In recent years, we have seen more frequent use of the tile wedged between two studs on a brick or plate. And almost inevitably, the question will crop up in some online forum ‘Is this LEGAL?’ I wrote a little about this back in 2017. This topic of conversation has come up again most recently as a result of a small detail on the LEGO ICONS Concorde model, and has, I suspect, resulted in a surge of activity on that previous post.
Now, there is no LEGO Police (outside of LEGO City, LEGO Town and most recently LEGO Friends) who will come and enforce the way you have built your model: You do you. If it goes together in an aesthetically pleasing way, we won’t judge you. But it might put some of your LEGO Elements at risk…
Last year, I started to explore the way in which the LEGO® Castle theme has developed over the years. In our first installment, we looked at some of the ‘Pre-minifigure’ Castle history and continued to look at the way the Castle theme developed during the period of LEGOLAND Branding (1978-1991). In particular, we saw the development of factions, advanced use of landscaping, compared to other themes and the development of multiple animal moulds.
But what happened next? We have previously seen that 1990s were a period of diversification of material in both the LEGO Town and Space themes, with an increased number of factions and sub-themes. I apologize to those who have been waiting patiently for the follow up to last year’s article: Let’s take a look to see what happens in the realms of the Castle themes during the SYSTEM era..
I’ve just finished watching the first wave of episodes of Dragons Rising, and something struck my mind: Rapton, Lord Ras, and the Imperium Claw soldiers all fly the same type of small craft- a so called Chariot – which carries one rider and deploys a flotilla of drones to aid the hunters in their hunt for Dragons. That said, in the sets related to the series, the chariots are all a bit different to each other. At the same time they seem just a little bit familiar. And then there are the droids in the Dragon Power Spinzitzu sets…
And it got me thinking. Are these sets revisiting Classic Space, with a contemporary aesthetic?
LEGO® Minifigures: they add life to our sets and our MOCs as well as a little personality to the benchtop. Over the last few years, since the advent of the first Collectable Minfigiures, they have become increasingly intricate in their designs. In the life of a casual LEGO Reviewer, I realise that I have been making photographing my minifigures for reviews unnecessarily challenging for myself.
I might be finding aspects of my LEGO® life a little chaotic at present. Some of this is of recent doing. Some of it relates to things I did over a decade ago.
I am quite excited by the new LEGO of The Rings: Rivendell set. I can’t wait to share my review with you. It will probably be the highest part count set I have ever put together. Before I do that, however, of course, I will have to build it. and I thought I might like to compare the minifigures with those from the initial release, a decade or so ago. And then one thing drove out another, as it were.
As I mentioned in the announcement of the set, Middle Earth has a special place in my LEGO MOC history. I came out of my Dark Ages and started exhibiting at back in 2010, but that was just a simple, somewhat quaint and primitive modular terrace house, built without enough time to get all the right Bricklink orders in before the due date. As such, it is decorated in the style of a student share house, somewhere in the 1970s or early ‘80s, complete with a poor choice in decor.
In which we explore the early days of LEGO® Castle, take in the early factions, and look at just what made Castle sets ‘Classic Castle’…
Over the past 18 months, the Rambling Brick has looked at the development of Classic Town from the early days, through the System era, a World City inspired Dark Ages to LEGO® City we know today. We have followed this up with a look at Classic Space, and its evolution through to the turn of the century. There is still an article to follow up here, looking at space themes in the 21st Century, and where they are today. This is particularly pertinent, given the 2022 reimagining of the original LEGO Space Flagship set: the 928/497Galaxy Explorer. This is not that article.
Before I write that article, for reasons that will eventually become apparent, I would like to take a look at the other pillar of the Classic LEGO Minifigure Themes – Castle. While Town gave kids the chance to live out the present, and space allowed them to imagine the Future, Castle allowed then to explore the past.
As a kid growing up in Australia, castles were a thing of fantasy: we only really saw them in books (with drawings) and in movies or on television. Typically in the context of an episode of Doctor Who. While the country has been inhabited for tens of thousands of years, the need for permenant fortifications was never really needed. In fact, the only castle I am aware of in Australia was built in the early 1970’s and run as a theme park.
But what are the characteristics of Classic Castle? And what time frame might be considered ‘Classic’? In this post, we will look at: Castle inspiration before minifigures existed; the initial range of Castle sets (1978-1981), and finally, consider Castle sets throughout the rest of ‘LEGOLAND’ phase: 1984-1990.
This last week or so, we have been counting down to the LEGO Group’s 90th anniversary. Today, we have reached the 10th of August 2022, and the LEGO Group are celebrating! After looking over the last 90 years, I thought we might take a moment to speculate about the directions that the company might take in the future.
Welcome back to our countdown to the LEGOLAND Group’s 90th Anniversary on the 10th of August, 2022. Every day, we are taking a look at a selection of major developments in a decade of the LEGO Group’s existence.
Yesterday, we saw the release of the minifigure, and the starting points for the Classic LEGO® Themes: Castle, Town and Space. The stage was set for developing the focus of LEGO Play, at a certain scale, going forward. The release of the Erling brick in 1980 also presented great scope for innovation in the way that LEGO building would develop in the future. Now read on as we take a look at some of the more significant developments of the 1980s
Welcome back to the fifth instalment as we take a decade by decade look at the history of the LEGO Group, before they celebrate their 90th Anniversary on August 10, 2022. Last time, we left the 1960s behind: wheels and trains have entered the mix, and DUPLO is helping little people to build big things. Today, we move further into the ‘70s: an era where characters enter the mix, more realistic models are possible, and a new CEO enters the mix.
In the previous article in this series, we looked at Classic Space – and what might define the theme: More than the colours, the sets of this era were united in working together for a common goal: exploring, mining and drinking oversized cups of coffee, while wearing their spacesuits inside. We have ships, bases and rovers, with a variety of colour schemes passing by over the years.
By the time I got to 1987, I had completed school, and was just starting off at university. My brother had recently stopped playing with our bricks, and they were put into storage – to be retrieved as we both gained children of our own. I was well and truly into my Dark Ages. All I know has been derived from fellow AFOLs, catalogs, the brickset database and picking up the occasional set or three along the way.