Nicolas Geeraert, a UK-based builder and former contestant in LEGO® Masters, is our special guest reviewer today. He's taking a look at the parts in the 2021 LEGO Super Mario set 71383 Wiggler’s Poison Swamp. Buying this £34.99 / US$39.99 / 39.99€ set? Consider using our affiliate links: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. New Elementary may get a commission. The products in this article were provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.
Alongside the Character Pack Series 2, a series of LEGO® Super Mario sets was released at the start of 2021 including 71383 Wiggler’s Poison Swamp. This is my first experience with the Super Mario sets, and so the lack of a Mario figure prevented me from reviewing the gameplay, but that should not spoil the fun. The set brings some great new parts and recolours, with a new SNOT element as the highlight.
I started by laying out all 374 elements. In terms of colour palette, the set is dominated by the presence of dark purple and yellow, alongside a more neutral palette of browns and greys.
Building 71383 Wiggler’s Poison Swamp
Growing up in the 1980s, I remember being in awe of the revolutionary Nintendo console and its flagship game, Super Mario Bros. However, as a kid I never owned a console and thus I confess that my knowledge of the Super Mario universe is somewhat limited. Luckily, unlike the ‘80s, I can now look up the backstory of the video game using the internet.
Overall, I had fun building the 71383 Wiggler’s Poison Swamp. The poison swamp is part of the Soda Jungle theme from the video game. Aimed at a younger audience, the building experience is relatively simple and straightforward. The final build consists of a series of modules that can be arranged in a number of ways, one of which is shown above.
Three brick built characters are included in the set: a Goomba, a Koopa Paratroopa and a Wiggler, which is the caterpillar-like creature. In the absence of a Super Mario figure, I created one to assist me in demonstrating one of the play features.
Mario can be made to slide the little cart back and forth. This causes the wiggler to start swirling, which in turn releases the bridge for Mario to cross. It is a nice feature, and I imagine it would be fun for the target age group.
Building techniques in 71383
The segments of the wiggler are constructed using three double jumpers in Bright Yellow/ Yellow (6228602 | 34103) and some clever snot techniques.
Each segment is then hooked to the next one using a Bright Orange/ Orange Plate 1 x 2 with Arm Up (6338911 / 88072), sandwiched between two Yellow Plates 2 x 3 with Hole (4188313 | 3176).
Although the final wiggler is less rounded than the source material, it is an elegant build. Unlike the segments of the main body, the head is not supported underneath, which causes the head of the wiggler to droop a little. Although the head is intended to rest on a base plate, I would imagine that kids may want to play with it on its own, thus the sagging seemed to indicate a minor design flaw.
Another notable technique was the meshing of a 4x4 splat gear (6252371 | 35443) with a series of Mixel ball joints, each ball being distanced 1 ½ plate apart by alternating between 22890 and 14417. It creates an interesting System version of a Technic Gear meshing with a Technic Gear Rack 1 x 4 (3743).
We already knew the gears could be adapted to function as linear actuators, however at New Elementary we hadn’t seen this particular technique. It is a nice demonstration how new elements are designed to fit into aspects of the existing system.
The current series of LEGO Super Mario sets has given us a novel SNOT bracket, Bracket 1 x 1 - 1 x 2 Inverted (73825) coming here in two colours: 10 in Yellow (6330893) and 2 in Dark Stone Grey/ Dark Bluish Gray (6336390). It is shown below right.
Comparing the new SNOT bracket with some of the existing ones, the new inverted bracket provides a nice addition to the family. A series of other ‘upward’ brackets (in Black) and ‘downward’ brackets (in Medium Stone Grey/ Light Bluish Grey) are shown for comparison.
Comparing the downward and upward brackets, there clearly is scope to extend the family of downward brackets as well. In the current set, the new brackets are used to expand a wider bracket (a 1 x 2 – 2 x 2) in both the wiggler and the cart. However, it definitely also opens up a number of possibilities for SNOT work in MOCs. I imagine this will be a popular element.
The set also contains a number of recoloured parts. The Plate Special 1 x 2 with Arm Up is new in Bright Orange/ Orange (6338911 | 88072). The part is now available in more than 10 colours.
A range of elements have been recoloured in Medium Lilac/ Dark Purple:
- 2x Tile 8 x 16 with Bottom Tubes in Dark Purple (6327865 | 90498)
- 3x Plate Round Corners 4 x 8 x 2/3 Half Circle with Reduced Knobs in Dark Purple (6330926 | 73832)
- 3x Plate 2 x 12 in Dark Purple (6338909 | 2445)
- 1x Plate Round Corners 6 x 6 x 2/3 Circle with Reduced Knobs (6326550 | 66789)
- 4x Plate Round Corners 4 x 4 x 2/3 Circle with Reduced Knobs (6334094 | 66792), which previously appeared in the Character Packs
The wiggler brings two further new elements. 4x Feet 2 x 3 x 2/3 with 6 Studs on Top are new in Bright Reddish Violet/ Magenta (6330892 | 66859). Somewhat to my surprise the Flower with 7 Thick Petals and Pin appears in White for the first time (6338913 | 32606), and a single flower is provided.
Printed parts and barcodes in 71383 Wiggler’s Poison Swamp
The set also contains a number of printed parts as shown here, some of which are new and unique:
- 2x Brick 1 x 2 in Bright Blue/ Blue with Star with Eyes (6334673 | 3004pr0064)
- 1x Brick 1 x 2 in Bright Yellow/ Yellow with Oval Eyes Print (6334678 | 3004pr0066)
- 1x Tile 2 x 2 in Dark Orange with Goomba Face looking left (6308955 | 3068bpr9899)
Some of the ubiquitous barcodes are also included:
- 1x Plate 4 x 4 x 2/3 with round corners in Reddish Brown with raft and a Barcode (6339043 | 66792pr0105)
- 1x 2x2 Tile 2 x 2 in Bright Red/ Red with Para-Koopa and a barcode (6338156 | 3068bpr9901)
- 1x 2x2 Tile 2 x 2 in Bright Yellow/ Yellow with two arrows and a barcode (6339042 | 3068bpr9900)
The Tile 2 x 2 in Bright Blue/ Blue with star and a barcode (6315998) and Tile 2 x 2 in Dark Orange with Goomba and barcode (6315663 | 3068bpr9978) are not new, having appeared in the first wave of Super Mario.
I imagine we may see some of these barcodes eventually making their way in Mindstorms MOCs.
71383 Wiggler’s Poison Swamp continues expanding the universe of LEGO Super Mario. Some of the play functions will definitely appeal to younger fans. More importantly, this set also heralds the arrival of a new bracket piece, which will be particularly useful for SNOT work in MOCs.
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