Video game "playing cars" is fun!
March 17, 2009 10:08 AM   Subscribe

My son and I love playing in the cars on Lego Batman: The Video Game (Wii). What other "vehicle toy" games are there?

It's a lot of fun to have your characters jump into the cars on Lego Batman and just drive around, running amok, especially 2 players. Smashing into things, people, and each other. Trying to tip over or bounce as high as we can, etc! Just "play", not racing or trying to get anywhere, though that could potentially be fun too as long as fairly low on the competitive/difficulty ladder. Easy controls (at least for the basics) a must.

Split-screen/"second-person" perspective a la Mario Kart isn't necessarily a dealbreaker but definitely isn't preferred. That sort of game is fun, but "play" really needs a shared context where both players can be about equally seen in a single view. Likewise, not having a timer/other "arbitrary" interruptions is a plus. It's really cool and funny when you on occasion run into something that blows up, so destruction/EXCITEment would be good.

Have a Wii, so Wii or GameCube (including VC or WiiWare) would be preferred; might be talked into a PS2 since I already "need" one and it's always nice to have an excuse.
posted by BaxterG4 to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (13 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: Clarification: "fighting bad guys" is good, though not a requirement. If there are bad guys, though, they have to be fairly easy or regeneration must be quick.
posted by BaxterG4 at 10:14 AM on March 17, 2009

Have you played the Lego Star Wars games? I have a young family member who loves his Wii version a whole lot. You run around, collect coins, and chop bad guys into smaller Legos. If you play as a Jedi you can also use your force power to have a lot more fun.
posted by Science! at 10:16 AM on March 17, 2009

Seconding Lego Star Wars (Complete Saga) if it's not too completely obvious. It also has vehicles, both of the terrestrial and space variety. Unfortunately, my 4.5 y.o. has discovered the wii via his older brother playing it, and now we can't get him off the thing.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 10:30 AM on March 17, 2009

Your question immediately made me think of Burnout Paradise. Then, I read your console requirements. If you're also looking for Xbox or PS3 excuses, there you go.
posted by gnomeloaf at 11:06 AM on March 17, 2009

Best answer: I remember the Micro Machines games playing sort of like what you're looking for - Controls are lead-pipe simple (Left, right, go, stop), lots of kablooey, and I remember the old PS version having a freeplay mode, though it's been a while. There's a version for the GameCube that should play on your Wii, but I haven't found it on the used sites. Maybe call around to your local stores? Should be cheap either way.
posted by Orb2069 at 11:13 AM on March 17, 2009

I miss the original Twisted Metal for the original Playstation. I was never good at really competitive games, but this one is full of ridiculous explosions and bizarre vehicles. I'm sure there are more in the same key.

I found the vehicles in Star Wars to be annoying (all I can remember at the moment are the flying levels), because of momentum and small scale. Plus, the game forces you forward, for level progression. The free-play environment of Lego Batman is a lot of fun.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:15 AM on March 17, 2009

Lego Star Wars II definitely had more of that "toybox" feeling, and there was even a secret level that would allow you to run amok and physically destroy an entire neighborhood of Lego buildings. There were certain things you had to do to unlock that level though. In the meantime you could terrorize the denizens of the cantina and chop up bystanders-- something that has been removed from every Lego game since.
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 11:18 AM on March 17, 2009

If you do get a PS2, get Katamari Damacy. It is the ultimate toybox game-- roll a big sticky ball around to collect small items, and build your ball from something that envelops paper clips and pencils to cats, people and cars. It becomes a Godzilla game later on :)
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 11:21 AM on March 17, 2009

Also for the PS2 would be Grand Theft Auto.

You can drive a huge variety of vehicles; cars, trucks, firetrucks, ambulances, boats, planes, cycles.

There are many racing minigames and setpiece jumps and stunts to do. The world is full of impromptu ramps. My son [11] and I have great fun driving around looking for cool jumps to attempt.

There are Firetruck missions where you drive your firetruck around town trying to put out fires, and police missions where you drive your police car around running down criminals.

In Liberty City Stories there's a mission where you drive a firetruck and have to cause as much mayhem as possible in some amount of time. Extra credit for making other cars flip over or explode.

In GTA III and Vice City, there are ways to explore the entire game world before you've even begun any of the missions, so you don't have to worry about random people shooting at you.

It's not multi-player, though.

Oh, and seconding Katamari Damacy. The multi-player there is fun, though a bit frustrating if there's a big ability gap. My kids and I can't play multi-player because I'm too good at it and they don't like it when I ease off, so it's a no-win for me.
posted by chazlarson at 11:42 AM on March 17, 2009

It's not a car game, and it's not multiplayer, but it is another sandbox game:

Try World of Goo for the Wii. WoG is basically an engineering simulator made into a game; it's kinda like Tinkertoys meets Lemmings but with a Dr. Seuss vibe to it. Build bridges and towers to accomplish specific goals. The main game might be too challenging for a kid but like the rest of my suggestions it does have a "free play" mode where you can just build whatever you want.
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 12:12 PM on March 17, 2009

Sorry to dominate your thread, but after some research I did find that the Wii version of World of Goo supposedly does support multiplayer.
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 1:18 PM on March 17, 2009

In addition to Lego Batman and Lego Starwars, don't forget Lego Indiana Jones!

I'll 2nd Katamari Damacy (PS2) too, though most levels are on a timer until you unlock the eternal modes.
posted by fings at 1:44 PM on March 17, 2009

Best answer: The Lego Indiana Jones series has an unlockable secret level where you just get to play with cars and vehicles and design your own race course. It's cute!
posted by bristolcat at 1:44 PM on March 17, 2009

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