Video games are a very special type of entertainment in many ways. One of the aspects of this industry that stands out the most is the way a new game is anticipated, as publishers and developers often announce a title several years in advance of its release. Because? Making a video game is a very long process, much longer than filming most movies or TV series. So it’s always a pleasant surprise when we don’t hear about a new title from leaks, but are instead announced as a surprise release or several months ahead of its scheduled release date.

Such was the case with the long-awaited Lego 2K Drive. The game was originally mentioned in one of the previous leaks, but went beyond that, allowing it to save face and remain anonymous until 2K and Visual Concepts were fully prepared to unveil it for the premiere. times in March. This highly anticipated automotive title will be released very soon, on May 19th, and on the eve of that release, I had the opportunity to meet the game’s developers, Project Manager David Msika and Lead Global Designer Jon Dunsmoor, to chat with them about the experience of creating an arcade racing game set in the world of Lego that appeals to everyone.

But before we get into the nitty-gritty, I asked them what their reaction was to the game’s announcement and why they thought they’d nailed down what the Lego racing video game has to offer fans.


Msika replied, “We’ve seen a lot of enthusiasm from the community, both from Lego fans and fans of racing and open-world games and adventure games in general. We’ve managed to spark interest from very different groups that overlap in some ways, but we’ve managed to capture what makes the game interesting for Lego fans.”

“We’ve been focused on giving players a new way of looking at Lego games, a new way of looking at driving, and we hope that above all else the game shines in how amazing its dynamics are. , how amazing its open world is and how much it hooks you, so you want to play it again and again.”

Lego 2K Drive tries to stand out from other crazy racing and karting titles by putting the driving experience first. We’ll continue to enjoy countless opportunities to race down the highway at full speed, but this game is about more than winning trophies and being the fastest driver on the track, and that was the fundamental design principle around which Visual Concepts began to grow. the game from the start.


Asked when they decided to prioritize the driving experience, Msika replied: “Almost immediately. We didn’t want to be inside the four walls of conventional racing games. We wanted the freedom to do what we wanted.”

And he continued: “We wanted it to be an adventure, not just a set of repetitive actions. It had to be something you could immerse yourself in and want to come back to, not just to compete with the others, but for fun exploring the world. Without However, if you want to enter the world of competition, you can do that too.”

That said, following this philosophy wasn’t always the easiest, as Msika told me that the project’s extended scope and longer plans often meant the team was trying to do too many things at once.

2K Lego player2K Lego player

“One of the things we didn’t pay much attention to early in development was the scope of the game, because we wanted it to be everything,” Msika said. “But we had a small team, so… We had a lot of ambition and a lot of knowledge, and what we needed was time and people to achieve the goal, and we decided not to. not shrink the scope because we knew that when you release a game – especially a AAA game – people have certain expectations, they expect certain game modes, and you can’t go cheap with that.”

“We’ve worked very hard to create a really impressive game with a very small team, and it shows. I think we’ve got a great game on our hands and it’s been developed with a lot of passion, a lot of blood, a lot of sweat and tears, but we are very happy with how it turned out.”

“We didn’t want to be between the four walls of conventional racing games. We wanted the freedom to do whatever we wanted.”

Lego 2K Drive is not limited to driving mechanics, during the game we can also find themed areas and biomes. At launch, the game will feature four biomes, including the learning world of Turbo Acres, Route 66-inspired Big Butte County, the Wild West-style Prospect Valley, and the spooky town of Hauntsborough, and each area will bring new races, vehicles, activities and much more.

2K Lego player

Since Lego has such a wide range of resources, I asked why the development team chose these themes for their biomes, to which Dunsmoor added, “There are so many options when you use Lego and try to design biome themes that match and conform to what we have available at Lego.”

“It gives us more variety in evoking the narrative elements, all the story you encounter, the races you do and the actions and the content and how that matches the theme.”

“We had a lot of options and I think the build came naturally.”

“If there’s any evidence that people like it, my five-year-old played the game while I was developing it and he loves the ‘Halloween’ biome. I’m happy to see the positive reaction from people who don’t. have nothing to do with the game.

That’s not to say these themes were set from the get-go, as Msika explained how the Big Butte County biome changed to give the game a more laid-back and accessible feel, as well as the three-player mobility system. Changes vehicles when you start driving on new terrain.

“For the Big Butte biome, we initially thought the ship would unlock for the player at some point in the adventure, so we wanted an environment where the water wouldn’t be as appropriate, so we immediately thought of the desert. So we added water to Big Butte, but for the most part it’s arid and desert, because we wanted to use the unlock system for in-game items.”

Dunsmoor explained: “We spent so many years working on the project that I try to remember…some of the things we changed because we wanted to give the player a lot more freedom and we wanted the things open much earlier so you didn’t have to wait to access this very important part of the game”.

As for how Visual Concepts designed the open world to entertain players, Dunsmoor also revealed what the building process for Bricklandia was like, so there’s always something new to find and explore.

“Everything is sort of layered on top of each other. We could have made a core world that would launch you into the content and then you would go back to your core world, and our world can do that, if we wanted to. We could make the instant content and get out of the world, but racing lives in the world, content lives in the world, and outside of that content it should always be fun.”

Lego is a very special product and brand because it is not only designed for children or adults, but all ages can appreciate and enjoy its wonders. With that expectation in mind, I asked the team how they planned to make a game that appealed and appealed not only to young fans, but to older audiences as well.

Msika explained to me the phases of this process: “This is one of the most difficult challenges in any video game. Normally, when you start developing a game, you determine what audience it is aimed at, because that help you design it What about a Lego game, we have to do what Lego does and appeal to all audiences, so how do you make a game that everyone can play, that everyone can enjoy, but at different levels?

“From a narrative point of view, this is nothing new. Shrek, for example, is a great example of a movie that appeals to kids and adults, who will laugh, but for different reasons. That’s what we’re trying to do. in our game too. The people, the people you talk to, the storytelling, that it can be understood on different levels, so everyone can find something funny or entertaining.

2K Lego player2K Lego player

“As for the gameplay itself, we want the whole game to be very accessible. For a six-year-old to play and complete the game by beating all the races, mini-games, etc. -game system called Race Difficulty Assist, which changes the difficulty based on your performance, if you’re having a really bad time, we lower the difficulty to make it easier for you to compete, and if you’re really good, we turn it up a bit so that you are always challenged.”

Msika concluded the point with, “Our game is very easy to learn and very difficult to master, because there are so many layers of dynamics that you don’t notice at first.”

“It’s very difficult to create a game that everyone is going to have fun with, but I think we’ve struck a really good balance between gameplay and storytelling.”

Dunsmoor added: “If you’ve seen the Lego movies and are familiar with that tongue-in-cheek style, it’s very easy to set up the narrative and know who you’re talking to.”

“It’s fine that way, since we don’t have Grand Theft Auto’s problem of being so explicit.”

As a final thought on the game’s upcoming release, I asked them both what they would most like players to experience in Lego 2K Drive, and the responses were mixed, although the creation suite, where you can build your own vehicles using hundreds of different Lego blocks (known as the garage), is a favorite.

Msika started with: “The garage, of course. But also to see how well it works as a racing game. It’s among the best, and on top of that, we have an open world as well.”

Dunsmoor went on to conclude, “It works really well in multiplayer. When we play multiplayer, that’s one of the best times. When you’re not playing against the AI, but against other people, and you use all the skills you have and see how they come to life.” Practicing in a multiplayer experience will be awesome. But also personalization. Being able to create things is very Lego and it’s going to be an amazing part because it’s going to be crazy.”

“The things that have been created, no one is doing the same and the quality you can get is insane. I want to see people play and I want to see people have fun playing against each other and not just s worry about a blue turtle shell.”

Many thanks to David Msika and Jon Dunsmoor at Visual Concepts for taking the time to talk to Gamereactor. Lego 2K Drive will be released for PC, PlayStation, Xbox and Nintendo Switch on May 19, and if you want to know more about the game you can read our first impressions here.

Categorized in: