LEGO Island, while generally stable, contains various known glitches that have been discovered over its 20+ years of existence. A handful of these glitches were fixed in v1.1 and therefore pertain only to v1.0, but the vast majority affect both. It is unlikely these will ever get officially fixed since the last official update to LEGO Island was v1.1 built on September 8, 1997.
Note that this list only includes glitches that are always apparent, and does not include the various compatibility issues that have developed as Windows has seen updates.
These glitches have no effect on the player experience and are usually just interesting quirks.
Music does not loop indefinitely
Main article: Interleaf File
Description: LEGO Island's sound infrastructure (using Interleaf files) does not appear to have a system for infinitely looping music. Music is instead set to a very high loop count (often 1,000 or 10,000) that would likely never be reached under any normal circumstance, but if the game is left running for long periods of time, it is not impossible to reach the limits of these loop counts at which point the music will stop until the room is reloaded.
Steps to recreate: The easiest way to trigger this is in the dune buggy building section (aka the Octan building). The music here is only 30 seconds long and loops 1,000 times, meaning it will stop looping after approximately 8.33 hours.
Inadvertent Usefulness: None, mostly just an interesting insight into the game's inner workings.
Vehicles can be made to drive themselves
Description: If you are driving a vehicle and exit it while moving (i.e. don't stop before leaving it), it will continue to drive at the same speed you left it at, auto-piloting itself around the island. It's not entirely clear why this is the case, but it's possible the vehicles are the same type of "entity" as the NPCs roaming around and that vehicle speed isn't automatically cleared when you leave it, causing it to roam around too at the speed you inadvertently set for it. If this is true, there are interesting implications for potentially driving and/or setting the speed of NPCs. Interestingly, the vehicles don't seem to move indefinitely (they don't slow down, but will eventually stop moving) so perhaps some background system on the island periodically tries to ensure vehicle movement is set to 0.
Steps to recreate: Drive any vehicle outside of a quest (e.g. jetski, skateboard, dunebuggy, or bicycle) and while still moving, click your LEGO hand to exit the vehicle without leaving the main island. You'll exit the vehicle, but the vehicle will keep moving, auto-steering itself around corners. The jetski will drive itself around the outside of the island on the water.
Inadvertent Usefulness: None, just a mildly fun novelty.
These glitches can affect the player experience, but not in a particularly detrimental way or are not common enough to cause problems under normal circumstances.
Description: Races can be glitched by exploiting a bug in the jetski race. Leaving a jetski race just before the race starts appears to set a global variable that leads to interesting behavior if you then try to enter the racecar race or jetski race again:
- If you enter the racecar race in this state, you'll be able to move during the opening sequence (the other racers taunting you and the countdown). You can drive backwards all the way to the exit door (which is invisible as its checkpoint hasn't been reached yet - it can be triggered by driving into it) but you're prevented from going through it. You can also clip between the racers (similar to Clipping past the roadblock) to start the race early, but the game appears to detect this and jumps the other racers forward giving you no actual lead over them in the race.
- Upon re-entering the jetski race, it will start immediately after the transition (i.e. there will be no countdown where you're unable to move).
Steps to recreate: In the jetski race, leave the race just before the race actually starts (after the second horn sound). The timing for this is not particularly precise so it's not hard to do. If you've triggered the glitch correctly, you'll hear a boat engine sound very briefly during the transition exiting the race. The game is now in a glitched state and you can enter either the racecar or jetski race to experience either of the above. Entering a race will return the game to normal, the state is not persistent.
Inadvertent Usefulness: Little, if any. While it technically shortens race time allowing you to skip the intros of both races, the setup takes too long to be useful in a speedrun. Also, as mentioned earlier, it can't even be used to gain a lead over opponents in either race. There may be a setup where this glitch could help save a few seconds somewhere, but it hasn't been found and doesn't seem likely.
Clipping past the roadblock
Description: In some missions, the game intentionally tries to force you to take a longer route by placing a sudden roadblock on what would be the shorter route. In all cases, the colliders of the roadblock are imperfect and it is possible to maneuver through the gaps with little difficulty.
Steps to recreate: When a roadblock appears, there's a fairly wide gap in between some of the objects. Continue to walk into it, you may have to rapidly press left and right to shimmy though, but you'll eventually slide right through.
Inadvertent Usefulness: Very. This is a big time save for any speedrun or even casual playthrough, allowing you to get around some forced "difficulty" fairly easily.
These glitches are considered highly detrimental to the player experience, through their severity and/or ease of encountering.
Turn speed is locked to the frame rate
Main article: Turn Speed
Description: One of the more infamous issues plaguing LEGO Island, particularly in the modern era. The keyboard controls can become noticeably harder depending on how fast or slow your hardware is. Since the game turns a constant amount each frame, if the game is running too slow, the turning slows down with it, and vice versa for the game running too fast (which is the case for nearly all hardware today). On many systems, the turning makes the game almost unplayable, particularly for anything time-sensitive.
Steps to recreate: The turning was tuned for the average hardware of the era (1997). Playing LEGO Island on any hardware outside of that range will demonstate the problem.
Inadvertent Usefulness: None. This is one of the most irritating issues when playing LEGO Island, particularly on modern systems. So much so that LEGO Island Rebuilder contains a patch to address it.
Glitching and crashing when trying to exit the game
Description: When you try to exit LEGO Island normally, you're teleported to the Information Center, and an animation plays where the Infomaniac bounces into the center of the screen, two LEGO bricks appear, and you're asked to confirm that you want to exit (clicking a green brick to leave or a red brick to remain in-game). Starting with Windows Vista, this sequence has become extremely glitchy for currently unknown reasons.
The Infomaniac's animation will flicker or jump erratically, and an intermittent buzzing sound will play. Frequently, the game will crash before the user can even select an option, resulting in lost progress since the game only saves when you click the green brick to confirm exiting. Whether the game crashes or not appears to be more or less random.
If the game doesn't crash, it's possible to get chunks of the Infomaniac's dialogue to loop indefinitely, even after moving to different rooms or to the island.
Steps to recreate: This is a very consistent bug on modern versions of Windows as well as Wine and is extremely easy to trigger. Chances are you've seen it happen already without even trying to cause it. Continuously clicking the door in the Information Center (or pressing Esc key) can make the glitch even more likely, or exacerbate it further.
Inadvertent Usefulness: The ease of triggering and exploiting this glitch has led to popular memes in the community, including "Are You Ready To Le?" (a glitched loop of the Infomaniac's question "Are you ready to leave LEGO Island?").