Lego Dimensions: Fun With Fun Packs – Laval and Sensei Wu
Last time I looked at a pair of Lego Dimension Fun Packs, they were characters from DC Comics which I love. Today, I’m dealing with two kid-friendly franchises I know nothing about. So I’m going to kick off this article with a little Lego history. In the late 20th century, the Lego brand had fallen on hard times. In a bid to revitalize sales, the company made a deal to make Star Wars toys. This lead to other profitable licensing arrangements like Batman and Harry Potter. These days, Lego has an intricate web of licensing deals.
Flush with success, Lego has made a few attempts at creating their own intellectual properties. Two of those are the Ninjago and Chima lines. Both of these toy lines are supported with cartoon series that I have never had to watch.
When you’re trying to decide which Lego Dimensions expansions to purchase for you game, there are two primary considerations. The first factor is what they add to your game experience. Do they have useful skills or give you access to new gameplay? The second is flavor. A character like Bane doesn’t bring all that much to the table, but if you like playing Batman characters he can be a lot of fun. Since I personally have no attachment whatsoever to Ninjago or Chima, I picked up these packs for gameplay reasons only.
Your mileage will vary on the flavor factor. I’m sure there are people out there who are big fans of the Ninjago and/or Chima brands. If you happen to be one of them, Lego has released several game additions for each series. I bought these two specific characters because I found them both for under $5 and they opened up two new adventure worlds.
First up is Laval, an anthropomorphic lion with a giant flaming sword. Laval has the acrobatics skill, but you already have access to that ability through Wild Style from the Starter Set. He has Super Strength which can be useful, but he has to power up a meter through combat before it kicks in. And since there isn’t a lot of combat in the adventure worlds, he can be unreliable for solving puzzles that require a little muscle.
Laval also boasts Laser Deflection and Sonar Smash. Both are relatively common abilities. The reason to buy at least one Chima player (other than access to the adventure world) is that they all have the Chi power. If you want to get do everything in the game, you’re going to need someone with Chi. Or you can always use the Hire-a-Hero function to rent someone for 30 seconds but what fun is that?
What would a talking lion be without a rad car with a lion head and flames shooting out the back? I don’t know because Laval comes with a Mighty Lion Rider. The Lion Rider is pretty standard in terms of vehicle abilities, but it sure makes for a striking visual.
Ninjago is all about ninjas. Sensei Wu is, you know, a sensei. He has the Stealth and Acrobat skills befitting a martial artist of his stature. But we already had both of those skills via Batman and Wild Style in the Starter Set. He can glide, which is nice. But it’s less useful than flying and flight is really common in Dimensions. He can pole vault which is actually a pretty rare ability, but it’s not needed all that often either.
Like the Chima characters, the Ninjago gang has an exclusive ability. It’s called Spinjitzu and it basically turns the character into a spinning top. As with Chi, you’re going to need Spinjitzu to solve some of the puzzles. About the only times Senesi Woo ever sees play on my game is if a puzzle calls for him to spin or pole vault.
Sensei Wu comes with a pet dragon. The dragon’s flight makes that gliding skill a little less impressive. The dragon looks cool, but he doesn’t offer much other than flying around on a dragon. But do you really need more than that?
For the most part, the Ninjago and Chima characters don’t pack a lot of punch in terms of skills. There’s a lot of overlap with each other and the Starter. But they are almost always easy to find at a low, low price. Purely for game purposes, it’s worth picking up one Fun Pack from each set in order to get access to the exclusive adventure worlds and specific powers. If you happen to be a fan, you can invest more heavily than that.