Minifigure Gender distribution: 2017 update

A little over a year ago, I wrote up an analysis of gender distribution in LEGO® Minigures in the post friends era.  In the years since LEGO Friends had been released, there had been some positive trends towards an equal balance, after starting from a pretty low base line (around 11% in 2012) up to 30% in the Volcano Sub-theme of LEGO City in 2016.

As well as supporting the regular themes, 2017 has been a big year for LEGO tying in with cinematic releases, with both inhouse and external IP.  By the end of the year, we will have seen a new Star Wars movie, Wonder Woman and Justice League movies, The LEGO Batman Movie and LEGO Ninjago Movie released.

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The LEGO Ideas set: 21312 Women of NASA.  Real Life STEM role models in LEGO Form.  This set is due to be released this week from LEGO retail stores. 

This post was provoked, in part after reading a comment about the relatively low female representation in the Collectable Minifigure sets recently released. I thought it would be interesting to revisit the question of gender distribution in some popular LEGO themes, and see if there were any significant shifts in trends over the last 12 months, when I last reviewed the numbers. The impending release of the Ideas set ‘Women of NASA’ is also of interest, as it certainly demonstrates a desire to see inspirational female role models immortalised in LEGO form.

I would like to look specifically at LEGO City, overall, as well as broken down into its major sub themes; The LEGO Batman Movie; The LEGO Ninjago Movie, and also LEGO Friends. I would also like to look at LEGO Star Wars sets released since the Force Awakens… Continue reading

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Return of the Taj Mahal, retreat of the speculators.[Announcement 10256]

The LEGO Group have announced that they are re-releasing 10189 Taj Mahal as set 10256.  Unlike the previous version, it will not supplant the Millennium Falcon UCS as the largest set ever released.  The piece count is almost identical to the 2008 classic, which has been soaring on the secondary market in recent years. This rerelease represents the third major rerelease in the last 18 months (including the Death Star, and Millennium Falcon), and continues the Creator Expert  Landmark series which has seen London Bridge, Westminster Palace/Big Ben and the Sydney Opera House released in recent years.

The set will be available from lego.com on November 27 2017, just in time for an anxiety provoking pre-Christmas order if you are dependent on international shipping! It will cost $AUD 499.95. More images and press release after the break… Continue reading

Gift with purchase survey: Select your Top 5

LEGO Group: Gift With Purchase Survey

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Over the last few weeks, you have been sending in your suggestions for Gift with purchase ideas.

I need to whittle this list down to a top 5 for the LEGO® Marketing team.

Click on the link and select your top 5 preferences by October 30. 

Thanks for your help.

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Escape the Space Slug Week 2 Raffle Winners

Modulex Star Wars LogoWhoops, almost a week has gone by since I drew the raffle, and I have failed to tell you all about it! Congratulations to Handoko Setyawan through emailing the blog and @hazatronic on Instagram: you have both won a copy of ‘Escape the Space Slug’, courtesy of the LEGO Community Engagement Team.

Handoko presented a picture of a wedding cake that he had built for a member of his LUG. It was unveiled a couple of weeks ago, after the nuptials had taken place. The rest of the album can be found on flickr, here and is well worth a look. Yes, you may have seen it blogged elsewhere too…

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@Hazatronic presented a fantastic microscale representation of that essential scene in The Empire Strikes Back:

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Congratulations to you both.

We had a few great entries this week, and while quality of the build played no role in selecting winners, I love the imagination shown in some of the entries.

 

Thank you so much to all of our entrants. I hope you have enjoyed seeing some of the great MOCs people have come up with here. I hope to have a community build in the near future. I am wondering about ‘Micropolis’…

In the meantime,

Play well!

 

 

Major LEGO Batman Movie Plot Point Spoiler, Set 70922 Announced.

Not everyone has seen the LEGO Batman Movie yet. I appreciate this. If you click on this link from Facebook, you will be taken directly to the full announcement.  If you don’t want any level of spoilage of the movie, stop now.  Press the back button, close the browser window. You have been warned.

Out of the blue, just while people are still recovering from news of of the UCS Millennium Falcon, the next Direct to Consumer set was announced this morning. Set 70922 >Spoiler Alert< is the latest set from The LEGO® Batman Movie.  I was surprised to get notice of this set: the rumor mill had been remarkably quiet over the last couple of weeks. Perhaps it had been exhausted in the run up to the announcement of the UCS Millennium Falcon. The new set will be released on Black Friday, 24th of November, and be available from LEGO Brand Retail Stores, and shop.lego.com. You have until then to catch up with the movie in a relatively spoiler free fashion. After then, I would suggest that all bets are off.  It is sizeable set, with 3444 elements, and costing $US269.99; GBP£249.99; $AUD399.99.

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This is a large set. You might speculate that it relates to a significant location in the film, or a ludicrously sized vehicle. But we have already seen the Batcave and Arkham Asylum. And they were probably a dead giveaway for being significant locations in the film, if you know anything about the history of Batman in his associated media. Or if you had seen a trailer.   If it were to be a vehicle, its a tough call:  we have already seen the Ultimate Batmobile, a fairly large Batwing, and otherwise most of the villains vehicles portrayed in sets have no major role in the film, with barely a few seconds of screen time each. And indeed, the trailers for the movie certainly gave away the majority of the villains involved in the movie, even if in a relatively insignificant way. Have people been crying out for a new UCS Batmobile (Speedwagon) or Scuttler?

If you have not yet seen the LEGO Batman movie, please recognise that this set ups the level of ‘spoiler’ seen  for the film, and cannot be unseen. So if you cannot bear such things, turn away, fire up your DVD player or streaming service and watch it now. When you return, read more on get details, and see pictures of the new set….  Continue reading

Winter Village Station 10259 [Announcement]

10259_Back_01For about a year now, the LEGO® social media feeds have been teasing the forthcoming release of the largest LEGO set ever. Starting with a silhouette on the ‘UCS’ Death Star box last year, new (official) information has been arriving more and more frequently. The set comes with the thickest instruction manual ever.  And the Biggest box. And then, last week, we saw a trailer hinting at some of the elements present.  This set has been subject to excessive speculation as to its exact nature:  the included minifigures and how it will differ from previous versions of this particular subject matter.

This is not that set. It is however, another  set in a series that has almost always impressed… except that one year when the LEGO® Group rereleased a set from several years earlier.

That’s right, today the LEGO® Group released details of the 2017 Winter Village set: the 10259 Winter Village Station. Now last year’s Winter Holiday Train will have somewhere to stop!

Launch date for the Winter Village Station at shop.LEGO.com and LEGO Stores is October 1 with VIP Early Access starting on September 14. The Australian price is confirmed at $AU119.99

10259_ProdMore images, and the press release follow after the break. Continue reading

LEGO Boost Robotics Australian Release Date Announced

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The LEGO® Boost robotics system is now available to order in some markets, with reports of deliveries arriving starting to come in from around the world.  Australia will have to wait a few more months before the new LEGO robots arrive to take over our lives. While the global release is scheduled for August 1st,  the Australian release date has been ever so quietly announced on shop.LEGO.com.   Scheduled for release in Australia, with a limited local retail release (the definition of limited currently remains a little fuzzy) on October 1, 2017, the Recommended Retail Price is expected to be around $AU250. Or half the price of a LEGO Mindstorms EV3.

Based on the a similar hardware platform as the WeDo Educational robotics platform, Boost was announced at CES in Las Vegas back in January 2017. There was a lot of excitement at the time of the announcement, and over recent months the set has been available for preorder in other markets. Until now however, news of the Australian release has best been described as ‘a little quiet.’ Continue reading