LEGOLAND Japan Mystery Box

In which I throw caution to the wind and make a completely unknown purchase at LEGOLAND Japan.  What I found was ultimately intriguing…

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It was 1:30 in the afternoon, and I was running out of time.

I was standing in the shop at LEGOLAND Japan, at the tail end of my whirlwind visit to Japan.  After several days in Osaka, and another few at Japan BrickFest, I had made my way to LEGOLand Japan.  I had to catch a train at 2pm, in order to make my back to Kansai Airport for an early evening flight.  I picked up a cap, a multicoloured elephant bag charm  and a LEGO City Airport enamel badge – all exclusive to LEGOLAND Japan.  Most of the actual building sets I could find elsewhere. And then I saw it.

IMG_2673A transparent plastic box, with LEGOLAND Japan’s logo on the side.  In this box was a cardboard dragon, emblazoned with Knight’s Kingdom, Dragon’s Apprentice.  This is one of the roller coasters at LEGOLAND parks, which I had not had a chance to ride on due to time constraints.  I picked it up and was intrigued.  It rattled as if it contained several poly bags.  Any indication as to what was inside was written in Japanese on the bottom.  I could not read the shelf label, and the battery in my phone was failing – so I was reluctant to use an online translation service. I picked it up, took it to the register and purchased it.  After getting it home, it sat on a bench for a few months.

Today, I picked it up and looked at the base.  There was a label I could not read, due to my near absent knowledge of Japanese script. That is not entirely true: there was a date that read 2018-07-18.  What could that be? This was after I returned home.  Perhaps it is a use by or ‘Best before’ date.  I was intrigued.  I agonised over the possibilities that might be spoiled by opening the ‘Thing mint in box,’ versus my curiosity, and spoiling the mystery by running the label through a translation program first.IMG_2661

I opened it.

IMG_2672I popped open the seal on the plastic box, and the dragon car shaped box glided out, like the way a roller coaster car glides towards the pickup chain. After a cursory inspection, I opened the mouth.  Inside was a white confectionary, in its own transparent packet, about 2.5 cm in diameter, printed with the Knights Kingdom logo on the side. I prodded it: it was soft.  Not mint in box, so much as marshmallow.

Now the conundrum: until now, everything was still intact apart from the seal on the outer box.  But the ‘best before’ date had passed: should I return it, or throw caution to the wind and test it out?

IMG_2668I tore open the packet, and bit into it.  The coating was slightly powdery. As I bit into the marshmallow, it became apparent that there was a chocolate filled centre, adding a interesting texture and flavour to the experience.

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Mystery solved. Delicious.  Was it worth the 1200 yen? For the joy it brought me in speculating over its contents, as well as the inner taste sensation, I would say yes.

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Have you ever made a mystery purchase, and been completely surprised by what you got in the package? Why not comment below.  As for the Marshmallows? Perhaps I’ll have another.  Until next time,

Play Well!

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

Lets Cut to the Chase: Rapid Review:70904 Catwoman Cycle Chase

IMG_0199The final set that I intend to purchase from wave one of The LEGO Batman Movie LEGO Sets, this was a simple build, but ever so elegant. Containing 139 pieces and with a RRP of $AUD34.99, this set comes with three mini figures, a vehicle and a small jewellery shop. Continue reading

Lets get Stuck Into It: Rapid Review- 70904 Clayface Splat Attack.

This is the third in my rapid reviews of sets based on The LEGO® Batman Movie. IMG_9955This is the final one featuring Batman for the time being.  Come along to the Rambling Brick Facebook Page on Saturday 18th March at 21:00 AEDT to see my final live stream in this series. – It’s around morning tea time in the UK, just before lunch in Europe or an early breakfast on the East Coast of the United States.  Or Saturday Night on the East Coast of Australia, but that’s okay because the LEGO Batman Move has NOT YET BEEN RELEASED!

But on with the review…

70904 Clayface Splat Attack

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Rolling Along: Rapid Review 70911 The Penguin Arctic Roller

This is the second of my LEGO Batman Movie set Rapid Reviews.  Each of these sets I initially assembled by Facebook Live Stream over the last 3 Saturday nights: while the rest of the World has been able to go out and watch The LEGO® Batman Movie.

70911: Penguin Arctic Roller

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Clowning Around: Rapid Review 70900 – Joker’s Balloon Escape.

Meanwhile, in Australia: we still eagerly await the arrival of the LEGO Batman Movie.

In the absence of being able to spend your Saturday night watching The LEGO® Batman Movie, there has at least been A LEGO Batman Movie to watch…Admittedly it has just been a live stream of my hands putting together my sets based on the Movie. It’s been a steep learning curve for me, but I think I have just about got it sorted. I won’t suggest too loudly that you should spending your time watching them, but feel free to come along and watch the my last set get assembled next Saturday (17th March) around 2100 Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time.  Commenting is encouraged.  Streaming is being run using Facebook Live via the Rambling Brick Facebook Page.

I have previously justified my choice of sets from the first wave.However, I thought I’d just pen a few quick thoughts about these sets so far.  These are all fairly simple builds, with some interesting aspects, but not the kind of builds that kept me guessing as to ‘what can this bit be.’

I’ll put a quick summary of my thoughts on each of these sets this week, starting with…

70900 Joker’s Balloon Escape

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The Many Faces of LEGO Batman.

I only picked up 4 sets from the first wave of LEGO Batman Movie sets. Three of them contained Batman.  This was part of my plan. They all look much the same: the printing on each body is the same.

What I had not planned on was successfully selecting sets that each had a different Batman Head…. so I present the Many Faces of The LEGO Batman Movie BATMAN. Continue reading