6 August 2020

LEGO® DOTS: Cole Blaq's Viruses

One of the more unusual elements introduced in 2020 is the LEGO® DOTS bracelet, and we love a challenge here at New Elementary – almost as much as we love challenging others! So Elspeth De Montes asked Cole Blaq if he would take on the challenge of using some Dots bracelet sets in his own creations. If you don’t know of Cole, he’s been a legendary figure on the AFOL scene for well over a decade. He is a visual artist and educator based in Germany who is primarily influenced by the mediums of graffiti and LEGO. The Dots products in this article were provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.


I was sent 41900 Rainbow, 41902 Sparkly Unicorn, 41901 Funky Animals and 41912 Love Birds. The parts selection is very limited in these sets, so I concentrated on smaller builds, initially to find useful implementations highlighting the bracelets (Design ID 66821) which are most interesting. Their flexibility really opens up possibilities. An issue however is the amount of studs, and where they are positioned. This makes these irregular parts even more irregular.

4 August 2020

LEGO® Super Mario 2020: The Prints and... Stickers?

Today, Ben Davies continues his thorough examination of the new pieces in the LEGO® Super Mario sets released this month. The products in this article were provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.

Following our coverage of the LEGO® Super Mario’s new moulds and recolours, today we’re turning our attention to the many new printed and stickered pieces that have been introduced for the theme.

1 August 2020

LEGO® Star Wars review: 75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter

We're harking back to one of the January LEGO® Star Wars sets today: 75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter which has been reviewed by Ryan Welles. The product in this article was provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.

Three thoughts spring into my mind when beholding yet another LEGO® Star Wars X-wing fighter: those resistance people sure like them X-wings; Poe Dameron is a lucky so-and-so for flying almost each and every one of the these; and if it ain't broke, don't fix it. That last thought is what counts most here because ever since the release of X-wing set 9493 in 2012, the design has stayed virtually the same, with its iconic white, grey and red colours. New slope, wedge and arch pieces have given the vessel a slightly more polished look and the mechanism to open the wings has altered somewhat, but the basic idea has remained unchanged for eight years.


28 July 2020

LEGO® Super Mario 2020: Recolours Galore

With the imminent release of the new theme LEGO® Super Mario on 1 August, Ben Davies thought this was the perfect time to tell you about all the LEGO parts that come in new colors across the range. Namely; 40414 Monty Mole & Super Mushroom, 71360 Adventures with Mario, 71362 Guarded Fortress, 71363 Desert Pokey, 71364 Whomp’s Lava Trouble, 71365 Piranha Plant Power Slide, 71366 Boomer Bill Barrage, 71367 Mario’s House & Yoshi, 71368 Toad’s Treasure Hunt, 71369 Bowser’s Castle Boss Battle, 71370 Fire Mario Power-Up Pack, 71371 Propeller Mario Power-Up Pack, 71372 Cat Mario Power-Up Pack, 71373 Builder Mario Power-Up Pack, 71376 Thwomp Drop and 71377 King Boo and the Haunted Yard. These products were provided to us for free by LEGO; the author's opinions were not biased by this. 

When we spoke to LEGO® Super Mario lead designer Jonathan Bennink in May, he teased that nearly 200 new elements had been introduced for the brand new theme. In the second part of our comprehensive examination of the LEGO Super Mario range, we’ll be taking a closer look at the new and rare colours of parts introduced in the upcoming sets.

24 July 2020

LEGO® Monkie Kid review: 80012 Monkey King Warrior Mech – The Build

Now, in Part 2 of his review of LEGO® Monkie Kid 80012 Monkey King Warrior Mech, Jonas Kramm takes a look at the various builds in the set and highlights the interesting aspects and techniques for you before giving his verdict. 

Last time, we took a detailed look at all the new pieces in 80012 Monkey King Warrior Mech and were blown away by the crazy amount of Warm Gold Drum Lacquered/ Metallic Gold, so now it’s about time to see what they get used for.


22 July 2020

LEGO® Monkie Kid review: 80012 Monkey King Warrior Mech – The Parts

Our next LEGO® Monkie Kid review comes from Jonas Kramm who takes on 80012 Monkey King Warrior Mech over the course of two posts. The set is available now and sells for US$149.99/ £129.99/ 129.99€.

With 1692 pieces, the Monkey King Warrior Mech is the second largest set of the first Monkie Kid wave. Today we will take a look at what’s in the box, list all the new bits in the usual New E fashion and learn that King Midas might have been involved in the design process.

19 July 2020

LEGO® DOTS review: 41913 Bracelet Mega Pack

Andrew Barnick returns to review the latest wave of LEGO® DOTS sets for us and to highlight which parts come in new colours, starting with 41913 Bracelet Mega Pack which is available now priced £19.99 / $24.99 / 24.36€.


Both being fans of bright colors and of letting our LEGO® fandom show in our attire, my twin sister and I have been extremely excited about the LEGO DOTS theme ever since it was revealed. So when I was offered the chance to review some of the new Dots sets for this summer, I was extremely enthusiastic. For my first review, I’ll be covering 41913 Bracelet Mega Pack, which offers an abundance of what I love about the Dots theme—and yet which didn’t come without its share of disappointment, not to mention a little bit of mathematics. Read on to see what I’m talking about...

16 July 2020

LEGO® Technic review: 42107 Ducati Panigale V4 R

Applications for volunteer New E contributors close soon: Friday 17 July 11.59pm GMT
Victor Pruvost returns today with a fascinating look at the latest LEGO® Technic motorbike, which contains new elements that may be useful even in non-Technic builds.


Today we take a look at the latest motorbike from the LEGO® Technic line: 42107 Ducati Panigale V4 R. It comes with 646 pieces (the highest part count yet for a Technic bike), including some elements that might be interesting even for System builders.

14 July 2020

LEGO® 71374 Nintendo Entertainment System: The Reveal

Following a teaser posted to social media yesterday, The LEGO Group has now unveiled the latest product resulting from their partnership with Nintendo. Ben Davies (Professor Brickkeeper) reports.

71374 Nintendo Entertainment System will be launching on 1 August 2020 alongside the LEGO® Super Mario product range. While the kit will initially be exclusive to LEGO Brand Retail Stores and LEGO.com, it will be available at third party retailers starting in 2021. It will cost US$229.99/ £209.99.


We will be reviewing the set shortly but based on the initial reveal there will be no shortage of things to examine, so why not start now?

8 July 2020

LEGO® Chinese New Year review: 80104 Lion Dance

Ben Davies returns today to examine the next in our collection of 2020 LEGO® sets introduced for the Asian market; 80104 Lion Dance

We recently examined the new parts introduced in 80105 Chinese New Year Temple Fair, which we found to contain a wealth of recolored parts and new prints. Excitingly, there are even more new elements (and interesting techniques) to discover in the Temple Fair’s smaller counterpart, 80104 Lion Dance.


3 July 2020

LEGO® Monkie Kid review & alt build: 80009 Pigsy’s Food Truck

Today we welcome back super-Spacer and co-creator of Lego Space: Building the Future (Amazon USA: affiliate link), Tim Goddard (on Instagram) for the first of our examinations of sets from LEGO® Monkie Kid. If you need an overview of this exciting new Asian theme check out our article, otherwise read on and see what new parts Tim found in 80009 Pigsy’s Food Truck – and enjoy his original creation, made from parts in the set!

Monkie Kid. It’s not just Ninjago with a lockdown haircut, apparently. Let’s see, shall we…


Pigsy’s food truck is a massive lump of a 10 module-wide food wagon. The scale is well off anything in the LEGO City range but you might get away with it put next to the new scale of Speed Champion sets. You will not get away with it next to a minifigure.

1 July 2020

LEGO® Art: the new mosaic theme

A key new product line arising from the LEGO Group’s newly-enhanced focus on adult builders has just been announced: LEGO® Art. In short: mosaics packaged with a soundtrack, but if that concept or the selected subjects hold zero interest for you, keep reading anyway because there are a few new moulds of great interest to all builders, and fantastically useful recolours. Here is our rundown, gleaned from the press release as well as an online exclusive reveal event with creative lead Samuel Johnson that happened in May as part of Fan Media Days.


Coming 1 August 2020 (1 September in the US) the range comprises of four products each priced US$119.99/ CA $149.99/ £114.99/ DK 1099DKK/ €119.99 (Euro pricing varies by country). Sound pricey? Well, each contains on average 3,200 parts; about 3.75 US cents per piece. “A bargain, I tell ya!”, says Sam. Obviously the vast majority of the pieces are round 1x1s, including new and rare colours, but there’s also a new kind of 16x16 baseplate, a Technic element used for hanging the art and a new, wider brick separator!

30 June 2020

LEGO® 40411 Creative Fun 12-in-1: Professor's One Set MOCs

Today we welcome the Professor (on Instagram) for an altogether different kind of LEGO® review! He's a French engineer who loves LEGO Star Wars and Creator – especially the 3-in-1 sets, as he loves to create his own alternate models – which made him ideal to take on the new set 40411 Creative Fun 12-in-1. This is a gift-with-purchase in many parts of the world from July 1 to 26 with qualifying purchases over $85 / €85 / £85.  He added so many of his own builds, it's now a 50-in-1! 


According to me, LEGO is synonymous with infinite play. I love making several creations from just the parts of one set – what I call One Set MOC. This is the very essence of LEGO. Only limited by your imagination!

29 June 2020

LEGO® Element Design: Interview with Karsten Juel Bunch, Part 2 – fans' questions

Yesterday we published our in-depth interview with LEGO® Design Director of the Element Design Platform, Karsten Juel Bunch, who explained the special role his team take and ran through an example: the redevelopment of the large shooter element and arrow. Today we just round off the chat with a few questions that were posed by the New Elementary team and our supporters on Patreon.

©2020 The LEGO Group

28 June 2020

LEGO® Element Design: Interview with Karsten Juel Bunch, Part 1 – the new shooter

In May we spoke with Karsten Juel Bunch who joined the LEGO Group in 2001 as an Element Designer and rose to become Design Director of the Element Design Team in 2016. He told us about the design process for complex elements, in particular the brand new shooter elements Brick 2X6X1 1/3 W/ Shooter (Element ID 6296378|Design ID 49743) and Arrow W/ 3.2 Shaft (6307940|46537).
This transcript has been edited for clarity, readability and narrative flow.



23 June 2020

Tipper Ends: Eero Okkonen's Aurora Sievert & Hurricane III



Yesterday, Eero Okkonen examined in great detail the history and geometry of the 'Tipper End Family' of LEGO® pieces, especially Vehicle, Tipper End Flat with Pins (Design ID 3145) and Vehicle, Tipper End Sloped (3436). Today he reveals this never-before-published model he built in February using tipper ends, but first he takes us through earlier models where he utilised these unusual parts that were introduced five decades ago.  

Previous Builds

A more mathematical approach to tipper ends is a new and exciting world to me, but I’ve used them few times before, mostly as armour shells or clothing, something akin to Constraction shells.

22 June 2020

Old Elementary: Odds & Tipper Ends

We take another trip into LEGO® part history today to discover a kind of piece introduced 51 years ago that is still found in sets in 2020; 'tipper ends'. They're a passion for Finnish LEGO builder Eero Okkonen and today he delves deep into their geometry and reveals building techniques utilising them.

As we all very well know, adults complain 64% of the time that everything was better when they were kids; the only LEGO® bricks were basic angular blocks (and lost behind the radiator probably) and you could build everything based on your own imagination and didn’t have to follow the instructions and it made you a better person in the end. I don’t think like that, and one of the biggest joys depicted here on New Elementary and in contests like Iron Builder (and hopefully in my own work) is finding new, fresh uses to odd and curious parts, no matter what their original use in the sets was.


This article is about what I will call the Tipper End Family; today I’ll introduce the parts and their history, then go through their dimensions with a series of tablescraps and explanatory pictures, then tomorrow show some older builds of mine using these pieces and close with an unpublished build.

18 June 2020

LEGO® Star Wars review & original builds: 75272 Sith Tie Fighter

Inthert (on Instagram & Flickr) returns today not only to review LEGO® Star Wars 75272 Sith Tie Fighter but to also use its parts, along with his own collection, to create his own fantastic original Star Wars models! The set has 470 elements, three minifigures and is available now priced at £64.99 / US$79.99 / 69.99€.

The Parts

Upon its release at the start of 2020, the Sith Tie Fighter was one of two sets to feature some new wedge plates (alongside Speed Champions 76898 Formula E Panasonic Jaguar Racing GEN2 Car & Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY, which Duncan Lindbo previously reviewed).



17 June 2020

LEGO® House Limited Editions: 40501 The Wooden Duck

The official announcement of the next LEGO® House set has just occurred in a live online event direct from the LEGO Group’s Billund-based experience centre and museum. 40501 The Wooden Duck is the first in their new range called ‘The LEGO House Limited Editions', celebrating key moments in the company’s history.


It was designed by Stuart Harris, the LEGO House Master Builder and Jme Wheeler who is a fan-turned-designer on the Ninjago team (his first sets will appear this summer). Available from Monday priced 599 DKK, it has 621 pieces, measures 20cm high x 22cm long x 3cm wide (8” x 7” x 1”) and comes with a stand measuring over 13cm (5”) square.  The base has printed tiles with ‘LEGO® House’ and ‘The wooden duck’.

16 June 2020

LEGO® Super Mario 2020: The Many Moulds of Mario

Today, Ben Davies provides our first look at LEGO® Super Mario: the incredible array of new pieces that have been developed for (or appear for the first time) in this exciting new theme.

One of the most curious new LEGO® themes in recent memory is undoubtedly LEGO Super Mario, which combines Nintendo’s famous plumber with the LEGO Group’s plastic bricks. Ahead of the August launch of the theme, we here at New Elementary had an opportunity to get hands-on experience with some of the upcoming sets, and examine many of the exciting new moulds introduced by the theme.

Mario

The most prominent new moulds are those used for the theme’s eponymous hero. He’s received a bit of a make-over for his LEGO debut, appearing considerably more blocky than usual.


Mario consists of three all-new primary pieces (body, hat, and overalls) plus 1x1 round tiles for ears and buttons.

15 June 2020

LEGO® Disney 43179 Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse: new set reveal

Following an accidental leak last week, the proper announcement of upcoming LEGO® Disney set 43179 Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse Buildable Characters is now here.


The set is on its way to us for review but we couldn't resist posting about it straightaway, as not only are there some really fascinating, useful new moulds but also the first pieces cast in a new 'colour' (or to describe it more properly, an 'effect') that was spotted on the LEGO palette earlier this year.

14 June 2020

LEGO® Brick Sketches: Interview with Chris McVeigh


Chris McVeigh, now a LEGO® Designer after many years as a freelance creative and fan, spoke to us at Fan Media Days about the new range just announced: LEGO Brick Sketches.


Chris, can you start by giving us a bit of a rundown on how this new series of models that you originally designed as a fan came to be an official product? Did you bring it to LEGO or did they suggest it to you? Because a few people have been like, “oh, we saw that coming. That's why TLG hired him…"

Chris: It certainly wasn't like that! Everything I've done with the company has been by the standard processes... there hasn't been any anything that's just like "hey yeah, let's do this because we like what you do”. So it was me who brought it to the company. When you first get to LEGO, every day, every week, it's a new adventure. So after I had been there a couple of months, people started to get excited about this event. It’s what we call Creative Boost, and it's where we designers can propose different ideas and whatnot. And I thought, I don't have time, I'm invested in what I'm doing right now, I’ll just have to wait until the next one... but towards the end of week, I said to myself, no, just remake some of your Brick Sketches!

12 June 2020

LEGO® MINDSTORMS® 51515 Robot Inventor: reveal and interview

The new LEGO® MINDSTORMS® has just been revealed, however we were lucky enough to be 'present' at the digital launch event at LEGO Fan Media Days a couple of weeks ago. Lena Dixen, Head of Product and Marketing Development and Dan Meehan, Creative Design Lead talked us through set 51515 Robot Inventor and answered a few questions from the LEGO fan media present. It has 949 pieces and will be available "sometime in early Q4 2020", priced £329.99/ US$359.99/ €359.99.

Lena Dixen:
"We're very excited about the launch we're here to talk about today. We want to share with you, up front, that we had planned for this awesome new product to be ready to go on sale in August this year. Unfortunately we've experienced some unavoidable delays in product development and as a result, we've decided to delay the launch until later in 2020.


"Here it is: the latest addition to the much loved LEGO MINDSTORMS. The new Robot Inventor 51515 unleashes a new world of creative coding possibilities that we believe provides the ultimate playful learning experience. Builders can create and code one of the set's five personality-packed models, or build and bring to life anything they can imagine.

10 June 2020

An anniversary and an au revoir


One of our rare 'admin' posts today to say, firstly, hey it's our birthday! Seven years since I started getting super-nerdy about new elements. Some 630 posts later (177 since our sixth birthday - that's a new post every other day on average), things have changed a bit! We are among the first Recognised LEGO Fan Media and now have a team of amazing writers and builders from around the world who create quality original content for you in their spare time, and of course we also have the brilliant models you all make for our contests and parts festivals, to inspire and educate the community.

9 June 2020

LEGO® Disney review: 43182 Mulan's Training Grounds

Today we are examining a LEGO® Disney set which, for its size, packs in a lot of interesting parts: 43182 Mulan's Training Grounds.


It is not to be confused with the first Mulan set, 41151 Mulan's Training Day, which was released in 2018 and was swiftly followed by… no more. Until 2020 that is, when she was granted a Storybook Adventure (which includes a training ground) and today’s focus, Mulan's Training Grounds. That Mulan, she loves the training. 

7 June 2020

Switch My Lantern Up: The winners

It is finally time to reveal which five LEGO® creations from our contest, Switch My Lantern Up, will be receiving the prizes of LEGO® Fiat 500s! We were going to announce them yesterday but it has been such a tough one to judge, and there were 88 models submitted using the Super Heroes lantern (part 65581).


This time the judges were Victor Pruvost and Tim Johnson from New Elementary, and none other than the LEGO Senior Designer who actually designed the lantern piece, Esa Nousiainen! We were honoured to have him and he was really impressed with what he saw:

4 June 2020

Switch My Lantern Up: The entries (Vol. 3)

Today we reveal the final 25 entries to our LEGO® building contest, where you had to find a new use for the Super Heroes lantern (part 65581). The judges' decisions will be published on Saturday, unless we argue about it for too long! Hard when there are so many awesome ideas!

Old Diving Suit by GSCLD


3 June 2020

Switch My Lantern Up: The entries (Vol. 2)

Today we continue revealing the entries to our LEGO® building contest, where you had to find a new use for the Super Heroes lantern (part 65581). Let's see what the next 30 entries were!

Peacock by Krakenbrix



In this build, I used the seed part as feathers for a peacock. The feathers are attached to a wedge belt tire (part 2815 and 4185) to obtain the radial design.

1 June 2020

Switch My Lantern Up: The entries (Vol. 1)

Our LEGO® building contest, where you had to find a new use for the Super Heroes lantern (part 65581) has now closed, so while our judges are getting all judgey and deciding which five win the LEGO Fiats, let's look at all the entries we received!


There were a whopping 89 fabulous creations submitted by you lot, and we will reveal them over the course of three days, in the order we received them. Thank you all, for sharing these wonderful ideas.

31 May 2020

LEGO® Star Wars review: 75271 Luke Skywalker's Landspeeder

Ryan Welles returns today with a look at one of the smaller LEGO® Star Wars 2020 sets: 75271 Luke Skywalker's Landspeeder.

LEGO® Star Wars has been around since 1999, coinciding with the release of The Phantom Menace, and the variety of possible subjects for sets has since become broader with every new movie or television series being released. Despite the incredible amount of new additions to the legacy, sets from the original trilogy have proven to be most popular.


This also explains the various iterations released of the same vessel, including the most recent entry, Luke Skywalker's Landspeeder. First seen in A New Hope, the vehicle has seen a total number of four entries as a minifigure-scale set. The 2020 version, set 75271, comes with 224 pieces and is a further improvement of the similar set released three years ago, 75173 Luke's Landspeeder. It makes use of several new bracket pieces released in the meantime.

26 May 2020

LEGO® 80105 Chinese New Year Temple Fair review: the parts

The largest set so far within the LEGO® Chinese New Year subtheme is 80105 Chinese New Year Temple Fair. With 1664 elements, including 14 minifigures, this set was first released in January 2020 priced at £89.99 / US$119.99 / 99.99€. While this is a large set, what's even more exciting are the sheer number of new elements inside the box... so stand by for a veritable buffet of new elements.



Okay, we realise that it nearly June now, so 'new' might seem a bit hopeful, and yet many of these elements remain exclusive to this set. There are also a large number that have only appeared in one other set.  So we definitely felt it was worth dedicating a post concentrating on the new elements, and those of interest either for their rarity or history. Coming soon, we also have an interview with the designer of this set, Markus Rollbühler, where I ask some of the questions that arose during the process of discovering the new elements and building his set.

23 May 2020

Iron Builder: Bryce Dempsey's stud shooter techniques

The Iron Forge contestant from the Iron Builder challenge revealing their LEGO® techniques for you today is Bryce Dempsey (on Flickr, YouTube and Instagram), from California. Appropriately enough for a builder who creates replica guns from LEGO pieces, last week in Round 3 the seed part was part 15391, the Minifigure, Weapon Gun, Mini Blaster / Shooter. 

My favorite of my own builds for Round 3 using stud shooters as the seed part was the soda machine. The build featured 11 stud shooters in total, with many unique uses.


22 May 2020

LEGO® interview: PPE safety masks

It was recently revealed that The LEGO Group (TLG) urgently altered their production to dedicate six moulding machines to create safety masks for Danish medical staff. Some fan media were invited to pose questions by email to LEGO® employees about this project, who kindly took the time to provide more detail about this unusual turn of events. The questions published here are the combined questions from the Rambling Brick, Brickset, BrickFinder, HispaBrick Magazine and of course New Elementary, including some from our kind patrons.

A LEGO employee tries on a completed mask.

Where did the idea for this come from, an employee or senior management… or perhaps a government request?

TLG: In March, one of our colleagues in the Engineering department heard that there was a desperate need for safety equipment for COVID-19 in Denmark. He approached the rest of his team with his idea for a visor and they started to trial production ideas. Approximately 100 LEGO employees have been involved in this project in Denmark and Hungary, from developing the design and new moulds, to working with our supplies to make the visors a reality in just a couple of weeks. 

LEGO® Hidden Side 70436 Phantom Fire Truck 3000: Design Process with Niek van Slagmaat

One of the LEGO® Hidden Side designers, Niek van Slagmaat, recently shared some of his design process for upcoming set 70436 Phantom Fire Truck 3000 in a series of fascinating tweets. Rather than scroll through the twittersphere trying to take in all the details, we have unrolled (and lightly edited) the threads here for you, with permission from Niek.



Niek: The new Hidden Side fire truck was my favorite Hidden Side set to design so far! With it releasing soon, I thought it would be cool to share some of my process on this set. It's important to make it VERY clear that this, as with all LEGO sets, was a team effort. I worked closely with a variety of people to make this vision work, from digital development teams to sparring partners, to quality and building instructions developers.

21 May 2020

Iron Builder: Stud Shooter LEGO® building techniques

We've been asking the Forge competitors from Iron Builder to highlight the techniques they've used each week with the seed parts. In Round 3 last week the element they all had to use was Design ID 15391, known as the "Minifigure, Weapon Gun, Mini Blaster / Shooter" on BrickLink, "Mini Shooter With Ø3.2 Shaft" on Brickset and "Weapon Gun / Blaster / Shooter Mini" on Rebrickable. Since being introduced in 2014 it has appeared in six colours. Given many would consider this a "specialised element that can only be used for one thing", it was a great choice of seed part by the Iron Builder admin!



Miro78: I found an interesting 'non-connection' with the stud shooters during my Round 3 builds, in the build Zorro where I included some furniture. 


20 May 2020

Iron Builder: Thomas Jenkins' stud shooter techniques

We have another Iron Forge contestant from the Iron Builder challenge revealing their LEGO® techniques for you today: Thomas Jenkins (on Flickr and Instagram), a Welshman living in Japan who has been building with LEGO for over 20 years. Last week in Round 3 the seed part was part 15391, the Minifigure, Weapon Gun, Mini Blaster / Shooter. 

On my first assessment of the Stud Shooter piece, there were two ways to use it in a model: take advantage of the bar that sticks out at an angle from the barrel of the shooter, or utilize the gaps and recesses that are usually used to house the accompanying trigger element.

Techniques using the angled bar of LEGO Mini Shooter With Ø3.2 Shaft, Design ID 15391

The angle of the bar meant that when used in conjunction with more shooters, it was quite easy to reproduce something akin to a spider’s leg. 


The shooters are connected quite simply with a 1x1 round plate with hole. The spanner seed part from the previous round also found its way into this model!

19 May 2020

LEGO® Accessories review: 40419 Harry Potter Hogwarts students

Our second and final review of the new LEGO® accessory packs of minifigures features characters from the Harry Potter universe, as Erik H. from HokayBricks explains. These sets are released 1 June 2020 and Brickset estimates they will cost US$12.99/£11.99 but this is unconfirmed.


This accessory pack includes four minifigures and the pieces and instructions needed to build a small bookcase. The bookcase build is simple but effective. It does not include any new or exclusive parts, but considering that this set is likely to be purchased several times over by some customers I'm sure any number of MOCs could benefit from the parts included here. The interest here, however, is all about the minifigures.

18 May 2020

LEGO® Accessories review: 40418 Marvel Super Heroes Falcon & Black Widow

There are new LEGO® accessory packs featuring minifigures being revealed today and Erik H.  from HokayBricks is here to talk you through them, starting with set 40418 featuring characters from the Marvel Super Heroes universe. (Tomorrow: Harry Potter!) These sets are released 1 June 2020 and Brickset estimates they will cost US$12.99/£11.99 but this is unconfirmed.


This accessory pack includes four minifigures and the pieces and instructions needed to build an energy turret stud-shooter - or in this case, a cylinder-shooter. The build is simple but effective. It includes two full sets of six Transparent Fluorescent Green/ Trans-Neon Green 1x1 round bricks. The build does not include any new or exclusive parts, but the minifigures do!

17 May 2020

Iron Builder: Cab's White Diamond techniques

We have another Iron Forge contestant from the Iron Builder challenge revealing LEGO® techniques for you today. Cab (on Flickr) hails from Germany but lives in California, and turned eighteen recently... "so I don't even know whether to call myself a TFOL or an AFOL". We don't think it matters really, so long as your techniques are awesome!

Hello everyone, Cab here! I was lucky enough to be among the final 20 contestants in this year’s instalment of The Forge. Now, while the final four compete for the prized Iron Builder slot, I thought I would share some techniques and tricks from my main entry in Round 2, a bust of the character White Diamond from the show Steven Universe. 


Adept builders will probably be familiar with many or all of these techniques, but I hope I can contribute to a few builders’ technical arsenals. 

15 May 2020

LEGO® Monkie Kid: new theme revealed

It's official: LEGO® Monkie Kid is here! The latest theme from The LEGO Group has just been announced and eight sets are immediately on sale in China, Singapore, Malaysia, and Hong Kong – and worldwide sales commence tomorrow, 16 May 2020. An animated mini-movie and TV series has also been created.


The story is based on the 500-year old Chinese fable Journey to the West but with a modern twist, "authentic to local culture". The press release is not shy about making clear that this is TLG's first big foray into the Chinese market: "Never before has the LEGO Group launched a theme inspired by one culture and with so much attention to local details, values and traits."

13 May 2020

Iron Builder: Jaap Bijl's hummingbird techniques

One of the contestants in Iron Builders preliminary rounds, The Iron Forge, is Jaap Bijl (jaapxaap, found on Flickr and Instagram) from the Netherlands and he is a member of Lowlug and Innovalug. He took part in our 2019 Parts Festival and has now progressed from the Top 20 to the Top 8 in the Forge. We asked him to explain a couple of the techniques involved in one of his Forge builds from last week.

Hey everyone, it’s Jaap here! I’ve been participating into the Iron Forge contest, and made it to the final 20. In that round we had to build using the hammer and/or the wrench minifig accessory pieces. At some point when I was playing around with the wrench piece I found a wrench combination that looked a lot like a bird’s beak to me. So there I started building this hummingbird.


(Yes, for those New Elementary readers who remember it, I also used those big yellow stars from the 2019 parts festival in the flowers!)

11 May 2020

Iron Builder: Hammer & Spanner LEGO® building techniques

It's easy to look at a MOC and think, wow, that's beautiful... without appreciating all the astonishing connection techniques involved. Especially in a LEGO® contest like Iron Builder's Iron Forge where the brilliance is steadily poured into your eyeballs on a daily basis. I find it can even be a bit intimidating: how on earth could I ever build that well? Here's one by #1 Nomad:

So we've partnered with Iron Builder to break things down a little for you and reveal some of the techniques used by these amazing builders in the hope it inspires you, and improves everyone's game. We chatted with some of the talented competitors who made the Top 20 last week to ask how they used the seed parts, which were two classic Minifigure Utensil Tools: the Spanner Wrench / Screwdriver (Design IDs 4006 & 88631) and Mallet / Hammer (Design ID 4522).

7 May 2020

LEGO® NINJAGO™ Review: 71710 Ninja Tuner Car

Back in January, a new wave of LEGO® NINJAGO™ sets was released including today's focus: 71710 Ninja Tuner Car.  The sets tie-in with Season 12 of the Ninjago television series where an old game called Prime Empire is unearthed, resulting in havoc.  No wonder the sets have a definite cyberpunk video game vibe.



Ninja Tuner Car has 419 elements, including four minifigures and is priced at £34.99 / $39.99 / 39.99€. This set caught our eye thanks to its retro colour scheme, like a ski jacket from the 1980s! And of course we were drawn to the new elements underneath that hyper-cool exterior.

6 May 2020

Articles about specialised LEGO® parts

Recently we published a great article by Victor Pruvost examining the highly specialised new LEGO® piece, the 'arcade pod'. However, many of you were soon frustrated as Google had some dumb bug resulting in all the images disappearing. I've now replaced them all, so check it out if you missed it:



Maybe you did see it already? So here's another couple of suggestions from the archives of New Elementary...

3 May 2020

Iron Builder: Round 1 results

The world heavyweight of LEGO® building contests, Iron Builder is underway and the results of the first round in the Iron Forge are in! There were 120 entries from over 60 builders and only the top 20 progress to Round 2, which whittles the 20 down to eight.

The seed part was minifigure legs. Here are the 20 winners in no particular order, other than that we have arranged them into the groups they will be completing within in the next round. Bring on the NPU!

Top 20 builders, Iron Forge Round 1

Ted A.

"Boom! Toasted!"
Some builders are bred for greatness, and others are just bread to be toasted. It's a Wonder some have even made it this far... "Boom! Toasted!"

30 April 2020

LEGO® Trolls World Tour: Jonas Kramm's Temple of the Blue Sea

Jonas Kramm returns today to reveal the alternate build he created using only sets from the controversial LEGO® Trolls World Tour theme!



My analysis of the new pieces in the LEGO® Trolls World Tour sets revealed many colourful elements so it’s no wonder that my alternative build turned out pretty flashy too. Let’s dive in and discover the Temple of the Blue Sea!

27 April 2020

LEGO® Trolls World Tour: the new parts

It's hard to ignore LEGO® Trolls, and in fact there are a lot of interesting things going on with the parts from this new 2020 theme. To kick our coverage off, Jonas Kramm examines the new, recoloured and printed elements (and foam ones!) to be found in four of the sets from this theme.

Glitter and bright colours! The new series of LEGO® sets dedicated to DreamWorks’ Trolls World Tour movie are here. To the adult eye they might seem a bit crazy, but we got them anyway… to investigate in true New Elementary fashion by seeing what new pieces and colours they bring and how those might be used.

25 April 2020

Iron Builder: the LEGO® building contest is back

Iron Builder returns! And you can participate. This is great news for anyone who is still looking for advanced LEGO® building challenges (if Ryan Howerter’s REC puzzles and New Elementary’s “Switch Up My Lantern” contest aren't enough for you, that is!).

We love Iron Builder for its mind-blowing NPU and cheeky sense of humour and we intend to share a lot of news about it here on New Elementary. To kick things off, we figured it has been gone for a while and many of you may have no idea what we are talking about. So we collared two of the Iron Builder admin team, Simon Liu and Markus Rollbühler, to give us the lowdown on IB 2020 and how – for the first time ever – anyone can get involved.

23 April 2020

Minifig Posing Stand: Pierre-E Fieschi's starfighters

This year we have been examining an interesting new LEGO® part: the new posing element (Design ID 65578) known as "Handle, No.1", "Minifigure, Utensil Posing Stand, Bar with Hollow Stud" or "Bar, Angled with Stud on End". Following on from Jonas Kramm's and Kevin Levell's analyses, our final article reveals what gaming concept artist Pierre-E Fieschi (see his Instagram, ArtStation) created using the posing stands we sent him.

Mini LEGO TIE interceptor

I had the idea to make a mini TIE interceptor from Star Wars - which is one of my favourite TIE designs – using the 45° trans-clear thingies instead of the usual hinge/clip assemblies for the wings.

21 April 2020

LEGO® Reverse-Engineering Challenge: Days 6-17

We are a little behind with sharing Ryan Howerter's REC puzzles with you (been too busy organising our own building contest!) so here is a bumper crop to give you a challenging LEGO® challenge to fill your days. Want more? They appear on Ryan's Instagram at 11am Mountain Time every day (and we also try to publish them on New Elementary's Twitter at the same time).

Welcome back to the Reverse-Engineering Challenge, or REC for short. Simply look at these small LEGO builds, and try to figure out how they are built. Always assume the hidden side is identical. The colours are irrelevant. No rubber bands and no flex tubing allowed! It's not a contest, there are no prizes – think of it more like a daily crossword puzzle. Solve as many as you like, at your own pace. Solutions are posted every Sunday at https://linktr.ee/rhowerter.

REC17 Halhi141 

Bottom looks like the top.