Advertisement

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Advertisement

Lego Vidiyo review: Dance, dance Lego-lution

Nathan Spendelow
15 Jun 2021
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
4
inc VAT (£4-£90)

Lego’s whacky Vidiyo sets let you build and perform in your very own music videos, but are the new app-based toys worth the money?

Pros 
Heaps of fun
Plenty of music video customisation options
Quirky minifigures and sets
Cons 
Vidiyo app is a bit sluggish
Additional sets can be expensive
Advertisement

Lego’s unassuming plastic bricks have come a long way since their humble blocky beginnings. The ever-popular Danish brick maker now has a bit of a habit of injecting a dollop of personality and quirkiness into each new release, sometimes with some sort of tech integration thrown in for good measure, too.

READ NEXT: Best Lego

Perhaps the silliest Lego lineup that combines both of these things is Vidiyo: a smartphone-based music video maker that lets you pair your brightly coloured stages and musician minifigures with an augmented reality app.

Browse Lego Vidiyo


Lego Vidiyo review: What do you get for the money?

With a total of 14 different Lego Vidiyo sets to choose from, you might want to consider picking up one of eight “BeatBoxes” as a starting point. These each cost £18 and include one unique minifigure, a small portable stage and a selection of 14 “BeatBits”: small 2x2 tile pieces used to customise the in-app music, add video filters and apply dance moves to the virtual minifigures, among other things.

Five larger Lego Vidiyo sets are also available, which start at £25 and go all the way up to £90. These are much bigger builds that incorporate a particular theme and come with significantly more Lego pieces and extra minifigures. I was sent the newest Candy Castle Stage for review – complete with cutesy, pastel-coloured bricks – as well as the Unicorn DJ and Alien DJ BeatBoxes.

You can also buy the “Bandmates” blind bags, which come with a random selection of one of 14 minifigures and three “BeatBit” music pieces. These are priced at just £4 a pop.

The accompanying Vidiyo mobile app is completely free and can be downloaded on any tablet or smartphone running Android 8, iOS 13, iPadOS 13 or higher. As for recommended ages, most Lego Vidiyo sets have an age rating of 7+, although K-Pawp Concert and Punk Pirate Ship have age ratings of 8+. The most expensive set, The Boombox, has an age rating of 9+.

Lego Vidiyo review: How does it work?

As you might expect, Lego Vidiyo is a bit of an oddity: a silly name with a suitably silly premise. The minifigures and stages you can build are appropriately whacky, including a maraca-shaking llama, a violin-playing fairy and a pirate punk with an anchor/guitar hybrid. Some of the larger stages are quite complex, too, allowing you to fully customise the way they look – the Candy Castle stage, for instance, has a rotating head at the top, with two different designs on either side.

Vidiyo’s in-app AR functionality is the real star of the show, however. Once you’ve built your stages, constructed your minifigures and chosen your BeatBits, all you need to do is launch the Lego Vidiyo app and scan your creations, adding them to your virtual collection. You can then start a new band – which consists of up to three bandmates – and give them a randomised band name.

Tap the play icon at the bottom of the screen and you’re ready to start your first performance. From here, you need to select your music from a wide range of artists – including Guns N’ Roses, Billie Eilish, Imagine Dragons and Celeste – pick your Lego band and choose whether or not to add one of your scanned-in stages.

Browse Lego Vidiyo

It can take a little while to load, but you then need to scan at least one of your bandmates, at least three BeatBits (up to a maximum of 12) and the pre-built stage, if you’ve selected one. In this setup phase, you can also customise the virtual elements around the stage by simply rotating parts of the physical build, such as the speakers, lights and top-mounted bear head in the Candy Castle stage I was sent for review.

Now you’re ready to begin recording your music video. It doesn’t play the entire track – only around 40 seconds or so – but during this time you can move your camera around, get your virtual minifigures to perform various actions and tap on the different BeatBits you’ve added. These allow you to adjust the music itself – switching to an orchestral version of the track, for instance – add silly costumes and apply video filters. There’s also the option to throw in a bit of virtual chaos for good measure, such as choosing to rain pandas down from the sky.

After you’ve performed your show, the video is then saved to the gallery section of the app. You also get the option to share with the Vidiyo community in either five-, ten- or 20-second selectable clips. You’ll need a verified Lego account to do this and it’s also checked by a safety expert before going live – this process usually takes around five minutes, but be advised that it won’t be approved if there are people in your video.

Lego Vidiyo review: What do we like?

Lego Vidiyo is heaps of fun. As a 28-year-old, I’m not really part of the target market, but it’s very enjoyable assembling your band and tinkering with the various audio and visual effects that you can apply to your music videos. There’s definitely plenty on offer here for youngsters to get their teeth stuck into, especially if you decide to invest in extra sets.

I was also a big fan of Vidiyo’s parental features. If your child’s account is linked to your family Lego account, you can limit certain features of the app, such as restricting sharing and follow permissions, as well as the ability to switch off daily challenges. Browsing the social feed, it looks like the video moderation works well, too.

Lego Vidiyo review: What don’t we like?

The Vidiyo app is quite performance-heavy – even my iPhone 12 Pro struggled a bit – and navigating between sections of the app often felt rather sluggish. It sometimes took a long time to connect to Lego’s servers, too, and it would occasionally take a while for my performance to successfully save to my account.

On that note, you can’t download the video to your phone’s camera roll unless you share your performance to the Vidiyo social feed. Of course, you can delete the video as soon as it’s shared, but if it doesn’t pass moderation or you’re concerned with your child’s privacy, then there’s absolutely no way to export it.

Finally, what you get out of Vidiyo depends largely on the camera you use for the app (in terms of video quality) and whether or not you’re planning on buying more sets. If you only buy a single BeatBox, for instance, then you’re not going to get the same sort of experience as someone who has a more comprehensive selection of stages, minifigures and BeatBits.

Lego Vidiyo review: Should I buy it?

That being said, there’s no doubt that Vidiyo is Lego at its finest. If you’re willing to invest in Lego’s bonkers music video creator, then you’ll be rewarded with a whole heap of fun, with hours of replayability and plenty of customisation at your fingertips.

Even if your child isn’t already a Lego fan, there’s plenty on offer here for the kid who likes to get creative, and there’s a good chance they’ll love it if they’re a bit of a dancer or music lover, too.

Additional sets might ramp up the cost, but the reasonably inexpensive barrier for entry (starting at just £4) means that Lego Vidiyo could be this year’s must-have toy.

Browse Lego Vidiyo

Read more

Reviews