Earlier in the year, we saw the arrival of LEGO DOTs: colorful tiles to put on over plates and bricks, available as bracelets and, in search of a better word, buildable homewares such as a pencil pot, jewellery stand and photo holders. There was also a supplemental pack, containing a mixture of round tiles, quarter circle tiles and a random assortment of printed round tiles.
There is a new wave launching at the start of June, and I was fortunate enough to find a couple of packs, amongst other June releases on the shelves at our local certified store a couple of days early. I picked up two packs of the 41916 Extra DOTS -Series 2, as well as some bracelets: ‘Go Team!’ And ‘Magic Forest’. Today, I will just look at the extra dots.
Earlier this year, the LEGO Group announced a forthcoming partnership between LEGO® Technic and Italian super sports cars car manufacturer, Automobili Lamborghini. Today, we see the official unveiling of the of the LEGO Technic set 42115 Lamborghini Sián FKP 37. With 3696 elements, the set will be available on June the 1st 2020 from LEGO Branded Retail channels: online LEGO Store, Bricks and Mortar LEGO store/LEGO Certified stores, where open; LEGOLAND Parks and discovery centre shops. $569.99AUD – €/$ 379.99, £349.99
Following on in the tradition of the Porsche GT3 and the Bugatti Chiron, This 1:8 scaled model set is aimed at adult LEGO Builders, coming in the Black Box labelled 18+ that we have seen with some recent sets aimed at AFOLS (Haunted House, Star Wars UCS A-Wing and Helmets; Architecture White House).
The Lamborghini Sián FKP 37 was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor show in 2019. The suffix FKP 37 refers to the late chairman of the Volkswagen Group, Ferdinand Piëch – who was born in 1937. The vehicle is a V12 Hybrid, and production will be limited to only 63. All have been sold.
After being closed for several months, due to the pandemic, LEGO® House today announced their plan to reopen to the public on 22nd June 2020.
However, it is important to stress that the opening-up of LEGO House will be gradual and controlled and with a very limited number of guests every day to be able to keep the physical distance needed according to the health authorities.
In which a global pandemic interferes with the Italian holiday plans of my wife and I. So we take a virtual trip, with the aid of a LEGO® Creator Expert Fiat 500 and some very bad Photoshopping.
In a COVID-19 free parallel Universe, my wife and I are currently flying from Rome to Singapore. We have been away for two weeks, arriving in Milan, visiting Cinque Terre, and Venice along the way. Probably catching up with some friends in the Italian AFOL Community as well. After a few days in Rome, we are on our way home, well rested: our first holiday away together for 4 years or so.
Of course, we do not live in that universe. But we were planning to be in Italy this month: Ann and I booked our tickets last November, back when our world was a vastly different place.
Subsequently, the world has been dramatically changed by the effects of the coronavirus. COVID 19 was just starting to reach epidemic proportions in northern Italy the week that the Creator Expert 10271 Fiat 500 set was announced. The launch event at the Fiat factory was reduced to a live stream. Since then, much of the world has been in varying degrees of lockdown, and we are starting to come out the other side. So, while we are not able to travel from Australia to Italy, I thought we might take a virtual trip in search of La Dolce Vita – the sweet life – by constructing the Creator Expert 10271 Fiat 500, an icon of Italian design; and some bad photoshop involving our planned destinations. Along the way, I might have a bowl of pasta…
So, pour yourself a short black coffee, find a seat in the sun and read on…
Back in April, we reported on the LEGO Group producing eye shields for health care workers, looking after patients with COVID-19 in Southern Denmark. In my ‘day job,’ I work as an anaesthesiologist. The availability of Personal Protective Equipment for health workers has been a topic of conversation amongst my colleagues for a few months, and I was excited to hear of the development. While we have had little to worry about in Australia, I realise that PPE remains an important issue in many parts of the world, as supply chains get re-established.
A group of Recognised LEGO Fan Media – including Brickset, New Elementary, Hispabrick Magazine, Brickfinder, as well as myself – had the opportunity to put some additional questions to the team responsible for the production of these face shields….
This week, we saw the launch of Monkie Kid, the LEGO Group’s new theme, based on the classic Chinese Novel, Journey to the West. While the sets look great, I was even more excited by the fact that there were only 12 hours between the official announcement and the release of sets in the local LEGO Brand stores – both LEGO Certified Stores, and the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre.
I was standing on the doorstep at opening time – third in line, and the only one who wasn’t planning to pick up the Monkey King Warrior Mech 80012. I am looking forward to getting it at some point, but I suspect there will be many reviews online in the next few weeks. So I headed to the antagonist: Demon Bull King 80010. This set has 1057 pieces, three minifigures and sells for $AUD129.99. To be honest, my interest was raised primarily by the colour scheme, as well as the windscreen elements used on his shoulders. I wanted to get a closer look, as the packaging was giving me a Space Police or Ice Planet 2002 kind of vibe. But we will come to that a little later.
As kid growing up in Australia in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s TV Viewing was pretty predictable in the run up to the ABC’s evening news: The Goodies, Doctor Who and a music video. In 1981, this changed with an English dub of a Japanese series based on a 500 year old Chinese folk tale. The tales of the stone monkey, along with the fish and pig spirits, protecting a Buddhist priest on his pilgrimage to recover scriptures to save the world from chaos captured the hearts and minds of a generation, as matchsticks became quarterstaves, and you could whistle up a cloud in the schoolyard. And that theme song. Ask anyone over the age of 40. they can probably still sing it for you.
Fast forward forty years, and the LEGO Group is releasing a whole new theme based on the Chinese legend….
Over the last few years, we have seen an increasing number of sets with the action set in an amusement park or fairground. We have seen these in Creator, Friends, LEGO City and particularly Creator Expert – where we have seen the largest, most sophisticated models: the Mixer, Ferris wheel, Carousel and Roller Coaster. The roller coaster was released 2 years ago now, and it must be almost time for a new one to be released. As an adult, I find the amusement parks sets enjoyable to put together: they have been satisfying builds, and there are lots of interesting ways to incorporate them in an engaging layout.
Today, the LEGO Group announce the forthcoming Haunted House – another fairground attraction to go beside your Carousel and Roller Coaster. This time based on the Family Home of Baron Samuel von Barron, whom we first met in the Adventurers theme, in 1998. This time, we have a ‘Tower Drop’ ride – incorporating a complex mechanism, that can also be automated using a Powered up Hub, motors and App.
The LEGO House, in Billund, has been closed to the public for several months due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Unfortunately, it will remain closed for the foreseeable future.
The team at the LEGO House have also been working to bring some of the atmosphere You might have seen some of the material on the LEGO House social channels, for their program ‘LEGO House @ Home’ – containing tips and tricks for families building together. You can find some of the content on their YouTube channel here.
Today, we receive notice of some activity initiated by the LEGO House, specifically for AFOLs Interviews with designers whose work is featured in the Masterpiece Gallery:
Last year, we saw the LEGO® sets aimed at younger builders shift from the the ‘Juniors‘ branding, to their respective themes, but with the added labelling of 4+. These sets feature the nifty aspects of the Junior sets: easy to build, no stickers, some cool minifigures, but with out the stigma of build specifically aimed at ‘Junior Builders.’ Now you can be 8 years old, and confident in the idea that these sets are OK for you to get: 8 is still on the plus side of 4. Previously, these sets had been limited to LEGO’s in-house ranges (City, Friends, Ninjago), as well as Disney Princess, Marvel Superheroes, and DC Superheroes. With this change in labelling, we have also seen LEGO Star Wars enter the fray, with a range of spaceships labelled 4+. Quick to assemble, and easy to start playing around with, these sets feature some large elements, which might be described as POOP: Pieces that could/should be made Out of Other Pieces.