The AFOLs Guide to Overwatch #2[75971 Hanzo vs. Genji]

It’s been a busy time of year! Recently, we looked at the smallest of the new LEGO®sets in the new Overwatch theme: Tracer Vs. Widowmaker. I was not up on the lore behind the story, so I invited my son Harry to provide some background commentary, to help bring me up to speed.  If you are trying to understand the underlying stories, it might help you too. As we continue to explore the world of Overwatch, in the context of the soon to be released LEGO sets, today I am taking a look at the the second set, 75971 Hanzo vs Genji. Hopefully, Harry is able to help all of us…

With 197 pieces, and costing $AUD39.99, this is a relatively expensive set, with elements costing roughly 20 cents each.  We will continue look at the value of these sets as we move along through the range.

Now your favorite Overwatch® fan can build the Hanamura dojo in LEGO® bricks with LEGO Overwatch 75971 Hanzo vs. Genji. Based on the internationally acclaimed team-based action game, this Overwatch toy recreates the epic face-off for the Hanamura dojo between the rival dragon brothers Hanzo and cyborg ninja Genji. With weapons for the highly recognizable Overwatch heroes and a buildable dojo, kids will love to play out the action from the game, while older fans will want to show off the set next to their gaming setup.

source: shop.lego.com

Now that Harry has a little more time on his hands, I have asked him to once again try to explain what happens to be going on with the lore, the story behind the game, in this set.  I asked him to explain the nature of the powers possessed by Hanzo and Genji.

Hanzo and Genji are two of the characters on the Overwatch hero roster who are particularly hard to understand in the context of a universe where every other hero’s power has a logical, if somewhat nonsensical, explanation:x Reaper’s wraith form is the result of Moira, Blackwatch’s medic and resident evil scientist, messing with his DNA; D.va has a mech because the Korean army drafted pro gamers as pilots on the assertion that they had the heightened reflexes necessary to control them; and Ana Amari can still snipe at 60 because she’s just that good.

But Hanzo and Genji can just summon magical dragons from their arm tattoos, and no scientific explanation is even attempted, so your suspension of disbelief is going to have to carry you a fair way here.

Hanzo and Genji Shimada are brothers, and were members of the Shimada clan – a highly respected crime family. I’m not sure if calling them “yakuza” would be entirely accurate, but they were definitely a crime family. Genji was a bit of a playboy, to the extent that it started interfering with the family business; as such, the clan elders ordered Hanzo to kill his brother. Hanzo then did to Genji what a power drill has been known to do to a swan, leaving him for dead and going off to wallow in his angst over what he did. Meanwhile, Genji survived thanks to Overwatch’s cyberneticists, and was basically told something to the effect of “you have a debt to pay off to us for saving your life and a lot of anger management issues to work out, why don’t you join Blackwatch now that you’re a cyborg ninja who can summon a magic dragon sword for some reason?”

So he did that for a while, and after Overwatch fell he started wandering, angsting over whether he was still human when he met Zenyatta, an omnic monk and one of the other playable heroes of Overwatch, who became his teacher and helped him to overcome his philosophical quandary. Meanwhile, Hanzo was still messed up with grief over what he did to Genji, believing him to be dead – even periodically returning to the Shimada family shrine at Hanamura where the ‘murder’ took place to mourn Genji. This then led to the canon animated short ‘Dragons’, which this set depicts. After this, Hanzo also became a kind-of nomad, trying to find himself and come to terms with what his brother became. And that pretty much covers it.

Harry – Advice to my Father: Hanzo and Genji Shimada

So… family murder, resurrection and guilt: it sounds like this story is practically Shakespearean in its scope. Let’s set out to explore the set.

The set comes in a slightly larger box than Tracer vs Widowmaker, and the box once again features two different aspects of the set, on the front and back of the box.

Inside the box are four plastic bags, an instruction book and a sticker sheet, with slightly less effort than we have seen with some of these sets previously. (that is to say, there are 2 stickers, and they are simple enough to apply.  Like Tracer vs Widowmaker, we are invited to scan our instruction manual into LEGO Life for some mysterious bonus features.

Bits and pieces

I suspect that I shall lack the strength of will to knoll elements of the larger sets, so I am taking this one last opportunity here.  besides, I loose the ability to keep them all straight and square. As you can see, there are many elements in tan and dark tan (brick yellow and sand yellow)

As I progressed through the elements, it became apparent that there are a number of elements that are new, with in 2018, or in this set. Let’s zoom in on some of the newer elements:

There are a number of brand new elements here, including the ribbons that connect to our character’s hair;  2×1 plates with rounded ends; the bb8 head, now available in plain black, with no printing ; the 1×1 upwards brackets… We see a number of new printed elements: Dragon tiles, round 1×1 tiles printed with the Overwatch logo.  We also have makings of a Health flask. The mobile phone tile is an older print, but works perfectly in this context.

Hanzo’s Storm Bow is dark blue, true to the source material, and is the first time the bow appears in this colour. Likewise, Genji’s sword, named Ryu-Ichimonji, is a standard katana, but making its first appearance in bright yellowish green. appears in this colour.  

The Minifigures:

We have three minifigures: Genji, Hanzo and the Shimada henchman.

Each of the figures has great torso printing, but the arms are strangely devoid of any printing.  This set, in particular, is priced at a premium ( at a price per part) and I feel that the arms look quite bare, especially compared to the torso detail.  

Genji has a medium nougat torso, featuring white and lime green printing, while his legs are white and feature the printing in medium nougat. Thetorso detail extends to his back.  His helmet is a new mould, and has an attachment for the new ‘ribbon’ element – now available in flat silver and pearl gold.  They these ribbons use the same attachment as we have seen in many helmets and hair pieces before, and will have use in other themes and MOCs going forward. Underneath his helmet is an unprinted flat silver minifigure head.

Hanzo has a suitably severe expression, and features a new hair piece, which the gold ribbons element can attach to.  There is no alternate face print, which surprised me, after the detail we saw in Tracer and Widowmaker last week. His torso is black, and suffers from the not infrequent issue of flesh colours not printing as strong as they could over dark colours: the ink never quite matches up with the colour of the light flesh head element or arm.  Printing on his ‘naked’ arm, of his dragon tattoo would have been welcome, as it is intrinsic to his character.  The rest of his torso printing has a high level of detail.  His legs are dark stone grey with a black print, but could easily have been dual moulded with black as well.  I wonder if dual coloured folding could have fixed the issue with the printing of light flesh on the torso?

The Shimeda henchman has a fantastic coif and the hairpiece is fitting with the henchman focussed on in the animated short “Dragons”.  His torso presents us with a good suit and tie print, again with not arm printing, and plain legs.  A less terrified, alternative face could have been a useful inclusion, but this one works quite well, especially in the context of facing Hanzo.

The Build

The build centres around the shrine located in the centre of the Shimada family castle, as seen in the animated short, Dragons

The build is simple enough: stacked cylinders to build the back wall, and incorporating a clever use of different curves to form the top of the shrine.  A sword and scabbard form the centrepiece of the shrine.  

The sword and sheath for the centrepiece of the shrine.


Incense burners are formed using an inverted dome element ( an unprinted head of  BB9-E).  We also have a health pack.

Disc launchers underneath the platforms to the side simulate the Dragon powers that each of the brothers is able summon.

How do the characters compare?

Lets have a quick look at the source material, as seen in screen shots downloaded from playoverwatch.com

The major discrepancy seen between game Hanzo and minifigure Hanzo is the absence of the tattoo on his chest, as well as his arm.

Genji is reflected fairly well, although the minifigure helmet over the head does tend to make the proportions feel a little skewed.

I’ll have to admit, this henchman appears to  match the source material particularly well, within the confines of the LEGO system.

 He appears briefly to be operating his phone in the animated short, and the hair piece and facial expression are beautifully executed here.

In summary: the build is simple but reflects the source material well.  There is plenty of Japanese inspired architecture to be found within the Ninjago sets of recent years. However, this set might hold appeal for some for whom ‘a kid’s TV show’ might not hold significant appeal.

I love the mini figures, although perhaps arm printing on Hanzo, to reflect his tattoo would have improved the level of translation from game to LEGO Set. The build is not too complicated, and I love the use of the round tile launchers to represent the dragon spirits for both of the characters.

I am disappointed by the appearance of the printing on Hanzo’s torso, and the lack of tattoo print.  The other minifigures are faithful representations of the source materials.  

I give this set three out of five Arbitrary Praise units.

What do you think about the Overwatch sets we have looked last recently? Enjoyable? A bit dull? More of the same? For myself, I think the lore of the game is looking more interesting to me, the more I see and hear.  Why not leave your thoughts below, and subscribe to the blog to keep up with future updates.  Until next time,

Play Well!

 I would like to thank the AFOL Enagement Team at the LEGO Group for providing this set for review.  All opinions are my own.

2 thoughts on “The AFOLs Guide to Overwatch #2[75971 Hanzo vs. Genji]

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