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Everything posted by makoy

  1. The latest NINJAGO wave appears to be a callback to the Digiverse from the Rebooted season, sprinkled with some cyberpunk vibe. What’s the big deal about that pink ninja suit? Find out in my 26th EB Review, set #71708 - Gamer’s Market. Overview Name: 71708 - Gamer’s Market Theme: NINJAGO Year: 2020 (1H) Pieces: 218 Minifigures: 9 Price: GBP 29.99 / USD 29.99 / EUR 34.99 / SGD 59.99 / MYR 169.90 (That is probably the longest description copy for a set with about 200 pieces) Introduction Unpopular opinion - I think that Digiverse is one of the more interesting world from Ninjago as it is inspired by Tron and The Matrix. For the upcoming season, our favourite team of ninjas are entering a familiar territory, and yet it feels different. We don't know much about the Prime Empire yet, but as far as I know, it is the game that will be important to the plot of the next TV season. We should find out how and why the ninjas will enter this dimension in season 12. In the meantime, let's talk about the packaging. Front box panel There are 3 Digi Jays in this box. Go find them! If the redundancy of the minifigures confuse you, it's fine. You're not alone. There are so many things happening in the box art that it is hard to figure out if it is a playset or just minifigure pack. It could be both. Back box panel As for the back panel, It shows pretty much about the same thing. Side box panel If the redundancy isn't enough in the front panel, this side panel shows you even the named characters that comes inside the box. Now, once you open the box, you are greeted with 3 plastic bags with numbers 1 to 3, an instruction booklet and a sticker sheet. Did I say sticker sheet? Yes. Unfortunately. Typically, I don't apply stickers . However, if you decide not to apply #1 and #2, the set looks incomplete or bland. Stickers #3, #4 and #5 are almost essential to make the Gamer Market vibe complete and they are small enough to be somewhat inconsequential if you choose to apply them. The translation of the script in the sticker: #4 - Hats! Additional stickers "+" from top to bottom, left to right: The individual letters - Z, N and C. Cole, the cake is a lie A B - probably referencing game control buttons. Minifigures Since this is essentially a People Pack for NINJAGO, what better way to start the review than by beginning with the minifigures. First, here are the official names of the minifigures. In order from left to right: Avatar Harumi, Red Visor, Richie, Okino, Scott, Digi Jay, Avatar Cole, Avatar Nya, Avatar Pink Zane. As we have 9 minifigures to cover here, I will showcase each minifigure one by one to thoroughly cover each one of them. Avatar Harumi Avatar Harumi wields a katana and is undeniably a homage to Kill Bill, an R-18 movie. This is not a coincidence because the new yellow tracksuit has the bluish emblem on the torso. This is present in tracksuit of The Bride. The designers even added a tiny black dot at the hips, which is also new, to denote the button which is also present in the original. Ultimately, this mimics the iconic yellow outfit of Bruce Lee which makes this minifigure even more awesome. The headpiece and hairpiece aren't new. They are exactly the same from 70651 Throne Room Showdown and 70658 Oni Titan. Unfortunately, there is no side printing for the legs or arms. To get around this, the legs has black strip running from the top edge of the hips down to the knee section of the minifigure. Frankly, I think the black lines should end just before the minifigure "feet" because as it is now, it appears that Harumi is wearing a yellow high-cut boots despite the original shoe reference being an Asics Onitsuka Tiger Mexico 66 Sneakers. I don’t know about you but I like how NINJAGO can adopt some adult-oriented pop culture references easily and make them look innocent. To a large extent, I think that this is an appropriate reference because Kill Bill is a quest for vengeance, which is very similar to the story arc of Harumi. However, I don’t really like the idea of my kids searching about Kill Bill due to *cough* blood bath *cough*. Red Visor I am not colour blind. The visor used in this minifigure is definitely not red, but calling this character Neon-orange Visor does not roll off the tongue quite easily, so it makes sense to just call it Red Visor. At least it uses a blaster with red scope. As for the visor itself, it is the same element used in Tron Legacy but in transparent neon-orange. The headpiece has dual face prints which are equally weird. The other one looks like it's about to puke (like those monsters from Hidden Side), and the other one appears to be a display screen of a robot on stand-by mode. Notice that the red symbol is the same as the one found in the shrine, which I will discuss in the build section later on. Moving on to the torso and legs, the major colour combination is red and black, with teal highlights. It has ‘404’ number printed which is a reference to one of the most loathed HTTP response code: 404 Not Found, which means the server could not find what was requested by the internet browser. This "404" number is then repeated at the back of the minifigure but is covered by the new shoulder armour and scabbards. At the back of this new armour, you can insert the frosted trans-neon orange 4L bar piece which is then attached to a gamer display board printed with skull icon, representing their antagonist group, next to 4 (full) health bars. The bad guys distinctly use black armours while the good guys use white. I don't know if it was intentional but the teal curly design at the back of the minifigure appears to be the same design motif for the NINJAGO box art that dates all the way back from 2011. This curly design motif is usually used at the borders of the box arts. See this image of the Fire Temple, and then spot where the right claw of the Fire Dragon touches, just beneath the "O" of NINJAGO logo. . Richie At first I don't know what to make out of this pink minifigure called Richie because it appears to be a rat with a visor and a pony tail. I heard people saying it has a goat face but if it is supposed to be a goat face, then it should have a goatee and a horn. So, it must be a rat. This moulded minifigure head is made of 2 different colour of ABS plastics so the detail is very crisps. The visor is not removable, unfortunately. However, you can remove the pony tail. This minifigure also uses the new shoulder armour and scabbards in black, with the same trans neon-orange gamer display board. In addition, Richie uses a twin-bladed weapon using a black game controller as the handle. Even if I am not the biggest fan of the pixel arts used on the torso and leg prints, the silvery details are excellent. Okino This civilian looking minifigure may look like just an ordinary minifigure but I doubt he is just a civilian because when you translate his Japanese name to English, you will find some parallelism with the other character, Unagami, who is positioned as villain for this season. Since season 12 has not come out yet, it is interesting to find out if there is any connection between the two. What I like about this minifigure is the new hairpiece with traditional topknot called chonmage (chon-ma-ge). It is also made of 2 different ABS plastic colour and the dark red part can be held by minifigure hand as it is the same size of a regular bar piece. Not sure why you would want to do that, but it's possible. The white torso has minimal details, just mere lines to show pleats and folds of a traditional Japanese clothing which is likely a yukata or a kimono. Scott Scott is the character that looks like Jack Davis from Hidden Side, but clearly not Davis at all. The character just happens to have a recoloured cap and hood combo piece, with a different print. On the cap, "S" is written in Ninjago script presumably meant for Scott's initial. There are shiny glimmer of face paint with triangular patterns on light aqua headpiece. This is the same skin-tone as General Vex and Blizzard soldiers from the previous wave but I don't know if this is just a coincidence as other characters use various skin colours in this wave. This could mean something very trivial or important to the season 12 storyline -- but we don't know that yet because season 12 has not came out yet. He also has red eyes and features an alternate face print with a mask. The torso has some crazy detail going on--from 2 dragon heads, reflective triangular patterns that goes all the way down the legs, "A" and "B" written in Ninjago script at the middle of the black inner wear, and "LJ" on his vest. At the back, a dragon circling an "S" is also printed. It almost looks like an ouroboros which is a serpent eating it's own tail. So to recap, the prominent letters printed on Scott are A, B and S --- Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene? Digi Jay Frankly, I did not like the design of the Digi suits initially. However, I appreciated the design more as I held the minifigures. Similar to previous masks, the new Digi suit mask uses dual mouldings. However, while the older masks use more rounded curves to imitate the cloth textures, the new design features more aggressive lines which accentuate sharper details, similar to those found in motocross helmets. On the forehead, "J" is written in Ninjago script. The headpiece is new. The primary face print has a VR-like screen with vertical scan lines. The alternate face is just a smug face but looks better when used under the mask. As for the torso design, it is hard to ignore the inspiration from Tron with all those glowing circles all over the torso and legs. Another interesting design choice is the use of a different colour for Jay's right arm. The last time this design choice was used is back in 2012 with Jay ZX. Digi Jay also uses a new shoulder armour and scabbards in white. As mentioned earlier, all the bad guys use black version of this armour, while all the good guys use white. Connected onto the armour is a trans neon-green 4L bar attached to a gamer display board with ninja icon and 3 out of 4 health bars. Lastly, Digi Jay wields a trans-neon green kusarigama (chain-sickle) with a white game controller as a handle. Avatar Cole Nothing particularly exciting about this minifigure because all the pieces here were recycled from previous variants of Cole. The torso appeared in several City sets. Avatar Nya Like Cole, there is nothing much to say about this minifigure because all the pieces here were recycled from previous variants of Nya. The torso also appeared in several City sets. Avatar Pink Zane Finally, this is the last minifigure in the set and arguably the star of this set. This minifigure took 7 years in the making and it is likely the main reason why it is one of the most sought after minifigure in the set. It appeared in the TV Season 1, Episode 5 "Can of Worms". While the headpiece used is not new, everything else is new in this minifigure. The mask is the same mould as the first NINJAGO wave, and its first appearance in pink. If you think the torso is a direct recolour of the classic white Zane suit, you are wrong. To begin, the gold creature emblem on the chest is slightly different. It is slightly bigger, looks more jagged and splintered with ice shards, and for some unexplained reason, lost its mouth! In contrast, the original design looks less detailed, and simpler. The hip and legs print are also slightly different. I think some people will irrationally dislike this just because of these changes. Personally, I don't see much difference at arm's length distance so I am not so bothered about it. What's more important is that the designers decided to add back printing and legs/hips prints. They did not have to do this, but they did it anyway. Personally, I think it is an excellent decision. Build After the minifigures, let's not forget that this set is a playset with several small-sized builds to complete the Gamer's Market. Bag #1 Content Bag #1 contains Avatar Harumi, Red Visor and Richie, trans-dark pink key-tana. The red slope 45 2 x 1 with cutout without stud (part # 28192) is relatively new and 2 of them are included in this bag. Another notable part here is the trans-dark pink 2x2 round brick which appears in this colour for the very first time. Bag #1 Build In the typical NINJAGO fashion, shrines are made of black and red pieces. Likewise, the new collectible item in this wave, called key-tana, is at the middle of the shrine. One great feature of key-tana is that minifigures can hold it in 2 different orientations. If you notice the end of the hilt, it has a bar perpendicular to the hilt just fit for the minifigure hands. Bag #2 Bag #2 contains Okino, Scott and Digi Jay. Outstanding elements found in his bag is the large shuriken piece as well as the weapon pack in trans-neon green colour Bag #2 Build This build is essentially the weapon shop of the Gamer's Market. While majority of the items for sale are bladed weapons, the trans-neon green 1x1 round brick appears to be a potion. The use of the large shuriken piece is a bit flambouyant for my taste and I could imagine that if the designers used a more subtle approach, they could have avoided using such a large expensive piece. As an alternative, the set could have benefited on additional small pieces for auxiliary builds. Bag #3 Bag #3 contains the rest of the protagonists - Avatar Cole, Avatar Nya and Avatar Pink Zane. There are a lot of interesting minifigure accessories included in this bag. The most important being the blue classic space helmet and gold conical hat. Bag #3 build For such a simple build, I think I appreciate this the most. This is because out of the 3 builds, it has the most efficient use of parts to display all these headgears. No bells and whistles Completed Build with all the minifigures Looking at the overall build, I can't help but focus on the small details such as the accessories found in these minifigures. Just to reiterate, there are 2 game controllers in this set, 1 black/red and one white/black.The Arcade Pod impulse-buy sets, (sold separately) contains the gold game controllers. All of them look awesome and I hope we see more of this game controller piece in other sets. Then again, there are also not so beautiful side of the build. I think only the shrine build really suffers from a terribly bad angle due to that large teal piece as most of the teal anti-studs look terrible when viewed at the back. The other 2 builds looks just fine. Finally, here are the extra parts once everything is built. Conclusion This set has taken us to an uncharted territory. The positives are definitely praiseworthy and it offers many things I want to see repeated in future sets. Of course, it's not all good points. There are some bad ones too but they are tiny. Pros: People pack for NINJAGO! Pink Zane and Harumi in Kill Bill tracksuit Interesting minifigure accessories such as game controllers, key-tana, blue classic spaceman helmet, weapon pack in trans-neon green, etc. Cons: Stickers Limited play structures Could have featured more meaningful "avatar" characters Ultimately, this is something that you will buy primarily for the minifigures, and secondary only for the actual playset. So, to wrap things up -- Review summary Playability: 9/10 - There are no gimmicks, just pure small builds that is fit for purpose. If large pieces were not used, additional small structures could have been added for more variety. Design / Building Experience: 7/10 - Nothing revolutionary in 3 small builds but it's interesting enough for younger builders. Minifigures: 9/10 - Considering that Avatar Pink Zane is a deep reference to early TV season, it feels that Avatar Cole and Avatar Nya were just fluffs or an after thought. Still, 9 minifigures are awesome. Price / Value for money: 10/10 - TLG, keep this up! Overall: 8.75/10 - This is a great set with 9 unique minifigures and satisfactory builds for role-playing that will make avid NINJAGO fans happy and entertained for hours. Hey! That's mine!
  2. Remember the round pods? Now we have cubes! This is my 29th Eurobricks RA Review, 41404 - Emma's Play Cube. Estimated reading time: 4 minutes, 20 seconds. Overview Name: 41404 - Emma's Play Cube Theme: Friends Year: 2020 (1H) Pieces: 43 Minifigures: 1 (+ 1 mystery animal) Price: GBP 7.99 / USD 9.99 / EUR 9.99 / SGD 14.99 / MYR 49.90 Introduction It's been awhile since I reviewed a Friends set. What grabbed my attention is the introduction of the new impulse buy line up, which oddly reminds me so much of Polly Pocket, I want to check what is special about them. True story: while I was browsing the new LEGO sets in a LEGO store few weeks ago, a stranger next to me blurted out, "Oh! LEGO makes Polly Pockets now." I awkwardly nodded in agreement. First, let's examine this semi-open packaging. The intent is very clear--the designer of these cubes want you to be captivated by the glittery finish of the product. At the top corner, it is also written "1 surprise pet inside" and we'll go into more detail about that shortly. Packaging Emma has always been my favourite Friends minidoll because her colour motif is primarily purple, and this translates to the packaging as well. Unboxing I was surprised that there is no sub-packaging protecting the building instruction and sticker. Once the box is crushed, there is a big chance that any of the thin sheets could slip outside. Regardless, I guess this is the way to be more eco-friendly, with less paper and less plastic packaging. Sticker sheet Zooming into the stickers-- anything that has no number next to it is entirely optional and is considered extra. They can be used to personalise your own play cube. Inside the play cube Inside the play cube, you will find a carton packaging for the mystery pet and another transparent plastic containing small LEGO elements. Mystery Pet Revealed I got a pearl gold cat! There are other variants - magenta, lavender and dark azure. From here onwards, just take note that your cat could be any of these colours. Contents Unpacked Below are all the contents of the 2 clear plastic bags. Some parts that caught my attention are the scissors, laptop and the 1x1 tile with cat portrait. It's also notable that the part # 64570 (Bracket 2 x 6 - 1 x 6 Inverted) is new and it appears the first time in these play cube set series. Build Once you complete the build, the end result is this enclosed clam shell case.. The hinge are complete detachable and looks sturdy enough to last heavy play wear and tear. A tiny room Inside the cube is like a room for these characters where they can do their favourite activities. For Emma, it is grooming pets and then taking their photograph. Notice that the walls of the compartment has 2 studs near the corners to hold several pieces on the wall. I didn't apply the stickers in this photo but later on I decided to put the fake mirror sticker on the Trans-Clear Panel piece because the interior looks so plain. I feel that the cube could have used 1 or 2 more printed elements so that even if I do not put the stickers, the design looks fully furnished. Stackable What's really good about this new play cube is that you can stack them together like how you would do in any LEGO piece. There are 4 anti-studs at the bottom of each clamshell piece, as well as 4 studs on top for each. if you have several of these, they look good snugly stacked on top of each other. Extra pieces You also get these extra pieces. You either hide this away or else you will have trouble keep them inside the cube because there is no cabinet or treasure box where you can hide these spares. Minidolls I am not the biggest minidolls fan but I appreciate them for what they are. Also, I know the pet is not a minidoll and neither a minifigure, but I want to show it next to the minidoll as it an integral part of the randomised mystery item feature in this set. Emma & her cat - front view Emma has a one-side off-shoulder dress with coral flamingo birds forming a heart shape silhouette in the middle. She appears to be using a new skirt and shoe colour combination, too. Emma & her cat - back view Plain and simple. Conclusion In summary: Pros: Practical pocketable storage solution Exciting mystery pet collection Cubes has studs and anti-studs so they are stackable Cons: Rely on stickers to furnish the interior which could be rather plain without them. No storage for spares, unless you want to store them loose inside the cube. Review summary Playability: 8/10 - The cube is slightly bigger than the round pod but the slight increase in size means more real estate in adding pieces and parts to the interior, which makes it more playable. Design / Building Experience: 8/10 - This is a great case of form following function because the cube shape is intended to function as mini-rooms that are now stackable as well. Minidolls: 8/10 - Nothing is extra-ordinary with Emma but it appears to be exclusive to the set because her skirt and shoe colour combination is different. Price / Value for money: 8/10 - While you get less in terms of weight and overall mass compared to the Arcade Pods, the value is offset by the unique mystery pet which is also exciting to collect. Overall: 8/10 - The play cube addresses the short-comings of the round pods -- it's slightly roomier, has more practical shape, and now stackable with studs. Hope to see them used in other themes.
  3. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    Yes, they are slightly different but I don't think it will be considered as 2 different entries in Bricklink. It is possible that the variation is due to the different manufacturing plant those penguins are made. I noticed that too.
  4. makoy

    [REVIEW] 41404 - Emma's Play Cube

    Agree to this. And I will likely get more of these cubes than the older pods.
  5. makoy

    "Condensed" button not working?

    Oh, I thought it is just me... but I can confirm this in both my Mac and PC, as well as Android & iOS phones. Condense is not working.
  6. Yeah, I can see that as well, but he could be an amalgamation of reference to several 80s cartoons as well. A lot of these Prime Empire references got to do with nostalgia, in some ways. I believe the current wave of NINJAGO will not be able to perform this "stop-gap" for castle fans. Being a castle & space (sci-fi) fan, I enjoy this a lot, and I do hope that the next wave will feature something more useful for castle fans next time around. Yes, that's right. That sticker is not numbered, so it is considered an extra. Remember, Cole has always been the foodie in the group, and this wave is all about games, so throwing this reference makes sense and gives us a great easter egg -- whatever that means. I won't overthink if it has something to do with the next season. :) Thank you! I am with you here. I could always wish LEGO to be cheaper. However, where I am coming from, those who collects a lot of minifigures and has been used to buying parted-out minifigures, once you remove the non-minifigure parts and deduct their value-- the minifigures suddenly become unreasonably cheaper than average. And that's why I said it is "fair".
  7. makoy

    [REVIEW] 41404 - Emma's Play Cube

    Sorry if you feel that way. On the other hand, my kids like it very much.
  8. Welcome to the Prime Empire arcade game. Here is my 28th Eurobricks RA Review, 71714 Kai Avatar - Arcade Pod. Estimated reading time: 4 minutes, 20 seconds. Overview Name: 71714 Kai Avatar - Arcade Pod Theme: NINJAGO Year: 2020 (1H) Pieces: 43 Minifigures: 2 Price: GBP 8.99 / USD 9.99 / EUR 9.99 / SGD 14.99 / MYR 49.90 Introduction As we enter into NINJAGO Season 12, TLG had already released several webisodes in Youtube. It's all about the new game in town, Prime Empire, that will be central to the new season plot. So far we only have Jay, Kai and Lloyd arcade pod sets but I hope that we will see the rest of these arcade pods for Cole, Zane, Nya and even Sensei Wu. Let's start with the packaging because I kid you not, the LEGO packaging is getting more and more creative. Now, we have an arcade pod set with packaging that looks like an arcade cabinet too. Front & Back view of the packaging Kai always had the unfair advantage on grabbing your attention because of his fiery red colour. In this strikingly new box design, it showcases what you can do with the 2 Kai minifigures, such as swapping around parts and accessories. Side views of the packaging "Prime Empire" is written at the side, in NINJAGO language. Open the packaging, then you will see there 2 loose big pieces -- one arcade cabinet and a new door for it, 2 plastic bags with LEGO elements (the one with tiny holes contain the sets of weapons in trans-neon green), 1 instruction paper (folded), 1 promotional leaflet (folded) and 1 sticker sheet. Unboxing Sticker sheet The aesthetics of the arcade pod is helped by these stickers to give them that typical gaming machine design. Here are the translations for the NINJAGO scripts: #1, #2, #3 - Prime Empire #2 & #3 in circle - New! #4 - A B (game controller buttons) Contents Unpacked Below are the contents of the clear plastic bag. It includes the 2 minifigures and some notable accessories like the gold game controller. Trans-neon green 10 weapons pack This 10-piece weapon is just awesome. They are included in a separate plastic bags, with tiny little holes (which reminds me a lot of vintage sets) I can't wait for TLG to release them in more colours. Build The construction is fairly straight-forward. Anybody above 7 years old can do this without difficulty. From this view, it looks like a normal clothes cabinet, or a wardrobe. Inside, the minfigure parts and accessories are organised but only 1 minifigure stands on the slope pedestal. In order to get the torso and leg parts, you need to remove the plate at the bottom. This is not a big issue even if you think it's inconvenient However, to appreciate the the shape and the design of the arcade more, you need to view it from these viewing angles: The shape of the arcade pod is reminiscent of Atari Monte Carlo arcade cabinet. Just look at its service manual. I can't find any other arcade cabinet that is closer to the shape of this arcade pod piece. I know that the arcade looks vanilla without the side stickers, but I like it this way. Here are additional view of the completed arcade cabinet - front and back view: Completed build If there is a single sticker that needs to be applied, I think that should be the arcade game pads. That's because without these game pad stickers, it does not look like a proper arcade machine at all. Minifigures Usually, the impulse buy sets like this contain 1 minifigure only. However, the NINJAGO arcade pod changes everything. If we can get 2 unique minifigures for this price point, I expect no less in the next waves. The argument is that if we go back to 1 minifigure next wave, it will be a step backwards unless the next gimmick is incredibly strong and convincing. So let's check out the minifigures. Digi Kai and Avatar Kai with weapons - front view If you have not read my review on the Gamer's Market, read that swiftly and come back here. You will find that the design of Digi Jay is very close to Digi Kai.. As for Avatar Kai, I seriously have no clue what is going on here. He has a blonde hair like a Super Saiyan and a red war paint on upper face area like Harumi. Digi Kai and Avatar Kai with weapons - back view At the back, the sleeveless top Avatar Kai has a cobra print, ergo Cobra Kai. This is another pop-culture reference that has something to do with martial arts. However, unlike the Kill Bill inspired Avatar Harumi in the Gamer's Market set, Cobra Kai reference on Kai is definitely more mainstream and kid-friendly. if you are not familiar with Cobra Kai, it is a continuation of the story of Karate Kid which is a Youtube Premium series. The Cobra Kai motto is: “Strike first. Strike hard. No mercy." Digi Kai and Avatar Kai - 3/4 side profile view Just like Jay, Kai has a white arm which is different colour from his left arm. I have never seen this design choice applied to Kai's gi up until now. Only Digi Kai has 2nd face print. You can see the 2nd face print of Digi Kai here. Let's appreciate the new armour a bit more because I didn't have a chance to showcase it in my previous review. To make up for that, I have taken a new photo of this new armour from this angle: (black monochrome minifigure used for illustrative purpose only) It is such a bulky piece, and almost look like a back pack if there are no swords or accessories inserted. Personally, I would have liked it more if it was in metallic or grey colour. Conclusion In summary: Pros: Interesting new arcade piece Great accessories included, such as gold game controllers and trans-neon green 10 weapons pack 2 minifigures, 1 exclusive Cons: Not as portable as the regular pods Large stickers Review summary Playability: 7/10 - While it is still limited with the small size of the build, this set will entertain kids of appropriate age. Design / Building Experience: 7/10 - While the portability suffered a bit compared to the older round pods, building experience is slightly more enjoyable now that there are more pieces to build and play with. Not a fan of stickers but it's entirely optional so no point(s) taken. Minifigures: 10/10 - It is refreshing to find 2 minifigures with great selection of accessories in these NINJAGO impulse buy sets. Price / Value for money: 9/10 - I could not say this to a lot of small sets but it's likely the first time I feel that I am getting a fair price for this kind of package. Overall: 8.25/10 - Well-rounded tiny set -- a solid impulse buy for collectors and fans of all ages. No chair... How to play now?
  9. Welcome back to 2017, time traveller. This is my 27th review, 50004916 Kai's Dojo Pod. Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 45 seconds. Overview Name: 5004916 Kai's Dojo Pod Theme: NINJAGO Year: 2017 (2H) Pieces: 35 Minifigures: 1 Price: N/A (Promotional item) Introduction I don't think we need any sort of introduction for small polybags but this is not an ordinary polybag because this is the 2nd pod to be released as promotional item, next to Nexo Knights. I remember seeing this and my initial reaction was very neutral. The next thing I know, my local marketplace is already flooded with all these pod sellers and collectors trying to get their hands on one. Front of the polybag Exactly what you see in front is what you get. Back of the polybag Like most polybags, there is a thin transparent strip in the middle so that you can peek what's inside. However, because the pod acts as a storage, you don't see what's inside at all except the pod and the instruction manual. Once you open the polybag, right immediately, you will see the circular lenticular image that is attached in front of the pod. Just in case you don't know how a lenticular image words, when you change the viewing angle of the image, it changes from one image to another. This makes an illusion that the image is animated. From Kai's face, the image changes to the creature emblem of Kai. The instruction included is just a piece of folded paper, typical for polybags. Content of the pod Inside the pod, the small parts and minifigure elements are inserted in a clear plastic bag. The 6x6 round plate attached to the pod is not designed to be removed. I tried prying it but I think it will damage the pod or the plate before I could even remove it. Dare if you want. Build Out of the plastic bag, below are the parts needed for the build. You can complete this in less than 5 minutes because the pieces are so few. Below you can see the 2 small assemblies of the weapon racks. Voila! We are done. Minifigures There is only 1 minifigure in the pod and there is no shame in that because it is a descent minifiture. Kai has a Wu Crew training gi which is generic enough to be used if you want to make a large group of dojo students. The Ninjago script written on the left leg is "ninja". At the back you can see the Wu crew emblem repeated. Kai also has dual face print which is always welcome. Conclusion In summary: Pros: Free, if you got it from a promotion Portable Novelty has staying power Highly collectible Cons: No external stud or anti-stud connections Review summary Playability: 5/10 - Kids can put this in their pocket but the playability is very limited to what you can do with a single minifigure and a small compartment. Design / Building Experience: 7/10 - The appeal of these pods is its portability. It has very high marks in form & function but very low in building experience. Minifigures: 8/10 - Above average. The torso and legs can be repurposed easily to make an army or large group of dojo students. Price / Value for money: 10/10 - I got it free so I have no problem giving this a perfect score in this criteria. Overall: 7.5/10 - For such a tiny set, these pods offer pocketable toys that kids can bring outdoors to enjoy and play. They are also highly collectible for adults.
  10. I see your point. This is not meant for castle fans. Apart from swords and that single helmet with fixed face grille, most of the pieces are really sci-fi oriented. I suppose that's why TLG maintains other themes such as Harry Potter to satisfy those castle needs and to appease fans who still look for castle. Personally, I think there will be many opportunities for NINJAGO to rotate back to more castle-compatible sub-themes to make other folks happier.
  11. makoy

    LEGO Ninjago 2020

    Here's my opinion about the Gamer's Market -- take a look and share your opinion too.
  12. Here's what I can think of at the moment -- Light aqua surgical cap Faun Legs and also the faun headpiece with horns. :)
  13. Thanks WhiteFang. The minifigures alone makes this set worthwhile, at least for a NINJAGO fan like me.
  14. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    Re: Chip n' Dale torso -- I don't think it is a mistake. It has been found in all LCS (LEGO Certified Stores) that I visited. Not an isolated case.
  15. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    This was already available back in 2019 Q4, the same time we got the blue top/yellow bottom and white top/ yellow bottom.
  16. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    From left to right -- The bicycle helmet is a recolour. I think it's exclusive to BAM at the moment? Then the white torso with white stripes is also available, which first appeared in People Pack - Fun Fair (3626cpb2380). Pink legs assembly is also a welcome addition. Hair Bowl Cut Parted in Centre, in Medium Nougat also appears to be BAM exclusive at the moment. The face is also from People Pack - Fun Fair (3626cpb2381) The torso is from Chip/Dale in Disney Train & Station. They did not even bother changing the reddish brown hands. LOL Legs assembly is from sushi chef as already mentioned. I still see some DBG cats and black dogs... so I added here.
  17. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    Ok here it is... Spot the difference! Don't blink.
  18. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    I need to swap my macro lens so that I can really zoom in for the difference. There is a tiny bit difference with the eye... But I will let you guys be the judge. Posting tonight.
  19. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    I bought the penguins as most of my accessories.... just because it's worth every penny. :)
  20. makoy

    LEGO Store "Build a Minifigure"

    New parts seen from my local BAM: Pink elephant headgear and "Vitruvian Man" torso print.
  21. makoy

    TLG acquires Bricklink

    Well done! It's very interesting that referencing Eurobricks would put more weight to the argument instead of just going with a Twitter or Facebook quote. Seems like they did a research where all the veteran AFOLs hang out.
  22. makoy

    [Review] #75267 Mandalorian Battle Pack

    This is like Benny's Space Squad but with Mandalorians. Really like this set and I will get several boxes of these. I don't really agree with the scoring because if I were reviewing this, it will definitely get a score above 80% in my book. We don't get this kind of set very often in Star Wars. Personally, this is the next best thing to 501st Battle Pack that I keep on reading about in every LEGO social media comment section. Every minifigure in this set is 'exclusive' so far, and that is part of the design. Don't really care about the build but that's the point of every battle pack, really. And this is why I appreciate this set very this much. But where are the jet packs? That is a glaring omission in this set. I gotta get one of those.
  23. makoy

    [Review] #75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter

    I was particular interested in this set because of the Knights of Ren....but after watching TRoS, probably not immediately. I don't mind that it is an X-Wing. The design is recycled but this version is very forgettable. This can wait for my discounted set list.
  24. Hop in for my 25th RA review -- LEGO 75256 Kylo Ren's Shuttle. Take note that I have not watched Episode 9 yet so this review is purely based on what I have seen on the trailers and marketing materials, including other toy references. Before I start, I know that only a Sith deals with absolute. So, when I say that this version of Kylo Ren's shuttle looks better in black, what I really mean is that I am very glad I am reviewing Kylo Ren's Shuttle in its more appropriate colour. I don't even own the older version so I cannot draw any comparison. For what it's worth, this could be the only version you need if you missed the older one. Also, please avoid going into that SJW thing. Not my cup of tea. Just enjoy the LEGO set and the movie folks. Thanks. Overview Name: 75256 - Kylo Ren's Shuttle Theme: Star Wars / The Rise of Skywalker Year: 2019 (2H) Pieces: 1005 Minifigures: 6 Price: GBP 99.99 / USD 129.99 / EUR 119.99 / SGD 219.99 / MYR 649.90 Introduction I remember several years ago, I wanted to get the first version of Kylo Ren's Shuttle but I was reluctant to own it because it is not accurate to its on-screen counterpart. At the same time, I already have 75156 Krennic's Imperial Shuttle which is visually as stunning as Kylo Ren's Shuttle due to its wide wing span. I kept on delaying the purchase until it got retired and became harder to find. Long story short, I did not own the first release and I have no plans of owning it anymore now that a newer version is out, in black! For that reason, this review will not draw any comparison to the first version apart from the colour which I already mentioned in the paragraphs above. So, to begin with the review let's get rid of the boring part first. Front box panel This is a simple box art that speaks for itself. No fancy and confusing illustration in the background or distracting images that might confuse potential buyer, which I hope TLG will do more often. I also like that the minifigure version of Kylo Ren is the banner for this wave because it's been a long time since we last saw such artwork. Back box panel Likewise, the back box panel is really well presented with key play features which I will discuss in more details below. Now, let's proceed with the unboxing. Box content There are plastic bags numbered 1 to 7 with 1 instruction booklet that is also sealed in plastic. I am pleased, and surprised at the same time, to discover that there are no sticker sheets even if it is a relatively large set. Well done TLG! Instruction Booklet Here is a good look of the instruction book. Nothing extraordinary. It's just a simple perfect bound booklet. For this review, I am reshuffling the order a bit as I know a lot of people are interested about the Knights of Ren and the Sith Trooper included in the set more than the actual model. Minifigures There are 6 minifigures included in the set namely, in order of appearance below (L to R): Kylo Ren, Knight of Ren "axe", Knight of Ren "club", First Order Sith Trooper, First Order Stormtrooper and General Pryde. For the sake of brevity, I will use the short form KoR to refer to Knights of Ren. Note that the names of the Knights of Ren are not even provided by TLG but other toy makers such as Funko Pop shared some monikers for the Knights of Ren based on their weapon of choice. So instead of calling them generic names, I will use those monikers. Front view First thing you will notice about the minifigure line up is that we only have a 2 Knights of Ren included in the set. How awesome it could be if TLG put all the Knights of Ren in this set -- but no, we can't get that luxury at all. The remaining Knights of Ren will appear in other sets next year but it is unclear if we will eventually get all of them as it appears TLG is allocating at least 1 new mould for each new KoR minifigure. KoR "axe" has a new hood in black. Later on, the same hood is used on Obi Wan in set 75246 Death Star Cannon but in reddish brown. As for KoR "club", the helmet is exclusively made for this minifigure and it looks awesome. Speaking of helmet moulds, Kylo Ren has exactly the same helmet but with red welding or some kind of space lacquer. For the uninitiated, Kylo Ren destroyed his helmet in The Last Jedi but then in the TRoS trailers, it is shown being welded or glued together with a red binding material. As already confirmed in several articles, this is akin to the Japanese art of kintsugi which is all about mending broken pottery, treating the breakage as part of the history of an object, highlighting the repair that has been done instead of hiding it. The idea is that just like a broken pottery put back together, Kylo Ren has undergone transformative repair. I have yet to see the movie but I was very stoked when I learned more about this art being adopted in the Star Wars universe because it speaks so much about how people go through physical and emotional traumas and how these scars make us who are today. So perhaps, it's not about forgetting the past entirely after all. It is about respecting the past no matter how damaged and imperfect it is. Now about that red FO Stormtrooper, also known as the Sith Trooper. Remember that version from Star Wars The Old Republic with flat short-muzzled face which looks like a pug nose? I think I prefer the First Order design more because of the sharper edges of the over all armour. Unfortunately, this new design does not translate well in the minifigures because instead of using a new mould, only graphics is used to mimic sharper edges and lines of the helmet. It seems to work from a distance because you cannot really discern the details from half a meter away. And for that, I think it's okay. As for the standard white FO Stormtrooper -- it is the same design from previous Star Wars wave. I am glad that there is no micro-adjustment made for the prints so it will be a good addition to your existing FO Stormtrooper army, that is, if you are even army-building. TLG please take down notes. Here's a theory -- if people are serious about army building, they would have amassed a lot of this FO Stormtroopers already by means of buying battle pack, cheaper sets, or Bricklink... Perhaps now that you own Bricklink, too, you will figure this out eventually. So, frankly speaking, no one cares about generic Stormtroopers in bigger sets. I would trade this regular FO Stormtrooper for another FO Sith Trooper any time of the day, please. Now, at the time of this review, I don't know much about this General Pryde. What I am sure of is that this guy and Kitty Pryde are not related because they belong in different universe. But from what I can tell, the face print and torso is new. I am just not looking for more information in the web to avoid spoilers. 3/4 Side Profile with weapons The front torso and leg prints are excellent in all minifigures but I find the lack of any arms and legs side-printing disturbing. I think at this price range I definitely want to see more side printing for Star Wars minifigures just to add more incentive on buying a set at this price range. I don't know about you but I think a lot of AFOLs will agree with me when I say, a boring minifigure line-up can make or break the set. Kylo Ren is equipped with the same trans-red lightsaber with cross-guards and the 2 Knights of Ren has an axe and a club made from standard LEGO elements. When I was looking at the parts, I could not believe that this is only the 2nd time we are getting a red 3L bar element. The first time this element appeared in red is with the release of CMF series 19 Monkey King a month earlier than the release of this set. You would think that because it's one of the most basic bar mould available that it would have been released in most colours already, and yet, it's considered a rare colour for this part at the moment. On a lighter note, the blaster used by Sith Trooper is the same one used by CMF Series 13 Alien Trooper, except that it comes in black colour for the first time. I am also surprised this mould has not been produced in more colours too, until now. Back view The back view of Kylo Ren's helmet further shows the imperfection of the helmet. Meanwhile, the back prints on Knights of Ren and Sith Trooper are also excellent. Front view without headgears/hairpieces With the helmets and hair pieces removed, we can see more prints on the minifigure heads. KoR "axe" head print is really nice, and technically, its face print is the mask under the hood. Sadly, the KoR "club" is just a plain black head piece. Take note that at this point, we don't even know any much about the Knights of Ren so keeping them plain black is probably a good idea. Alternative face prints The face print in this variant of Kylo Ren is the same print used in 2018. Therefore, everything is the same for Kylo Ren except his helmet. The rest of the minifigures has no 2nd face print except General Pryde. So, does that mean this character is important because he got 2 face prints? Frankly, I have no clue. Another thing that I want to highlight is the colour of KoR "axe" head piece. I thought it's black but it's actually pearl dark gray after taking a closer look. Other versions of Kylo Ren Left to right: Kylo Ren from this set, Kylo Ren from sets 75196 and 75216, Kylo Ren from set 75139 Build Now let's go through the building process. Bag 1 This bag includes the minifigures Kylo Ren and General Pryde. Bag 1 build progress The frame is using boxy technic frames. It's a standard approach to make sturdy builds. There are 3 seats available and from this alone, you can tell that it won't be a roomy spaceship. Bag 2 Look! A Technic 6.5L shock absorber. Only a few non-Technic sets has this and it is integrated very well in this set for the wing mechanism. This is the view of the sub-assembly before putting inside the back side of the shuttle frame. The shock absorber provides the tension needed to push liftarms outward or pull it inward while holding it in place when the axle is turned. Bag 2 build progress The mechanism for the wings is already well hidden at this point but there is so much more to build. It it starting to look like Kylo Ren's shuttle. Bag 3 This bag includes the 2 Knights of Ren. Bag 3 build progress A lot of smooth tiles were used at the sides. Bag 4 This bag contains the parts used on the right wing. Bag 4 build progress Now it is starting to look like an Upsilon-class shuttle. Unlike my initial perception, the building process of this wing is not cumbersome at all. Bag 5 This bag contains the FO Sith Trooper and FO Stormtrooper. This left wing sub-assembly is a mirror image of the right wing. It is not surprising that a lot of technic parts are used in the construction of the wings. Bag 5 build progress The beauty of the process is that you can immediately appreciate the purpose of the shock absorber once you put the left wing sub-assembly. Twisting the right knob (shuttle jet exhaust) is such a satisfying experience because you can see how the mechanism works perfectly to move the wings in flight-mode and landing-mode. Bag 6 This bag contains the parts for the hatch cover Bag 6 build progress Almost there... Bag 7 The final bag contains the upper portion of the wings. Completed Build Finally done with the build. It's a very enjoyable build for me because I really like the simple mechanism used to make the wings move. What makes it even more enjoyable is that when you lift the command shuttle, the wings automatically spreads out due to the weight of the wings. It is so brilliantly designed. Because of this, the swooshable factor of this set is very high. I also feel that for its price, I get a reasonably sized volume and weight. Below, are my additional comments after playing with the shuttle. There isn't much space to open the bottom ramp so you need to lift it up to make room for minifigures. I had to use some transparent supports to make the picture above possible. There is a clip inside the cockpit and that is meant to store the extra spring shooter dart. Very convenience but I don't think I will ever use that to store the extra dart just because the space is already limited. This isn't the most spacious shuttle since it can only fit 3 minifigures using 3 seats available. So, can we even fit 6 minifigures here? You can't see the 3 minifigures clearly in the picture above because they are all in black, but they can comfortably fit inside the cockpit. You can still fit 6 minifigures -- but you need to be creative. Looking at the back profile of the command shuttle, maybe it's just me but when I look at the back of the shuttle,I can see a droid face with this neutral expression... 😐 It's quite tall The wings are 49 studs tall (+1 rounded bottom 'boat stud') so it looks impressive. Most impressive on display. Although it is very accurate compared to the actual on-screen model, several things that slightly ruins the look for me is the gap in the middle of the wings to make way for the swivelling upper portion of the wings. On top of that, there are no landing gears which I find odd because every X-Wing and Y-Wings as of late have those. This and the gaps can be qualified as nitpicking because they are very minor and can be easily added by a simple mod. These 2 are not really an issue for me but I just need to mention these shortcomings. Going back to how impressive this command shuttle is, it is also impressive that I can balance this shuttle upside down. As I have mentioned, the build is very sturdy and the strength of the wings can support the weight of the entire airship. At the bottom, you can see how the spring shooters are well hidden beneath. If you don't want the transparent bright green spring shooter dart, you can remove it so that all you have is a dark ominous look of the shuttle. The wing retracts downward guided by several Technic liftarms and at this position, the wings look chunkier than usual due to how the wings are constructed. This is fine with me because I rather have strong and chunky wings than sleek but fragile. In order to lock the position of the wings, there is a locking mechanism that uses a towball (part # 6628) which then connects to a 1x2 modified plate with horizontal clips (part # 60470). It looks discreet and does not look out of place when the wings are fully extended but when the wings are folded down, it is not fully rotated downward so it looks slightly awkward when viewed at the back. The image above is an exaggerated view of the locking mechanism that sticks out awkwardly at the back when the wings are folded down. Parts There are a lot of black parts in this set. If you don't even like the set, the set can easily lend many useful black parts for other creations. Here are several notable parts in my opinion: Part no. 32828 - Plate Round 1 x 1 with Hole and Horizontal Bar (Plate 1X1 Round with Horizontal 3.2 Shaft), black x2 + 1 extra Part no. 36840 - Bracket 1 x 1 - 1 x 1 Inverted (Plate 1X1, with 1.5 Plate 1X1, Upwards), dark bluish gray x2 Part no. 18754: Sports Ice Skate - Black (Minifigure, Skate), black x2 + 1 extra If you ever wonder if there is any difference between part no. 93555 and part no. 18754 -- they look very similar ice skates mould at first glance but Part no. 18754 has a sharper edge at the back of the ice skate blade. Part no. 15445 Weapon Gun Automatic Pistol with Top Clip (Rifle no. 3 with 3.2 Shaft), black x1 Capes from Bag 1 The 2 capes used in the minifigures in this set are the old starched fabric and they are packaged together in a small single paper box. I am getting more used to the soft spongy capes used in other sets and I don't understand the going back and forth starched fabric and the new spongy capes. Anyhow, this is fine I guess. Parts listing from the manual Conclusion At the beginning I already mentioned that there won't be any comparison with the previous version and I firmly believe that it is easy for me to ignore the predecessor because 1) I am not a completionist, 2) I don't find value in owning both, and 3) I own this set now. In summary here are the things I like about this set: The minifigure selection is almost perfect. Very swooshable. Not worried that it will break apart in heavy and rough play. Very accurate to its on-screen appearance, after the 2nd try. Great detailing without any stickers. What I don't like about this set (in a very nitpicky way): Gaps on the wing could have been easily covered by adding other moving parts. Omission of landing gears which also lends to the lack of space for the ramp below the shuttle. Star Wars tax. If you happen to own the other Kylo Ren's Shuttle in gray, I think the accuracy of this set alone is worthy of your attention. Personally, I bought this set because this came with a great offer and I thought that I could not skip this since I already skipped the first one. The addition of Knights of Ren also enticed me to buy the set, and to me, it is one of the most appealing factor as well. Review summary Playability: 10/10 - I am going to make this my first perfect score for playability because I really enjoyed swooshing this set. The kids love it too! Design / Building Experience: 9/10 - Apart from my nitpicking about the gaps and landing gears, the build is excellent. The mechanism to make the wings slant outward is very well designed and executed. Minifigures: 9/10 - Almost perfect. If the FO Stormtrooper was replaced with an FO Sith Trooper, or maybe another minifigure is added (e.g. other Knights of Ren), it will be perfect. Price / Value for money: 9/10 - For what you get and able to enjoy from this set, I think it is more than just fine. It is very good. Overall: 9.25/10 - I feel no remorse skipping the predecessor of this set. I have spoken.
  25. makoy

    [REVIEW] 75256 - Kylo Ren's Shuttle

    Thanks! I like very much too. ;) Thanks. Now that the we are at the last instalment of the sequel trilogy, at least TLG is able to redeem themselves. I am happy that they got it right this time. Cheers! It is indeed neat. Great thing about LEGO is that you can easily move things around and adopt what you like from one set to another, and even make your own.