Throughout many generations, LEGO has sparked creativity in our childhood days. This year in Taipei Comic Exhibition – Gamers Con 2019, LEGO revealed a new mobile AR game that will once again ignite the creativity in adults and children alike.
▍About LEGO: Hidden Side
LEGO: Hidden Side is a new line created by LEGO which incorporates AR technology, allowing you to not only enjoy the process of building LEGO but also take you to a “Hidden Side” of each model in the series with the company’s APP. All players have to do is to scan the completed models to travel to the Hidden Side of each set. In the Hidden Side, players will be able to scan and explore the world to find collectibles known as “Glooms” and occasionally hunt ghosts that haunt the set. The series follows the adventures of Jack Davids, a 13-year-old boy who is trying to adapt to his new life in Newbury, a seemingly sleepy town with many hidden sides. Before long, Newbury’s Hidden Side, a bone-chilling, long-forgotten realm filled with ghosts, threatens to take over the town. Together with his new best friend Parker, also 13-years-old, and the brilliant scientist J.B, Jack Davids sets off on a spooky adventure around town.
▍Taiwanese Designer Worked on LEGO Hidden Side
Over a span of three years, Taiwanese designer Zhang Yiqian (鄭以謙) has worked together with the rest of the design team to design eight sets of the Hidden Side series including “Newbury Haunted High School”, “Paranormal Intercept Bus 3000”, “Graveyard Mystery”, “J.B’s Ghost Lab”, “Wrecked Shrimp Boat”, “El Fuego’s Stunt Truck”, “Shrimp Shack Attack”, and the “Ghost Train Express”. The series is set in different locations in a Newbury, a seemingly sleepy town with more than a few hidden sides.
During the convention, we were able to try first-hand just how the AR App works together with each model in the series. Whilst we didn’t get a chance to enjoy building each set brick by brick, we did get to explore the new AR experience LEGO has created. The app scans each model quite accurately, and certain pieces can be missing from the piece without affecting the overall experience.
When hunting ghosts, players will have to follow the flying ghosts and shoot them through their mobile devices. The game is simple yet incorporates a fun AR shooting experience. Players have unlimited ammo, but their weapon will gradually overheat if shot continuously without rest. Overheated weapons will drain their “virtual battery” and if the battery completely depletes it will essentially lead to game over.
The actual AR experience still has a very authentic LEGO experience, with interactive elements that really lets you explore each set. The ghost hunts are more targetted to younger players, but overall, it still is quite fun to have something more than just a model that encourages younger children to spend time away from electronic devices.