71411: The Mighty Bowser [Rambling Review]

Almost as consistent as the appearance of a certain Italian Plumber across a series of Nintendo Video Games over the past 30 years has been that of Bowser: ruler of the Koopalings, a fierce, fire breathing, Princess stealing warrior tortoise. We have seen him appear in 2 previous forms over the years: One in several of the LEGO Super Mario Expansion packs (Bowsers Castle, and Princess Peach’s Castle), and a microscale version in last year’s ‘?’ Block.

This is the Super Mario tie-in set to be specifically aimed at adult builders, and it promises an intriguing large scale build, imposing to display, but also incorporating some play features, posability as well as some impressive puppet like movements.

As I write this review, I am almost as far from the model as I can possibly be, on a little holiday before attending the Skaerbaek Fan Weekend. Fortunately, I got the model built and photographed before I left.

So, how does the model stack up with the stated aims? We shall start off with a general look at the finished model, before diving into an in-depth, spoiler-filled look at the build. I’d love to know if you appreciate this style of review, so drop me a line in the comments below, or reach out on social media. I still have some more Mario sets to review, and these will be coming up after we return from holiday.

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71406. Yoshi’s Gift House Expansion Set

Yoshi is a fan favorite character, and the LEGO Super Mario game has changed the way in which the character his handled since Green Yoshi debuted in 2020’s 71367 Mario’s House and Yoshi. Like that set, this set provides plenty of opportunity for play and experimentation, not necessarily in the setting of the timed game. Let’s take a look at this set, which builds further on the Fruit and gifts mechanic first revealed in the Peach Starter Set. We will take a close look at that mechanic, and see how you can use it to maximise your score.

The set is based around Yoshi’s house and brings us Green Yoshi, Monty Mole, Green and Red Fruit, a present and a…fruit upgrade carousel? That said, I have come through this set with a better knowledge of the fruit powers and gift giving.

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LEGO Super Mario: Goomba’s Shoe Expansion Set [Hands On Review]

Over the years, we have seen a number of means used to enhance Mario’s coin scoring while ‘just walking around’ be it using a power up suit or flying around in Bowser Jr’s Clown Car, or even the various rafts seen in Wiggler’s Poison swamp or Dorrie’s Beach Front. This wave sees the arrival of 71404 Goomba’s shoe, an oversized boot, with a wind up key, which Mario (or Luigi or Peach) can ride in. How does it contribute to the game?

The set is priced at $17.99 AUD /9.99USD(affiliate link) and has 76 pieces. It officially goes on sale on August 1, 2022.

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71410 LEGO Super Mario Buildable Characters Series 5: Hands-On Review

The LEGO Super Mario Buildable Characters were unveiled at LEGO CON, and this series represents a significant departure from the format of characters seen previously. I was fortunate to receive a shipping box for review from the LEGO Group, and I will present the contents of the box: we will look at the shipping order, the new packaging and the characters, including the characters behaviour in game, and their potential in game coin value.

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Getting Started with 71403 Adventures with Peach: Hands On Review.

Regular readers of the Rambling Brick will know I enjoy looking at the LEGO Super Mario sets. With the interactive digital brick bringing us favorite characters, Mario and Luigi. This year we see the arrival of Princess Peach. Frequently a target of kidnapping by Bowser, I was intrigued to see what sort of activities she would be engaged in.

I have been fortunate to receive some of the new wave of LEGO Super Mario sets for review, and today I would like to start with the entry level Princess Peach set, 71403 Adventures with Princess Peach. With 354 pieces, this set includes The Princess Peach digital brick, as well as several brick built characters and some new terrain elements. It will go on sale on August 1, 2022, costing $AUD89.99.

Inside the box are 6 bags, and a leaflet highlighting the sets still available in the Super Mario range, including some ideas for arranging the elements.

As with All LEGO Super Mario sets, there are NO stickers to apply.

Let’s take a look at what we get in the set: the characters, powerups and  landscape elemements, including how scoring is allocated. At the end, I will include a video demonstrating gameplay for the elements of the starter set.

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LEGO® CON Reveals… LEGO SUPER MARIO Buildable Characters Series 5

We saw most of the next wave of LEGO Super Mario sets revealed a few months ago, but there was no mention of any buildable figures. Today, at LEGO® CON, the live-streamed product showcase, the LEGO Group and Nintendo finally unveiled these latest figures

Arriving in August, you will be able to collect these new characters. I suspect the team have responded well to the feedback: there are only 8 figures in the set. Hopefully 2 full sets in a box, rather than sets of 10, and 18 figures in the box, as we have seen with the last 2 series.

Read on for more details

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71402 LEGO® Super Mario Buildable Characters: Series 4. Biomes, Coins and Mysteries.

Here in Melbourne, it’s March the 10th, Mar10 Day, and to celebrate, we have a new review. This time it is 71402, Series 4 of the Buildable Characters. This set was released at the start of the year but has only just started to become available in Australia. I was fortunate to be sent a box of 18 figures by the LEGO Group for review.

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71398: LEGO® Super Mario: Dorrie’s Beach Front [Hands-On Review/ Playthrough]

Today we continue our exploration of the 2022 LEGO Super Mario releases by looking at 71398 Dorrie’s Beach front. The Dorrie in question is a pleisiosaur like sea dragon, who first debuted in Super Mario 64. This expansion set brings us a little scenery in fitting with that biome, as well as hidden treaure boxes, a new mechanism to knock over an enemy, as well as a Huckit Crab.

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71396 Bowser Jr.’s Clown Car Expansion Set [Review and Playthrough]

While the previous range of LEGO Super Mario sets was starting to feel a bit same-old and refresh, despite the addition of the 2-player mechanic, Unlike previous waves of LEGO Super Mario, this wave does not feature any new Power-Up suits for Mario to wear. However, it introduces a vehicle mechanic in the form of 71401 Bowser Jr,’s Clown Car Expansion Set. This inexpensive set provides a new way for Mario to take on enemies and earn coins, all for the same price as an Power-up Pack.

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LEGO Super Mario: 71400 Big Urchin Beach Ride Expansion [Hands-On Review]

The January 2022 wave of LEGO Super Mario sets follow two specific streams: Luigi’s Mansion and the Beachfront. Today, I’d like to present the 71400 Big Urchin Beach Ride expansion set. You need either the Mario or Luigi Starter sets to play with this set in the way it is intended. The set has 536 pieces, and will be released on January 1 2022. This set was sent to me by the AFOL Engagement team of the LEGO Group for review purposes. All opinions, however, are my own.

After the previous wave of expansion sets focussed on two-player, cooperative play this wave returns to the roots of single player gaming, although the 2 player option exists, with all of the potential advantages that brings.

This set brings some familiar gameplay from the Super Mario Video Game, as well as a few new characters, and game mechanics. With this set, I will take a look at the Characters encountered, Any Bonus boxes, as well as hazards and obstacles encountered in the gameplay.

As with all LEGO Super Mario sets, building instreuctions are accessed through Digital instructions in the LEGO Super Mario App, or using the LEGO Building Instructions App. Personally, I find the App quite acceptable to use on a tablet – it also allows demonstration videos for game play. the Instructions Plus engine also allows manipulation of the model in 3D space as you build it, ensuring construction is clear.

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