There have been a number of characters who have prominence in the Super Mario Universe that we have been yet to see: Lakitu, a small Koopa like creature, who spends his life flying in a cloud throwing eggs at Mario, or presiding as MC in Mario Kart is one. One of the new Expansion sets exploits both the two player aspect of the new LEGO Super Mario game, as well as introduces this enemy to the roster of opponent that Mario and Luigi now face.
So, let us take a look at 71389, Lakitu’s Sky World, due for release on august 1 2021 (If you are lucky, you might already find it in the wild). the set has 482 pieces. Instructions to put the set together are now available both through the LEGO Super Mario App, as well as the Customer service section of the LEGO website.
The set brings us a number of landscape nodes, including dark azur rounded square plates, which I presume represent the sky. We also have a number of orange mushrooms., as well as wome green ‘grass’ nodes.
There are three opponents for Mario in the expansion set:
Bullet Bill is built around a core, consisting of two 1×2 technic bricks, with upward 1x2x2 brackets attached. There is a scannable tile on top, a tile on the back end and an arched 2×2 brick with printed eyes on the fron. He has white arms plugged into the holes on the technic bricks.
Fuzzy is built around two 1x2x2 2/3 bricks, with four studs on one face, two studs on teach side. These bricks are held together by tiles front and back: oe printed with a distored face, the other with the scasnnable tile. The sides and top are covered in 1×1 tiles and pryamid tiles.
Lakitu is built into his cloud. his face is printed on a yellow 2×2 tile, with large eyes, and a smile that looks like it is coming from a face with chubby cheeks. The top of his head consists of an offset plate, with a 3 pronged branch resembling a tuft of hair. His body merges with the gloud – by there are yellow arms attached to cool yellow 1×1 technic bricks. Lakitu’s cloud has a smile on its face too . the shape of the cloud is achieved through the use of 1×1 ‘arched tiles’ the underside of the cloud consists of a singe 1×2 technic brick: this sits over the central pole in the main part of the construction.
Lakitu requires 2 scans to defeat, yielding 5 points. In the two player gamer, each player can scan it once, totalling 2 scans, and they get 5 points each, plus one point each for cooperation – so between you, you earn 12 points.
The Sky World
The central part of Lakitu’s Sky world consists of a central 8×16 region , with some small green hills built onto it, as well as a central gear wheel and some curved slopes building up a less than smooth ride for the central sky and clouds – with Bullet Bill on one end, and a platform for Mario or Luigi to ride in on the other. The cloud bounces up and down a little as it turns. With enough of a bouncy ride, Lakitu will fall off the top. Coming off either side of this central build are two cloud cars, with a sliding back and forward action tile.
There is a subtle difference between Mario and Luigi, when you place them in the clouds: Mario plays different music, while Luigi makes the a more mechanical noise (I am embarrassed at this point that I cannot pinpoint either sound from the games, so if you know, drop me a note!) Sliding these cloud cars back and forth spins Lakitu’s cloud round and round, resulting eventually in him falling off.
Unfortunately, the geometry of the construction means that from time to time, Bullet Bill will knock the player out of their cloud car, resulting in them entering a ‘no coin’ state. Likewise, if you are riding on the spinning platform, beware: it is very easy to fall off, and be stunned. If you are riding Yoshi, and get stunned, you lose the bonuses for riding him. You are immune to being stunned if you have Super Mushroom power, the one up Mushroom, or star power. If you fall off while you have super mushroom or one-up power, you will lose those bonuses.
This is a really challenging level to play, if you are going to avoid getting knocked out of the cloud. I appreciate the fact that being knocked down by Bullet Bill now feels like an inevitable occurence. As a figure in the desert, he didn’t feel too threatening previously.
Time Bonus Brick
I typically found the time taken to dislodge Lakitu could be longer than I hoped, and the level comes with a time bonus brick as well, which adds 30 seconds. Each player can scan a time bonus brick, adding two lots of 30 seconds=1 minute to the game. This brick has previously only appears in two previous sets: 71365 Piranha Plant Power Slide and 71369 Bowser’s Castle Boss Battle.
It wouldn’t be a review of a LEGO Super Mario expansion set without a video play through…
This expansion adds an interesting mechanism to the ways in which LEGO Super Mario levels can be played. While designed to facilitate two player games, it is quite fine to play on your own, although the scope for point scoring is not so great. It can be quite frustrating to coordinate the play efficiently between two players, and it might take some patience for players to be able to work together well enough to get a high score with this set. I feel it brings more challenge to the game than the Luigi Starter set, although that set has the advantage of providing us with the Super Mario Brick. I give this set a solid 3.5 out of 5 arbitrary praise units.
Things I learned playing this expansion:
- Each figure can scan the Time bonus block to gain an extra 60 seconds of play time.
- you can play cooperatively, but there is just as much potential in playing to knock your playmate off the clouds with Bullet Bill.
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I’d love to know what you think of this expansion set. Is Lakitu a character you have been waiting for? Leave your comments below, and until next time,
This set was provided by the LEGO Group for Review Purposes. All opinions are my own.