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fantastic_beasts_lego_10LEGO Dimensions meets the Wizarding World

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the newest story returning us to J. K. Rowling’s Wizarding World universe, has come to LEGO Dimensions in a big way. Released on November 18, 2016—the same day the new film hit theatres worldwide—is the Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Story Pack, a 6-level adventure that lets you play the complete movie with LEGO-infused charm and humour, and the Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Fun Pack featuring Tina Goldstein and Swooping Evil.

To celebrate the launch of the movie, and the new LEGO Dimensions expansion packs, Warner Bros. built a massive replica of Newt Scamander’s magical suitcase at Yonge-Dundas Square, located in the heart of downtown Toronto. Fans got a chance to step inside Newt’s suitcase for a Canadian exclusive experience, including costumes from the film, interactive exhibits, and the chance to play the all-new LEGO Dimensions Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Battle Arena. Let’s take a look, starting with the new LEGO Dimensions figures and packs!

fantastic_beasts_lego_7Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Story Pack

If you’re yet to try LEGO Dimensions, the toys and video game hybrid produced by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, TT Games, and the LEGO Group, I encourage you to first take a peek at our announcement post and comprehensive review, as they will get you caught up to speed on what it is, and why it’s such an exciting product line. If you already have the LEGO Dimensions Starter Pack, then you have everything you need to begin building out your collection with new packs, based on popular global entertainment properties, including the all-new Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Story Pack.

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What exactly is a LEGO Dimensions Story Pack you ask? Well, if you’re a LEGO Dimensions fan, you’re probably already be familiar with Level, Team, and Fun Packs—the three types of packs available since day one—and now this fall Warner Bros. is adding Story Packs to the mix. Story Packs are essentially much larger Level Packs that give you 6 brand new story-driven levels to explore (instead of 1 found in Level Packs). Each Story Pack will retell a major theatrical release using signature LEGO humour, while also continuing the LEGO Dimensions narrative established in the main game. You also get a new LEGO Gateway Build to construct and place on your LEGO Toy Pad, letting your customize your pad with some of your favourite entertainment brands.

fantastic_beasts_lego_6At the Toronto event I had the chance to get hands-on time with the new Fantastic Beasts Story Pack LEGO toys, which includes Newt Scamander, and a Niffler (the rodent-like creature with a long snout, black fur, and a penchant for shiny objects.) Both of these toys can be seen in the image to the right. Like in all other LEGO Dimensions packs, you need to assemble the LEGO characters yourself using step-by-step instructions, and what’s cool is your Niffler can also transform into two vehicles for Newt: the Sinister Scorpion and Vicious Vulture. Also included in the Story Pack is Macusa (Magical Congress of the United States of America), a beautiful, ornate new Gateway Build that you can place on your LEGO Dimensions Toy Pad. Combined, Macusa and the two characters total 261 LEGO pieces, which you can have fun building together with friends and family.

fantastic_beasts_lego_5Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Fun Pack

Also at the Toronto event was the new Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Fun Pack containing Tina Goldstein and the Swooping Evil creature. Picking up this Fun Pack can be a great companion piece for the Fantastic Beasts Story Pack since by doing so you can bring Tina and the Swooping Evil into your adventure and use their powers. Tina has the ability to cast Aguamenti to help solve puzzles, and Protego to bolster her defenses. Swooping Evil can be called in when you need a rescue, and you can also rebuild it into the Brutal Bloom and Crawling Creeper. If you’re a big fan of Tina Goldstein and want to just get the Fantastic Beasts Fun Pack, that’s an option too.

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All-new Battle Arenas

One of the exciting additions to LEGO Dimensions this year are the new 4-player competitive Battle Arenas. You’ll notice that minifigures released in Waves 6 through 9 have golden Toy Tags (the circular bases they stand on), and by placing one of them on the Toy Pad you’ll unlock a special Battle Arena corresponding to that specific entertainment brand. Wave 6 began September 27th with the release of The Ghostbusters Story Pack, Adventure Time and Mission: Impossible Level Packs, Harry Potter Team Pack, and The A-Team Fun Pack. Wave 7 includes the two above mentioned Fantastic Beasts Packs (and a few others, like the Sonic the Hedgehog Level Pack), and Waves 8/9 will release in 2017. In total, there are 21 new battle arenas you can unlock.

fantastic_beasts_lego_8A rep for Warner Bros. explained to me that in Battle Arenas you can play four different game types, each with their own unique objectives. Capture the Flag has teams battling it out to capture the opposing team’s flag to earn points, and bringing the flag back to your base nets you bonus points. Base Bash requires you to bash your opponent’s base using a high powered weapon to knock them out of the game. Objective focuses on completing mission objectives to earn the most points. Finally, Tick, Tag, Boom! tasks you with tagging your opponents with a bomb and hightailing it out of there before it explodes. Matches can be played in many different configurations, e.g. 2-vs-2, 3-vs-1, and 1-vs-3 A.I. bots, and you can create a match playlist if you and your friends want to play multiple game types one after another.

fantastic_beasts_lego_9At the event I had the opportunity to try one round of Capture the Flag inside the Fantastic Beasts Battle Arena, and for this I chose to play as Harry Potter, while the Warner Bros. rep picked Tina Goldstein. Any LEGO Dimensions characters can be used in the Battle Arenas, letting you have awesome dream matches like E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial vs. Sonic the Hedgehog vs. Lord Voldemort vs. Newt Scamander, and other wacky combinations.

The Battle Arena was set at night on an arid land with a few scattered trees (supposed inside the mysterious and magical suitcase of Newt Scamander) and tall, narrow buildings in each of the four corners. These buildings serve as the main bases that house the flags, and your goal is to defend your own base flag while also attempting to breach your opponent’s houses to snag theirs. Not only can you use your character’s powers for attack and defense, but the levels also have a bunch of power-up items you can grab and unleash to swing the battle in your favour. The match was a lot of fun with plenty of back-and-forth action, and (naturally) there were lots of cute/charming LEGO brick busting moments. I definitely can’t wait to try out the other three Battle Arena modes!

Post-game fun

After I finished my LEGO Dimensions session, I went off to explore the rest of Newt Scamander’s magical suitcase at Yonge-Dundas Square. There was so much to look at, including costumes from the production, cool props that fit the movie’s theme perfectly (who knows, maybe they actually were from the movie), and lots of fun attractions to participate in. Below are some pictures!

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Well, that about wraps up my time at the event. If you’re tried or are interested in new Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Story Pack or Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Fun Pack let me what you’re most excited about!