Roll of the dice, take a spin of the wheel - Out of your hands now, so how do you feel - But you’re not gonna win, you’d better go back again (Iron maiden - The angel and the gambler)
Here comes my second walk in Paradisa. I've been at the Sidewalk café, but there's another place where you can buy ice creams and have some fun. Welcome to the
6409: Island arcade
Pieces: 140 + 6 extras
Price: 21 USD (source: Peeron) Legopriceguide.com states a 97,50 USD as value for a MISB set.
Building time: less than 15 minutes
MISB on review: Yes
More info: Brickset - Peeron - Bricklink
Official description: N/A
Box front: a bit hurt, but that's no problem. Good overview of the set. The most interesting fact about the pic is that it's quite different from what you see in the first and last page of the instructions: the palm, the cupboard, flowers, chairs and small table in the bottom left corner, fridge and carousel. See these pics:
Box rear: alternate models. On the left side, a girl carrying a cupboard instead of a pram and a photo shoot with odd tripod and an odder light umbrella; in the center, an horizontal wheel of fortune with chairs and tables on the side and an open air dancing (nice piano and congas, but is the 4x4 dish meant to be a bass drum?). On the right side, a happy family walking a pram and a close-up of the main model focusing on the gambling side.
Box side: OK, THIS is what you build by using instructions and not placing items at random.
Box inner: good to see there was some solid cardboard inside, otherwise it would have been hard for the pieces and papers to be safe inside a thin outer container.
Box content - paper: the instructions booklet and a huge one-sided poster.
Box content - building material: a 16x32 light green baseplate, three different sized bags and a small sticker sheet (found in the instructions booklet).
Pieces: a lot of pink, some gray, obvious green leafs and brown palm trunk.
Pieces: all the white ones, and that includes a few printed pieces (who doesn't love those ice cream come tiles?)
Random instructions page: That's where you put the money. Nice seaside sunset background, with a view on not-so-far-away islands. Full instructions available here.
Stickers: only three of them (and in perfect shape). Trouble is, they are to be put on two 2x2 tiles or three 1x2 bricks.
Poster: A really nice theme overview, but not so nice to scan. Everyone's happy there, even the unhorsed girl. Please click the 4 thumbnails for a larger view.
5 people and a parrot: Yes, 5 minifigs in such a small set. It seems like in Paradisa all girls like the same hair style (and most of them are into heavy make-up).
Building: We start with the palm (good to have a trunk that can be curved) and the pram (it's REALLY hard to put a baby in there. I don't own any microfig yet, so I can't try it)
Building: Step 6 of 14: the background's there, so is the place to put the ice-creams.
Building: Step 11, we now have the cupboard, carousel, chairs and table too.
Building: Close to complete, we only miss stickers and flowers.
Building: And now everything's there and we're done.
45° views: How does it look from the corners?
Rear view and leftovers: Looking at it from behind, it surely looks far from great.
Side by side(walk): My little corner of Paradisa.
Lego is about building, playing and collecting. While there's not much to build here, there is plenty to play with. You can enjoy the wheel of fortune (and probably lose a lot of money; more on that later), have a seat with a friend for a drink, buy an ice cream, teach a parrot to talk, ride a carousel or carry your newborn in the pram. There's a lot about family too, with at least two minifigs per gender and a total of three females (that's a lot, we all know). It's not much of a deal that each girl has the same hair piece, look at the poster and see that EVERY girl in Paradisa has a ponytail. What about head pieces? That's basically the same; everyone in Paradisa has either shades, freckles, moustache or heavy make-up. But that was 1993, a long time ago, so the whole thing is fully understandable. Obviously no back printing on heads or torsos, but who cares? We have 4 different legs and 5 different torsos; while most of the minifigs parts are common amongst the theme sets, at least they are different within the set itself.
Back to building: I was really surprised (should I say "Shocked"?) when I saw that the set was built in three slightly different ways on the box and the first and last page of the instructions. But that's good, because it tells the 6 year old "you're not too forced, do as you like". Don't look for odd techniques, a turntable and a SNOT sign is what you'll find. But something's spinning, something's opening, there's a lot to do after the build. The two ice creams consist of two 1x1 tiles (red, yellow), but you could add some of the leftovers. You can stock 6 of them vertically (if you leave the fridge open) or 4 horizontally (and close the thing)
As for colors, that's probably the only con of this set. I know it's very female-oriented, but the whole thing (except for palm tree and parrot) looks pale to me. It's not so bad on other sets, but with such a few pieces it just doesn't look good to me.
The collector's point of view: it's not too big or tall, it's different than the usual (whether modern or vintage), it has plenty of figs and features and it was a steal! And for those who weren't there yet in non-Internet days: yes, most sets came with a full catalog or mini/maxi poster.
Overall: This is probably not the MISB set you want to spend 75 bucks on (I spent much less than that, within the luckiest LEGO find of my life) but something a lot of kids would like or have liked. I'm curious about the new Lego Friends theme, but I wonder if it is going to be so much better than Paradisa. Pale colors aside, this female-oriented theme was really good.
Color scheme: 3/5. I know white, pink and gray is what it's allabout, but this time I don't like the scheme that much.
Minifigs and accessories: 5/5. If it was a 2011 set, I would complain about head pieces and hair pieces. But with such an old set, I just can't.
Pieces: 4/5. Mostly because of the uniqueness / rarity of the printed pieces. And there are never enough palm trees, I say.
Playability: 5/5. This is a true playset, just as much as most every other one in the land of pink and white.
Design: 4/5. Simple and effective, appealing and inspiring.
Overall rating: 4,5/5. A bit short of outstanding, but absolutely good.
The final words: This is not a collector's item at first sight, it quickly becomes one as soon as you own it.
Extra: so, what about gambling? click the Spoilers button, if you dare!
Edited by Rick, 05 September 2011 - 06:50 PM.