LEGO 2K Drive’s open world is not as open as you think

The upcoming video game LEGO 2K Drive was announced as an open-world racer, but a developer at Visual Concepts has specified that the world isn’t truly ‘open’.

Releasing May 19 of this year, 2K Drive promises Mario-Kart-style arcade racing and expansive customization options which come naturally to a LEGO property. It also offers a single-player or co-op sandbox mode that has been called ‘open-world’.

This is not necessarily true, though, as executive producer Mark Pierce recently confirmed (via VGC) that the game’s sandbox is actually made up of several completely separate smaller areas called biomes. He goes on to explain that the developers’ original intention was to have players be able to drive seamlessly between biomes, but they had to change this to fast-travel and the biomes are no longer connected at all. 

When discussing the reason for this change, Pierce cites limitations and loading times on ‘some of the platforms,’ careful to not call out any specific system. It’s pretty obvious, though, when looking at the list of platforms the game is releasing on, that this is referring to the Nintendo Switch. The Switch is a popular console, especially among younger demographics, so clearly the developers prioritised making the game playable on Switch over their true open-world dreams.

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LEGO 2K Drive’s series of small, separate worlds isn’t new to LEGO games – it recalls LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham’s series of planetoid hubs, which was certainly a divisive change from the large, open Gotham of LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes. This concept does provide lots of variety, but in a game focused on driving fast cars, there’s a chance smaller worlds could make things feel cramped.

LEGO 2K Drive is due to launch on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series S/X, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC on May 19 for the Standard Edition, or May 16 for the Awesome Edition and Awesome Rivals Edition. Click here to find out more about the game, or here to check out all the various versions and pre-order bonuses. 

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