David Thomsen

Future Pirates Speculation

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Posted (edited)

I would like to drop my 2 cents.

I have been repeated many times that "Today's kids do not play with pirates" but it's that true? I mean, did really 1989's kids play with them? Were them actually that fond of pirates?
Pirates books for kids keep on being printed, and maybe it's just the country I live on, but kids are really still attracted by pirates.
Plus, my admiral fact:

https://www.playmobil.it/isola-del-tesoro-fortificata/6679.html

This is a new set from 2019. Why if Playmobil is still selling pirates and knights, LEGO is failing after that?

If they reprinted the Black Seas Barracuda now in 2019, 30 years after the first one, would it really be a bad move? Wouldn't AFOL buy it just to say "hey, that's the first ship they made, I'm grabbin' one of these".
Or a new ship, better than the one they did in 2015?

Do they really need all these "named character" as per Ninjago and Nexo Knights?

I don't know. I trust them saying "No, pal, they don't sell" but are the children to be blamed or the poor sets they made back in 2015? Or the advertising campaign after that?
Sometimes it seems to me like they do a new pirate/castle theme in a bad way so that they can say "See? It doesn't sell."

And playmobil keeps on selling pirates.

Why?

Edited by Itaria No Shintaku

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Just now, Itaria No Shintaku said:

I would like to drop my 2 cents.

I have been repeated many times that "Today's kids do not play with pirates" but it's that true? I mean, did really 1989's kids play with them? Were them actually that fond of pirates?
Pirates books for kids keep on being printed, and maybe it's just the country I live on, but kids are really still attracted by pirates.
Plus, my admiral fact:

https://www.playmobil.it/isola-del-tesoro-fortificata/6679.html

This is a new set from 2019. Why if Playmobil is still selling pirates and knights, LEGO is failing after that?

If they reprinted the Black Seas Barracuda now in 2019, 30 years after the first one, would it really be a bad move? Wouldn't AFOL buy it just to say "hey, that's the first ship they made, I'm grabbin' one of these".
Or a new ship, better than the one they did in 2015?

Do they really need all these "named character" as per Ninjago and Nexo Knights?

I don't know. I trust them saying "No, pal, they don't sell" but are the children to be blamed or the poor sets they made back in 2015? Or the advertising campaign after that?
Sometimes it seems to me like they do a new pirate/castle theme in a bad way so that they can say "See? It doesn't sell."

And playmobil keeps on selling pirates.

Why?

I think it varies by country. This may be just my personal experience, but it seems to me that in Ireland, where I live, children are mostly interested only in licenced themes, or Lego's own brand of licenced themes, like Ninjago. Even when I was a child and I got set 375, I turned it into spaceships fairly quickly. However, I visit Germany a lot, where it seems that traditional themes for toys, like pirates, wild west and knights are still a thing.

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22 hours ago, TalonCard said:

Still curious about this mysterious Idea Book. What can you tell us, @kelceycoe?

 

TC

I believe it was #260, last pages

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58 minutes ago, kelceycoe said:

I believe it was #260, last pages

Nope, the last pages of 260 are space themed.

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What about the idea book before that, wasn't there one in the 80s?

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2 hours ago, kelceycoe said:

What about the idea book before that, wasn't there one in the 80s?

Is this something you're remembering or something you heard about? Do you happen to remember what the cover looked like?

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11 hours ago, Mister Phes said:

What evidence indicates Pirates mini-figures?

It said "You will be suprised!"I really dont know i just saw that and though maybe pirates?

6 hours ago, Itaria No Shintaku said:

I would like to drop my 2 cents.

I have been repeated many times that "Today's kids do not play with pirates" but it's that true? I mean, did really 1989's kids play with them? Were them actually that fond of pirates?
Pirates books for kids keep on being printed, and maybe it's just the country I live on, but kids are really still attracted by pirates.
Plus, my admiral fact:

https://www.playmobil.it/isola-del-tesoro-fortificata/6679.html

This is a new set from 2019. Why if Playmobil is still selling pirates and knights, LEGO is failing after that?

If they reprinted the Black Seas Barracuda now in 2019, 30 years after the first one, would it really be a bad move? Wouldn't AFOL buy it just to say "hey, that's the first ship they made, I'm grabbin' one of these".
Or a new ship, better than the one they did in 2015?

Do they really need all these "named character" as per Ninjago and Nexo Knights?

I don't know. I trust them saying "No, pal, they don't sell" but are the children to be blamed or the poor sets they made back in 2015? Or the advertising campaign after that?
Sometimes it seems to me like they do a new pirate/castle theme in a bad way so that they can say "See? It doesn't sell."

And playmobil keeps on selling pirates.

Why?

They dont focus on Pirates.2009 reboot was excellent with Imperial Flagship, Brickbeards Bounty, Soldier Outpost...And they didnt continue.I'm a teen and i like mostly Pirates.Star Wars are good, but Pirates...is just something else.

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11 hours ago, Roebuck said:

There is only hope left for anything pirates 30th anniversary this year and that hope is getting smaller every day :cry_sad:
There was one pirates looking head that leaked, but probably from ninjago, CMF 19 or similar I guess :def_shrug:

We can cross our jolly roger:jollyroger: and hope "The Pirate Bay" gets approved on Lego ideas :pir_laugh2:

Yeah,  i hope so.Pirate Bay looks likes a good set.I think they should re-release the classics from 1989 atleast:Black Seas Barracuda, Eldorado Fortress, Forbidden Island, Caribbean Clipper and Shipwreck Island.Also the box needs to look like the 1989, not like the nowadays boxes.

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Posted (edited)
On 7/7/2019 at 12:28 AM, kelceycoe said:

I believe the original source of Europa was an 90s Idea Book, #671 to be exact

So by "exact" you didn't actually mean an exact number, or a real book then? That's just such a weirdly precise number that could correspond to an Idea Book between the 1990 and 1997 books, but does not apparently exist.

TC

Edited by TalonCard

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9 minutes ago, Balkcuga said:

Yeah,  i hope so.Pirate Bay looks likes a good set.I think they should re-release the classics from 1989 atleast:Black Seas Barracuda, Eldorado Fortress, Forbidden Island, Caribbean Clipper and Shipwreck Island.Also the box needs to look like the 1989, not like the nowadays boxes.

I could see them re-imagining them, but not re-releasing them. There are several major obstacles I can see with that:

  • For starters, LEGO already tried re-releasing older sets in the early 2000s "LEGO Legends" range (specifically, 6290, 6291, 6292, and 10040) but sales tended to be lackluster across the entire range.
     
  • Re-releasing sets like those now would be even more cost-prohibitive, since many more elements from back then have been retired than had been the case in the early 2000s.
     
  • A lot of stuff from back then is simply sub-par by current standards:
     
    • simplistic graphic designs
       
    • bricks in extremely limited colors
       
    • flimsy building techniques for features such as the rigging and bowsprits
       
    • chunky, overspecialized pieces like Forbidden Island's rope bridge and stairs, Eldorado Fortress's raised baseplate and Fabuland-scale jail cell, etc.
       
    • abysmal value for money even at their time of release. For instance, Forbidden Island cost $37.50/£22.00 —the equivalent of $77.46/£54.28 after 30 years of inflation — for a mere 182 pieces weighing less than 490 grams! How many people are really going to pay that much (or possibly even more, depending on how much it takes to bring the old masts, rigging, etc) for such a simplistic, awkward-looking build like that, when nowadays $69.99/£54.99 can buy you a set like 21316, 41379, 41380, or 70831 with 600+ pieces weighing 550+ grams?
       
    • People who actually remember those sets from back then and who put a lot of value in nostalgia MIGHT be willing to give all these drawbacks a pass, but other LEGO fans (even adults of similar age) who are more used to modern design standards might easily perceive it as laziness, cheapness, or shoddy quality. I definitely remember seeing Facebook comments to that effect about the Modular Buildings back before LEGO started using face prints that were up to date with modern standards.

All in all, I think it makes much more sense to continue to hope for LEGO to make NEW pirate sets. After all, if there's a big enough market to support a Pirates wave encompassing stuff like the classics you mentioned, that should also be a big enough market to support Pirates sets of comparable size that don't fall so dismally short of current design standards.

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On 5/10/2019 at 4:08 AM, Mister Phes said:

Not like it has't been done before... Check out the 1990's Paradisa theme...

Actually had a few Paradisa sets in my youth.  Loved incorporating some of the minifigures into my Pirates builds.  Not the same with minidolls, unfortunately.

On 5/22/2019 at 1:34 AM, Mister Phes said:

However, like any consumable, consumers are under no obligation to favour the manufacturer's current output and have the liberty to express their opinion, whether that be an in-depth essay or simple reaction.

Agreed.

On 6/14/2019 at 10:07 AM, Mister Phes said:

Europa.png

Squarely between Pirates and Castle.  While I understand why it couldn't work then, I could see it working today.  Much better than trying to combine either of them with Space...

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24 minutes ago, Aanchir said:

I could see them re-imagining them, but not re-releasing them. There are several major obstacles I can see with that:

  • For starters, LEGO already tried re-releasing older sets in the early 2000s "LEGO Legends" range (specifically, 6290, 6291, 6292, and 10040) but sales tended to be lackluster across the entire range.
     
  • Re-releasing sets like those now would be even more cost-prohibitive, since many more elements from back then have been retired than had been the case in the early 2000s.
     
  • A lot of stuff from back then is simply sub-par by current standards:
     
    • simplistic graphic designs
       
    • bricks in extremely limited colors
       
    • flimsy building techniques for features such as the rigging and bowsprits
       
    • chunky, overspecialized pieces like Forbidden Island's rope bridge and stairs, Eldorado Fortress's raised baseplate and Fabuland-scale jail cell, etc.
       
    • abysmal value for money even at their time of release. For instance, Forbidden Island cost $37.50/£22.00 —the equivalent of $77.46/£54.28 after 30 years of inflation — for a mere 182 pieces weighing less than 490 grams! How many people are really going to pay that much (or possibly even more, depending on how much it takes to bring the old masts, rigging, etc) for such a simplistic, awkward-looking build like that, when nowadays $69.99/£54.99 can buy you a set like 21316, 41379, 41380, or 70831 with 600+ pieces weighing 550+ grams?
       
    • People who actually remember those sets from back then and who put a lot of value in nostalgia MIGHT be willing to give all these drawbacks a pass, but other LEGO fans (even adults of similar age) who are more used to modern design standards might easily perceive it as laziness, cheapness, or shoddy quality. I definitely remember seeing Facebook comments to that effect about the Modular Buildings back before LEGO started using face prints that were up to date with modern standards.

All in all, I think it makes much more sense to continue to hope for LEGO to make NEW pirate sets. After all, if there's a big enough market to support a Pirates wave encompassing stuff like the classics you mentioned, that should also be a big enough market to support Pirates sets of comparable size that don't fall so dismally short of current design standards.

I see.They can re-imagine them.About the graphic design...i prefer the old one.I think Eldorado woudn't be Eldorado without basic smiles and baseplate, dont you think? The Forbidden Island have only two unique pieces and the palm.Eldorado only has unique doors,palm and baseplate.But i see what u want to say.Maybe better re-imaging them with new Pirate sets in that style, not those crappy sets from 2015.

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1 hour ago, TalonCard said:

So by "exact" you didn't actually mean an exact number, or a real book then? That's just such a weirdly precise number that could correspond to an Idea Book between the 1990 and 1997 books, but does not apparently exist.

TC

Because the file name had 671 so I assumed that was the number. But I cannot find an idea book by that number so I officially have no clue about the original source of Europa.

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8 hours ago, Balkcuga said:

It said "You will be suprised!"I really dont know i just saw that and though maybe pirates?

Ok, so that was your own personal speculation and nothing confirmed in the source material.

8 hours ago, Balkcuga said:

2009 reboot was excellent with Imperial Flagship, Brickbeards Bounty, Soldier Outpost...And they didnt continue

As of 2015 the current business strategy regarding LEGO Pirates is to release a new wave of sets every 5-7 years.  There are no plans for yearly releases or an ongoing theme.

But whether that is still the strategy I cannot confirm...

8 hours ago, kelceycoe said:

Wasn't the one from the '80s (http://oldinstructions.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/1987-250-1-Ideas-Book.pdf). I swore I had seen that but guess not.

That one is from 1987 so it predates Pirates by a couple of years.

3 hours ago, Aanchir said:

For starters, LEGO already tried re-releasing older sets in the early 2000s "LEGO Legends" range (specifically, 6290, 6291, 6292, and 10040) but sales tended to be lackluster across the entire range.

Where precisely was it stated sales were lackluster?  Was it in the 2001/2002 yearly official reports?

Anecdotally, I recall seeing them in local department stores and deliberately waited for a sale in which I'd swoop in and clean up.  But they sold rather well and no sale eventuated so I turned to eBay instead. 

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2 hours ago, x105Black said:

Actually had a few Paradisa sets in my youth. 

My sister had a couple of Paradisa sets which I eventually inherited after she lost interest in toys.

I thought Paradisa was great because it was like this fusion between Town and Pirates, so it was very useful for supplying useful parts.

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1 hour ago, Mister Phes said:

Where precisely was it stated sales were lackluster?  Was it in the 2001/2002 yearly official reports?

Speaking recently with KimT, he said that they were a total flop.
The most asked set for a re-release actually is the Greengrocer (they did a survey) but they have no plans for it.
On the other hand a new take on the Imperial Flagship isn't a fantasy too far.

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16 minutes ago, Itaria No Shintaku said:

Speaking recently with KimT, he said that they were a total flop.

Does that include the 2002 release of 10040 Black Seas Barracuda? 

The reason that particular set went back into productions is because fans voted for it.

16 minutes ago, Itaria No Shintaku said:

On the other hand a new take on the Imperial Flagship isn't a fantasy too far. 

What makes you say that?

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6 minutes ago, Mister Phes said:

Does that include the 2002 release of 10040 Black Seas Barracuda? 

The reason that particular set went back into productions is because fans voted for it.

What makes you say that?

Yes that includes also the Barracuda's re-release.
And I can say that because when speaking with a designer, asking him about other topics they were like "no" and about an imperial flagship they were like "who knows".

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4 minutes ago, Itaria No Shintaku said:

Yes that includes also the Barracuda's re-release.
And I can say that because when speaking with a designer, asking him about other topics they were like "no" and about an imperial flagship they were like "who knows". 

Thank you for all this insightful information! :thumbup:

Where were you speaking to KimT and the designer?  Was this at the same event/location or different occasions?

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Just now, Mister Phes said:

Thank you for all this insightful information! :thumbup:

Where were you speaking to KimT and the designer?  Was this at the same event/location or different occasions?

It was in Skaerbaek Fan Weekend, if I recall correctly it was 2018, but I may be wrong with 2017. I've been there 7 times already so sometimes I make confusion about when I did what.

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2 hours ago, Mister Phes said:

Where precisely was it stated sales were lackluster?  Was it in the 2001/2002 yearly official reports?

I got 6290 late in 2001 - on sale for less than half the original price, only a few months after release. So I guess its true that they didn't sell well.

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25 minutes ago, Itaria No Shintaku said:

It was in Skaerbaek Fan Weekend, if I recall correctly it was 2018, but I may be wrong with 2017. I've been there 7 times already so sometimes I make confusion about when I did what. 

Interesting how sales data for sets re-released 15 to 16 years prior happened to be fresh in their minds...  you know, since how many hundreds of sets have been released in the time since?

4 minutes ago, ArneNielsen said:

I got 6290 late in 2001 - on sale for less than half the original price, only a few months after release. So I guess its true that they didn't sell well.

Ah yes, and therein lies the problem with personal observation.  Sales performance in one store or one particular region, isn't necessarily an indication of global sales.

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1 hour ago, Mister Phes said:

Ah yes, and therein lies the problem with personal observation.  Sales performance in one store or one particular region, isn't necessarily an indication of global sales

True! But then again, this was in Denmark, the home of LEGO, and it was in the COOP chain, the biggest chain we have, so at least it does carry some weight.

But I admit, that it was only this set (which is the least interesting of the three sets); 6291 and 6292 were never on clearance in Denmark.

 

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1 hour ago, Mister Phes said:

Interesting how sales data for sets re-released 15 to 16 years prior happened to be fresh in their minds...  you know, since how many hundreds of sets have been released in the time since?

Ah yes, and therein lies the problem with personal observation.  Sales performance in one store or one particular region, isn't necessarily an indication of global sales.

It's quite simple to say if a theme was a failure or not.
It's like remembering the biggest flops of your supported sport team.
I remember all the best and worst matches of my team perfectly, even the ones that took place 20 years ago.

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