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  1. I was going to say the same thing. I think Griffon is one of the more requested faction mascots.
  2. Sounds like a spin on Monster Hunter (video game). I don't have an opinion on if that's good or bad, just that it reminds me of it. My only concern with something like this (as you sort of started going into) is that I would envision Lego taking that sort of theme in a vehicle-heavy direction, which is precisely what I don't want from a Castle theme. If they could do it more location-based, I'd be more interested. I don't mind vehicles altogether, but I do mind the way Lego has approached vehicles in the past several years. It seems they either go WAAAAY overboard with a ton of vehicles, with plenty of them being over-the-top concepts....or they recycle the same old handful of tired concepts from previous themes. There has to be a nice middle ground of a couple classic vehicles, along with a couple new vehicles (that are not too outlandish) , to complement a theme with several location-based sets (not to forget minifigure-based sets as well).
  3. [MOC] Hogwarts Castle

    I really like the dollhouse-like approach to the interior. Really gives it a "I can play with this thing" feeling, rather than simply being a showpiece.
  4. I agree. While those sets are always neat to think about, they are mega-impractical for a wide majority of people (even AFOL's). Since becoming an adult and getting out of my "dark ages", I have not bought a single set that was over $100, let alone the $200-500 range. I just can't justify that sort of spending with my disposable income. I have other hobbies I need to support as well, and Lego isn't my "main" hobby. However, if there were lots of sets in the $10-50 range, I could justify several of those. And if there was a really special set that was $100+, I might consider it.....but I wouldn't even come close to touching the $200-500 price range. It just isn't going to happen, no matter how cool and desirable the set is.
  5. To be fair, "magic" can be used as an excuse for ANYTHING in fiction....even the examples you provided as being Steampunk. Magic isn't exclusive to medieval fantasy fiction. Harry Potter is a great example of that.
  6. Within the realm of fantasy entertainment, Steampunk has always felt like a small niche style when compared to the powerhouses like medieval fantasy and sci-fi. I've always thought it was best when subtly integrated into medieval fantasy, rather than trying to be the main attraction by itself.
  7. Just gotta say that I agree with pretty much all of what you just said. We've all thrown out tons of great ideas over the years, and these remind me of some good ones that many of us could get behind. Wolfpack, anyone? I've been working on a Lego RPG'ish boardgame for use with friends and family (think of the map image linked earlier)...and the Wolfpack were going to be a faction that was located IN the main city. They would represent something similar to a thieves guild...a collection of people down on their luck that secretly organized to bring some balance of power back in their favor.
  8. Marketing is a massive part of the success of any product (overall promotion: printed, commercials, internet, media tie-ins like games and tv shows, etc...). When you give classic Castle a bare-bones approach to those things, it's going to struggle in today's environment. And then when you give Nexo-Knights the full-on treatment of all those things, of course Nexo is going to do better. I'd be willing to bet if you completely reversed the marketing approach of those 2 sub-themes, you'd likely see results indicative of that switch. Give a new classic Castle theme the "Big Bang" approach: give it some factions with a few named individuals within their ranks...give them a tv show, give them a video game, commercials, internet promotion, etc.....and you'd likely see sales result quite comparable to how Nexo did. And if they released Nexo with the minimal marketing that classic Castle traditionally receives, the theme would likely do about as well as classic Castle did last go around.
  9. I still don't understand why they don't just make something inspired by World of Warcraft, or Dungeons and Dragons. (key words: "inspired by") Those sorts of brands still have pretty mass appeal and would fit within the Lego Castle genre. There are many, many, MANY other successful examples of entertainment that follow in the same stylistic footsteps as these examples. Castle, as a stylistic theme, is NOT irrelevant with the youth of today. Anyone who tries to suggest otherwise is simply wrong. There are way too many examples of entertainment out there that prove that idea wrong. You can find countless examples in video games alone, which are more popular with kids than Lego is. This isn't to say that kids don't also like other things too, or possibly even more, but that's why Lego would always have multiple themes going at the same cater to the different interests of customers.
  10. That's how I feel about it. Lego could have gone hundreds (thousands?) of different directions with classic Castle. Heck, we've been offering suggestions like crazy over the past few years about all the different ways classic Castle can be done different than it has over the decades. But it seems Lego understands 2 basic directions for Castle these days: 1) uninspired repetition of the same types of sets, or... 2) make Castle so drastically different that it's hard to even look at it and think it is Castle. There is SOOOOOOO much untapped ground between those 2 styles that would be creative and still look/feel like classic Castle, but Lego seems uninterested in it.
  11. Plot twist: The next "Castle" theme is actually going to be a "City" theme, and it's going to be a Renaissance Festival :) (while that's a joke, I think it could be kinda fun, in a way) Regarding Fantasy vs. Realistic...I think Fantasy is more likely to have wacky building/vehicle designs, whereas Realistic would give us much more traditional structures. On the other hand, I'd be more interested in the potential factions of a Fantasy theme, despite preferring more traditional structures.
  12. YOU ARE PLAYING WRONG!!! (Seriously long as the kid is having fun, the above concerns really shouldn't be much of an issue.) I had several factions as a kid (late 80's/early 90's)....and I can say that I remember loving the variety. I would make up different stories about what the different groups were doing on any given day, and the sheer variety encouraged further imagination (which is one of the biggest things Lego is supposed to do, in my opinion). So some figures would get used less often than others...that's the way most toys work - favorites are established. In the beginning, my Crusaders were the favorite and got played with the most. Then the early 90's Robin Hood movie came out, and the Forest Men started getting all the action. Eventually I merged over into Black Knights, and they became my new favorite. I got some Wolfpack, and while they never were my favorite as a kid, they definitely served their purpose. I lastly got some Dragon Masters towards the end of my Lego childhood...and they were never my favorite...but still got used a lot as bad guys to my "good guy" Black Knights. To make things even more crazy, I started collecting some Pirates stuff in it's early days too, and it got mixed with my Castle stuff when I played. Imagination: With lots of factions, there's plenty to do.
  13. Just play it safe and buy the missing head in question, then give the buyer BOTH heads. If you are concerned on making the person wait... perhaps send what you currently have, and send the alternate head once you have received it (if shipping wouldn't be TOO steep).
  14. My First Castle/Fort WIP

    That was my exact thought. It looks good, but does feel as though it should have windows by that high up.
  15. I see this as a big issue with Lego. I'm not exactly sure how long it has been like this, but it seems most sets are required to have an "opposition" element to them. As if every set has to be 1 side vs. the other. There are some exceptions (I think)...but for the most part it's always 1 faction attacking another. And in design purposes, that means they have to do "something" for the attacking side...whether a carriage, a catapult, a brick built monster....or something. As a result, as x105Black indicates....these primary structures are losing out on piece counts that could make the structure itself more compelling or useful. I look back at many of my sets from the late 80s/early 90s, and while there were some sets that featured 1 side vs. another....I seem to remember there were a LOT of sets that featured almost nothing but 1 faction, and maybe a prisoner from another faction. It was sorta nice collecting a favored faction back then, rather than having a 2-faction system in which every set included figures from both.