The Northern Summer 2021 wave of LEGO® Star Wars sets focuses almost entirely on sets based on Television Series: Clone Wars season 7/The Bad Batch and the Mandalorian.
At LEGO® Con on the weekend, 3 sets from the Mandalorian were officially revealed – The Imperial Armored Marauder, Boba Fett’s Star Ship (the ship formerly known as Slave I) and the Imperial Light Cruiser. All three of these are integral to key moments in the series, and along with 75299 Trouble and Tatooine, as well as the 75314 The Bad Batch Shuttle shows an ongoing commitment to presenting more LEGO® sets from the newer, Disney managed, faces of the franchise.
The AFOL Engagement team at the LEGO Group sent over a copy of the the new wave to review, including the Clone Wars sets, and today, we will take a look at the 75311 Imperial Armored Marauder. Appearing in the Mandalorian, series 2, episode 4: The Siege, the Armored Marauder is a heavily armoured version of the Troop carrier, seen in the finale to season I.
The set has 478 pieces, and 4 Minifigures. It will cost $59.99 AUD, and go on sale on August 1st. Is this an enjoyable build, or just a big grey box with guns? Read on to find out.
It’s Almost here: LEGO CON, where we will get a couple of hours of presentations and previews direct from Billund. While the event will be live streamed from LEGO.com, I will be mashing the refresh button, typing along with the event.
We will start with the AFOL Preshow, including @trickybricks, @fourbrickstall @IV_LEGO and more, before moving onto the main event.
The Event will be hosted by Melvin Odoom and Michelle Khare
We will be seeing new products from Minecraft, Star Wars, Super Mario, Technic and more. We will also see the results of the ‘I love Sports’ contest on LEGO IDEAS announced. Join me at 5pm London time, 12 pm US Eastern; 9am US west coast; and stupid o’clock AEST(0200). Leave your comments below.
Clone Force 99, also known as the Bad Batch, are introduced at the beginning of the final season of ‘The Clone Wars’, and have subsequently spun off into their own series, following the end of the wars, and the execution of Order 66 by the Clone forces of the Grand Army of the Republic.
As such, the team and their adventures open up a rich new vein of material for LEGO® sets. 75314 the Bad Batch Attack Shuttle is one such craft. The set has 969 elements, and will go on sale on the 1st August 2021. The RRP is $AUD 149.99/USD99.99
I was excited to receive a copy of this set to review by the LEGO® AFOL Engagement Team. I was late to appreciate The Clone Wars, only coming to watch it during the extended pandemic lockdown last year. I am grateful to my son for encouraging me to do so, as the wealth of stories contained within helped me to appreciate the Prequel Trilogy all the more.
I had been somewhat oblivioius to the Clone Wars for many years, and it was only during the lockdown last year that my son started to introduce me to the rich tapestry of characters and stories in the series. It almost had me appreciating Revenge of the Sith in a whole new light.
75310 Duel on Mandalore is the smallest of the LEGO Star Wars sets to be released with the new wave, and while it might only contain 147 pieces, the $19.99 USD. (AUD 32.99) price tags suggests that this set is about far more than the build.
The duel between Sith Lord/Crime Lord, Darth Maul, and Jedi Dropout Ashoka Tano takes place in Season Seven of The Clone Wars, as part of the Seige of Mandalore story arc.
These two characters are highly desirable in minifigure form, and it is good to see them in a relatively inexpensive set. This continues the trendof key characters available in smaller sets, a key example of which would be 75299 Trouble on Tatooine – released earlier this year – which gave us the Mandalorian, the Child and a Tusken raider for 44.99 (AUD).
Each year, we hear more and more about the steps that the LEGO Group are taking towards developing a more sustainable brick: elements from Bioplastic; Eliminating single use plastics, use of renewable energy and more. Today the LEGO Group have announced progress in the development of a brick made of recycled PET – the plastic commonly used in plastic bottles.
While the prototype bricks are still undergoing testing for suitability as a substitute for the current ABS bricks, there are still a few questions to be answered, including durability, strength and indeed the ability to ensure that they can be consistently coloured.
A year or two ago, Apple Arcade opened – a subscription model for a games service in the Apple Ecosystem. One of the launch titles, Builder’s Journey, saw a number of AFOLs sign up for the service, and I suspect a few of us failed to cancel our subscription after completing the game.
The game is a puzzle based game, involving the journey of a stylised father and son, exploring a world of LEGO Bricks. The game’s beautiful aesthetics is capped off by the relaxing soundtrack, which also features heavily in the LEGO Games Podcast ‘Bits N Bricks.’ In fact, there is an episode of the podcast dedicated to builder’s journey, which you can find here (episode 6 to be exact…).
This week, the game has been released for PC via Steam, and the Spic Game Store, as well as the Nintendo Game store. These versions, as well as the new version on Apple Arcade, represent an expanded version of the original game.
I’ve set the Household Gamer (ie the game player of our household) the task of working through the new, Steam Based version, and putting together a review for the Rambling Brick – I look forward to hear he has to say about it. I really enjoyed the game on Apple Arcade, when it first came out, and am setting out on revisiting the game with the latest version.
According to the publisher’s website, the game
The LEGO® Group is taking players on an epic, inspirational experience in LEGO® Builder’s Journey, available now on Nintendo Switch and PC. The game follows a father and son on a heartwarming journey through a stunning brick-built universe, filled with geometric puzzles that will surprise and delight players
“When creating LEGO Builder’s Journey, we were inspired by the new movement of games that focus on the overall experience for gamers,” said Karsten Lund, creative director and head of studio, Light Brick Studio. “We chose to focus on the emotional and evocative aspects of storytelling to spark players’ imaginations, and to encourage them to reflect on the importance of play and creativity in all of our lives.”
In addition to the playful themes sewn seamlessly throughout the narrative, the Light Brick team has designed a world featuring graphical upgrades to further immerse players in the game, including ray-traced ambient occlusion, global illumination, reflections, shadows, and other effects that make bricks feel more tactile and movement more fluid.
LEGO Builder’s Journey is available now for $USD19.99 on Steam, the Epic Games Store and the Nintendo eShop. This translates to $29.99 AUD.
Have you played Builder’s Journey? Have you been frustrated by the limited platforms that it has been available on? Did you fall foul of the ‘Signup for the free trial and forget to unsubscribe’ business model that Apple use?
Why not leave your comments below, and until next time,
Last week I had the opportunity to take part in a press briefing looking at LEGO Super Mario’s latest Companion: LEGO Super Luigi. Today we can reveal all the sets coming up in the next wave of releases. Over the next few weeks, I shall present some of what I have learned through playing with LEGO Luigi, in conjunction with the LEGO Super Mario.
The LEGO Group brings 2-player action to the LEGO® Super Mario™ universe with LEGO® Mario™ and LEGO® Luigi™ Let’s-a go! The LEGO® Adventures with Luigi Starter Course, available for pre-order, enables new 2-player interactive play, while brand new Expansion Sets including Bowser’s Airship lets fans level up for even more exciting adventures. Billund, June 22nd, 2021: Today, the LEGO Group has announced a new unique social play experience that for the first time enables children and fans to connect LEGO® Mario™ and LEGO® Luigi™ figures for brand new 2-player adventures in the LEGO Super Mario universe. Perfect for family activities, this exciting feature will encourage even more social play, with two players able to enjoy the universe of LEGO Super Mario at the same time for new brick-built adventures. Once connected via Bluetooth, 2-player adventures with LEGO Mario and LEGO Luigi (or any combination of the two figures) are made possible. Now, children and fans can play as a team, collect extra digital coins by doing in-sync actions like walking, flipping and jumping, or work together to defeat enemies, complete challenges, share rewards or even by changing up the play and competing against each other. The new unique 2-player feature was also shared in a video posted by the LEGO Group and Nintendo earlier today.
“For us it’s all about encouraging continuous creative rebuilding and extended playtime. With today’s announcement, we’re not only bringing LEGO Mario and LEGO Luigi, their friends and enemies to life in new interactive ways for endless fun, we’re also thrilled to expand their play experience and the LEGO Super Mario universe with even more new sets and characters, something we really hope will excite fans”, says Simon Kent, Creative Lead, LEGO Super Mario. The interactive and highly-anticipated Adventures with Luigi Starter Course is the latest extension of the LEGO Super Mario product line, the result of a unique partnership with Nintendo, that has introduced an entirely new way to play with LEGO bricks. Players will be able to get their hands on LEGO Luigi with the LEGO Super Mario Adventures with Luigi Starter Course, a set that contains elements for both single and dual play from August 1st. LEGO Luigi and LEGO Mario, the fraternal twin brothers, are available as separate Starter Courses – both functioning as entry points into the world of LEGO Super Mario –with the 2-player interactive play available using any combination of the two figures from August 1st. As well as unveiling the new Bluetooth-enabled 2-player mode, the LEGO Group is also introducing four new Expansion Sets, two new Power-Up Packs and ten new Character Packs. The four new Expansion Sets represent highly immersive builds for kids to expand their Starter Courses, and feature elements that are suitable for single play, but also enable dual play, and extra coin collection. Available for pre-order from today is the ‘Bowser’s Airship Expansion Set’. The set gives fans a first chance to build an exciting new level within the universe, taking on the infamous flying ship. Fight off Kamek, a Goomba and a Rocky Wrench then battle with the ship itself! The ship can be arranged in ‘flying mode’ or folded out in ‘course mode’. The other new products introduced today include: Frog Mario and Bee Mario Power-Up packs, which let players change up play and dress LEGO Mario in his playful frog and bee suits; and a Boss Sumo Bro Topple Tower Expansion Set, where kids can use their LEGO Mario and/or LEGO Luigi figure to bring down the Topple Tower – fun for solo play, or for playing with friends and family.
The full list of products announced today are:
71391 Bowser’s Airship Expansion Set (available to pre-order today) (99.99 USD/EUR)
71388 Boss Sumo Bro Topple Tower Expansion Set (29.99 USD/EUR)
71389 Lakitu Sky World Expansion Set (39.99 USD/EUR)
71390 Reznor Knockdown Expansion Set (69.99 USD/EUR)
With a new time trial game: how long does it take to collect 50 coins
71392 Frog Mario Power-Up Pack (9.99 USD/EUR)
71393 Bee Mario Power-Up Pack (9.99 USD/EUR)
71394 Character Packs – Series 3 (10 collectible Character Packs, including Galoomba, Parachute Bob-omb, Crowber, Boo, Amp, Torpedo Ted, Bony Beetle, 1-Up Mushroom, Scuttlebug and Swoop) (4.99 USD/3.99 EUR)
All Sets and Packs offer fans limitless ways to expand, rebuild, customize and create their own action-packed challenges and lots of creative fun in a highly-interactive experience that now features 2-player connectivity with LEGO Mario and LEGO Luigi. The LEGO Super Mario Adventures with Luigi Starter Course and Bowser’s Airship Expansion set are available for pre-order now through http://www.lego.com/supermario-startercourse and http://www.lego.com/preorder-bowsersairship respectively, ready to launch August 1st, 2021 on http://www.LEGO.com and from selected leading retailers around the world. The remaining announced products will be available to purchase from August 1st. The recommended retail price for the Adventures with Luigi Starter Course is 59.99 EUR/USD and the Bowser’s Airship Expansion Set is 99.99 USD/EUR.
It’s exciting to see the way in which the LEGO-Nintendo collaboration is developing: the two player mode rewards cooperative play, and gives you an additional 30 seconds to complete the level.
New Gear blocks, as well as many other scannable objects will present new ways to play with these play sets.
I’ll bring more news later this week regarding the new functionality, as well as presenting reviews of the Airship, Lakitu’s Skyworld and of course the Super Luigi Starter set.
What are you most looking forward to in this wave of sets? Why not leave your comments below, and until next time,
The LEGO Group today has revealed the third wave of LEGO Super Mario Character Packs on Twitter. These figures are due for release due for release on 1st August. As with the last few waves, I expect they will be fun, affordable characters, so long as you can find them in store!
The new characters include: Galoomba, Parachute Bob-omb, Crowber, Boo, Amp, Torpedo Ted, Bony Beetle, 1-Up Mushroom, Scuttlebug and Swoop.
I really enjoy the way that LEGO Super Mario provides a fresh way for playing with LEGO, while tying in to the nostalgic video game franchise. I hope to be able to continue reviewing the new expansion sets during the next wave, and am excited to find out what’s coming soon. Hopefully, will will see the full wave revealed at LEGOCon, later in the month.
I presume the majority of characters will be worth a single coin when scanned, in keeping with previous collectable figures, but there are always a couple of characters in each set that exhibit special behaviours:
Read on for closer images, as well as my predictions as to their ‘in game’ behaviour.
After a tease earlier in the week, the LEGO Group today announce the forthcoming release of the LEGO Ideas typewriter. Set 21327 has 2079 Pieces, and measures 27cmx26cmx12cm. It is based on the design by Steve Guinness, who has been involved in the process with the Ideas Design Team.
The set will cost $AUD329 USD199.99 €199.99 $CAD 269.99. It will be available from June 16 to via VIP early access from July 1 through LEGO branded retail channels.
A stalwart of many offices in Days Gone By, this model is based on machines of a certain vintage, and is sure to have appeal for a wide audience, but especially those to whom a vintage aesthetic appeals.
Do you remember Mixels? Crazy, chaotic pocket money sets that were released a few years ago. With each wave, we got a collection of small, interesting elements in previously unexplored colours: arches, greebly bits and of course ball joints. The characters had their appeal, but many AFOLs typically considered them to be awesome parts packs. And then, they were gone.
Earlier in the year, I reviewed some of the new Marvel Mechs: Thor, Captain America and Miles Morales. From my point of view, they were interesting enough, but not too startling. And, to an extent, the choice of characters in that selection felt a little odd: a Super Solder and a Norse God are characters for whom a mech feels to be more of a hindrance than a help, unless they were acutely robbed of their powers! For Miles Morales, it feels more like an enhancement of his powers. But only just. Overall, they felt like they were missing a bit of excitement and drama.
And now, along comes 76198: Spider-Man and Doctor Octopus Mech Battle. Something has happened in the last few months that left me not only excited, but wanting to explore them more. I am left wondering if these sets are now occupying a segment of the market previously occupied by the Mixels range…