12 October 2019

LEGO® CITY review: 60234 People Pack - Fun Fair

While we tend not to to focus on minifigures heavily here at New Elementary, we often look at minifigure accessories, body wear and headgear as they can often be utilised within builds completely differently than being simple minifigure elements. 60234 People Pack Fun Fair (available at Amazon.com) was released this summer and contains enough interesting, new elements for us to take a closer look.


60234 People Pack Fun Fair contains 183 elements, 14 minifigures and is priced at  £34.99 / $39.99 / 39.99€.

9 October 2019

Fabuland Lives On: the hidden side

This year marks 40 years since The LEGO Group (TLG) launched the FABULAND® theme, which ran until 1989. To celebrate this, we've been running an occasional series of articles here at New Elementary called Fabuland Lives On! We're examining the surprising effect that this theme for 3-7 year olds has had upon the LEGO® System, and the hearts of fans.


So far we have looked at the colours and the elements that are still present in sets today. This third post focuses on some of Elspeth's favourite Fabuland elements that popped up unexpectedly in other themes over the years but sadly are no longer in production; the hidden side of Fabuland.

6 October 2019

LEGO® Build a Minifigure: Exclusive elements from October 2019

Every three months, new LEGO® elements are added to the Build a Minifigure towers in LEGO Stores worldwide and recently The LEGO Group have started including some pieces in exclusive colours or with decorations not found in sets. Erik H. (HokayBricks) has scrutinised October's offerings for you!

The parts described below are all completely new – they have not appeared in any officially released set prior to the 1 October 2019 Quarter 4 (Q4) batch of new parts for Build a Minifigure (BAM) Towers. All previous iterations of the parts have been referenced along with their origins.



4 October 2019

LEGO® Hidden Side review: 70423 Paranormal Intercept Bus 3000

Continuing our examination of the new LEGO® Hidden Side theme, Ben Davies (ProfessorBrickkeeper) takes a look at 70423 Paranormal Intercept Bus 3000 which is now available priced £54.99 / $59.99 / 59.99€.

For all the different LEGO® buses produced over the years, there’s been surprisingly few depictions of school buses. Historically, LEGO has instead opted to reproduce public transport and tour buses. With the launch of LEGO Hidden Side 70423 Paranormal Intercept Bus 3000, they have finally rectified the situation. The Paranormal Intercept Bus 3000 is modeled off of a typical American school bus, retrofitted with various gizmos and gadgets to help heroes Jack, Parker, and J.B. defeat the ghosts of the Hidden Side.

1 October 2019

Old Elementary: Insectoids

Duncan Lindbo returns today with another look at a weird LEGO® part from history and how it might be used in your creations.

Today, we’re going to venture back into the dark days of the 1990s once again and take a look at some more parts from the Insectoids theme. Last time, we looked at some of the properties of the Insectoid wings; this time we’re looking at the legs. Bug legs! Weird biomechanical big legs!


25 September 2019

Old Elementary: The 1x2 plate with the arm that moved

Today's look back into LEGO® part history comes from Felix Stiessen, an avid LEGO enthusiast from Austria who is always interested in discovering new and interesting techniques to exploit the unique geometry of certain LEGO bricks.

Making its first appearance in 1984’s LEGO Castle range, the basic design of the LEGO® 1x2 plate with a vertical bar attachment has now been around for 35 years. However, in 2008 LEGO introduced a subtle design change that might have gone unnoticed by many.

This article will explore the difference between Design ID 4623 - Plate W. Hook 1X2, and Design ID 88072 - Plate 1X2 W. Vertical Schaft (sic).

22 September 2019

How the LEGO® element team designed the new gear wheels

We’ve really enjoyed this latest Parts Festival, which now draws to a close, and we are so grateful to the talented artists who gave us their time and creative talents for everyone’s pleasure; in no particular order – Jessica Farrell, Inthert, Jaap Bijl, Duncan Lindbo, Samuel Pister, Sarah Beyer and Jaroslaw Walter.

To complete the festival we will take another look at what are arguably the most noticeable parts in the selection; the new gear wheel plates that we affectionately named ‘splat gears’. You may recall back in March, Elspeth wrote a fantastic post listing the different kinds of LEGO gears through history, including an examination of the new splat gear family.


It seems LEGO enjoyed her post too! – we later received this fascinating email from Marinus Jasperse on behalf of the Element Design Platform Team at the LEGO Group about the development of the new gear family...

21 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Duncan Lindbo's Schwebeadler

It's the final day of creations in our Parts Festival today and we hope you've been inspired by the incredible LEGO® models and techniques our global team of fan builders have come up with. (If you're looking for a building challenge yourself, check out our latest competition, Recycle my Bicycle!) To round things off, Duncan Lindbo creates a cool ship.

With Ma.Ktober approaching, I decided to get in on the action with this build for the parts fest. So, here’s the Schwebeadler, a two-person hovercraft used primarily for scouting and light anti-infantry duties.



20 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Inthert and the pauldon

Our Parts Festival has almost ended but those of you with a good memory may recall there is an element that hasn't yet been shown in any of the LEGO® creations yet; Reinhardt's pauldron. We didn't have lots of this element and a couple of unfortunate complications meant that in the end, only one builder was able to use them. That builder is Inthert, and we're excited to present his ideas to you today!

As an AFOL who almost exclusively builds spaceships (more specifically, grey spaceships) there was one part amongst the selection I received that I took particular interest in: Design Element 5x5x3 in Medium Stone Grey/ Light Bluish Gray (6254171|49523).


19 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jessica Farrell's flowers

Being a horticulturalist, Jessica Farrell was well placed to build flowers with the LEGO® parts we gave her for our Parts Festival! In her final post, she gives us a beautiful bunch of bunches.

NARCISSUS

Outside my bedroom window there is a clump of dwarf narcissus that faithfully bloom a cheery yellow and orange every February, no matter how inclement the weather. What better way to immortalise them than by recreating them out of my favourite medium? 

18 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Duncan Lindbo bugs out

After a break let's get back the last few contributions to our Parts Festival, where LEGO® builders use some of the newest parts to create inspiring ideas. Duncan Lindbo is back today, finding a place for the first creation he made for us.

Today we get to see where the TRT13 dropship was in such a rush to get to…

(Click image to enlarge)

The colony on planet LG-624 had gone silent, so a platoon of marines was dispatched to investigate. They start their search at the colony’s power plant complex. The massive reactor tower appears intact, but the shattered windows and flickering fires in the admin towers suggest some kind of struggle. More ominous still, the entire complex seems deserted: no sign of the colonists anywhere.

16 September 2019

LEGO® Hidden Side review: 70419 Wrecked Shrimp Boat

Our third LEGO® Hidden Side set review is one of the cheaper sets, 70419 Wrecked Shrimp Boat. It has 310 elements, four minifigures and one sticker sheet with 15 stickers. It retails at £24.99 / US$29.99 / 29.99€.


Let's take a look and see if this set has any interesting new elements to float the boat of New Elementary readers.

13 September 2019

Contest: Recycle my Bicycle

Go to the competition entry form to send us your entry!
Time to see what you readers can build; yes it's time for a new contest! (You must be 18 or over.) We're asking you to make an amazing LEGO® creation using a new piece; we want you to recycle the bicycle element to build something completely different with it. Impress us with your imagination and ingenuity!


10 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jaap Bijl - week 3

Jaap Bijl (jaapxaap) reveals his final LEGO® model for our Parts Festival using a collection of seed parts chosen by us.

So here it is. My third and final update for the Parts Fest. I wrote last time that this update would be all about my final build that shows uses of some of the seed parts. I showed a little work in progress of a mushroom house with a purple door en an arch of stars above it. Over the last week I have spent quite some time on it and here it is. I present to you my Mushroom Mansion!


9 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Duncan Lindbo kills bugs

Duncan Lindbo returns from the garden today with a rather nasty discovery for our LEGO® Parts Festival.

There I was, out getting some fresh air, when a flash of purple caught my eye. Upon further investigation, it turned out to be some kind of foul alien worm. In an abundance of caution, I put on a pair of thick gloves before handling the specimen.

Nasty little critter, isn’t it?

7 September 2019

LEGO® Build a Minifigure: Exclusive elements from July 2019

Back in July we published an article by David Gregory about some seemingly new colours/ decorations/ lack of decorations of LEGO® elements found in Build a Minifigure towers. In August our friend and avid follower AFOL Jack asked Vice President of Design Matthew Ashton whether these were intentionally being produced as exclusives – which Matthew confirmed! Meanwhile, Erik H. (HokayBricks) had been researching these new elements and shares his findings with us today. There are surely more than these, for example Erik hasn't tried to identify any heads yet – so if you are aware of more, do comment!

The parts described below are all completely new – they have not appeared in any official set prior to the release of the July 2019 batch of new parts for Build a Minifigure towers at LEGO Stores worldwide. For comparison I have photographed most of the previously released variants of each design, with the new one on the right.


Long Straight Hair (12890) is now available in Bright Orange/ Orange, previously available in Cool Yellow (one Collectible Minifigure and Build a Minifigure) and Black (one set). This piece debuted in Cool Yellow with the Trendsetter from Collectible Minifigure Series 10 in 2013.

6 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Samuel Pister's clown and soldier

Time for the second half of Samuel Pister's creations for our Parts Festival today, where LEGO® builders from around the world try out new pieces. If you missed his first bunch, they're here.


For this clown creation, I integrated many of the parts from the selection:
  • Vibrant Coral Gear Wheel 6x6, Z14 (6258385| 35446)
  • Medium Lilac/ Dark Purple Gear Wheel 2X2, Z6 (6238330 | 35442)
  • Bright Purple/ Dark Pink Plate 3X3, Heart, No. 1 (6254513|39613)
  • Bright Yellow/ Yellow Design Plate, 4X4X2/3, No. 1 (6248804|39611)
  • Bright Orange/ Orange Tile 1X1, Heart, No. 1 (6258993|39739)

5 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jarekwally's chair and speeder

Following his earlier creations for our Parts Festival, LEGO® builder Jaroslaw Walter (jarekwally) focuses on some of the stranger elements among our seed parts.

Office chair

For the base of my retro furniture I used three of the seed parts: Black Turntable 2X2X1 w/ Function (6252373| 40145), Dark Stone Grey Turntable Holder W/ Cross Axle (6252372|40144) and Black Pneumatic Connecting Piece, No. 1 (6249327|41817).


4 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Sarah Beyer's microscale

Following her experiments with new LEGO® Technic parts, Sarah Beyer presents some microscale creations for our Parts Festival.

Last time I used Brick, Modified 1 x 1 x 2/3 No Studs, Curved Top (Design ID 49307) to create arm rests for a sofa. I believe that this "D brick" will fulfil many different purposes in coming sets and MOCs. Below, I've used it as the roof of a microscale train.

2 September 2019

LEGO® Hidden Side review: 70422 Shrimp Shack Attack

Hidden Side is a new LEGO® theme for 2019 featuring brick-built sets that combine with augmented reality (AR) to give a physical and digital aspect to each set. The Hidden Side range features eight building sets and interaction is via a smartphone app which reveals a hidden world of interactive mysteries and challenges to solve, using AR.


We are taking a look at a few Hidden Side sets and following 70425 Newbury Haunted High School, our second set up for review is 70422 Shrimp Shack Attack. This set has 579 pieces, one sticker sheet with 16 stickers, five minifigures and retails at £44.99 / US$49.99 / 49.99€.

1 September 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Duncan Lindbo sings C is for Cookie

A little Sunday treat for you from Duncan Lindbo, as he continues his LEGO® Parts Festival explorations for us.

So there I was, staring at a pile of Vibrant Coral gears (Gear Wheel 6x6, Z14 – 6258385| 35446), trying to think of a MOC to make with them, when it struck me that they kind of look like a big splat (I’m not the first one to make this observation, I know). Then I tried to think of things with big pink splats on them, and the first thing that came to mind was a particular variety of cheap, disgusting, and totally delicious sugar cookie that pretty much every grocery store and supermarket around here has a generic variety of…


31 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jessica Farrell's microscale

Another quick post for our Parts Festival, from Jessica Farrell today. Following her animals last week, we have a couple of microscale creations using some of the LEGO® parts we sent her. This is a good moment to explain that we don't send all the chosen builders exactly the same parts; for example Jessica received some of the new 3x3 Technic frames. 

BAVARIAN ICE CREAM CONE CASTLE

Invert the inverted printed cone piece (Cone 2X2X2, Inverted, No. 1 in Medium Nougat – 6261728|52116) and you get something that resembles the turrets of a fairytale castle. At least, it would if it was in microscale!

30 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jaap Bijl - week 2

Time for another update of what's been going through Jaap Bijl's (jaapxaap, found on Flickr and Instagram) head as he is faced with the various LEGO® parts in our Parts Festival.

There was one piece in the parts selection that was just weird to me. It's a white piece with some strange holes and details that didn't feel like LEGO to me. I was wondering why it even existed and why they would make such a part. But hey, if I think a piece doesn't deserve the name LEGO, I feel like that's enough reason to use it.

While looking at the piece, it suddenly came to me that it looked exactly like a security camera. So I took some bricks together and made a little scene to prove that even this piece is useful.


29 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Inhert's Splat Gear Experiments

Back to the Parts Festival fun today as our LEGO® fan builders find uses for 2019 parts. Following his discoveries with the big yellow star, Inthert returns today with fascinating analysis of the gear wheels.

Perhaps it was their bright colours or unusual shape but the three sizes of the affectionately dubbed ‘splat gears’ immediately caught my eye as I emptied all the parts onto my build table.


  • Vibrant Coral Gear Wheel 6X6, Z14 (Element ID 6258385 | Design ID 35446)
  • Dark Stone Grey [TLG]/ Dark Bluish Gray [BL] Gear Wheel 4X4, Z10 (6252371|35443)
  • Medium Lilac [TLG]/ Dark Purple [BL] Gear Wheel 2X2, Z6 (6238330|35442)

27 August 2019

LEGO® Hidden Side review: 70425 Newbury Haunted High School

We interrupt your Parts Festival to bring you the first of our reviews of LEGO® Hidden Side sets, of which we will examine five over the coming weeks. Jonas Kramm takes reviewing duties of 70425 Newbury Haunted High School.

Hidden Side is the new LEGO® theme in town, and brings us eight new play sets. To start we’re exploring the biggest one: it’s not a new Elementary School, but Newbury’s Haunted High School.


Opening the box reveals nine bags containing 1474 pieces, one big instruction booklet and two sheets with 44 stickers to apply. The biggest interest for me is always what new parts are included so let’s take a look what treasures are buried here.

26 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Duncan Lindbo's Castle Maze Puzzle

After his initial creation using the new LEGO® stud shooter, Duncan Lindbo returns with a wholly different idea, this time using the new gear wheel, as part of our ongoing Parts Festival.

When I got my shipment of Gear Wheel 4x4, Z10 (Design ID 35443) from New Elementary, it didn’t take me long to come up with an idea for a MOC that used them. With a diameter of six studs including the teeth, and four studs without, they’re big enough to have some space to work on without requiring a tremendous investment in parts. Also, the ones I got were Dark Stone Grey/ Dark Bluish Gray (Element ID 6252371), which works well for a variety of uses (they also come in Medium Azure, 6238331).


So I built a slide puzzle. Not just any slide puzzle, but one in which the pieces also rotate!

25 August 2019

24 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Samuel Pister's tube and king

Samuel Pister (Pistash on Flickr and Facebook) is a French LEGO® builder and member of Lug’Est. His wild and colourful style seemed the right fit for the wild and colourful elements in our Parts Festival!

When I received the different parts shipped by New Elementary my first question was, “What will I do with this giant coral gear?” (Gear Wheel 6x6, Z14 in Vibrant Coral 6258385|35446.)
Obviously there were two main difficulties with this part. Firstly this element is designed to be used as a functional element, a gear in rotation, not for aesthetic effect. Secondly, the Vibrant Coral. I love this newest colour introduced by LEGO but it is not natural and very difficult to integrate in MOCs.

Despite these difficulties, it is always feasible with LEGO parts to find solutions and that is one aspect of the hobby that I particularly like: everything is possible.

23 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Sarah Beyer's Technic experiments

Swedish LEGO® builder Sarah Beyer (betweenbrickwalls on Flickr) usually builds modern house interiors and microscale buildings, and her initial contributions to our Parts Festival are no exception!

I received a whole bunch of various new parts from New Elementary, and some of them belong to the Technic category. I rarely build Technic MOCs but I find those parts very useful, especially when it comes to microscale builds. The Round Plate 2x2 Thin with Rotation Stem (Design ID 40145), and Liftarm 1 x 3 with Connections for Hose and Rubber Bladder (41817) first caught my attention.


The circular shapes make great microscale watch towers like in this fort somewhere in the desert.

The round plate can also be used in minifigure scale builds. It´s a perfect alternative to using Support 2 x 2 x 2 Stand (3940/19798) or a Telescope (64644) when building a stool. You need a Round Tile 1x1 with Bar and Pin holder (20482) to connect it to a stud.

In the room below I´ve used the round plate to create a side table. It fits well in a Swedish home from the early 20th Century.

As you may notice I´ve also used Brick, Modified 1 x 1 x 2/3 No Studs, Curved Top (49307) to create arm rests for the sofa.



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Products mentioned in this post were kindly supplied by the LEGO Group. All content represents the opinions of New Elementary authors and not the LEGO Group. All text and images are © New Elementary unless otherwise attributed.

22 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jaap Bijl - week 1

The next LEGO® builder to introduce you to is Jaap Bijl (jaapxaap, found on Flickr and Instagram) from the Netherlands and he is a member of Lowlug and Innovalug. His building motto is “Never ask whether something is possible with LEGO or not. Only ask how.” Sounds like an ideal candidate for our challenging Parts Festival! Jaap has taken the unique approach of sending us weekly updates on his progress; an insight into his creative process.

A week ago I got my hands on the parts New Elementary sent me and that made me excited as I had no idea what pieces I would receive. I took the package straight to my room, got a pair of scissors and immediately opened it. Since then they have been sitting on the coffee table in my room! I had a lot of work to finish first but by having them in sight I still saw them a few times a day, to get inspired.

I started experimenting with the pieces that immediately triggered my creativity, such as the purple gear (Gear Wheel 2X2, Z6 in Medium Lilac/ Purple  – 6238330 | 35442). That was not because of the shape but the colour. If you follow me, you might know that I have done a lot of fantasy builds with purple, so getting new purple pieces was a fun surprise! It just looked like a flower to me. This was the same thought I had with the yellow star pieces from The LEGO Movie 2 sets (Design Plate, 4X4X2/3, No. 1 in Bright Yellow/ Yellow – 6248804|39611) which were a lot bigger than I expected, which means a harder (and more fun!) challenge to incorporate them into a build.



21 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jessica Farrell's animals

The next Parts Festival participant to introduce you to is Jessica Farrell from Ireland, a member of Brick.ie. You may have first seen Jessica's work when her LEGO® version of Her Majesty's Theatre in London gained widespread coverage back in 2015. She runs her own nursery and so you you can expect organic builds from her, and today is no exception as we look at the animals she created from the parts selection we sent her.

I felt genuine anxiety when I received my sealed box of new elements. I had already discovered that, to my chagrin, my creative brain stubbornly does not work this way! When I build a model, I choose the elements to suit the build rather than chose the build to suit the elements. I’d happily put all these new elements away in a drawer somewhere until, one day, I’m puzzling over a tricky, fiddly bit of some enormous model and suddenly a bell rings in my head and I know just the part to fit... but Tim said “Just go and build stuff, I have faith in you,” so (gulp) here goes!

GANDER


20 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Inthert is Starry-Eyed

The next Parts Festival participant to introduce you to is Inthert (on Flickr), a UK-based LEGO® builder who was one of the winners of our Build 'n' Fix contest earlier this year with his lovely spade, although spaceships are really his thing. Here's the first of his investigations into our 19 seed parts.

At first, I questioned how useful the star element (Design Plate 4X4X2/3 No. 1 in Bright Yellow/ Yellow – Element ID 6248804| Design ID 39611) would be, especially without straying straight into illegal techniques. This is simply down to its number of connection points which, for a part of its size, is pretty limited. A star with nine friends is a slightly different story though.


18 August 2019

LEGO® Ideas review: 21319 Central Perk

Well, it might not have been your day, your week, your month, or even your year but we are here for you with our review of the new LEGO® Ideas 21319 Central Perk set. Could you BE any more excited? Well it might depend on whether you actually ever watched the television series Friends back in the 1990s.


LEGO Ideas 21319 Central Perk is rated for ages 16+ and contains 1070 elements, seven minifigures and a small sticker sheet. It is due for release on 1 September 2019. Let's go and have a coffee with some friends now.

17 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Jarekwally's flowers, vase and butterfly

Our second Parts Festival participant is Jaroslaw Walter (jarekwally on Flickr, Facebook & Instagram), a Polish LEGO® builder living in Ireland who is a member of the LEGO User Groups LUGPOL, Zbudujmy.to, Brick.ie and Lug.ie. Here's the first of the varied creations he's made for us.


Building LEGO should make us happy. Personally I build to de-stress and forget about everyday problems. It helps a lot. I like enter to my room, sit down and combine different elements. At some point, ideas come to my mind. 

For this creation I used various parts from the selection provided by New Elementary.

16 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Duncan Lindbo's TRT13 dropship

Our Parts Festival begins today! If you missed yesterday's post introducing the LEGO® parts that our selected builders are using in their creations, check it out. To kick things off proper today though we have the one returning builder from a previous parts festival, Duncan Lindbo (donutsftw on Flickr and Instagram). Duncan is a member of the North Carolina LEGO Users Group who generally builds mecha and Space stuff and for his first build he has chosen one of the most peculair and controversial elements from our selection.

Stud shooters: Kids love ‘em (I assume, since LEGO keeps making new ones) and AFOLs hate ‘em. So Shooter w/ Cross Axle, No. 1 (6248534|41812) probably wasn’t a part I would have sought out on my own but now that I’ve got my hands on a bunch of them (thanks Tim!) let’s see what I can come up with.

The various ridges, flaps, and clips that facilitate the stud-shootin’ action give this piece some interesting texture, and because every part is a spaceship (or mech) part, my first thought was to use them as thrusters/engines on a mini spaceship.


15 August 2019

2019 Parts Fest #1: Introducing the Elements

It is Parts Fest time once more here at New Elementary. We have posted a lovely selection of new-for-2019 LEGO® elements to some of the most innovative, inspiring builders we know and love. This time our featured builders are from Ireland, the Netherlands, UK, Germany, USA, Poland, France and Sweden; each with their own style and techniques to bring to our parts festival.


In this first post,  we wanted to introduce the elements included in this parts festival. All the elements are new to 2019 and almost all are completely new element moulds. Without further ado, let's meet the elements.

13 August 2019

LEGO® review: 71044 Disney Train and Station

Announced today, LEGO® set 71044 Disney Train and Station is a mammoth, detailed set containing a 77cm-long train and a station based on Disney theme parks which is 39cm x 35cm. It will be available direct from LEGO stores from 21 August 2019 for VIPs and general release from 1 September for £299.99/ US$329.99/ CA$379.99/ DE€329.99/ FR€329.99/ 2499DKK/ AU$549.99.

In 2016, LEGO released the first series of Disney Collectable Minifigures, followed by a big set. This year, LEGO released the second series of Disney Collectable Minifigures, and it is also followed by a big set. 71044 Disney Train and Station comes with 2925 pieces and five minifigures, which we’re about to examine!


11 August 2019

2019 Kockice Convention workshop: part 2

Today we're continuing the highlights of our workshop in Croatia earlier this year which was a part of the Kockice Convention in Zagreb. If you missed part 1, see it here.

“Modern Living” by Vesna Todorovic


9 August 2019

2019 Kockice Convention workshop: part 1

It's time for another parts festival at New Elementary, where we put LEGO® elements from 2019 in front of LEGO fans and see what techniques, tablescraps and MOCs they come up with.

To kick things off we have the results of our workshop in Croatia earlier this year which was a part of the Kockice Convention in Zagreb. Over 100 AFOLs from 13 countries attended and you can read a report by The LEGO Group about the event here.

7 August 2019

LEGO® Ideas 21318 Treehouse: the build

Time for the second part of our LEGO® Ideas 21318 Treehouse review, looking at the build. We covered its elements in part 1.


In a great alteration to Kevin Freeser's original fan submission, which had a grey square base, César Soares' official version has an irregular green shape with a stream running through it. The stream is Dark Azure plate (including the 4x8, Element ID 6209672, its third appearance in sets) with a layer of Transparent 1x1 and 1x2 plates on top.

5 August 2019

LEGO® Ideas 21318 Treehouse: the parts

Fan designer Kevin Freeser faced an unexpected challenge after submitting his Treehouse to LEGO® Ideas: he had exceeded the 3000 part limit imposed and had to redesign it with fewer elements. Ironically the final retail set exceeds it again, at 3036 pieces, but you can see why The LEGO Group didn’t want to skimp with this set. Folks, this thing is big.


3 August 2019

Fabuland Lives On: the elements

This year marks 40 years since The LEGO Group (TLG) launched the FABULAND theme. In total, 99 Fabuland sets were released from 1979 until 1989, plus the theme featured licensed products such as books, clothing, key rings and for the first time an animated TV series. To celebrate this, we're examining the surprising legacy that this theme for 3-7 year olds has had upon the elements of the LEGO® System to this day.



We thought it would be interesting to take a look at the influence of this theme by finding some current LEGO elements that started their lives as Fabuland elements.

1 August 2019

LEGO® Technic review: 42099 4x4 X-Treme Off-Roader

Our final review of summer 2019 LEGO® Technic sets is 42099 4x4 X-Treme Off-Roader which uses the new Control+ system, has 958 pieces and is available as of today for US$249.99/ £199.99/ 229.99€. This time, we welcome back Ryan Welles to reviewing duties! 

It was the year 2007 when the good people in Billund introduced a new motorized system. The Power Functions system, known for its orange banded box art and incorporated in both Creator and Technic sets, is the electrical system that has had the longest lifespan in LEGO® history to date. The powerful motors came in several types and sizes, with infrared remote controls and receivers, and initially showed a combination of studded and studless connections. Later additions to the Technic line included a Large Motor and Servo Motor introduced in 2012, that only allowed for studless mounting. 



29 July 2019

LEGO® Technic review: 42097 Compact Crawler Crane

Continuing our reviews of this summer's wave of LEGO® Technic sets, today Alexandre Campos and friend return to review 42097 Compact Crawler Crane, available from 1 August 2019.



Cranes have been a frequent presence in LEGO® Technic almost since the beginning, when in 1978 the 855 Mobile Crane was launched. It was also in this set that a very important part that is still a familiar sight to this day appeared: the Connector Peg/Cross Axle (Design ID 6562).

Yet, with all the cranes that have been pouring out during these last 41 years, the Technic team has managed to release one of a type never done before: the spider crane. Or, should we say the 42097 Compact Crawler Crane? Although the "CCC" abbreviation is tempting, "Spider Crane" sounds way cooler, so that's what I'll be calling it throughout this review. And, as you'll see in a while, I suspect I'm not the only one with this opinion.

26 July 2019

21318 Treehouse: designer interview with César Soares

This week, the LEGO® Ideas set 21318 Treehouse was officially revealed. It has 3036 pieces and is coming out on 1 August for £179.99/ US$199.99/ €199.99, but LEGO VIPs can already order it now. Our review is coming soon but here is an exclusive interview we had with the set's designer César Soares, with Monica Pedersen from Marketing also present.


Wow! You kept it at a good size then.

César: Yes, this is actually very close to the fan submission size [by Kevin Feeser – Ed.]. I think his is a bit taller.

Was it the intention to stick as closely as possible to what had been voted for?

César: Yes, absolutely. We always try to stay as close as possible. We have to change some things. In this case, the base for instance. He had a square grey base and the whole thing is very organic so a square base would look a little bit odd. So we thought, why not make it more organic, make it green also to mimic the grass or plants, and a little stream. Another thing is the cabins; in the original submission they were all brown. And actually the first sketch model was all brown but then Sam [Johnson, the creative lead of LEGO Ideas] wrote me and said, “hey, they don’t pop out as much as we would like, so make them another colour.” That’s why they are medium dark flesh instead of brown, and the same thing with the roofs. They were dark tan and brown as well, so again we felt a little bit of colour might add something.