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LEGO → Video Games → LEGO Universe
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Lego Universe logo

The game's old logo

55000 LEGO Universe, also called LEGO Universe: A Massively Multiplayer Online Game, was a LEGO video game that was released in a Massive Multiplayer Online Game (MMOG) format. It was initially scheduled to be released in 2009, but the LEGO Group pushed its publication date to October 26, 2010, due to a redesign forced by the lack of popularity of the game by internal testers. It featured customizable LEGO Minifigures as the controllable characters and LEGO environments as the surroundings. Players were able to build their own objects or vehicles, and display them in the game.
LU-logo-web-transparent

The game's release logo

LEGO Universe, also known as "LU" by players, launched a free to play version in the fall of 2011. It allowed players to download and play through the first two worlds of the game, Venture Explorer and Avant Gardens, for absolutely no cost and no time restrictions. The free trial allowed players to try the game (without some of the benefits, including chatting), and purchase it whenever they felt like (to get the full experience). Low sales was the reason for the formation of a free trial.

LEGO Universe was closed on January 30th, 2012, after failing to meet sales expectations. The game had already incorporated a Ninjago theme, and was planning to undergo an update featuring the Kingdoms theme. However, this content was never seen in-game.

Story

thumb|300px|right The LEGO Universe story begins when four explorers - Duke Exeter, Doc Overbuild, Hael Storm, and Baron Typhonus - set out to find a source of rare power. They find this power on a cube-shaped planet called Crux. This power was the long lost essence of pure imagination, that could create anything you imagined. Hael imagined a pirate ship, Duke imagined a large kingdom, and Dr. Overbuild imagined a robot dog. But the Baron had become chaotic during the long travel, and imagined a creature of pure evil.

The imagination makes it so, but the Baron's attempt to rule the universe through chaos failed, and the creature dragged him inside the pure imagination. With all that evil inside, the imagination was corrupted, and mutated into a strong and destructive Maelstrom. Dr Overbuild sealed the imagination, but the pressure inside Crux made the planet explode. The smaller chunks were colonized but the biggest ones turned into the locations in the game.

The explorers sent a message to all the minifigures to use their creative powers to save imagination. The three remaining explorers founded the factions of Sentinel, Assembly, and the Venture League. The Paradox faction was founded by the Baron's assistant, Vanda Darkflame.

Worlds

Background

Development and production of the game began around 2007. It was chosen by LEGO to be created through the collaboration of NetDevil, an MMOG (Massively Multiplayer Online Game) development team, and the LEGO Group. The game would be the next big step in LEGO gaming, as it would allow countless people, by the thousands, to interact with each other simultaneously in one game. This would also be LEGO's first MMOG.

The game allowed players to create their own Minifigures and control them with the mouse, touchpad, and/or keyboard. These minifigures could build creations in three ways: Quick Building, where a minifigure can quickly build a pre-determined model; Modular Building, where a minifigure can build a model by using different pre-built pieces of it (the pieces have different variations, which allows for many different combinations); the final type is Free Building, where minifigures can use thousands of bricks to create whatever they like. However, Free Building is only allowed on designated properties. The worlds in the game are always evolving, from monthly patches (updates) and by the players' creations.

One of the biggest missions for the LEGO Group in this game was to create a safe environment for children, due to LEGO having a large target audience of children. The game allowed players to create, build, quest and socialize together in a safe environment. Using state-of-the-art technologies, chat filters strain out certain profane words, and only let words in the game's dictionary through.

The game had been through an Alpha stage of testing by the employees of LEGO, their families, and the LEGO Kid's Inner Circle. These testers had to sign a Declaration of Secrecy to play it, which meant they could not reveal any information about it other than say they were testing it. The game has endured many scraps and countless revisions during closed-BETA testing as well.

During the course of production, the LEGO Universe Website has been updated with challenges in the Creation Lab, videos, pictures, news updates, and safety information. There are many different sections of the creation lab, which is still running after LU's closure.

There has also been a promotion on the website in the form of LEGO Pods landing on Earth at LEGO Retail Stores. The Bradford Rant Institute of Cosmis Kinesis' (B.R.I.C.K.) website is all about the LEGO pods. The Pods contain information about the minifigures from LEGO Universe. Their website contains several screenshots from the game and a "message" from the minifigures in LEGO Universe. All 7 pods have landed and they contain letters of a message from the minifigures, which has been recently "deciphered". The message says, "Answer the call to save imagination." The website can be found below or by clicking on this link. This has evolved into 20 minigames on the LEGO Universe LEGO.com site called "The Great Minifig Mission." This revealed story items about the game.
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The Worlds of LEGO Universe

The game was officially launched on October 26th, 2010, with early access available for those who pre-ordered the game on October 12th, 2010. However, this date was changed to 8th a week before it was ready for founders launch. The pre-order item number 2855133 was changed to 55000.

It was announced on November 4th, 2011 that it will be shut down on January 31st, 2012 due to an unsatisfactory revenue model in their target group. This date was later changed to January 30th, 2012.

Factions

Factions are large groups of minifigures, who each protect the last shard of imagination and push back the Maelstrom in their own ways (although the Paradox also studies it). They are Assembly, Venture League, Sentinels, and Paradox.

Assembly

Assembly
Assembly - Guided by construction specialist Doc Overbuild, they battle the maelstrom using various creations. The Assembly Faction is the first of the 4 Nexus Force alliances. Their members believe that the act of creation naturally sets back the chaotic destructive nature of the Maelstrom. And they are challenged to push the limits of imagination, exploring new styles and new ways of construction. They consider themselves to be the foundation of the Nexus Force. And even though they may not be as brave as the Sentinels or as daring as the Venture League, they are brilliant architects and clever engineers who are highly respected for their skills.
Doc overbuild

Their leader, the eccentric Doctor Overbuild is genius and very intelligent – like a true copy of Einstein. His passion is building and pushing the uses of imagination. He spends months at a time locked in his building laboratory, creating the visions in his head.

They are mainly builders, engineers, architects, mystic summoners, and inventors. Their symbol is an illusional Penrose Triangle.

Venture League

Venture1
Venture League - Space pirate Hael Storm's Venture League are a group of explorers that solve mysteries and look for answers. The Venture League is the second alliance of the Nexus Force. Its members are a composition of adventurers and explorers who want to get to the bottom of all of the mysteries filling up the Universe. No matter if has be exploring long-lost civilizations of the First Builders or boldly going where no Minifigure has ever gone before, the Venture League has always been the first to discover it. They're simply on a mission to unravel every mystery the Universe has to offer.
Hael storm

Their leader, the cheerful Hael Storm, has a great sense of humor and is always ready with a wisecrack. He's a born problem solver and in times of danger, Storm will always rise to the challenge. He's a fun, adventurous pirate with an attitude. His specialty is the sea and he is a seasoned explorer of all the oceans in the Universe. They are an adventure group of Daredevils, Buccaneers, and Adventurers and their symbol is a skull in front of a compass.

Sentinels

Sentinel1
The Sentinels - Legendary warrior Duke Exeter leads the Sentinels in the fight against the Maelstrom. The Sentinels are the third alliance of the Nexus Force and their mission is to protect the weak, defend the good and serve justice to all. Integrity and Honor are the core of their operations and their heroic performance overshadows all evil.

Members of The Sentinels are the most forceful Minifigures of the Nexus Force. What they lack in pure imagination, they make up with strength and courageous will power. They are known and respected as the most honorable warriors in the Universe.

Duke exeter

Their leader, the charismatic and brave Duke Exeter, is an inspiration to everyone around him. He refuses to compromise his principles, and so far he has always found a way to achieve victory with honor. Always trusting that the right will win, he's big on giving everyone second chances. And he is always prepared to take on challenges like a true boy-scout. They are the warrior group consisting of Knights, Samurai, and Space Rangers. Their symbol is a bird, possibly a blue eagle.

Paradox

Paradox
Paradox - Ninja warrior Vanda Darkflame leads her group in using the maelstrom's power against itself. Their group looks like ninjas and dark wizards Paradox is the fourth and last alliance of the Nexus Force. Paradox members closely study the Maelstrom power in an effort to find the evil within it. They believe that the battlefield is no place for honor and use whatever means are necessary to achieve victory. Paradox has got a reputation for being secretive about their operations. They are sneaky in their attacks and highly effective in all their disciplines. Though Paradox has never broken the trust of the other Factions they are still looked at with an eye of suspicion.
Vanda darkflame

Their leader, the mysterious ninja warrior Vanda Darkflame, believes that to defeat an enemy you must understand it and, if possible, turn its own power against it. She is cynical, selfish, decisive, and always fights for what she feels is right, no matter what anyone else may think about her heartless methods. They are a group of Space Marauders, Shinobi, and Dark Sorcerers and their symbol is a slanted eye with a spiral behind it.

Notes

  • The game originally was scheduled to be released in 2009, but official release was stalled until 2010.
  • In a LEGO Club Magazine, a code for access to an exclusive LEGO Club world was given away; however, the game code was incorrect and an apology was added in the next issue.
  • The game was originally priced at $39.99, but was reduced to $19.99 due to low sales, then later reduced even further to $9.99. Shortly thereafter, the disc method was replaced with a free download of the patcher for the game.
  • On March 25th, 2011, The LEGO Group gave out 10,000 free copies of the game with the Spring 2011 catalogue to VIP members who didn't yet have LEGO Universe.
  • The game was closed on January 30th, 2012.

Subscription Prices

Release

The game was released as a DVD, and also as downloads from the LEGO Universe Official Website. The cost of the game was based on a subscription model. The packages are US $9.99 for 1 month, $49.99 for 6 months ($8.35 per month), and $89.99 for 12 months ($7.50 per month). The North American release date was October 26th, the European release date was October 22nd with early access on October 8th for "pioneers", or "Founders" those had who pre-ordered the game. Those who pre-ordered the game also received an exclusive astronaut minifigure and an astronaut costume in-game. Pre-Ordering ended on September 27th for North America and on September 23rd for Europe.

Additional sets

Three promotional sets promoting the game were released so far:

Additionally, a guide to the game was released:

Contests

During the beta testing, they also held contests. The prizes were of a greater reward during that time. One time, the prize was a shirt. As well as a weekly competition or so, the Nexus Championships was a main and lengthy contest which all LEGO universe members, both free to play and members could participate in.

Gallery

Sources

See also

References

External Links

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