Scan and Play
To start using LEGO Vidiyo, you must purchase a BeatBox. The retail price is $ 20, which includes a minifigure, a custom box decorated with Lego dots, and a set of 16 BeatBits starter sets (2×2 printed tokens; 14 of the included BeatBits are random, 2 One is exclusive to the suit).
There are currently 12 different BeatBoxes to choose from, and around 130 BeatBits can be collected at the time of writing. The minifigures are unique and full of personality, just as you would expect from the essential changes to the collectible minifigure series. Each BeatBox has approximately 7090 pieces, so don’t expect to use these pieces for an extended traditional LEGO building experience.
Making your character’s suitcase is very simple. It consists of four to five pieces, a strap, and some dots and mosaics to decorate it. The handle looks like a pair of earphones and feels good in the hand.
However, if you want to go straight, all you really need to build to start using the Vidiyo app is the Minifigure and the folding stage. Center your character, fold the sides and paste up to 12 BeatBits. Scan this in the app to unlock your gang character.
If you have multiple characters, you can add multiple characters to your band, but you need to rescan one of them (not all, just one) each time you want to perform. Each gang can only have up to three members, and because you can have more than one person using the Vidiyo app, Lego can easily manage multiple gangs, each with their own artwork, clothing options, etc. It is worth noting that bands cannot customize their names; the Vidiyo application will generate familiar random names.
To start the program, select a song. The song selection rotates frequently, rather than becoming a growing library, which is a good reason to check what’s available from time to time. This week is an eclectic mix, from modern pop music (I don’t pretend to know any of them) to Guns `n` Roses, so you always find something you like. But you can’t use your own music.
Once you’ve chosen the song, you need to scan at least one of the characters in your band (again), as well as up to 12 BeatBits. Check Latest price at Amazon.
BeatBits are special effects used when recording music videos. These vary due to environmental effects, video distortions, or audio filters. You don’t need to worry about setting BeatBits up the right way; the app will recognize them anyway. You can store spare BeatBits in the back of the carrying case.
Next, choose a real-world location as your stage and explore so that the augmented reality system can recognize the surroundings. This is where things get really interesting. On the left, you can choose the scale of your minifigure:
- The proportions of the minifigures are the same as the real LEGO costumes, so you can make them dance with existing LEGOs without looking out of place; or create a custom scenario for them.
- Human scales, so you can dance with the band or see them only in life size.
- Massive, where they became giants.
Point your device at the stage (ie the camera) and the performer will follow. Once you have selected the exact location where you want them to be, click on the main performance interface. Here, your band will start playing independently, lip-synching with the music. As a video director and cameraman, you will have access to all the special effects buttons that were originally scanned, as well as the ability to move the camera. If you point to a specific artist, you can also click on the circular profile icon that appears to instruct them to perform their own special actions. For those with smaller hands, due solely to the weight of the device, it is easier to do this on a smartphone than on a tablet. My son’s videos often end up pointing at the floor, and he tries to hold the heavy tablet with one hand and press the screen with the other at the same time.
Of course, if you have friends who want to be featured in this video, you can yell at them instructions (or just “Get out of the way, Mom!”).
Each video is one minute long, at this time you can preview and save your work. Completing the performance will also unlock content like costume changes, band art, and other cosmetic items.
But You Can’t (Really) Share Anything
Did your little baby make a fun video that you really want to share with your Snapchat family group? Sorry, you can’t. Not only can it not be shared directly to any social network within the app, there is also no way to download the creation to device storage and then manually let parents share it. If you are absolutely determined, you can connect your device to the computer and record the screen, but honestly, who has the time to do this?
I fully understand the decision not to include any stock options directly in the application; after all, this is designed for kids, and most social media doesn’t even allow kids to use it. What you can do is save it in the app or share the 520 second clip on the Vidiyo community feed. This should only be done if no real person appears in the video. As you would expect from the Lego app, it is very gentle, so if your kids want to explore the creations of others, they don’t have to worry about inappropriate material.
Not being able to export the video in any way feels like a missed opportunity. People might think that these are music copyright issues, but given that these are 60-second clips, not even complete songs, this seems unlikely. I suspect it is more because Lego really does not want the app to be used improperly.
Expanding With Bandmates and Boombox
Similar to the minifigures series, the Bandmates package provides a random minifigure to add to your band, and a unique two random Beat Bits. However, they are not cheap, each priced at $5. Such lucky bags are not new to Lego (the entire collection of collectible minifigures are sold in this way), but this does not make them less shocking-they are physically equivalent to loot boxes.
As the most expensive new product in the Vidiyo series, BoomBox adds a physical stage and four custom environments for your band to perform; and four new band members, weighing 996 pieces and priced at $100. Lego has also released some smaller stages for the European market, but it is not clear whether they will enter the United States.
A Very Brief History of Digital LEGO Play
Lego has always been a reliable cure for the modern problem of children’s screen addiction, so when two worlds collide, the results are always interesting. Although the LEGO Group has achieved countless successes in original video games, it has only recently begun to use the digital arena directly as a game feature of its building block sets.
For the elderly, Mindstorms EV3 and robot kits provide technical settings and programming options similar to Scratch. Dimensions is a wonderful combination of physical and digital, using RFID to import characters into video games, although in the end it is nothing more than a peculiar way of writing passwords. The PoweredUp series of cars and trains provide Bluetooth remote control via a smartphone application.
Lego first tested augmented reality in the form of AR Studio and Playgrounds; both were quickly shelved. Recently, he has achieved success in the Hidden Side suit, where users can use AR to bring the model to life and play some ghost hunting games.
Should You Buy Into LEGO Vidyo?
Despite the flaws in exporting his work, it turns out that the Vidyo series is very popular in the family, be it for the 39-year-old or your 7-year-old. Lego finally identified a compelling use case for augmented reality; a type of screen time that allows children and adults to participate in creative screen time, seamlessly combining digital and physical games. Check Latest price at Amazon.
The recent addition of a new stage shows that Lego is committed to the series, even if the numbers disappear, you will still leave some amazing minifigures and unique works for your own creation.
Vidyo BeatBox is $20, and the purchase price for testing it is also good; although it is a shame that some extra characters appear in the form of lucky bags.