Chinese Festival, Monkie Kids and Friends revealed at CIIE 2023

It’s early November and for the 5th year running, the Chinese International Import Expo has been the place for the LEGO Group to showcase some of the new sets for next year. This is the event where the Spring Festival sets made their debut back in 2019. Now into the 5th year, the LEGO® presence at CIIE has also seen some of the flag ship sets in other themes presented – and while media coverage has not been readily accessible (Thanks to Jays brick blog and Dylan Chow for the heads up), images of some of these sets have made their debut on the LEGO Builder App.

Let’s take a look.

Spring Festival/Chinese New Year 2024

80112: Auspicious Dragon

On February 10th 2024, we will see the start of the Year of the Dragon, and there is a brand new model to celebrate: the 80112 Auspicious Dragon. Drawing cues from Mei’s Guardian Dragon , this looks like a spectacular display model, with details above and beyond those we have seen in recent years. I love the way that the undulating form of this serpentine dragon is captured.

Next year will be the year of the ‘Wooden Dragon’ and as such, I appreciate the use of tan colouring here which conveys a feeling of the dragon being crafted from wood. The Rocky outcrop adds to the feeling of action and power associated with the creature.

80113: Family Reunion Celebration

One of the hallmark events of the Chinese New Year celebrations is the family reunion dinner. While the dinner at home was the subject of one of the first Traditional Festival sets -80101 Chinese New Year’s Eve Dinner, this year, the Reunion Dinner is being held at a restaurant.

With the restaurant spread over 2 floors, and with 15 minifigures, spread over 3 generations ( to say nothing of 3 staff, and a fulling appointed kitchen ), there are plenty of opportunities to generate great stories associated with this annual tradition.

Monkie Kid: 80047 Megapolis City

As a theme drawing heavily on classical Chinese literature, as well as serving in part to be the continuing story of Journey to the West, it is not surpriing that CIIE should be chosen as a place to showcase the flagship set from next year’s range. Bringing us a modular city over several levels, this set has a lot to comment it, from the minfigiure selection through to the easter eggs and tributes -a wooden duck; the entire elevator sports the blue, grey and transparent yellow that has been long associated with Classic Space, and according to BricksJoy on Weibo, with set also includes a proper classic space helmet in Green – just what proud owners of the LEGO Ideas Exo-suit will be looking for, as that set came with ‘motorbike’ style helmets.

The set celebrates the 5th anniversary of Monkie Kid – which is probably the result of the way that years are considered in some Asian cultures – and 2024 will see the start of Monkie Kid’s 5th year. (I’m not going to lie – I am currently a bit frustrated by the limited availability of Monkie Kid in Australia, and as far as I can tell, series 4 has not even aired here yet! While one of our streaming services had S1-3 covered earlier in the year, the series appears to have been withdrawn for the time being.

LEGO Friends: Heartlake City Shopping Mall

After a stunning opening year for the Friends Reboot, its time to let Heartlake City grow: Shops have always played a part in LEGO Friends, and we have seen a couple of malls come and go over the years. This one appears has several stores spread out over 3 levels with working escalators.Along with Nova, Aliya and Liann we have some new characters including Petch, who is one of the first friends characters to be depicted with a prosthetic limb (and a cool new sling bag).

I’m not going to lie, I laughed when I saw that banana peel right there…

I’m excited to see these sets: the Chinese Traditional festival sets have been some of the most consistently appealing sets over the last few years, and with the move towards a festival event, as well as a display piece over the last couple of years, I am quite excited to see the Auspicious Dragon ( I am also really looking forward to the Presumed Dragon GWP next February). Likewise, Monkie Kid’s larger sets never fail to impress, and Megapolic looks like it is set to be one of the bigger Monkie Kid sets ever.

I hope to be able to review some these sets in the next couple of months – time will tell. What do you think of them? do any particularly appea to you? Why not leave your comments below.

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Play Well!

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