Google has teamed up with LEGO in its latest Chrome experiment, which allows users to create their own buildings using virtual LEGO bricks. Yes, it is quite a flagrant copycat of Minecraft et al, but LEGO is something that most of us share in common to varying degrees, and this WebGL-based environment makes construction as fun as when we were five years old. Not only can you let your imagination run wild and build castles, mansions and so on, but you can also select the plot of land you wish to build upon using the Google Maps utility. Luckily, though, there’s no planning permission involved, enabling you to get straight to work!
Of course, playing LEGO online can never compare with the real thing, but there are a couple of notable upsides. Firstly, if you get halfway through and decide that your creation isn’t up to your usual, masterpiece standards, you can quickly undo certain parts, or scrub the whole thing if need be. Also, when you’re dismantling, you won’t have to go through the rigmarole of separating all of those pesky bricks back to individual pieces.
Additionally, by using the Chrome version, you’ll never find yourself running out of bricks, so in effect, you really can build to your heart’s content.
You can view and share your LEGO creations with those in your Google+ circles, and with plenty of tutorials helping you to get started, you’ll soon have your own Minecraft-esque lair comprised completely of LEGO.
The system is nicely optimized for the touch-based interface of tablets and smartphones, so if you’re serious about getting the job done, you’re much better off on your iPad or Nexus 7 than the traditional desktop.
For me, having tried it out for a short while, the Chrome experiment is a nostalgia-inducing, well-executed idea, but it seems the novelty has worn off already. Then again, I could never really get into Minecraft, either, and with something of a soft spot for LEGO in general, here’s to hoping it takes off and millions collaborate to create a colorful world in virtual plastic,
To get started, all you need to do is head on over to buildwithchrome.com and sign into your Google account. Rest is, as they say, magic, or your imagination. Whichever comes first!