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Found 1 result

  1. Farseer Petriel

    Review: 78777 Alien Discovery

    Hello again Eurobricks! I present you the review of a rare LEGO set from 2001 Life on Mars series - or even 3 sets in one box, to be precise: Alien Discovery by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr They are two promotional (Double Hover and Rover) and one "common" (Red Planet Cruiser) sets. Life on Mars is one of my favorite LEGO series. Its main idea is interesting even in our times - humans and Martians do not fight but live in peace and harmony. Besides, this series was very rich in rare colors and uncommon parts, and it can be viewed as the primogenitor of all LEGO walking mechs. This set (being "new" and sealed, of course) was a birthday present from my friend. It was a very pleasant surprise for me, as now I have got almost all Martian sets from the series. So, let's go! Or, as Tenth Doctor says, allons-y! Box The box looks unusual, as it has slots for lesser boxes with sets inside: Alien Discovery Box by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Such "3 in 1" packs were sold only in America. The depicted astronaut says that it was a set of special value. This minifigure, the silhouette of Mars and the red background create the atmosphere of distant space and scientific discoveries which was iconic for this series. The back side of the box has the set images and the LEGO Club advertisement: Alien Discovery Box Back by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The ad looks unusual for Europeans as it was targeted at American consumers. It should also be noted that the green background has the blueprints of a completely different Life on Mars set - Recon Mech RP. The big box without small ones looks like a photo frame: Alien Discovery Box Without Small Boxes by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Different sides of the big box: set images, a Club ad and warnings: Alien Discovery Box Sides by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Three little boxes viewed separately: Alien Discovery Set Boxes by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr They have the images of the sets on the red Mars background. Written names and pieces counts indicate that this is the American version. The back sides of the promo set boxes have combined Life on Mars posters, and the box of Red Planet Cruiser depicts its functionality: Alien Discovery Set Boxes Back Sides by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Different sides of the boxes: Alien Discovery Boxes Sides by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The Red Planet Cruiser pilot is named on the box (Altair), while the other minifigures are not. Instructions and Booklets The cover of Red Planet Cruiser instruction: Red Planet Cruiser Instruction by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr On the first pages, the construction begins: Red Planet Cruiser Instruction First Page by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The back cover has all basic sets from Life on Mars in boxes: Red Planet Cruiser Instruction Back Cover by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The instructions for smaller sets are folded sheets of paper: Double Hover and Rover Instructions by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Their back sides are absolutely identical: Double Hover and Rover Instructions Back Sides by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr In both promo sets, these small posters are included (I don't remember which poster corresponds to which set). One poster depicts three Martians (Altair, Canopus and Cassiopeia), and another one depicts more Martians and the Assistant: Life on Mars Posters by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr There is nothing on their back sides. Besides the posters, all sets have such advertisements (they are identical, and here both sides are shown): LEGO 2001 Ads by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The profiles to attain LEGO Club membership in North America (US and Canadian flags are depicted): LEGO Club Ads by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Minifigures Each set has one minifigure. Totally there are three figures: two Martians and one Earthling: Alien Discovery Minifigures English by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The name of the Double Hover Martian is unknown. He has the same face as Vega, but his body and legs are colored differently, which is atypical for the series. He is one of three nameless Martians included only in promo sets. This Martian can be found only in Double Hover. On the other hand, we know the name of Red Planet Cruiser pilot - Altair. He is a Martian child. He likes listening to weird music and flying at high speed. His name means "the flying eagle", very much like the name of Altair star. His eyes are larger and cuter than Vega's, and his face has nostrils and freckles. Altair is also the only Martian with hair - he has a very funny red forelock! This figure is unique for 7311. The Assistant is an unnamed crew member of the human starship called Solar Explorer. He wears a futuristic spacesuit and a helmet with a blue visor. His face with glasses and a microphone is standard for that years. It's amazing how his bare hands withstand Martian cold weather (-40 degrees Celsius!), or he wears yellow gloves. This Assistant figure was present in two promo sets. The version included in basic 7310 set has a chrome blue visor. For my entire life I thought that Altair's suit is yellow - it looked yellow in photos and comics from Samodelki magazine. This is not true since Altair's body and legs are lime, and this can be easily seen if you bring a human minifigure: Altair Is Not Yellow! by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The Assistant has no print on his back: Alien Discovery Minifigures Back by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr From his back he looks like some fantasy knight: Space Knight? by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr But from his front he doesn't: Assistant and Grand Marshal by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Sets Let's move to the main part of the review - namely to the sets. There are three of them - Double Hover, Rover and Red Planet Cruiser: Alien Discovery Sets by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Rover Rover by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Number 7309 (other versions: 7300, 1413). The Rover represents nothing special - just a small vehicle with an ore detector. Behind the pilot here are an antenna and two side holders, one of which is occupied by the locator. The Rover is controlled by an ordinary steering wheel: Rover by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The wheels are placed on spinning Technic pins: Rover Wheel Construction by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The Rover without pilot: Rover Without Pilot by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Double Hover Double Hover by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Number 7310 (other versions: 7301, 1414). The Double Hover is as small and simlple as the Rover, yet it looks more exotic, because it is a Martian invention. It's something like a hovering scooter or sleigh: Double Hover Back by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The pilot holds the handles, upon which the printed control panel is attached. The set has no stickers at all - the round part under which the engine is apparently located is printed too. The color scheme is the same as in Red Planet Cruiser (it will be shown later) - green, sand green and a bit of orange. The "ski" of Double Hover can be lifted. Apparently the pilot can use this to regulate the altitude: Double Hover Engine Lift by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr "Obey me, Earthlings!" Obey Me! by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Without the pilot, the Double Hover doesn't look so beautiful: Double Hover Without Pilot by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Red Planet Cruiser Red Planet Cruiser by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Number 7311. The Cruiser is the biggest set in this box and the only one that belongs to the common set line. It is the smallest of the "usual" Life on Mars Martian sets. It's hard to understand why this vehicle is called Cruiser - it doesn't look like one. It's a weird one-legged hybrid between a mech and a flyer: Red Planet Cruiser by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr It's hardly understandable how he moves. By jumping? Or is the leg needed only to push off the ground and later fly on jet engines? This leg is particularly flexible due to three joints (larger mechs have only two of them). The problem is that it's difficult to pose the Cruiser without falling. But it can crawl like a caterpillar, for instance: Red Planet Cruiser Caterpillar by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr "Forward, to the stars!" To The Stars! by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The leg can be straightened to turn this weird mech into a small flyer: Red Planet Cruiser Flying by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr In this mode, it flies with two wing-based jet engines. Probably there is the third engine inside the leg. The round piece with flame image is the Cuiser's symbol and isn't included in other sets, except for accessory pack. The cruiser's cockpit is open and has manipulators on its sides. Most likely they are sensors and scanners, but the orange dish may be a weapon: Red Planet Cruiser Cockpit by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The Cruiser from the bottom: Red Planet Cruiser Upside Down by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr This model has pleasant colors. Grey and sand green with small inclusions of green and orange look good. The cockpit without the pilot: Red Planet Cruiser Without Pilot by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr It can be seen that the control panel is attached to the similar part as Martian arms, but grey. The Cruiser contained several extra parts (extra droid and Martian arms mistakingly are not shown here but still were present): Red Planet Cruiser Extra Parts by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr The Cruiser can be united with the Double Hover, and they look like one vehicle (this was Artlego's idea): Red Planet Cruiser With Double Hover by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Red Planet Cruiser, Double Hover and other Martian flyers: Martian Aircraft by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr Rover, Cruiser and Double Hover among other Martian mechs (7314, 7316 and 7317): Martian Mechs (With Rover) by Farseer Eldar, on Flickr I need only Red Planet Protector (7313) for the full Martian collection. Pros/Cons Pros: + Special value, 3 sets in 1 box + Good color scheme + Rare minifigures + Mobility of Red Planet Cruiser and Double Hover + No stickers Cons: - Weird Red Planet Cruiser design - Simple Rover design - Hard to find Thank you for reading and watching! If you like the review, please, leave a comment. The author will be glad to hear your opinions. And if someone wonders why I'm doing these reviews, I'll answer that this is for history.