31 May 2021

LEGO® Friends review: 41684 Heartlake City Grand Hotel

Saija Saarenpää (@saija_kristina) is our brand new guest reviewer today, examining the new LEGO® Friends set 41684 Heartlake City Grand Hotel. Hailing from Finland, Saija codes and does graphics for her day job. She finished her Dark Age in 2014 via the Architecture Studio set, after which she was gradually lured back to the world of colourful bricks. Will you be buying this colourful set? It is released at midnight tonight 1 June 2021 priced £89.99/ 99,99 €/ AU$169.99; and in North America, 1 August US$99.99. Regardless of what you're buying, please consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.


LEGO® Friends 41684 Heartlake City Grand Hotel is a big package, and seven-year-old me would have screamed for happiness if I got this as a present. It’s also super fun to build and is as exciting as the previous version of the Grand Hotel (set 41101 from 2015).

29 May 2021

LEGO® review: 10292 Friends - The Apartments

Kevin J. Walter (@public.brickstory) returns as our guest reviewer today with a look at LEGO® 10292 Friends - The Apartments, coming 1 June 2021. Buying this set, priced £134.99/ US$149.99/ AU$259.99? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.

The 1990s TV-series Friends is without a doubt a cultural phenomenon and still one of the most watched and streamed shows of all time. For the series’ 25th anniversary in 2019, TLG launched LEGO® Ideas 21319 Central Perk, so it comes as no surprise that Friends: The Reunion, also known as “The One Where They Get Back Together” which aired on 27 May 2021 is being used as an opportunity by TLG to launch the consecutive set. 

28 May 2021

LEGO® VIDIYO™ review: 43109 Metal Dragon BeatBox & 43110 Folk Fairy BeatBox

Caz Mockett (@cazmockett) reviews two LEGO® VIDIYO™ BeatBox sets for you: 43109 Metal Dragon BeatBox & 43110 Folk Fairy BeatBox. Buying these? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.


The LEGO® VIDIYO™ theme launched in March 2021 with a series of six BeatBoxes, similar in size and shape to the LEGO Friends play cubes, along with a collection of 12 different BandMates supplied in blind boxes. In the second wave which will be available from 1st June, two more BeatBoxes will be released, along with five larger buildable sets. The LEGO Group sent us the two new beat boxes to examine, and I have added components from the first wave releases from my own collection so that I can give you a comprehensive rundown of the new moulds and colours available to AFOLs.

25 May 2021

LEGO® Marvel Super Heroes parts review: 76178 Daily Bugle

Thomas Jenkins (@thomas_jenkins_bricks) examines LEGO® Marvel Super Heroes 76178 Daily Bugle across 2 articles; today analysing its parts and then the build in this separate article. Please consider using our affiliate links to purchase, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.


Stop the presses! Today we’re taking a look at the latest - and largest - entry into the LEGO® Marvel Super Heroes line: 76178 Daily Bugle. It’s a massive set weighing in at 3772 pieces and is priced at €299.99/ £274,99/ $299,99/ 499.99 AUD/ 399.99 CAD.

23 May 2021

LEGO® Creator 3-in-1 review: 31122 Fish Tank

TobyMac (@efraimaspie) examines another of the upcoming 2021 LEGO® Creator 3-in-1 sets: 31122 Fish Tank. Released 1 June 2021 priced £24.99/ €29.99/ AU$44.99 (except North America; 1 August US$29.99). Buying this set? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.


The second LEGO® Creator 3-in-1 set I’m reviewing is a lot smaller than 31120 Medieval Castle. But size doesn’t matter, as long as it brings us some new elements. Let's take a dive into the Fish Tank.

21 May 2021

(CW: HP) Jonas & Stefan's alt-builds of LEGO® Harry Potter 76386, 76387, 76388 & 76389

Jonas Kramm (@jonaskramm) is joined by Stefan (@robo.block) today to create alternate models from 4 LEGO® Harry Potter sets coming in June 2021! Editorial note: Although views expressed by Harry Potter's creator do not align with that of New Elementary, we continue to cover some sets for their parts. Read about our stance here. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.

In the first part of the review we took a detailed look at the new moulds, and recolours of existing pieces. Today we take it a step further to see what else we can build with the pieces from upcoming LEGO® Harry Potter sets. To make this alt-build task a bit of a festival, I got help from Stefan who dropped by to contribute his own creative juices.

16 May 2021

LEGO® Friends reviews: 41687, 41693 & 41683

Eero Okkonen (@eerookkonen) examines 3 upcoming 2021 LEGO® Friends sets for you today. Buying them when they're released on 1 June 2021? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.


Funfair magic, beachfront surfing or horseback riding? Today you can enjoy them all, as we review three LEGO® Friends sets being released in June:

  • 41687 Magical Funfair Stalls - 361 pieces
  • 41693 Surfer Beachfront - 685 pieces
  • 41683 Forest Horseback Riding Centre - 511 pieces 

15 May 2021

(CW: HP) LEGO® Harry Potter parts review: 76386, 76387, 76388 & 76389

Jonas Kramm (@jonaskramm) analyses the new parts and minifigures in the June 2021 range of LEGO® Harry Potter sets. For reviews of the actual builds, visit our sister LEGO fan sites. Editorial note: Although views expressed by Harry Potter's creator do not align with that of New Elementary, we continue to cover some sets for their parts. Read about our stance here. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.

In June 2021 a new wave of LEGO® Harry Potter sets will launch. Today we’re taking a look at what new moulds, recolours and interesting printed elements we can find in these four sets:

  • 76386 Polyjuice Potion Mistake: 217 pcs - £17.99 / US$19.99 / 19.99€
  • 76387 Hogwarts: Fluffy Encounter: 397 pcs - £34.99 / $39.99 / 39.99€
  • 76388 Hogsmeade Village Visit: 851 pcs - £69.99 / $79.99 / 79.99€
  • 76389 Hogwarts Chamber of Secrets: 1176 pcs - £129.99 / $129.99 / 139.99€ 

14 May 2021

LEGO® Creator 3-in-1 review: 31120 Medieval Castle

TobyMac (@efraimaspie) reviews a much-anticipated upcoming set today: LEGO® Creator 3-in-1 31120 Medieval Castle. Buying this set when it is released on 1 June 2021? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.

Name a theme that LEGO should revive, and the most-heard answers will be Space, Castle and Pirates (and, surprisingly for me as this theme was launched during my dark ages: Bionicle). TLG has said those three ‘Classic’ themes will not return as stand-alone themes, but will instead be featured in the Creator 3-in-1 line. We’ve already seen 31109 Pirate Ship, 31107 Space Rover Explorer and 31115 Space Mining Mech as examples, and now Castle joins the line with 31120 Medieval Castle. 

13 May 2021

LEGO® VIDIYO™ review: 43115 The Boombox

Caz Mockett examines one of the most exciting of the new LEGO® VIDIYO™ sets today: 43115 The Boombox, coming 1 June 2021 priced £89.99 / € 99.99 (North America 1 August US$99.99). Buying this set? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. Products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are their own.

Many AFOLs were rather unimpressed with the chunky BeatBoxes when the new VIDIYO™ theme launched in March, even if they were more enamoured with the exclusive printed tiles and whacky minifigure characters which came in them. The LEGO Group heavily emphasised the interactive part of the theme, demonstrating the ability to make fancy pop videos with a tie-in from Universal Music, squarely aimed at the 9+ age bracket. But older fans were worried that it was a poor relation of the now-defunct Hidden Side theme which had also featured Augmented Reality trickery - at least Hidden Side had some decent sets which stood on their own merit without using an app, they argued.


And then there was a surprise announcement that VIDIYO was getting a second wave, in quick succession, comprising two more BeatBoxes and five playsets of varying sizes. The biggest of them, 43115 The Boombox, is what I have to show you today.

12 May 2021

LEGO® Speed Champions 2021 interview: Design Manager Specialist Christopher Stamp

Back in May 2020 during the Fan Media Days, New Elementary contributors Tim Johnson and Francesco Spreafico spoke online to LEGO® Speed Champions Design Manager Specialist, Christopher Leslie Stamp, where he told us everything about the 2021 sets. (Well, almost everything – since then, they added another car to this year's assortment!) And so now, a year later with the sets about to be released on 1 June, we can finally share what he told us! This transcript has been edited for clarity, readability and narrative flow.

Set images ©2021 The LEGO Group, photograph ©2019 New Elementary

10 May 2021

Which LEGO® sets have the most new parts? April & May 2021

Following our list of new parts from May 2021, today we list the most recent LEGO® sets showing the quantity of new parts each of in them. This covers sets added to Rebrickable in April and May.

Developed in partnership with TobyMac (from Rebrickable), we show both quantity as well as overall percentage of new elements. So if you like to buy sets knowing they'll contain stuff you don't yet own, you may like to use our table as one of your purchasing factors.

09 May 2021

What new LEGO® pieces were released in May 2021?


TobyMac (on Rebrickable) has created a list showing all 99 new LEGO® elements added in May 2021, with links to which sets they come in so you can check for the ones you might be interested in. And this month, we've made an improvement to the list that many of you have been asking for! There's also an opportunity for you to help Rebrickable with information on a potentially new mould.

08 May 2021

LEGO® City interview: the new Road Plates

An earth-shattering change occurred in LEGO® City in 2021: the introduction of brick-built roads, replacing the thin baseplates that have been used for decades. So New Elementary asked The LEGO Group about the development of this new 'element platform', including questions from our lovely Patreon supporters. The answers are a team effort from the LEGO® City team and Element Design. Before anyone asks; we did not ask them about the absence of curved road elements as the team had already stated; "At this point the LEGO® City team does not have a comment on corners."


Where did the idea for reinventing road baseplates come about - is it something that’s been on the LEGO® City team’s collective minds for a long time now, or a bit more recent? 

The idea has been hovering around the project for a number of years. The first time this system of elements was pitched as a concept was more than 10 years ago. 

06 May 2021

LEGO® Creator review & alt-build: 31116 Safari Wildlife Tree House

Alice Finch (@bippitybricks) returns as our guest reviewer again today, with LEGO® Creator 31116 Safari Wildlife Tree House in her sights. She examines each of the 3-in-1 models before designing a 4th of her own! Buying this £29.99 / US$29.99 / 29.99€ / AU$49.99 set? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. The products in this article were provided by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.

31116 Safari Wildlife Tree House is in the LEGO® Creator line and features an animal, a vehicle or structure, and at least one colourful bird in each of the three models. Seeing as most of us are still staying close to home, taking a trip on a LEGO safari is a welcome departure from the living room, office or wherever you have been spending the last year.

03 May 2021

LEGO® Botanical Collection review: 10289 Birds of Paradise

Victor Pruvost (@leewanlego) reviews an upcoming addition to the LEGO® Botanical Collection today: 10289 Birds of Paradise. Buying this set? Consider using our affiliate links, New Elementary may get a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop, for other countries 'Change Region'. The products in this article were provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.


10289 Birds of Paradise, the third set in the recent LEGO® Botanical Collection, has just been revealed. With 1173 elements, it is the set with the highest parts count to date, and also the most expensive: it will cost 99.99 EUR / 89.99 GBP / 99.99 USD and will be released on 1 June 2021, except in North America where it will be released on 1 August.

02 May 2021

(CW: HP) LEGO® BrickHeadz parts review + MOCs: 40495 & 40496

Eero Okkonen examines the parts in LEGO® BrickHeadz sets 40495 & 40496, both released on 1 June 2021, before using some of them in his own creations. Note, this article does not cover the actual build of the models – please visit other fan sites for that, such as The Rambling Brick. The products in this article were provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.

The target audience for LEGO® BrickHeadz sets 40495 and 40496 are people who want to have simple, rectangular models of Harry Potter franchise characters on display. These two Brickheadz sets, each containing multiple characters, are not what I would call “essential New Elementary content”; they’re fairly basic models with only a few unique printed parts. Also their theme licence has its problems: New Elementary has a stance on Harry Potter sets following JK Rowling’s shocking and hurtful views on transgender people, which you can read here. I am aware that reviewing this merchandise might work as an advertisement, and JK Rowling might even profit from it. I don’t like it. 


So, why do we review such sets? Firstly, we do not always know what pre-release sets we’re getting from TLG, and secondly, it’s worth knowing that all sets are not new mold powerhouses; and such sets may have other qualities. Due to this issue, I have deliberately faded out the Potter aspect of this article, rather focusing on the parts and creating my own models. I will also return to this issue later on.