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LEGO Island
Item №:


LEGO Theme:

Video Games





Date Released:

September 26th, 1997


Open-World Action-Adventure


Windows 95, 98, 2000, ME, XP


5731 LEGO Island is a 1997 Windows PC game developed and published by Mindscape. It was one of the first LEGO video games ever created, the second LEGO video game to ever be released, and the first outside of Japan. It was re-released in 2002 for the LEGO Masterpiece collection, and in 2007 for the LEGO Island 2 Game Collection.



A map of LEGO Island.

When first starting, a player will find themselves in the Information Center, which acts as a main menu for the game. From here, the player can choose to start anywhere on the island by dragging one of the five character icons onto an icon on the map of the island. When starting for the first time, The Infomaniac will greet the player, and essentially teach the player the basics of the game. When on the island, the player is free to wander along pathways and interact with the other minifigures, many of which have unique dialogue. There are many small things you can do while on the Island without going into any buildings, such as clicking on minifigures to change them in various different ways, and when running into minifigures, they'll even explode into pieces as if you ran into them just a bit too hard. When entering one of the buildings, Bill Ding can assist the player in building a helicopter, race car, jet ski, and a dune buggy for various objectives told to the player beforehand (see below). You can drive these aforementioned vehicles, along with Pepper's skateboard, a bicycle and a police motorbike. However, the race car can only be driven in the racing minigame, the jet ski can only be used to surf in the surrounding waters of the Island and the helicopter can hover through the sky, but can only land at the jail.

LI Jail

The jail, with the Brickster escaping in the helicopter

In the Information Center, you can view a pre-rendered cutscene of each of the characters that you can play as, depending on who you click on. Each of these characters also have different abilities, which are as follows:

  • Pepper: Changes hair/hats of the minifigures and types of vegetation when clicked on.
  • Mama: Changes the voice/sound that minifigures do when the player clicks on them, and the sound of the elements of vegetation.
  • Papa: Changes the animation that minifigures do when the player clicks on them, and the animation of the elements of vegetation.
  • Laura: Changes the way of walking of the minifigures when clicked on.
  • Nick: Changes the colours of the different articles of clothing and the colours of the elements of vegetation when clicked on.
LI Race Track

The start line of the Race Track

LI Ambulance

The Hospital

Each character has five different activities they can participate in, in order to fill up the Score Cube in the Information Center. These missions consist of helping out at the hospital, driving the ambulance to Minifigures in need (with the assistance of Enter and Return), jet skiing at the Lifeguard's Post, racing on the Race Track, assisting Nubby Stevens (the head of the Gas Station) by taking the tow truck to the Race Track in assisting a car breakdown, and delivering pizza to various locations, a different one depending on who you are playing as. While delivering the pizza is a normal mission for four of the main characters, if Pepper does it, it has the ability to start off the main story mission of the game. As Pepper Roni, the destination is to the jail. You have to give the pizza to the Brickster, who is pretending to be somebody else while on the phone ordering the pizza. After you give him the pizza, he will either escape using the fumes of the food, or hint towards building the police helicopter and getting him another pizza. This is because the police helicopter needs to be built beforehand in order for the Brickster to initiate the aforementioned mission (see The Brickster's Story below).

LI Lifeguard

The Lifeguard's Post

The Brickster's Story[]

For all of the characters, there is the opportunity to deliver a pizza to a specific destination, such as the Police Station for Mama, the race track for Papa, the Hospital for Laura and the Octan Garage for Nick. All of these missions merely consist of delivering the pizza, but Pepper's delivery leads to the main plot of the game.

When playing as Pepper and with the police helicopter built (it can be done at the Police Station), choosing to do a pizza delivery will have him told to deliver a pizza to the jail, as Papa receives a telephone call from the jail (him assuming the caller is Nick Brick). After traveling to the jail, the Brickster (revealing that is was he who somehow made the call pretending to be Nick) takes the pizza from Pepper's hand, and holds it up against the jail lock. The fumes from the pizza somehow melt the lock, which gives the Brickster the chance to escape.

As the Brickster gets out, he runs for the police helicopter, gets in, fires it up, and flies away. He flies up to the top of the Information Center, stealing the power brick from the top, before flying all the way over to the other side of the island to his hideout in the cave. Meanwhile, Laura and Nick, the Infomaniac, Mama and Papa come to the jail to find out what is going on. They realize that the Brickster has escaped, and begin to panic, everyone simultaneously talking over each other. The six of them try to think up a plan of action, eventually resulting in Pepper having to go over to the other side of the island to track down the Brickster. As he travels across the island, Pepper encounters several citizens of the island, all of them in a panic. Pepper finally reaches the other end of the island, but two of the entrances are blocked. He enters the only available entrance, followed by Nick and Laura on their police motorbikes, who had removed the Brickster's barricades. They encounter the Brickster, driving away in an ambulance (which he stole from the hospital). A police officer contacts Nick and Laura of the stolen ambulance and believe that the Brickster is planning to disassemble the island using a laser gun (powered by the power brick) that can suck bricks away from buildings and plants.

They chase after him, and he leaves behind a piece of the police helicopter. Laura takes it back to the Police Station's lab for analysis and sends Nick to cover the east side of the island. She also instructs Pepper to chase the Brickster and collect the helicopter parts that he drops for evidence, and presumably to rebuild the helicopter itself. The Brickster starts on the left side of the residential area, taking the bricks away from two of the houses there, and will either head to the race track or to the beach. Following this, he will stop in different places to suck away bricks from nearby buildings and will move if Pepper catches up.

He will always stop in the following eight areas and dissemble either one, two, or possibly three buildings in the area along with some of the plants or street lights:

  • Left side of the Residential Area: two houses
  • Race Track: Starting Line, Octan Building, Bleachers
  • Road near the beach: Lifeguard Tower
  • Path south of the Residential Area: Superstore and Post Office
  • Road to the police station: the jail cell
  • North T-intersection: Gas Station and Bank
  • Road to the hospital: Hospital
  • Right side of the residential area: the single house

He will never take any roads leading to the Information Center, the police station, the tall hill in the Residential Area, the Superstore, the Beach, and the Race Track. Most buildings and plants take at least two zaps to fully disassemble. He will also drop the following pieces in this order: black base piece, propeller piece, blue seat piece, tailfin piece, and small red and black piece.

After Pepper collects five pieces from the Brickster, he leaves one more piece behind (a black side plate piece) and retreats into the cave, unable to be tracked down. Nick and Laura return and see that the pieces that Pepper had collected are parts of the helicopter, but four pieces are still missing. Pepper is then assigned with the task of obtaining the remaining four pieces of the helicopter that have been scattered around the island by the Brickster: two black edged pieces, a blue and black piece, and the blue propeller base piece. If Pepper happens to have missed some of the first six pieces, he can go back to find them. All ten pieces must be collected to complete this part of the mission. These missing pieces are randomly placed along the island, and the player has to click them in order to collect them. They have a very loud ringing noise, getting louder the closer you get to it. You can click the piece from any distance, as long as it's obviously visible, therefore clickable. After collecting all the needed pieces, the Infomaniac tasks Pepper with rebuilding the helicopter, with the help of Bill Ding, before using the helicopter and an invention called the Pizza Turbo Chucker designed to shoot pizzas against the Brickster. When the pizzas are shot along the Brickster's path, the Brickster will lock onto and eat them, making him go slower. Opposite to the pizzas, the player can also shoot donuts to Laura and Nick, with the difference this time being that the police officers will go faster, rather than slower. Players can try to direct Laura and Nick using the donuts as well, possibly forcing them to take a more optimal path to the Brickster, although this doesn't always work.

Should Pepper not succeed in collecting the first five parts from the Brickster and if the Information Center, Pizzeria, and Police Station are the only remaining buildings, the Brickster will not head for the cave. He will instead disassemble the Pizzeria (he won't move even if Pepper gets close) and the player will skip to the part where they have to rebuild the helicopter.

With Nick and Laura on the ground, on their motorbikes, and Pepper in the air, the island finally looks fit to be saved. The Brickster, also on the ground, is now on another police motorbike that he has stolen from the Police Station (it is unknown what became of the ambulance, but it can be assumed that the police eventually recovered it and returned it to the hospital), but still using his laser gun to suck away the bricks from the rest of the buildings on the island. Unlike before, he will now try to disassemble the Police Station. The game is won when one of either Nick or Laura runs into the Brickster's motorbike. As this happens, the Brickster is nabbed by both of them, and dragged back to the jail. Meanwhile, the power brick returns to the top of the Information Center, and the rest of the citizens of LEGO Island chant Pepper's name in celebration, as the Island is saved.

Alternative Ending[]

There is an alternate, bad ending to this story too. If the Brickster manages to reach the Pizzeria (or the Police Station if the Pizzeria is already gone) and suck the bricks out of it, the Island is deemed lost. A cutscene shows a bleak sky, the island's buildings (all except the Information Center) and vehicles in ruins, Pepper desperately speeding away on his skateboard and the sound of people in sorrow. The screen then points towards an array of wreckage revolving around the Brickster, with him then cheering, "It's mine, all mine!" while standing on the power brick. This is proceeded by the cries of the citizens of the Island. Despite this cutscene, time will reset and everything returns to normal afterwards, with the Infomaniac saying "At least it's not bad as it looks!" and claims that they can rebuild the island and the Brickster will be returned to jail, back to before the storyline began.


See Main Article: List of LEGO Island Characters

LEGO Island is made up over 35 unique characters, including five characters you can play as. See the above article for more information.


Early Development[]

The development of LEGO Island goes back to before February 1995, when Mindscape management started to take interest in making a game focused around LEGO. Wes Jenkins, who would go on to become the game's Creative Director, and Paul Melmed, who would become the game's Educational Director, then began work on a pitch for the game.[1]


LEGO Virtual Explorer Product Concept Presentation

A pitch to the LEGO Group then followed at Toy Fair New York in 1995, followed by meetings in Connecticut, England, and finally Denmark.[2] The meeting in England occurred on August 23rd of that year at Monkey Island in Bray where a "LEGO Virtual Explorer" presentation is shown describing the game's concept to folks from the LEGO Group.

A meeting at Wes Jenkins' apartment also occurred sometime in 1995,[3] where developers made a simple LEGO Island layout using several sets from the time, along with at least one unreleased one.[4] This design would later be expanded upon in art, with Wes Jenkins painting both a recreation of it and a proper design[5] that would evolve into the layout seen in the final game.

1996 & Forward[]

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Wes Jenkins working on the physical LEGO Island model.

In January 1996[6] Wes Jenkins began working on a physical model of LEGO Island for reference in developing the game with his wife, Kyle.[2][7] The terrain was made on two ping pong tables out of sytrofoam, modeling clay, and paint[8] with locations such as the Police Station, Racetrack, Bank,[9] Pizzeria, and Superstore being spun out of elements of existing sets.

Also sometime in 1996 many different composers were interested in working on the game, including Mark Mothersbaugh, The BOBS, Ray Manzerack, and Duane Eddy.[10] Budget issues and concerns Mindscape management would lead to these composers not working on the game.[2] Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Jonathan Winters, Elliot Gould, Mickey Rooney, and Levar Burton, among others, were also interested in contributing to the voice acting for the game at this point.

Cut and Changed Content[]

Throughout the development of the game there were several features, characters and locations cut from the game due to time and other various reasons.


Early art of LEGO Island


During the early development of the game buildings centered around the Coast Guard and a Cafe were scrapped from the game for unknown reasons, along with outdoors locations focused around a construction site and lake[11]. The Information Center also started out as a hotel,[12] before evolving into the location seen in the final game.

Multiple buildings including the Post Office, Superstore, Bank, and at least one of the residential houses were intended to have interiors during the development of the game,[13] however they were scrapped due to time.[2] Both the Superstore and Bank had art made for their interiors,[10] however it is uncertain if the rest did.


An early route for the underground racetrack's layout

The underground portion of the racetrack initially had a different design on paper with an emphasis on mini golf course style obstacles.[10] Additionally, the in-game version also had a completely different design to start out,[14] with a curved loop ramp where the player could drive upside down and a more heavily focus on racing in tunnels.


The script to the game


Several characters cut from the game include named characters such as Edie Mail,[10] Edith Mail,[10] and Sargeant Lockitt. Roles for characters without names tied to the included artists, a game show host,[15] and 2-3 families worth of characters to live in the Residential District. Also, the ambulance mission was supposed to have several characters in barrels, including Shorty Tails, Luke Tepid, and Brian Shrimp.[16] Brian Shrimp would later appear in Island Xtreme Stunts (Game) after the developers at Silicon Dreams Studio found voice files for him with a Scottish accent in the source code from the first game.[17]

Scan 14 (1)

Development imagery for the TurboChucker.

Game Mechanics[]

Various game mechanics were cut from the game during the development. Some of the earliest unused mechanics in 1995 include a decal editor, mission editor, and the ability to design custom layouts in the game.[5] Mechanics cut later in 1996 playing every as every character (but the Infomaniac and Brickster),[10] a game show,[15] and video phones.

The Pizza TurboChucker was initially apart of a much broader concept of general TurboChuckers[10] to be used throughout the game by the player by allowing them to fire bricks at various designated targets. Different names were also considered for it throughout the development of the game including Bricker, OGEL, and Bricky doo-hickey.[18] The Brickster's gun he used to dismantle buildings after he escapes, referenced in documentation as the Debricker,[19] is also connected to this concept,[10] with later LEGO Island 2 development materials referencing it by that name.[20]

Magazine ComesToLife

The early advertisement mentioning the Macintosh supported version.


An early advertisement for the game mentions mentioned a Macintosh supported version, with the requirements of a PowerPC with System 7.5.[21]

Late Development and Release[]

Additional titles, including LEGO Sea Challenge and LEGO Adventurers, were planned to be developed by Mindscape during the development of LEGO Island. They were canned however, when the LEGO Group and Mindscape got into distribution disagreements over the release of LEGO Island leading to the LEGO Group ending their partnership with Mindscape.[2]

The developers on the project at Mindscape were fired a day before release by management in order to avoid to giving them bonuses[2]. Some of the developers would later go on to work with Stormfront Studios on the LEGO My Style Preschool and LEGO My Style Kindergarten titles,[22][23] with Wes Jenkins also being hired to work at LEGO Media to work on additional projects such as LEGO Island 2.


  • Many of the characters' names are puns. For example, Captain D. Rom (the police chief) is a play on "C.D. ROM", Ed Mail could be abbreviated "E-Mail", Bill Ding sounds like "Building", and Pepper Roni is definitely a play on "Pepperoni".
  • The Race Track, Police Station, Jail, Beach, Helicopter, Buggy, Race Car, and Jet Ski were actual LEGO sets.
    • Furthermore, a modified version of the Ambulance can be driven in-game, while the Tractor Drawn Aerial and Shuttle component of the Launch Pad are seen during both the "Race Track racing game" and the "good" ending.
  • The first few copies of this game came with a free Infomaniac minifigure.
  • The intro of the game, in which you get to see most of the island, shows a different lay-out than is seen in the actual game.
  • The Pizzeria in this game resembles to the pizzeria in the 6500 Holiday Village.
  • It was incorrectly considered the first LEGO video game. The first one in general was the Japan-only 1995 Sega Pico game LEGO Fun to Build.


See also[]

External Links[]