It’s called “LEGO Worlds”
LEGO is increasingly taking its brick world into the digital age. And the toy companyâ€™s latest game could pose a real problem for Minecraft.
The Danish toy maker has unveiled LEGO Worlds, an open-environment game made entirely of LEGO bricks that can be freely manipulated, almost like a virtual LEGO set. Sound familiar? It should: media reports point out LEGO Worlds sounds a lot like Minecraft, now owned by Microsoft.
Interestingly, LEGO is debuting the game even though itâ€™s still in development, meaning users can play now even if all the features arenâ€™t included yet. LEGO says it wants users to play the game and offer feedback with the hope that developers can improve LEGO Worlds over time.
LEGOâ€™s new game isnâ€™t the first time a physical toy maker has followed the tech industryâ€™s lead when it comes to innovation. Remember Zyngaâ€™s hit Words with Friends? That was essentially a knock off of Hasbroâ€™s Scrabble. Toy companies havenâ€™t historically been great at coming up with tech games on their own â€” instead, they tend to rely on partners with more expertise to effectively compete on video game and digital platforms.
Executives at LEGO have long contended their bread-and-butter will remain physical toys, like sets based on characters from films like Star Wars and Batman and original packages that play on broader themes like a fire department or a police station. While those sets are LEGOâ€™s core focus, the company is showing itâ€™s willing to expand its toy box a bit more in recent years. It came out with a hit film last year, while LEGO also partners with video game makers to produce games based on its brand, including a Skylanders-type game called â€œDimensions,â€ which will hit store shelves this fall.