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REVIEW: 9441 Kai's Blade Cycle


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#1 Velika314

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 11:10 PM

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I decided to take advantage of the Black Friday sales out here in the USA and picked this set up along with 9442 Jay's Storm Fighter at a discount.  :classic:  These new sets appear to have a "convert" ability which grabbed my interest. The last time I saw that was back with Alpha Team!

Set Name: 9441 Kai's Blade Cycle
Theme: Ninjago
Released: January 2012
Pieces: 188
Price: $16.99
Place of Purchase: Toys R Us

Let's start with the box:

Box Front

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Box Back

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The new box has a mysterious green ninja as a background. Who is it I wonder...  :look:

Parts, Instruction Booklet, and DSS

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The Parts

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I spy some nice new pieces!

Pieces of Interest

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Look at all those cool bits! A new ninja mask, golden bits, gold sheath, and a new tile stud piece! :cry_happy:

The Instruction Booklet

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Bent as usual...  :hmpf_bad:

Also, I found this insert in the middle of the building directions:

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A 4 page insert in the middle of the instructions! Why?  :sceptic:

The DSS

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This was a pain to apply, but at least they don't overlap pieces.

The Minifigs

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Very detailed minifigures.

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I love the new mask and snake head.

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Some back printing.

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A comparison with Kai ZX's old ninja mask (and the one used for most ninjas up until this point) and the new ninja mask.

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The shorter back allows for armor to be added to ninjas.  :thumbup:

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The new double sword sheath looks nice and is attached to the shoulder pads.

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How the swords fit in.

The Build

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A nice small stand for the snake staff. The staff actually has a transparent blue tile stud with a "hypnosis symbol" attached to it.

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The bike starts off with some technic bits for stability (and not for the "convert" function as I had thought before building it).

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The bike is beefed up with some blades and a wheel.

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More blades and wheels are added.

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The sides that supposedly pop out are added.

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Finished! :classic:

Conversion

Before

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After

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I found this feature nice, but overall kind of uninteresting. It barely pops out at all and it doesn't convert into anything more than a seemingly larger bike. Still, it's nice to have some sort of play feature for kids to use in a smaller set like this one.

Conclusion

Extra Pieces

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Overall

Playability: 4/5 It's nice that LEGO decided to add a transforming option into a smaller set like this. It doesn't work very well though.
Design: 5/5 The set is very stable and looks very "sharp"  :tongue:
Build: 3/5 Interesting, but it didn't stick out like some other sets do.
Parts: 6/5 Lots of nice new parts in nice new colors.
Price: 4/5 The price-to-parts ratio is pretty good. Not spot on though and this is not a Licensed theme
Overall: 4/5 I would get it for the parts and minifigures alone. A nice set to add to your parts collection.  :thumbup:

The Finished Set

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Click here to view my review of 9442 Jay's Storm Fighter.

Edited by Rufus, 11 February 2012 - 04:24 PM.
Indexed

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#2 K-Nut

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 11:13 PM

Great work so far! This is one of m top sets for 2012. I look forward for the rest of the review.  :sweet:
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#3 Nightshroud99

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 11:23 PM

I have this set and made a video review of it. I have to agree it is one of my favorites, the bike itself is sweet and the figures are both amazing!  :sweet:

Lot's of pearl gold too.  :thumbup:
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#4 Velika314

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 11:38 PM

Sorry for the delay, I accidentally clicked post while trying to preview it.  :tongue:
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#5 K-Nut

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 11:47 PM

That Ninja is awesome! :wub: I'll get this set for him alone! The bike is great, but I'm not a fan of the Snake people.
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#6 lightningtiger

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 12:09 AM

Thanks for the review 'Velika314', great looking set....it should sell well and I guess this is what the future holds for Ninjago....we shall see when the series hits CN next year. :wink:
But looking at this set....I can't help think.....Go, Go Power Rangers ! :laugh:
It appears also that the snakemen have sonic powers similar to Evo's on Generator Rex and Echo Echo from Ben10 Alien Force.....CN input again eh Lego ? :grin:
I look forward to the next review. :classic:

#7 Rocketbilly

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 12:47 AM

View PostNightshroud99, on 25 November 2011 - 11:23 PM, said:

I have this set and made a video review of it. I have to agree it is one of my favorites, the bike itself is sweet and the figures are both amazing!  :sweet:

Lot's of pearl gold too.  :thumbup:

I saw your review - did you manage to fix it so that both sides open properly? every review I've seen of this set seems to have the same problem  :sceptic:

Nice review! I have to say I'm looking forward to being able to get this set, though I think the transformation is a little odd. Still, nice that it was included and it does look kind of cool...when it pops out all the way on both sides. Nice pictures, too  :classic:

#8 Ceroknight

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 10:22 AM

Thanks for the review!
Personally I don't like the armour that much, the back comes out a bit too much...
I need to try and get these! :grin:
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#9 Lordofdragonss

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 11:15 AM

This set is pathetic- It's just a giant ugly motorcycle with pop up armor function(blade attack with no visible blades? ). No traps, no cool hiden compartments and stuff like that. Lego I'm disapointed.  :look:
It have only two good sides: Minifigs (I love how they made Rattla eyes) and pieces (but too much technic  :sceptic: ).
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#10 Aanchir

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 03:20 PM

I like the function-- it reminds me of things like the X-Wing Starfighter that have "attack" and "speed" configurations-- but alas, it's a real disappointment that it doesn't work as well as it seemed to in pictures. Still, it's a lovely vehicle that I think suits Kai's bold and reckless personality. I also like the sticker sheet's design. This is an instance where I think stickers do the job quite well-- printing would have been very specialized but a complete lack of decorations couldn't have given the vehicle such an intense graphic design.

Instructions being split in the middle isn't new exactly-- lots of Roboriders and early BIONICLE instruction booklets had a similar format (like 8510. But in their cases it was more justified: the first half of the instruction booklet tended to be the instructions for the "main model" and the second half included instructions for an alternate or combination model. Here it's a bit baffling, but it doesn't exactly bother me-- it reminds me of the "story features" in the centerfolds of some BIONICLE comics.

The figs are very neat. Kai's new costume still has a sort of traditional look rather than a futuristic Power Rangers sort of aesthetic, but at the same time it is suitably unique and fantasy-inspired to fit the theme's zany and colorful aesthetic. "Rattla" is alien-looking and menacing but still nice and cartoony.

The snake shrine in this set seems to be one of the dullest ones, but thankfully it's small enough that it doesn't likely drive up the price too high.

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#11 surrideo

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 05:36 PM

Nice update of the Ninja costumes, much more interesting bad guys imo than last year and the transformation does look disappointing but a nice chunky bike that kids will enjoy. One of the first sets I'll get the kids when these hit UK stores in January

#12 charlieboy

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Posted 27 November 2011 - 10:07 AM

Wow! The new wave sets are much better than the first ones! My son is a big Ninjago fan so we'll be buying them all again I should think but these new minifigs are awesome! I'll be grabbing all of those via Bricklink methinks.

Thanks for a great review :wink:

#13 Darth Nihilus

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Posted 28 November 2011 - 08:36 PM

Wait a second. One of the weapons is dynamite? That's just wrong. Anyway, I  :wub: this set, parts pack galore. The new ninja looks good, but GOD THAT TORSO IS AWESOME! The sword sheath is quite good as well. :sweet:
Nice review, I think you did very good. :thumbup:
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#14 TheLegoDr

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 12:28 AM

I never liked Ninjago until seeing some of these new sets. Now I want a lot of the older ones. Weird...

I don't care too much for the vehicle, but the figures look greatly detailed. I am excited to see these in the flesh, so to speak.

Nice review. Very thorough. Good pictures. It gives us a good idea of what to expect.
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#15 Velika314

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 06:20 AM

Thanks for all the great comments everyone!  :classic:
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#16 IAmWillGibson

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 10:05 PM

View PostK-nut, on 25 November 2011 - 11:47 PM, said:

That Ninja is awesome! :wub: I'll get this set for him alone! The bike is great, but I'm not a fan of the Snake people.

Dude, any Snake People you get that you don't want, send 'em my way. I'm into this new wave almost exclusively for the Snake People [except the weird two-headed one]. Children of Yig, yo.

#17 horizon

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Posted 06 February 2012 - 05:18 AM

Hey,
my son bough if from his weekly money. He is four and half years old, he build 80% of it all by himself, then he got a little tired and let me finish the blade things. For an 8+ year old set he did quite well I must say.

A sturdy basis of this bike. And an edgy end design of the model which only has 2 studs left, which are for Kai to stand on: sleek.

While I am still not sold on the Ninjago 2012 direction I must admit that the vehicle in itself is really well done by LEGO.


Good review by the way. ;)

#18 Esurient

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Posted 06 February 2012 - 05:53 AM

Nice set and review. I would buy the set just for the minifigures. Looks like Kai stole someone's shurikens lol.
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#19 just2good

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:36 AM

Nice review, 'Velika314'! :thumbup:
I've always had little interest in this set. If it was $12, I probably would have picked it up by now, but $15 seems a bit overpriced, but the figures do look nice. :classic:

#20 jabadala

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 11:42 AM

This set is very popular among kids. I always see kids picking this one out because not only is it cool but it's only $15, just expensive enough to allow their allowances or gift money to cover. Seems like the shelf for this set is always empty.



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