GamingReview: Lego 2K Drive

Review: Lego 2K Drive


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When this game was revealed, my mind was flooded with memories of playing Lego Racers 2 and Lego Island 2. Those games came out over 20 years ago, and I was surprised that game devs were once again taking chances on original Lego games again.

Too bad this one isn’t that good.

The Pain of Going Home

I was fairly excited for this game to come out. In being so excited, I ensured that I wasn’t blinded by nostalgia and went back to play a bit of Lego Island and Lego Racers. Still wonderfully charming, almost terrible games.

I was immediately snapped back to those games when met with the oddly hideous menus of this game. Just flat red colours. This was hideous, but, if it was a reference to those early 2000s Lego games, it’s a perfect homage. After this, I was assaulted by the 2K account implementation which, unless you create one, disallows you from going online at all. So, after cobbling together an account, I finally had the full game.

Now, before we start tearing it apart, what is it?

What Comes In the Box

Lego 2K Drive opens with a string of meta jokes to introduce its world, main characters, and your motivation for even caring. You want to win the big race, no go drive.

As opposed to being purely open world, the game has 4 distinct open hub areas. It has the tutorial area, the dinosaur area, the cowboy area, and the Halloween area. The disconnect between these may be disappointing to some, but it helps each area feel somewhat distinct.

These areas are well themed and fun to drive around in. I’m not really sure what else you could expect from a Lego hub world. You can smash through anything and everything that isn’t a building, you can catapult a group of pedestrians whenever you like, and you can find any number of collectibles scattered throughout. I’m sure the worlds are bursting with classic Lego references, but try as I might, I could not find the pizza shop from Lego Island 2.

As for you, you get a few default cars to mess around with. Each vehicle has 3 forms: a standard race car, an off-road racer, and a surface skimming ship. The car transforms when deemed necessary by the game, however this auto-switch feature can also be turned off if you’d like a more engaging experience.

We’re Here To Win

The main game is comprised of several rival races. There are usually about 3 or 4 of these per hub area, and they each have you facing off against a theme specific rival. Most of these ‘rivals’ only get one introductory cutscene when you start the race, and then you win their car, and they’re just gone.

Some linearity may have actually helped here, because aside from the few sparse pre-race cutscenes, all exposition is given while driving around the hub. This makes the main races feel odd. It’s like playing Crash Team Racing, except every boss is just one after another and randomly plopped into each race of the game.

The structure of each of these races is the exact same as well. The rival will always start in first, and the rubberbanding AI will fight to keep you in the middle of the pack, until the last lap wherein you’ll all of a sudden find yourself in second place, and then you’ll win by 1 or 2 seconds. EVERY race is like this.

This repetition coupled with the fairly forgettable tracks turns the main races into chores. This is especially annoying once you realise that each of these races is either level-gated or locked behind a checklist of tedious side content. “Protect the thing, break all the things, jump over the thing.” Every single activity is mindless busy work that was seemingly put in the game to justify the fact that there’s a leveling system. I found myself enjoying only a handful of these missions, but I can’t tell if that’s because they were of actual quality, or because they were all about 10 seconds long. Who knows?

Infinite Toy-Box

One thing that this game does perfectly is its customisation. Much like with older Lego racing games, the game understands that the main appeal here is to either slave over a beautiful original creation for hours, re-create a famous car, or just create the most horrid monstrosity you can think of and see if you can still win with it.

Unfortunately, I get a form of option paralysis when given this kind of freedom, and so I just opted to slightly modify an existing car to look like a 1960s Batmobile and then called it a day. Also, the garage wherein you create these vehicles is staffed by two literal grease monkeys. When that Lego humour actually manages to hit, it hits hard.

The game also has destructibility with regards to your car; every time you take damage, pieces of your car will fly off, and you will explode should you lose all but the bottom 6×8 piece and the wheels. This damage can be healed by crashing into… well, anything. Anything you break will immediately begin fixing your car.


One thing I do think I have to mention is the fact that this game has microtransactions. Pretty expensive ones. These are all to buy in game coins which are effectively used for everything. The weird thing is that coins aren’t hard to come across. You get more than enough by just playing the game. So much so that I wonder if this was just a publisher mandate, like the superfluous Devil May Cry 5 purchasable red orbs. I hope so, because if the need for a 2K account didn’t already suck out my childlike love of Lego, these microtransactions sure did.

This is especially egregious once you look at the even more expensive editions of this game; editions which include the now concomitant ‘season pass’ and a bunch of other junk, all of which effectively doubles the price of the game and is just cordoned off in order to pressure you to spend more money. Not unique to this game, but it is still predatory.

Also, if you have an older console and are looking to get this game then I should let you know that while the game runs at 60fps on modern consoles and PC, it has a variable framerate on anything older and will go between around 45 and 30 fps the whole time, along with some longer load times.

It’s great to have a non-licensed Lego game again, and I do hope we get more of these in the future. I don’t know if it’s the lack luster, almost anachronistic race and mission design and how it clashes with the fact that this is a modern, partially next-gen, FULL-PRICED game, but this game was just oddly disappointing.

I can’t really recommend buying this. My only hope is that the largely middling reviews for this game don’t discourage other developers from making original Lego games when there’s so much potential there. How else am I to get my King Baldwin IV vs. Salah-al-Din Jerusalem siege Lego game?


+ Wonderful to see a non-established IP Lego game again
+ Excellent car customization
+ Charming open world with 4 themed areas

- Story races are pretty severely level-gated and require grind
- Egregious microtransactions, especially given initial price
- Superfluous and often boring side content

Costs $60. Reviewed on PS4/PS5. Available on PC, Switch, and Xbox One & Series X.
Daniel Kelly
Daniel Kelly
A man forever in search of a game to surpass Metal Gear.

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+ Wonderful to see a non-established IP Lego game again<br/> + Excellent car customization<br/> + Charming open world with 4 themed areas<br/><br/> - Story races are pretty severely level-gated and require grind<br/> - Egregious microtransactions, especially given initial price<br/> - Superfluous and often boring side content<br/><br/> Costs $60. Reviewed on PS4/PS5. Available on PC, Switch, and Xbox One & Series X. Review: Lego 2K Drive