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  1. WhiteFang

    REVIEW: 10245 Santa's Workshop

    Hello everyone, I am very pleased and honoured to be able to review one of the highly anticipated upcoming Winter Village addition which is classified and labelled under the LEGO Creator Expert Theme. I have not done any of the LEGO Winter Village sets for my review before and I am extremely elated to have such an awesome opportunity given by Eurobricks Staff and The LEGO Group (TLG) to have an early insight reviewing on this beloved winter set. Earlier ago, Eurobricks has started a topic in August 2014, which entail the official press release discussion topic for more high resolution images provided by TLG. Name: 10245 Santa's Workshop Theme: LEGO System / Creator Expert / Winter Village Year: 2014 Pieces: 883 Minifigs: 6 minifigures Price: USD $69.99, GBP 59.99, EURO N.A, SGD N.A Resources: Brickset, BrickLink An original box image of the 10245 Santa's Workshop Back view of the original box image of the 10245 Santa's Workshop Different side view of the original box image (1) Different side view of the original box image (2) Different side view of the original box image (3) Discover the Christmas Magic right here in the Santa's Workshop Come on everyone and be excited by the charm and magic of Christmas right here in the Santa's Workshop. It has never been done before for any LEGO sets. Occasionally, we do get a few slight different variants of Santa Claus minifigures in some places such as the City Advent Calendars, Lifestyle items, etc. There is never a real home for Santa to live in. Thus, we have to thank the man for the design of this set. It is none other than, Marcos Bessa (Senior LEGO Model Designer) who has made this design possible. He has designed many various and iconic sets. One of his recent works, was the 21108: Ghostbusters. If you wish to know more about this 10245 Santa's Workshop and Marcos Bessa, an exclusive video interview done by TLG, can be found . It is worth to watch that two minute plus video, to allow you to gain a better appreciation on this set as well, from the designer's perspective. The 10245 Santa's Workshop is part of the greater annual winter tradition, under the Winter Village sub-themes. It all started in 2009 with the 10199 Winter Toy Shop and it went on to feature the upcoming sixth addition to this memorable sub-theme in 2014, which is adored by many especially during the month of December in the celebration of Christmas Day. It has progressed and expanded systematically to allow all these sets to form an actual winter village. Even though, Santa's Workshop is not physically 'present' in a typical village setting, but it can be real near to the hearts of many, despite of his North Pole locality. I really hope TLG will continue expanding the winter village setting. The content of the sealed box The sealed box comes with nine mint packages which is numbered and grouped from one to three, a sticker sheet, three long black bendable rods and two instruction manuals to guide the user to build up the set. After the building is completed based on the selected design, the remaining spare parts varies. These are the remaining spare parts for packet 1, packet 2 and packet 3. The two instruction manuals are packaged in a sealed plastic together with the sticker sheet, like in this front and back image. Please note there is no paper cardboard at the back to support the manuals. Thankfully, when I opened the package, the manuals are straighten without any visible bending. At the end of the second instruction manual, you can see TLG promoting the LEGO Creator Expert Theme of the recent LEGO Modular series. As for the dreaded sticker sheet, there are only six elements which required to be stickered. Luckily, six is not really considered a lot of stickers. The close up details of the sticker sheet can be found in here and over here. The full minifigures range in this Santa's Workshop In this 10245 Santa's Workshop, you will get a total of six minifigures and two of them have printed backs. You will get the main star of Santa Claus. You may also notice that Santa Claus is highly similar to the LEGO CMFs Series 8 Santa Claus. This is the parts assortment of Santa Claus from the Santa's Workshop. Not quite a big difference, other than the torso neck and the new red colour for the bag of gifts. The other main new star, is casting Mrs Claus. It will be real lonely for Santa Claus to be living all alone without his loved one taking care of him during the harsh bitter winter cold. Mrs Claus will take great care of him by preparing nice baked cookies and hot chocolate in his favourite mug which will be seen later in Santa's working table. I personally find it disappointing but I believe it is the quota constrain for producing limited exclusive torso parts and set designer are highly encouraged to use existing parts and most likely his request for new parts could have been restricted for other areas of his built. Still, I am sadden by the fact that, while we are given a brand new designed skirt torso for Mrs Claus but we used the Princess Maiden torso from the 7947 Prison Tower Rescue. This female torso is also available in these sets. The remaining four are the superb hyper hardworking elves. Without these jingle elves, then Santa Claus will be working very hard to ensure that toy-making production is on schedule. These elves made use of the same hairpiece of the Series 11 Holiday Elf. The facial features for these elves are just so dynamic. I am very fond of their various looks. Their short legs are quite common and it is useful for using it as City children minfigures or dwarves. The torsos are mostly made up of common City minifigures torso, with the rare exception of the third elf from the left, which utilise a new City torso of the Juggling Man that can be found in the new 10244 Fairground Mixer. And, oh gosh... I am so wrong... The torso is not really that exclusive and it actually appears in the 3816 Glove World and 10232 Palace Cinema as well. This is quite a disappointment. Line up, please! We have a new worker among us The extended version of the Christmas Minifigures The building process overview The entire building content for Packet 1 Some useful parts in Packet 1 After opening and pouring all of the LEGO elements together, I personally find these items to be quite useful. First of all, no one will mind the fact that the reindeer eyes and the fur backs to be printed. I am very pleased to see them printed as it could be useful for builders to attempt to use it to build other brick-built animals with those features. The magic wands and guitar is not new, but it is nice to have them as Christmas gifts even though I will really prefer teddy bears instead. The stars and ribbons are some nice ornamental touch which I find it nice to outline additional fine details. The new red colour for the bag of gifts for Santa Claus is distinct and matching. Somehow, I am surprised to see a spare additional white beard for Santa Claus. It could be good to keep the spare part for your minifigures customisation in the future. North Pole signage To get to North Pole, you must first locate the elusive North Pole signage. Too bad, the wording is made up of sticker. I am personally fond of the simplicity and subtle hint of Santa Claus since it utilise the red and white colour schema for the pole. Christmas Tree When there is a Christmas celebration, you will bound to find a Christmas Tree. This small brick built Christmas Tree is well designed. It is able to outline the shape of the tree through the usage of jumper bricks to form the four sides of irregularity which eventually even out the sides. The final touch is the shining star which is placed at the top of the Christmas Tree. Baby Reindeer This cute little brick-built baby Reindeer is actually called a calf. It belongs to a deer species that live in Arctic and subarctic areas. The entire built is smaller and the ears are without the antlers. It is just simple and nice. Now let's slowly discover the rest of them. Reindeer gathering The four brick-built reindeer are adults with their full grown antlers and larger body built. It is ingenious to utilise the robot droid body to form the head and the robotic arms to form the antler. Really nice and creative way to make use of these parts. The reindeer come with their natural backing. You can remove a 1x2 portion at the back to allow the placing of the carriage lash. This image and the other image is a simple comparison of the reindeer with the carriage lash on and off. The carriage lash is meant for the reindeer to secure with the magical sleigh which will be shown soon. Well, some of them are not very fond of this brick built reindeer and will prefer moulded version of an animal. I am receptive towards the brick-built as it bring some cuteness in it and reindeer may not be commonly used in other future settings in a more common manner which could not justify the cost of the mould. I am just guessing down here. Reindeer are having their well-deserved breaks The magical Santa's sleigh We have finally received a proper and decent design of a Santa's sleigh. Excellent work. I am super glad that it is not something like the 40059 Santa's Sleigh. The magnificent and the scale of the Santa's sleigh is terrific. The interior of the Santa's sleigh offer comfort and plentiful of storage space. I like the colour schema of the distinct red combined with emerald green and pearl gold to form the side of the sleigh and the back of it as well. It is also enable the sleigh to lock through the carriage lash for the reindeer. Oh well, this sleigh doesn't come with the nine reindeer which are Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, and of course, Rudolph. Frontal view of the magical sleigh Side view of the magical sleigh Let's see if I have brought all of the presents out These presents are able to fit nicely at the back of the sleigh without spilling the presents out of there. I did tell you that there are plentiful of space at the back. My magical sleigh The completed built for Packet 1 The entire building content for Packet 2 Some useful parts in Packet 2 It is useful to have these parts in your collection. I will not complain having more mason texture wall bricks of nougat brown and dark grey bricks to give texture to the outer facade. The emerald green windows with the pearl gold grilles are useful as well since we don't get this colours easily. The signage is a nice store front display but without the sticker, it look rather bare and it will be much useful if there is stickered detail for it to apply in your own creation. The printed clock is superb and lovely. I am very pleased that piece is not stickered. The printed baked cookies are also nice accessories for it to be used in many other settings. Same applied for more printed envelopes too. Front view of Santa's home After building the lengthy built of the Santa's home from the building elements in Packet 2, you are able to admire the beautiful exterior of the building. It involve some advanced building techniques, from the base to the door which is pretty awesome detail to show the snowing and grey texture. From the side, you are able to see some of the designer's application to build the fireplace exterior which is rather an ingenious way to show the dull texture combining with a mixture of grey bricks to show the flow. The two red and white poles are also a nice touch to show from far, that this is Santa's home. At the same side, I have applied the sticker onto the black signage and clipped onto the side of the house. It is hung together with a lit lamp for luminance. The clocktower is situated at the center front top of the house. It is a nice placement which make it the main focus of that house. As you open the wooden door, you will be able to see a stickered doormat with the wording, "Welcome Ho-Ho-Home". I am sure it must be Mrs Claus idea to place such a heart warming doormat to welcome his beloved husband back after a hard day of work. Near the fireplace at the ground floor, you will see another nice and sweet stickered picture frame hung at the top of the fireplace. It appears both of them are having their fun and hot Summer Holidays at tropical sunny beach. At the second floor, you will see Santa's cosy armchair in his work-area. In there, you will find his warm hot chocolate yellow mug, prepared by Mrs Claus placed at the side of his table with the candle lit, reading through the letters sent by children wishing for what they wished for and telling Santa how good they have been for the past one year. Now I put Santa in the working area and it fits him comfortably. You can see the scale of the Santa's house with the minifigures in place. The wooden pearl gold ladder is the mean to connect both floors together. Side view of Santa's home Side view of Santa's home Back view of Santa's home The completed built for Packet 2 The entire building content for Packet 3 Front view of the Workshop The second part of the building is the extension and built up of the Santa's Workshop. The wooden door look rather secure and secretive. After all, toy-making is a secretive task for the elves to work on. The building of the stained glass windows is very nice and I find it one of the best eye-catching detail in this workshop. Once completed, you can see the full built of the stained glass windows from the inside. The exterior work for the white snow rooftop is filled with dazzling Christmas lightings. This is pretty simple and effective way to showcase colourful lightings. But I am not quite pleased that the rooftop is not fully covered. I do wish that the roof can at least cover the top of the workshop. The diligent elves will work on the workbench. It is equipped with tools and parts for them to carry rectification works on the toys to ensure highest quality checked is being carried out. You may also notice the last stickered part, which show a motivational poster designed by Santa to motivate his elves to work hard to meet the tight deadline. Side view of the Workshop Side view of the Workshop Back view of the Workshop Front view of the toy-making machine If I introduce this last component of the Santa's Workshop, the simplest way to present it could be that this bad-megablocks machine is a dream of many children. If this machine is able to magically produce any number of LEGO sets that I want, that will be incredibly awesome. Enough of my silly dream, this is a magical toy-making machine specially created for Santa Claus in his beloved workshop. The toy-making machine is operated by qualified and well-trained elves and the machine is capable of producing a series of beautiful toys in the assembly line. The finished built of the toy-making machine is fantastic, especially with this brand new printed tile which features the machine controls. It has printed gauges, adjustable levers and light on it. Real awesome to have such lovely printed tile. And, "again", I have made a silly mistake of mistaken identity. It seem the printed tile is not that exclusive and it is a common printed tile that used in some recent train models. It has appeared in a total of 31 sets. For those who are very familiar with the City Advent Calendars, we do get some micro building toys, similar to the one made here. In this case, the toy-making machine produces a blue classic spaceship and yellow car in micro scale. Side view of the toy-making machine Back view of the toy-making machine The completed built for Packet 3 Front view of the fully built Santa's Workshop Isn't it a sight to behold to place the two finished section and combined them to form a built Santa's Workshop. Personally, I am fond of the finished built of the Santa's Workshop despite of some flaws in my opinion that was mentioned earlier in my other segments of my review. I like the outline of the workshop. It felt very compact and he managed to squeeze many fine details on the exterior which is highly commendable. All in all, it is still a nice piece of building to be featured in the Winter Village setting and a place for our main characters to live in. Back view of the fully built Santa's Workshop Welcome to the North Pole I have prepared a few additional pictures below for your viewing pleasure and I hope you will like the way that I have arranged with them. Let's try and repair this blue Classic Spaceship Santa needs you Come boys, have some baked cookies Let's hire these new helpers Have some baked cookies before you depart Good bye Santa and don't be late Ho Ho Ho, Merry Christmas! Santa Claus welcoming these special visitors Good bye Mrs Claus and my hardworking jingle elves To conclude, I enjoyed building this set very much. The building process is interesting and not quite suitable for our younger builders since this set is targeted at the age of 12 plus and above. The minifigures are fun to play with except the disappointment of Mrs Claus. It could have been better. The finished building and the numerous components that form the entire Santa's Workshop is amazing. I love it, except that the workshop portion can be improved to include a proper roofing to cover the top. Lots of nice and delicious uncommon colour bricks such as emerald green and nougat tan. Not only that, the cute and adorable brick-built reindeer including the baby reindeer are just brilliant. Lastly, if you are collecting the whole Winter Village Series, then this set is not to be missed when it is out in official retail store in October 2014 worldwide. Summary review Playability: 8/10 (Fun and enjoyable to narrate many different play scenes on its own as illustrated in the last few images.) Design: 8/10 (Very good efforts to squeeze in many fine details onto the building and other components.) Price: 8/10 (Price is reasonable for per part ratio but it may not be reasonably attractive in other regions such as Singapore.) Overall: 8/10 (Get this set and don't miss it, especially fans and collectors of the LEGO Winter Series.) I gave it a "4" based on my Review Score Card. What about yours? I hope every one of you enjoyed reading this simple review of mine. Comments and Criticisms are strongly welcomed. Pictures can be found in My Flickr.