to go and what you need to do, including acting as the hint system.
  • Mission-Pack Sequel: One of the major complaints is the similarity of the games aside from the license. TT Games has tried to diversify, especially with abilitites and the addition of the Wide-Open Sandbox hub worlds.
  • Money Multiplier: Almost every one of these games, since the introduction of Red Bricks in LEGO Star WARS II, has provided cheats for boosting stud gain (usually X2, X4, X6, X8, and X10), and in every game with more than one, activating all of them at once stacks, so on average you'll get X3840 studs for each you collect.
  • Moveset Clone: Inevitably, considering the amount of characters within each game, there will be a lot of them that have familiar, identical, or otherwise the exact same attacks or body language.
  • Multi-Platform: The games have been released on several Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft consoles and some portables.
  • Mythology Gag: In LEGO Rock Band, the only characters with normal skin tones are those based on the pre-made characters from RB 2. The rest (the human ones, anyway) all are built with yellow skin, including your road crew.

  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Such a combination for a video game was so new that many thought it was a joke when first announced.
  • No Campaign for the Wicked: Averted; there are ample opportunities to play as evil characters in almost any of the games.
  • No Fair Cheating: If you attempt to use a code to unlock any characters or red bricks, the game will lock you out of saving until the next time you play. Averted with the cheats provided by the various Red Bricks.
  • Once an Episode: A disco that plays a dance remix of the theme song appeared in every game that used Speaking Simlish. Starting from when they were Suddenly Voiced, the disco sequences became less frequent.
  • Painfully Slow Projectile: Bullets go slow enough to be visible and able to be dodged by player characters.
  • Party in My Pocket: In contrast to the consoles' and PSP versions, the DS ports only have two active player characters onscreen at any time. As a result, characters must tag in and out this way, similar to Free Play mode.
  • Percussive Maintenance: In several games, one of the random animations when using a wrench to fix something is hitting it with the wrench.
  • Person of Mass Construction: Every character, with the exception of Joke Characters, can rapidly create complex structures, assuming a pile of interactive LEGO Bricks are around. This especially goes for characters with Telekinesis (ex: the Jedi, Wizards, Green Lanterns), who can manipulate LEGO Bricks from a distance.
  • Playable Epilogue: Starting with the introduction of fully explorable hubs, there also came the introduction of numerous collectibles that are normally locked out from you getting during story mode. This is where "world Free Play" comes in, where after completing the whole story, you become able to switch between characters on the fly through bringing up the character grid just like during level Free Play. Even later games started making it where you can access Free Play character selection by using a "character purchase" panel before getting total free changing by completing the story, until eventually by The Incredibles they just let you switch on the fly in the hub no matter when you are currently in the story.
  • Plot Tailored to the Party: In order to achieve 100% Completion, you have to collect different types of characters and replay the 'Free Mode' to be able to access the areas that only certain characters with certain abilities can gain access to.
  • Power-Up Magnet: The "Stud Magnet" cheat lets you collect studs from a slightly boosted distance without needing to directly walk over them.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: Parts are sometimes changed from the original material to allow two players in what were originally one-man scenes.
  • Product Placement: All the games have been based on pre-existing building sets, naturally. More than that, most games are timed to tie in with a related movie release, such as The Lego Movie and The Lego Movie 2.
  • Pungeon Master: Ever since spoken dialogue was introduced, a great deal of what the characters say involves making puns relating to either their character or the current situation, sometimes even basing the puns off a Mythology Gag that wouldn't make sense playing the game without prior knowledge of the adapted franchise. Heck, even the early games involving Speaking Simlish had characters engage in plenty of Visual Pun scenarios, both for gags and as references to the spoken dialogue from the source material.
  • Puzzle Boss: Due to the fact that combat in the games involves just hitting things until they die, along with how only enemies experience Cycle of Hurting, in order for bosses to be challenging they will be invulnerable to damage until the player performs an action that renders them hurtable, in some cases only being damageable at all through using the environment for attacking.
  • Puzzle Pan: Some games may point the camera toward required puzzle elements.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Red and black objects can't be manipulated by most characters and are reserved only for either those with evil powers or those with evil-hurting good-imbued properties.
  • Respawning Enemies: A common mechanism in all of the games is having a constantly restocking supply of Mooks, to pad things out a bit while the player is solving puzzles. Every fifteen seconds, like clockwork.
  • Rewarding Vandalism: Smashing anything plastic-y and/or in LEGO form provides Lego studs to collect.
  • Rule of Funny: The cutscenes in general, no matter the game, are all about taking their source material and making appropriate gags out of them.
  • Running Gag:
    • In nearly every LEGO game, there's a room which has a disco, and the disco theme in question is a remix of a piece of the soundtrack.
    • In many of the games, there's at least one scene where a character is seen sleeping with a teddy bear, regardless of the setting.
  • Sequence Breaking: Generally in Free Play mode, where you can choose any character needed to traverse the level, which means you can skip a number of puzzles to proceed through the level. Sometimes you can this outside of Free Play mode as well.
  • Silliness Switch: The games are silly enough already, but some of the unlockable options, particularly the common "Disguise" cheat, deliberately take it farther.
  • Solve the Soup Cans:
    • The puzzles to find the hidden minikit canisters, Power Bricks, and various other collectibles. You won't know something in the area will make those items appear until you've already done it. Finding these items without a guide (or the Minikit/Power Brick detector cheat) can be difficult.
    • Several parts of levels are confusing since the typical Color-Coded for Your Convenience mechanics are difficult to identify due to lighting. Other puzzles are easily overlooked, since they involve repeating an action which granted you something important to the level and give you a minikit the next time, or recreating a condition of the level which goes against the player's instincts to move on (since the games are normally very linear).
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Downplayed. Some characters occasionally live longer than they did in canon in order to give player 2 someone to control during a boss fight (most notably Cedric Diggory and Darth Vader).
  • Speaking Simlish: The earliest games used a small voice cast speaking gibberish in the cutscenes, and relied on the players to have seen the movies and know how the story goes already. Later games used dialogue samples from the movie being adapted, voice actors performing new dialogue, or a combination.
  • Stripperriffic: Averted, obviously. The designs of notably sexy outfits like Storm are considerably more modest, and the minifigure body certainly diminishes the effect as well.
  • Stock Footage: In the adaptation games with voice acting based on movies, it is generally the stock voice clips from said movie.
  • Stylistic Suck: Everything is kept pretty simple and even sloppy as if to drive the point home that the game is a toy first and foremost and things aren't meant to be taken particularly seriously. Probably less "stylistic" at first as Traveller's Tales were a shovelware dev at first making licensed platformers and kart racers, then played straight from that point on due to the first LEGO Star Wars' success.
  • Suddenly Voiced: After eight years of muteness, characters finally started speak come LEGO Batman 2.
  • Teamwork Puzzle Game: Two or more characters onscreen help pull levers or stand on buttons at the same time, for example.
  • Technicolor Magic: Special powers such as magic and telekinesis glow purple when they're used. Some bricks are purple to begin with, meaning those powers are required to manipulate them.
  • This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: Each playable character has their own gimmick, and in story mode, every character you are given will have their gimmicks be mandatory to use in order to progress. The only exceptions are times when a second character is included just for the sake of multiplayer mode.
  • Title: The Adaptation: LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game, LEGO Batman: The Video Game, The LEGO Movie Videogame, The LEGO Ninjago Movie Video Game, and The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame.
  • Toyless Toyline Character: The roster is large, so this trope is inevitable. Some characters did eventually get physical figures, though it is usually sometime after the game, sometimes with major differences.
  • Trap Door: There is one in Rock Band, at the theater where auditions are being held. Your character uses it to dispose of a tuba player during the auditions for bassists.
  • Two-Keyed Lock: Two levers are often next to each other and must be pulled at the same time by two characters. Similarly, multiple floor buttons in an area must be stood on by multiple characters.