Game Review: Lego 2K Drive is both a fun and functional arcade racer

Lego 2K Drive came as a surprise to me when it was revealed. I had admittedly never expected Lego to pair up Forza Horizon’s arcade racing mechanics and vast open world with a wealth of customisation that only those little bricks can provide. But after a few hours with Lego 2K Drive, I was stunned that these ideas took so long to meet. Lego 2K Drive is an incredibly functional and diverse arcade racer, that shakes up the formula by providing gamers with multiple ways to play and unique environments to explore. It’s well-paced and incredibly accessible, making this a worthy racer for younger and older fans alike.

I Feel the Need, the Need for… Speedy Bricks

If you’ve played another open-world racer in the past, you’ll get the gist of Lego 2K Drive relatively quickly. The game offers up a total of four unique modes, the first of which is a dedicated story mode. Players take control of a newly discovered rookie, as you aim to take on a series of unique rivals through a number of races to win the coveted Sky Cup Trophy. It’s definitely straightforward, but I can appreciate the interwoven stop-motion cutscenes that play out like something from the Lego movies. Thankfully, some humour from those films also carries across, as some wacky supporting characters help guide you to victory.

Players then take part in a number of races and challenges across four unique hub worlds, which consistently have your rookie shifting between big races against rivals and smaller challenges to level up for the next race. Races are fun, thanks to the inclusion of traditional power-ups to use against opponents, but I honestly enjoyed the smaller challenges found out in the open world, particularly early on. You’ll need to complete a few of these to access the next rival, but I soon found myself protecting a field of four power generators from a small robot invasion, as I had to run down and stop them before they planted their bombs next to each generator. That being said, the challenges tend to repeat themselves, making things feel a tad repetitive towards the end. Even so, the mix is well-paced and consistent for the most part, even if most of the challenge lies within the main rival races as opposed to those smaller challenges. Thankfully, the open world is interesting and diverse but it’s worth noting that the world of Bricklandia is split into four separately themed worlds. As a result, they don’t feel as large as Forza Horizon’s open worlds but are packed with opportunities for races and activities, in order to collect canisters and cash to unlock extra goodies.

You can also jump out of the story and race in the Cup Series, a dedicated mode catered for the Grand Prix experience. With back-to-back tracks, it’s the best way to smash out races in rapid succession, in which wins contribute to a total number of series points. Beyond this, players can also set up and jump into single races, and even take part in the game’s challenges through a dedicated Mini-Game mode. It’s also worth noting here that Lego 2K Drive also looks great throughout. The vibrancy of multiple colours paired with the frantic nature of breaking bricks as you inevitably smash into cars is consistently something to behold. It even runs at an even clip, with rarely any significant bugs or framerate dips.

The Way Around Brickville

The gameplay is also terrific. Moment-to-moment driving feels weighty and responsive, while the different terrains present players with multiple opportunities to travel and explore each environment. Be it on-road, off-road or on water, players will be able to equip a total of three vehicles, which will change on the fly depending on the terrain you’re currently driving on. While road vehicles are generally the fastest, there’s something so satisfying about diverting off a main road, as my vehicle changes to a rugged four-wheel drive with a propeller up front, and then driving straight off a ramp into water, as my vehicle changes in a purple speedboat. Running on and off certain terrains in rapid succession can feel a little frustrating as your vehicle struggles to decide between the two, but the automatic selection can be switched off so that vehicles can be transformed manually.

Drifting also feels fantastic, but takes a little getting used to as you’ll need to hold the accelerator and brake buttons at the same time, quite literally forcing you to steer into the skid. This takes away from some of the weight of the vehicles, making them feel a little more rigid than they could be. But when you do master the controls, you’ll find yourself drifting and boosting consistently through most races, ultimately necessary for the win, particularly down the final stretch.

Beyond all the racing, Lego fans will be glad to know that customisation here is also fantastic. You’ll be able to unlock a bunch of parts and complete vehicles and characters by beating rivals and completing challenges, even going as far as to adjust any car you want to paint each individual piece in the colour you prefer. The options are virtually limitless, although building cars from multiple parts can feel a little flimsy at times as certain pieces take a few attempts to snap together. I found myself relying on the pre-built models, of which there are plenty to choose from. It is a shame though that these creations cannot yet be shared, as players will surely come up with some fantastic creations. It’s also at this point that Lego 2K Drive decides to bring out the microtransactions. They’re not crucial to success in any way, but there are plenty of them. It’s a little frustrating that certain models are locked behind these paywalls, as it’s clear that the game is happy to give you so much in the first place, even if it stops short at the slightly cooler or popular models it knows people will want to fork out for.

Final Thoughts

Overall, Lego 2K Drive is an incredibly functional and diverse racer that pairs together some solid driving mechanics along with the ability to craft the vehicle of your dreams. The story mode offers the most complete experience, with its own nifty sense of humour and quality stop-motion cutscenes. While the separated environments can feel a little small at times, they are packed with a variety of challenges and races to complete. I would love to see what players can create in the future, as I’m sure both younger and older audiences will stick around for everything that Lego 2K Drive has to offer.


Highlights: Solid driving mechanics; Wealth of customisation options; Plenty of races and activities
Lowlights: Challenges tend to repeat themselves towards the end of the story mode; Microtransactions can feel a little heavy at times
Developer: Visual Concepts
Publisher: 2K
Platforms: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4 Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Windows PC
Available: Now

Review conducted on PlayStation 5 with a pre-release code provided by the publisher.

Matthew Arcari

Matthew Arcari is the games and technology editor at The AU Review. You can find him on Twitter at @sirchunkee, or at the Dagobah System, chilling with Luke and Yoda.