Trekkie99

The Future of Lego Space. (opinions, ideas, discussion)

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21 out of 30 ideas sets so far have been IP related, counting the nasa/ real company ip’s. It’s time to just face the music at this point that ideas is not viable for this kind of thing. It’s an IP testing ground above all else. 
 

if we want to see LEGO return to original space sets, we need to support them doing original sets in general. Hidden side, ninjago, monkie kid, those are the things that tell LEGO “keep experimenting, keep trying things”. And although maybe not suitable for classic space, look at those themes, take away the original characters, and look at the stuff they have to offer. Just as an example, the cloud jet from monkie kid. It’s a very sci-fi flying vehicle, with a function to split its cockpit off into a motorcycle. That would work stupendously one sci fi settings. So would the hoverboard in the horse-motorcycle set. So would tons of the nexo knights sets, with minimal changes. Even ninjago, while usually sticking to a fairly distinct style, has waves like prime empire that feature tons of great sci fi vehicles. 
 

lego will see what people actually buy. If nobody is voting space on ideas, and nobody is buying sci fi related sets other than star wars, then we’re gonna get another 20 years of bland grey And white Star Wars ships. 

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On 5/7/2020 at 12:51 AM, Captain Mutant said:

As far as blowing us away... maybe we shouldn't be too picky and vote for any original sci-fi set that comes along?

That's a strategy only a select few people have, and it's not going to tip the scales. If you can convince masses of people to be less picky, then be my guest.

On 5/7/2020 at 6:12 AM, Lego David said:

Well, the promotion certainly helped. In the period soon after it was discovered that Bionicle was allowed on LEGO Ideas, the site got flooded with Bionicle projects, but none of them went anywhere due to their very limited promotion. Sokoda's set, on the other hand, got promoted by pretty much everybody on various Social Media platforms, including YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit etc, and it managed to gather support so quickly because of that. 

Things get shared because people like them. The fact that Sokoda's set got promoted so much by others was because it was really darn good.

 

On 5/7/2020 at 11:18 AM, astral brick said:

What should Space builders have to do more than they have already done? I mean, there are present and past models on Ideas that are simply amazing.

After a similar search, I can confirm what @Lord Insanity pointed out: distinct, quality entries are few and far between, though I have to acknowledge the good ones. These are pretty much all the needles in the hay stack, imho:

7b74ea6639.png

Beware of the cheerleader effect: try to look at them individually. There's a lot of info here to draw conclusions on. I think, it's often the things that interact with the ship that are the most interesting, not the ship itself (even though it has to look good).

Of particular interest: the Galactic Explorer and Galaxy Explorer, in the upper row. At a glance, the ships are practically identical, however their presentation and popularity of their creators differ considerably. The difference in support count is enormous!

 

Anyway, "what more can we do?" is really a good question. I may have to think about that one for a little longer, but @mrfang2 suggestion is quite a good one. Maybe we should be less picky what sets we buy! :wink: 

(now the circle of the post is round, isn't that satisfying? :purrr:)

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17 hours ago, Lord Insanity said:

There are present Space models on Ideas that are simply amazing?  Where are they?  Sorry but I think Exetrius is right on the money with this.  There hasn't been any absolutely stunning Ideas project that transcends the barrier of "already a Space fan and will vote for it anyway."

I am afraid that you are reversing the cause and the effect. The problem is not the lack of good models but the absence of people interested to vote them. In my opinion this is mainly due to Star Wars, which has engulfed sci-fi to the point of preventing the generational turnover of Space fans. Besides, the leftovers of Space were redirected by Lego to other themes, both fiction oriented (Ninjago, Marvel/Dc superheroes, the upcoming Monkie Kid) and including a more realistic approach (some Town/City sets or the more expensive Nasa ones).   

17 hours ago, Lord Insanity said:

Searching "Spaceship" results

Actually, since my first vote on Ideas, I noticed that using "starship" or "spaceship" in the search bar didn't lead me to Peter Reid's model. I don't know if it is related to Lego search engine features or it is a matter of tags, anyway it was and it is shocking.

17 hours ago, Lord Insanity said:

Where are the original Spaceship designs and how will they compete against things Lego currently has on the shelf that fills that demand?

As much as I would like to see submitted on Ideas this model

https://www.flickr.com/photos/tardisblue/31726117568/

or a reduced version of this one

https://www.flickr.com/photos/jon1138/33781902220/

or any of these ones

https://www.flickr.com/photos/legodoumoko/albums/72157635573953932

I believe that these models would struggle even more than (Neoclassic) Space ones to reach the required votes, not relying on any Lego known theme or any other Ip.

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This thread is taking a pretty depressing turn...

But if it's true that Star Wars is sucking the life out of any potential in-house sci-fi theme, it's a real pity, but at least we can still build our own. If we don't like what's on offer, then we can at least create whatever we can dream of ourselves.

Regarding Exetrius' list (thanks for including me in it btw ;), my favs are Euclides Sector II, and the All-Terrain Exploration Vehicle. I think the LL-997 is too blocky and the Spearhead looks too big to be swooshable.

Peter Reid's Neo-Classic Space revamp is beautiful, but it sadly won't make it now. Its pretty-much-clone copy is only just starting on its journey, although I have an issue with those two: the Ideas rule are clear and state that trying to re-issue an old set isn't allowed... so how come they were?

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8 hours ago, gedren_y said:

The problem is LEGO has Star Wars, which overlaps so much of that community that competing for attention without a popular IP is difficult.

The elephant in the room.

Quote

...If you're going the IP route, you need to do research. Who owns it? Would they license with LEGO? What objections could LEGO have?

This is another essential problem. Anyway I still can't believe that years ago, with Macross license being allowed, this amazing Valkyrie - https://youtu.be/VFRhaNnne8c

gathered the support only to be rejected. Unbelievable missed opportunity.

1 hour ago, Exetrius said:

These are pretty much all the needles in the hay stack, imho:

What a useful recap! Post like yours should be periodical and deserve to be pinned.

Edited by astral brick

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And these threads always come back to Star Wars.  The circle is complete.

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Minilegogo said on instagram that an old theme from many years ago is coming back later this year, could it be space? 

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44 minutes ago, Harkonen said:

Minilegogo said on instagram that an old theme from many years ago is coming back later this year, could it be space? 

Are you sure it was this year? We know most (if not everything) that is coming out this year, and none of it is a returning theme. 

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39 minutes ago, Lego David said:

Are you sure it was this year? We know most (if not everything) that is coming out this year, and none of it is a returning theme. 

He said "An old LEGO theme went out of production many years, will return this year". No idea, I mean, do we really know all the themes? Or maybe it's just one set, we had no idea we get Super Mario until it was officially announced. 

Edited by Harkonen

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Earlier in this thread there was discussion of how a Bionicle Ideas build got the 10k votes to pass. That could easily be it.

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I love classic space and the old space themes and build mocs around them, but they are admittedly pretty niche and would be hard for a kid to get into today. You had to grow up with these sets back then to appreciate it now. I often take Blacktron models to shows and the kids always think it's Batman. I wouldn't expect these models to get much traction on Ideas, especially against all the licensed stuff. It's actually surprising the exo-suit did so well, but Ideas was a much smaller platform back then with a lot fewer models. I prefer to just stick to mocs (and enjoying stuff made by others) instead of wishing for more classic space sets, which are never going to be able to compete with Star Wars and would divide fans even if they did come out.

For me, the main thing that sets classic space apart from both realistic space and Star Wars is the color schemes. The old space themes were all about those sharp looking color schemes, including both the colored windscreens and contrasting main colors (e.g. white/black or blue/gray), and they make models really stand out especially at shows. If we had enough trans colored windscreens released in sets for mocs, that's good enough for me. They were historically rare but we have been getting more of them in the last 4-5 years, especially in the DC/Marvel sets.

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42 minutes ago, CP5670 said:

For me, the main thing that sets classic space apart from both realistic space and Star Wars is the color schemes. The old space themes were all about those sharp looking color schemes, including both the colored windscreens and contrasting main colors (e.g. white/black or blue/gray), and they make models really stand out especially at shows. If we had enough trans colored windscreens released in sets for mocs, that's good enough for me. They were historically rare but we have been getting more of them in the last 4-5 years, especially in the DC/Marvel sets.

I am in full agreement. As a younger fan, I never grew up with the vintage space themes, but looking back at them, I was blown away by the incredible color schemes, and that really got me invested into those themes. In my opinion, that really sets them appart from the Star Wars ships which feature incredibly dull color schemes, consisting mostly of grey and white. 

With that said, I still believe a Sci-Fi Space LEGO Ideas set could gain 10k supporters if properly promoted. If Bionicle (which is a lot more niche than In-House Space) managed to do it, I am pretty sure an In-House Space can do it as well.

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Very interesting reading everyone's thoughts above. I recently wrote to the new lego Innovation portal. My suggestion essentially was a nostalgia line that released a 1 set in each of the classic space, castle and pirates themes each year to shut up AFOLs and make them feel listened to. 

This was the response I got:

Quote

While we love your product ideas, we are not able to pursue a further collaboration at this point. LEGO Innovation Intake will focus on delivering brand new product experiences, whereas LEGO Ideas would be the place to showcase fantastic creations made from bricks that make you yearn for days of past! We'd challenge you to build your vision and share it on https://ideas.LEGO.com. We've already seen some fantastic whimsical themes brought back, and you never know which one will be next! Please don't let that discourage you: The world needs people like you, the builders of tomorrow.

So now we know where they stand on that. I guess if they got a glut of the same sorts of requests through the portal that might make them reconsider, but I doubt it'll happen. Lego know that adults endlessly ask for retro themes to be reborn. I wonder if the success of the pirate bay and of Benny's space squad might mean they think about doing more one offs. The Dorling Kindersley £30 orange classic space man is a nod to that certainly! I don't think we should hope too much though. Best just stick with MOCs and keep scanning sets for useful parts. That said, I do have a lego ideas project coming soon. Reading up on it al, I know the chances of it getting to 10,000 without being an IP are rather low, but why not try? Something to do in these Covid times at least.

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Well, I decided to take the plunge and throw my hat into the LEGO IDEAS ring.  The prospect of having LEGO take something I built and turn it into an official set is too awesome of a dream to pass up, even if the odds are low

I did some slight updates to my old NCS Saberkitty MOC, took new photos, and pitched it on LEGO IDEAS:

https://ideas.lego.com/projects/f030c8f2-134a-4306-80bc-25aa9f7040e0

New photos under the spoiler:

Spoiler

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Of course, I'd appreciate any support from Eurobricks members that I can get.  :thumbup:

I'm learning that achieving success on LEGO IDEAS is an exercise in marketing, and I'd appreciate any advice from others who have a lot more experience here than I do.  Things like who to reach out to, and how to get the eyeballs of those who may be interested to see my submission.

I know that Classic Space by itself is a hard sell on IDEAS, especially given what happened with Peter Reid's Galaxy Explorer revamp, which should have been a slam dunk (it pains me so much since I was so looking forward to having a chance to purchase it).

Luckily for me, the nature of my MOC lends itself to some cross marketing, namely that of Classic Space x The LEGO Movie x Unikitty, which I tried to take advantage of in my submission.

Even though you can earn over two years to achieve 10,000 supporters, I think that an IDEA submission pretty much needs its support to grow multiplicatively or exponentially to really have a chance of making it to 10,000.  The statistical tools LEGO provides on the website even provides a graph of the support you've earned in log10 scale, which makes it quite obvious that getting trickling support in a linear fashion will not cut it (unless you somehow can earn something like 20 supporters a day consistently for 500 days).

I figured reaching out to Classic Space, The LEGO Movie, and Unikitty fans is a no-brainer, but then I started looking and well...let's just say that the Unikitty FaceBook pages are either private or haven't been used in a while.  I know there are Classic Space and Neo Classic Space flickr groups, but is it appropriate to spam them with my LEGO IDEAS submission?  Again, I'm asking for advice.

Help?  Please.

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On 6/6/2020 at 1:55 AM, pombe said:

I did some slight updates to my old NCS Saberkitty MOC, took new photos, and pitched it on LEGO IDEAS:

 

I absolutely love it!

The rear leg design reminds of me something but I can't place it. The missile placement evokes Transformers Ravage but the thruster vents remind me of something else. Zoids Liger? Ok now it's bugging me!

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18 hours ago, danth said:

I absolutely love it!

The rear leg design reminds of me something but I can't place it. The missile placement evokes Transformers Ravage but the thruster vents remind me of something else. Zoids Liger? Ok now it's bugging me!

Phew!  I was afraid that people would not like the small updates to the old MOC.  Thank you so much for the support!  Yes, the weapon pods on the back thighs were inspired by the Transformer Ravage/Jaguar.  As for Zoids, I will admit to not being an expert, but I did use images of a few Ligers to help me design the legs.  I really wanted to get that "mechanical with pistons" look for the legs.  There are a lot of Ligers in the Zoids universe, apparently.

As for trying to drum up support for this on the LEGO IDEAS website, I think I've become quite obnoxious.  I've spammed a few subreddits, spammed soooooooo many Flickr groups, added pins on Pinterest, and begged my entire social network on FaceBook to support this and share this with the known universe.

I've stayed away from Instagram, since it's unclear to me whether or not they own any uploaded content.  Instagram says they do not, but they also say that they have the right to do whatever they want with it, which is essentially the same as owning something.  I haven't used Twitter, since it's not really clear to me how Twitter works.  A friend suggested I try TikTok, but no.

Many of the successful IDEAS submissions have YouTube videos, which leads me to think that I may have to try to put one together.  But even so, how do you get your video to reach audiences who will actually click on a link, generate a new account, and click support?

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2 hours ago, pombe said:

As for trying to drum up support for this on the LEGO IDEAS website, I think I've become quite obnoxious.  I've spammed a few subreddits, spammed soooooooo many Flickr groups, added pins on Pinterest, and begged my entire social network on FaceBook to support this and share this with the known universe.

Honestly I think there's no other way. At least you're self aware about it!

Did you spam UniKitty or Lego Movie fans? You should...

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On 6/6/2020 at 10:55 AM, pombe said:

I know there are Classic Space and Neo Classic Space flickr groups, but is it appropriate to spam them with my LEGO IDEAS submission?  Again, I'm asking for advice.

This is what the guidelines say:

Quote

LEGO Ideas: If you have a great MOC, that is also a LEGO Ideas project, you may present it on EB as you would any MOC, with a single link to the Ideas entry. Make the title about the MOC, not the Ideas business; don't be too shouty, and it is likely to be tolerated. You need to be thinking: 'I want people on EB to see my MOC and comment on it. If they like it, perhaps they'll support it on LEGO Ideas', rather than: 'I want Ideas support! If I post it on EB, perhaps more people will vote!.

Selling, self promotion and promoting: [...] Please don't use Eurobricks as a billboard. You may certainly post links to your site in your signature, but don't join just to advertise your site. This includes reviews/MOCs/contests posted on off-site forums.

My take on this is that you generally shouldn't bring up your project in threads outside of the one dedicated to your creation, but using your signature for Ideas promoting is definitely fine. Lately I personally feel that moderation in the Ideas discussion thread has been slipping a bit, with (mostly new) members plugging their projects and asking for votes. Having an Ideas project myself (which is definitely in need for votes), the temptation to do the same is growing, but that's just not how it's supposed to be.

Btw, I'd revive your old Saberkitty, since it's relevant again that should be fine.

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On 5/7/2020 at 11:18 PM, Lord Insanity said:

Searching "Spaceship" results in the Blacktron Renegade remake and a few Galaxy Explorer style Remakes amid a sea of "junk".  Both of which from a corporate paper pusher perspective Lego has already done modern versions of.  (See Benny's Spaceship and all The Lego Batman Movie sets)  Where are the original Spaceship designs and how will they compete against things Lego currently has on the shelf that fills that demand?  (See the current City Space theme and I would argue the Avenger Ultimate Quinjet is basically a modern equivalent classic spaceship.)

Hey at least we are getting a new astronaut design with a classic logo in the upcoming Creator set.

I agree with this.

What I liked most about LEGO Space from the early 1980's through the mid-1990's was the variety of original, inspirational designs.  MTron and Ice Planet were not merely rehashes of Classic Space or even Futuron.  The themes and their follow-ons were unique takes on how exploration and life in space might work. 

I don't think re-makes of Blacktron or 900-series spaceships are what LEGO Space needs.  What's needed are fresh designs that capture the imagination of kids and adults alike. 

Some of the sets from The LEGO Movie and The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part have this.  I bought the Super Secret Police Dropship because it was a fresh take on Space law enforcement, and it has a very cool and playable design.  I also bought Emmet's Rescue Rocket, because it was a whimsical "Jules Verne" type of spaceship that made me think of exploring the stars.  

What makes a good LEGO Space set?  It should look interesting and have nice play features.  I also feel that it should not be too complicated in terms of greebling or other non-functional décor.  I understand why greebling exists on Star Wars sets representing huge vessels like Star Destroyers or Death Stars: to give a hint at all the smaller structures that are dwarfed by the larger ship.  However, I don't think they add anything to a smaller 1-2 person spaceship, or even a bigger spaceship that can accommodate 6-7 mini-figures.  The ship should be of a size and weight where it is not unwieldy for a child of appropriate age to fly around.  Empty space is ok and even good: it leaves room for creativity and expansion.  For example: the Space Police 2 Galactic Mediator and the Classic Space Cosmic Fleet Voyager had interiors that were empty in some areas and customizable.  Inter-Galactic Command Base is another example of a set with a lot of "empty" room for customization.  

I do have hope that LEGO Space will make a comeback.  A new generation of children will become interested in space exploration, inspired by the creativity of commercial space launches (like SpaceX) and the real possibility of Moon and Mars colonies within the next few decades.  I think there should be plenty of demand for Space sets to help kids give form to their imaginings of a future where many people live in space.

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I'm rediscovering my classic space legos now that my boys have reached the age where they can start using standard lego bricks and I've been disappointed with the fact that so many classic space sets fail to meet the threshold to be made by Lego. Having read through this thread, it seems to me that maybe a better approach than lego ideas would be developing a independent website that had a well curated selection of MOC's organized by theme (neoclassic space) with set piece lists that can be bought from Bricklink. I'm still new to rediscovering lego, but what impresses me now is that you can basically create your own sets with instructions independent of Lego with the MOC's on Bricklink and Rebrickable. It's expensive, but a lot of that has to do with the piece counts of the MOC sets, not the availability of special pieces no longer produced by Lego. 

While I may lament Lego for not wanting to create new space themes, I also feel like the vast majority of space color themes were produced in those old sets i.e Blacktron, M-tron, Futuron, Ice Planet, ect. Themed sets were the inevitable outcome after the sets of the 1990's, since almost every color scheme was utilized by Lego in their in-house themes. 

I've been drumming up support from my boys to create our own space theme, since you can basically create your own minfigs and print stickers. Its not that much more cumbersome. Most space themes were about 10 sets - 4 spaceships, micro, small, medium & large, a couple of ground vehicles, a base and some odd ball sets. 

Anyone else just decided to create their own space theme?

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2 minutes ago, Rocketjim said:

Anyone else just decided to create their own space theme?

How funny you should say that!

Since it looks like my Modernised Classic Space proposal isn't gonna make it on LEGO Ideas, I've spent the last few weeks - in my spare time - designing extensions to the main set idea, essentially creating my own space theme as you yourself just suggested.

I'm still creating additions to the base for now, but I do have dreams of expanding that to ground vehicles, and later, should I ever gain the needed skillset, my own spaceship :)

Edited by Captain Mutant
typo

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40 minutes ago, Rocketjim said:

I'm rediscovering my classic space legos now that my boys have reached the age where they can start using standard lego bricks and I've been disappointed with the fact that so many classic space sets fail to meet the threshold to be made by Lego. Having read through this thread, it seems to me that maybe a better approach than lego ideas would be developing a independent website that had a well curated selection of MOC's organized by theme (neoclassic space) with set piece lists that can be bought from Bricklink. I'm still new to rediscovering lego, but what impresses me now is that you can basically create your own sets with instructions independent of Lego with the MOC's on Bricklink and Rebrickable. It's expensive, but a lot of that has to do with the piece counts of the MOC sets, not the availability of special pieces no longer produced by Lego. 

While I may lament Lego for not wanting to create new space themes, I also feel like the vast majority of space color themes were produced in those old sets i.e Blacktron, M-tron, Futuron, Ice Planet, ect. Themed sets were the inevitable outcome after the sets of the 1990's, since almost every color scheme was utilized by Lego in their in-house themes. 

I've been drumming up support from my boys to create our own space theme, since you can basically create your own minfigs and print stickers. Its not that much more cumbersome. Most space themes were about 10 sets - 4 spaceships, micro, small, medium & large, a couple of ground vehicles, a base and some odd ball sets. 

Anyone else just decided to create their own space theme?

Yes, I have made my own as well! In fact, I have a whole three-page thread dedicated to mine, the LEGO Universe MMO inspired Nexus Force. I used the 2014 CITY Arctic sets and an orange version of Benny's SPACESHIP! from the original Lego movie to make it my own continuation on the story-line left open-ended by Lego in 2012 when the game was shut down abruptly. I've also used the Systar system ships (along with a similarly colored 2009 Tantive IV set) and so-not-evil Space palace along with the Unikitty TV show figs to make a version of a space theme for her royal highness, and her friends / family as seen here.

I wish LEGO would return to the heady days of the 1980's and early 90's with regards to space, but as long as they keep making cool sets like the ones that can be modified to fit individual tastes (Benny's space squad, the Blacktron 3-like Vampires from NexoKnights and the Systar ship / palace) , I guess it's good enough for now.

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@Captain Mutant

I'm so sorry about your LEGO IDEAS submission (I supported it!).  That would have been awesome to see on the shelves.  However, I am glad that you have a positive attitude about it and are continuing to expand on your idea.  I look forward to seeing more of it.

@Captain Mutant and @Murdoch17

I noticed that both of you know how to build digitally.  As someone who has only built in physical bricks, I want to go back and rebuild my Classic Space MOCs digitally so that I can:
1) generate a parts list
2) generate instructions
both of which I would like to share with the community.  I'd also like to create those cool animations of the set building itself that I often see online.

Are there programs which can do this for me?  Which program should I use and what are the pros and cons for each?  Thanks in advance!

Edited by pombe

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