What look to be the 2012 "must have" sets

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So now that we have had a pretty good chance to see all of the Summer 2012 sets one way or another, what's the verdict? What does everyone feel are the best of the lot? Which ones are the ones that you will be kicking yourself for not getting 4 or 5 years from now? Which just seem the most fun?

Here's my take;

1- Vampires Castle - In a year that gave us LotR's and such great Star Wars sets, it might seem weird that an unlicensed set targeted towards a more mixed and younger audience is quite possibly the best of the year. But this one just seems to hit every mark perfectly. Great size vs price. Fantastic minifigs. Lots of playability. It is a castle, so it blends into many themes. Everything about the set just nails it in ways that we rarely see. Absolute must have.

2- Star Wars Dessert Skiff - The best minifigs at the most affordable price of any set released this year. If you don't have Lando you will be crying for a long time. Best Boba Fett yet released.

3- Star Wars Sith Fury - I know this will seem weird, but I put this one ahead of things like Palpatines Arrest and Jabas Palace. The reason. It is a great ship, a great set. It has what are possibly the greatest Star Wars related minifigs ever made. (Darth Malgus will be hard to ever top). But I don't think it will be around long. The game that it is based on really isn't doing well. I doubt we will see a lot of repops of this one. Grab it while you can. Give in to the Dark Side!

4- Ninjago Samurai Mech - OK normally I avoid Ninjago. Just don't care much for it. Don't understand it, etc. Too much lime green etc going on there. But I love this set. Possibly the best Giant Robot lego has made since the Agents Dr. Inferno one. Just cool on every level. Plus its got a real cannon!

5- LotR's Gandalf Arrives - Yeah yeah I know Helms Deep is the best in class in terms of shear size and all. But this is the nice cheap peaceful little set with Gandalf. Gandalf I say! Enough said.

Bonus - I don't count it yet, because it is nowhere near release... But that Haunted House just looks over the top awesome!

So what do the rest of you think are some of the years best?

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This is definitely one of the best years to be a fan of Lego!

I love almost every set you mentioned (I'm not really into Ninjago and Star Wars), so here's my top five:

1 -- Town Hall. Big, massive, solid building. Impressive in almost every feature.

2 -- Haunted House. Big, scary and one of the top Lego designs ever! Great minifigs too!

3 -- Desert Skiff. I'm not really a Lego Star Wars collector/buyer, but this set really got me. Simple and awesome -- simply awesome! And what a great assortment of minifigs!

4 -- 5001130 The Battle of Helm's Deep Collection. Ok, I know I'm cheating. This is actually two sets in one. But how can you get one and not get the other? The Uruk-hai army is a runner up for the best set in 2012! And the rohirric castle is just... Rohirric! What's there not to love it?!

5 -- City Garage. It's a garage. It's a service station. It's big. It's got 4 nice cars. And one of the cars is this awesome van. 'Nuff said!

6 -- Bonus sets. Any of the "big cars": Ambulance, Recycling Truck, Tipper Truck, Garbage Truck... And there's a special mention here to the Heavy-Duty Helicopter.

These are my favorites. As for the sets that have already written their name in Lego history, I'd go with:

1 -- The Lord of the Rings. 'Nuff said.

2 -- Monster Fighters. I love the "don't take me serious" approach of this theme! Vampyre Castle is amazing! And don't forget the Vampyre Hearse and the Ghost Train!

3 -- Friends. Look at the colors and designs of this theme. They are just awesome! And the tools? Wow! The City Park Café will sell a lot even if only for the cooking and eating tools!

4 -- City. The big cars have it. People will be buying tipper trucks and recycling trucks till there's no room left in their city garages. Which are all around the town hall...

5 -- Star Wars. Fans of the Old Trilogy are still drooling for the skiffs, palaces, X-Wings and Tie Fighters Lego put out this year.

6 -- It's only a bet, but... Wait to see the 2012 winter village set... :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:

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In my opinion:

Destiny's Bounty from the Ninjago line

Oofcourse the Town Hall looks impressive.

Edited by horizon

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My vote for best sets of 2012:

NinjaGo Samurai Mech. Great looking set (one of the best NinjaGo sets to date and a great selection of nice parts)

Haunted House (cool looking set, great detailing and good parts choice)

Helm's Deep (amazing build and amazing figs)

Sydney Opera House (it may not be the best replica but its still the only Australian set ever produced by TLG)

Town Hall (great modular and great parts selection)

Honorable Mention goes to the City Vehicles (Recycle Truck, Ambulance, Dirt Bike Transporter, Car & Caravan)

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I agree with moste of the above.

For me personally must haves are:

-Vampyre Castle (best castle up to date)

-Gandalf arrives (to have at least one LOTR set)

-all three SW OT ships (x-wing, y-wing, TIE) (always wanted them)

-Droid Escape (great figs)

-Desert skiff (antoher not expensiv set with great figs)

-Superman set (lego superman - must have)

-Batmobile set (always wanted batmobile)

-4x4 crawler

And, if the money will allow, each of three large sets, which are all great, but too much for my pocket: Helms Deep, City Garage and The mine.

I am not counting in Town Hall and sopwith camel, which are also great, but will have to wait for next year.

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My picks in no particular order:

UCS Star Wars R2-D2

Star Wars Desert Skiff

Sopwith Camel

LOTR Mines of Moria

LOTR Attack on Weathertop

Monster Hunters The Vampyre Hearse

Marvel Quinjet Aerial Battle

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I'm loving the look of the monster fighters line, have pre ordered the whole lot so i'll put it at number one for me this year!

Haunted house of course!

Town hall is a beauty!

Never been a fan of LOTR but helms deep is impressive not doubt.

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Helm's Deep and the extra wall section in Uruk-hai Army are the only ones I see as "must have". I'll likely get more of the LOTR sets eventually, however, now that it's the only Castle theme around.

I'd get the Vampyre Castle and the zombie graveyard set from the Monster Hunters theme as well, if not for the (for me) completely useless vehicles and figures being big parts of those sets.

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Any of the Superhero first wave sets, if Star Wars is anything to go buy. I bet they will be 40%-50% more in ten years than now, although any of the above will be pricey in years to come.

Edited by Dr Leg O Brick

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My must buy list of the 2012 sets

Destiny's Bounty

Samurai Mech

Helms Deep

Haunted House


Lex Luther's Mech

Hulk's Helicarrier Breakout

Town Hall

Seaside House

The Zombies

Desert Skiff

Palpatine's Arrest

Jabba's Palace

CMF Series 7 Galaxy Patrol

CMF Sereis 6 Classic Alien

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This ear has a lot of must-buy sets, I think it's be hard to list them all, and I'm also poorly educated on lines like Ninjago and Spongebob, so I won't even mention those sets.

But here we go:

Sopwith Camel - Absolutely brilliant large-scale plane, it's so nicely detailed, and has an incredible color palette of dark green, sand green, dark tan and the metallic silver.

Town Hall - It's the biggest modular of all time, and looks amazing. While it's not necessarily the nicest of the modulars, any modular building would be worth mentioning on a list like this unless it was absolute garbage.

Haunted House - What can I say? It's gorgeous both inside and outside and is unique among Lego's afol-targeted sets, who knows if we'll ever get another large-scale haunted house?

Store opening exclusive Lego Store - Very rare set that is also a decent build and it is the first time Lego has ever made a set of a store.

Jabba's Palace - Eight years after the previous rendition we get a set that is orders of magnitude better and very true to the movie original in external looks. Add to that fantastic minifigures that represent an almost complete cast of Jabba's Palace characters and this set is a winner. One might think it's a bit too expensive, but I can only imagine what it will be a few years after it's discontinued.

Desert Skiff - A no-brainer, with essentially four all-new minifigures including an intricately printed Boba Fett and an amazing Lando Calrissian, on a Desert Skiff that's the best design ever.

TC-14 - Maybe not a set, but who would miss getting a chrome protocol droid?

UCS R2-D2 - In my eyes the best UCS character build ever.

City Garage - The first one since 1988, and who knows when the next one will come out. The design is good, but not great, but that is far outweighed by the once in a quarter century rarity of what is an essential building in any City layout. A huge bonus for the minifigure scale VW bus as well!

Quinjet - This vehicle looks big and imposing, true to the source material and certainly seems worth the $70. I'm not very into the Super Heroes line but this is one of the sets I know i'll regret missing.

The Dynamic Duo Funhouse Escape - An OK model, but with a great cast of Batman characters this set is already hard to find even if it's still in production.

Olivia's Treehouse - My wife is the Friends builder in my house, but i have to say of all the Friends models she has, this one stands out. It's a treehouse (!) with great parts including purple elements, as well as useful brown slopes and lots of vegetation.

Rock Crawler - As a kid I was fascinated by the Lego RC cars of the late 90's, but in hindsight they don't seem very impressive. If the Rock Crawler was available back in those days it would've been on top of my wishlist, I find it amazing that such a capable vehicle can be made with only standard Technic parts.

The Battle of Hems Deep - A big, well-designed castle with lots of LotR characters, even if it doesn't stand out particularly from the rest of the wave (the whole LotR line is really amazing). This set is great with it's modularity and is the best at showing the "epicness" of the LotR trilogy. If Lego does a 10000-series LotR set next year it'll be on my 2013 don't miss list for sure.

Team GB minfigures - Every figure is very well-designed, and these are pretty hard to find. I've been debating whether to get these, but I just know I'll regret it if I don't.

I'm sure I've forgotten many great sets, but these are some of my personal favorites. I'm also fairly certain that some sets we have not seen yet would also make my list (looking at you UCS B-wing and Winter Village set).

Edited by fyrmedhatt

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City Garage.

Because it makes me nostalgic of the 80s. :wub:

All 7 of the LOTR sets.

Why? Because we waited 11 years for it and they rule. :dangry:

Edited by SheepEater

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Why? Because we waited 11 years for it and they rule. :dangry:

11 years? Talk for yourself!

I've waited for Lego LotR since I first knew about Lego. And about The Lord of the Rings! :tongue::laugh:

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It's hard to just pick a few, to say the least! But these are my definite-buys from 2012 thus far:

1. Sopwith Camel

2. Monster Fighters Vampire Castle

3. Haunted House

4. Helm's Deep

5. Desert Skiff

There would probably be more if I thought about it... but those sets are more than enough in terms of cost. :laugh:

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Well, you do have a point. My bad. :laugh:

I came out of my dark ages (october 2002) less than a year after the first LOTR movie (december 2001) came out, and I had already read the book earlier than that around 1996-98. I'm sure hardcore Lego fanatics made LOTR Mocs long before the movies came out.

I remember seeeing Star Wars MOCs pre-1999. Can't find those anymore. :sad:

The only detail I remember from those photos is an ugly yellow C3P0 :laugh:

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What, no love for the new Technic Rock Crawler set? It's got two new motors, a wealth of new parts, white Technic parts, and it performs beautifully on top of that!

Big kudos to those who spent well over the standard price to import them early into the USA and review them :thumbup:

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It's a tough one as this year has been the best year ever ( maybe lego thinks the worlds going to end).

The must have sets are gonna be:

Jabbas palace

Desert skiff

Gunman sub


Superman vs Lex Luthor

Wolverines Choppershowdown

Funhouse escape

Big Ben

All the lord of the rings stuff

Sop worth camel

Haunted house

And finally the droid escape set

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The most interesting set to me is the Technic helicopter. That's the first helicopter in over 30 years with a realistic swashplate mechanism, which is hard to do in a small space (but possible) with currently available parts.

The Town Hall also looks good. I especially like the elevator design.

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The "must have" sets for me in 2012 would be:

Town Hall - I love the modulars and this one doesn't disappoint (other than price). I realize it has more pieces, but I would prefer a smaller $150 set again. But it is a great addition to the series.

Haunted House - I am enjoying the idea of the classic monster movies and a haunted house is to be expected. The color scheme and details are great. But again, disappointed in the price.

Kingdoms Joust - The details and wall designs are brilliant. Some of the exclusive figures are a great addition to the medieval life. Supposedly this came out at the end of 2011 per Brickset, but I assumed it was the Jan 1st D2C set.

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1- LoTR Gandalf Arrives. Only set with Gandalf currently.

2- SWTCW Malevolence. My favorite ship in the entire franchise!

3- LoTR Mines of Moria. 2 words: Dwarvish architecture.

4- LoTR Helm's Deep. The biggest and baddest castle, will be hard to find later on.

5- Minecraft Micro World. Maybe this is the only set we'll ever get of Minecraft, but, likely not. It's sold out in the USA!

That's it for me, but I don't think that will be all of them. I want to see the second wave of the LoTR line first.

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