As we continue our look at the second wave of LEGO Super Mario sets, we turn to the return of one of Mario’s classic challenges: the Piranha Plant. Can we call it an enemy? Given the fact that it cannot directly attack, or nerf Mario in any way, I consider this level to be an obstacle, with a built in playable challenge. The set is now on sale, has 267 pieces and costs29.99 USD/EUR – 24.99 GBP – 49.99 AUD – 39.99 CAD.
Like other expansion sets, it is built using the instructions included in the LEGO Super Mario App. It is also possible to access the building instructions from the LEGO Building instructions app. The Super Mario App is necessary to update the Mario Brick to accept the latest sets; provide video demonstrations of different aspects of the set, and to get challenges, and share your levels/images to the LEGO Life. It is not necessary to play a timed game, BUT if it is connected at the time, you can get a complete break down of how you gained the coins during your game.
There are a few interesting/relatively new elements here, including the medium lilac 6×6 rounded biome plate (in search of a better name). There are also a couple of 2×4 tiles, rounded at each end, in medium nougat, as well as some regular 2×4 tiles, and a large (14 tooth) splat gear. We also have some of the small 5 petal flowers in vibrant coral – consistant with the Soda Jungle Biome.
This challenge involves a seesaw, on a central turntable, which interacts with another two adjacent turntables via ‘splat’ gears. Each of these peripheral turntables is home to a piranha plant, which is able to flip-flop, back and forth. There are two blocks on each of these turntables, underneath the resting point of the plant. Fortunately, the plant can be flipped out of the way by slamming Mario down on the central teeter totter when one end is under the plant. This gives Mario access to the brick underneath.
While the Piranha plant challenge is set over the soda jungle biome, there is no need to touch onto the purple plates. He basically rides on the centre of the teeter-totter, until he is ready to move on.
The central see-saw has a medium nougat 4×4 biome plate, which Mario does not specifically recognise, and a 14 tooth gear in this colour. There are 4 of the 10 tooth gears, in medium lilac. The construction of the see-saw also involves lateral bracing of the supports, using SNOT bricks, and a 2×4 tile on each side. Rubber bushes ensure the see saw returns to its baseline position.
As I discussed earlier, the Pirhana plants do not really count as an an enemy, so much as an obstacle. This set does, however comes with one scannable enemy: Spiny, who other wise only appeared as a buildable figure in the first wave. Two scans of his barcode results in receiving 3 coins. Any subsequent scan gives a single coin.He has identical construction to the version in series 1 buildable character. However does, he has a different barcode to the buildable character. As such you can put the two figures in the same layout, and get full points for both.
This set comes with 3 clock stopping red coin bonus blocks. While they are in play, the main clock for the game is paused. After scanning one, you have 12 seconds to scan the next, and then the next. This is useful, as during this time, Mario needs to rotate the seesaw to line up with the piranha plant, and slam the plant out of the way, so that he has access to the brick underneath.
Scanning the three boxes, and allowing time for the ‘coin drop’ sound that follows, will see you earn 10 coins. You can then repeat the exercise for further 10 coin drops. If you stumble during the collection: scan one box twice during the scanning of the three, for example, the score is reduced to 5 coins. The order of scanning the coins does not matter.
I found that if I completed my run after scanning the three boxes, but not getting the ‘coin sound’ then I would not receive any score.
The red coin bonus cannot be scanned while Star power is in play.
Dash30 vs Conventional Game Play.
The Mario Maker set ( 71380) comes with a Yellow Warp pipe, and a game which only runs for 30 seconds. When playing this game, rather than the standard ‘Green pipe’ game, I found that Mario received coins for rotating the gear at the centre of the set. The Green game does not award any coins for ‘simple rotation’, unless you are on an appropriate ‘Action Brick’ – such as you might encounter with the Desert Pokey, or Bowser’s Castle.
Overall, I found this to be a challenging puzzle to complete. the biggest trap was going to the end gate before the coins had ‘dropped’ – I had not hear the sound of the coins falling, and I didnt receive any! While the challenge is there and the mechanism ingenious, I have to admit, I found the see-saw did not always stand up to my ‘stamping’ with LEGO Super Mario, resulting in some in game repairs being required. However, being able to ‘ stop the clock, and gather coins almost indefinitely means that, should you choose, you could get quite a hefty score should you choose.
Overall, I enjoyed the gameplay, but it was detraced from by occasional collapse of the see-saw. I award it 3.5 out of 5 Arbitrary Praise units.
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Until next time.
this set was privide by the LEGO Group for review Purposes. All opinions are my own.