Monkie Kid on a Budget: 80040 Monkie Kid’s Combi Mech/ 80041 Mei’s Dragon Flyer [Hands On review]

One of the criticisms offered to the early waves of Monkie Kid sets is the relatively high prices, compared with other playsets, for what is essentially an in-house IP. The sets themselves have not been bad value, more tending towards the higher end of the spectrum, with the initial wave featuring no sets for less than $50AUD. As such, I was quite excited to see that there were a couple of playsets in the upcoming 2023 wave with sets retailing for the much more palatable 32.99AUD. That’s right: Not one, but two!

80040 Monkie Kid’s Combi Mech and 80041 Mei’s Dragon Jet. Both sets are great standalone sets, but they also have the capacity to join together to form a larger vehicle: in part serving to introduce the target market to the idea of mixing and merging LEGO sets together.

Both Mei and Monkie Kid have fairly distinctive colour blocking in all of their sets: MK’s are red, gold, teal, and yellow, while Mei’s vehicles are almost all white, lime green, teal, bright green and lime green (which a touch of vibrant Yellow.) The near exclusive use of these colours, with the exception with grey and black elements for joints and hinges leaves me thinking back to the space themes of the 80’s and 90s, where themes were defined by a specific palette, although in this case, we have parallel streams representing different characters.

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80045 Monkie King Ultra Mech [Rambling Review]

For a theme steeped in classical Chinese mythology, Monkie Kid continues to bring us some of the LEGO Group’s best homegrown Science Fiction type content: mechs, flyers and drivers, along with more organic elements, including animals and landscapes. The latest wave is no exception. Now entering its fourth year/season we see a refresh of the original 80012 Monkie King Warrior Mech. Manifested through sheer willpower by MK, it makes sense that as he develops his powers, the mech will become upgraded. I initially started thinking about this set as MK Ultra… and then I was reminded about the use of this designation for the CIA’s experiments into mind control in the ’60s and ’70s.

I was excited when the opportunity to take a pre-release look at this set came along, and I appreciate the LEGO Group sending it over for an early review.

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New Spring Festival, Monkie Kid and Duplo sets revealed at CIEE5.

Today, at the Chinese International Import Expo, the LEGO group unveiled some of the most anticipated sets for the new year.

Announced at the expo, and streamed on WeChat, we saw new sets in Duplo, Monkie Kid, and also commemorating the Year of the Rabbit. I apologize for the quality of images, caputered from the live stream of the press conference.

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Monkie Kid Seasons 1-3 Now Available to Stream in Australia

Over the last few years, the LEGO® Monkie Kid theme has provided us with an imaginative, and somewhat colourful collection of sets, incorporating both fantasy and science fiction themes. However, the animated series has been available in only a patchy fashion in Australia, despite being the home of the animation studio.

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80032 Chang’e Moon Cake Factory [Hands-On Review]

The 2022 Monkie Kid sets continue to delight and surprise me with the diversity of their content. Having looked already at the the Staff Creations, City of Lanterns, and Mei’s Dragon racer, this set takes us off world, and brings us a different type of playset.

In Chinese legend, Chang’e is the goddess of the moon, accompanied in some versions of the story by a Jade Rabbit or hare – based on the shape of the shadows cast on the moon. The rabbit is said to be pounding herbs, or making mooncakes. And so in this set, we see s mashup, with Chang’e and her rabbits overseeing a Moon Cake Factory.

Moon Cakes are traditionaly part of the mid autumn festival, and wonder if we will see aspects of this festival appearing in another set later in the year, or next year.

In this version, imagine Chang’e as a streamer, livestreaming the goings on at her mooncake factory, while playing games in her spare time. Living on the moon, she is accompanied by her rabbits, who pilot a rabbit shaped mech, while she has a rabbit shaped robot taking care of security. In the mean time, she sends boxes of Moon cakes back to earth… in a carrot shaped rocket. I have not had the chance to see how the story plays out in the Monkie Kid series yet, but I am looking forward to seeing how it pans out.

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80031: Mei’s Dragon Car – [Hands-on Review, With a New Hue]

MK’s friend Mei is descended from dragons (and in particular, a dragon that took on the form of a horse). As such, she has acquired a number of Dragon themed vehiclesover the last few years.The latest wave is no exception, bringing us 80031 Mei’s Dragon Car.

The set comes with 4 minifigures, 456 parts, 3 vehicles and an eye burning new colour. Due for release on January 1, 2022, it will cost $AUD 69.99 / £34.99 / $USD49.99 / 39.99€. How does this set stand up for play value and building experience? Read on to find out.

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Monkie Kid 80036 The City of Lanterns – Full of easter eggs [Hands-on Review]

Monkie Kid draws its inspiration from the Classical Chinese novel, Journey to the West, and in the closing moments of season 2 of the animated series, that is exactly where the Monkey King told MK and his friends that they would need to go: on a Journey to The West. I presume that the 2022 wave of sets relate to the path that this journey takes.

Today, I would like to present the flagship set of the wave: 80036 the City of Lanterns. with 2187 pieces, and 9 figures, the set presents some highlights from LEGO History, while embracing the spirit of the story.

While the set, along with the theme as a whole is said to be ‘…designed to be a fun, creative way for parents and grandparents to pass on legendary tales of the Monkey King to the next generation.’ This set also sets out to refresh the iconography of LEGO sets from the past, to educate a new market of its history and provide extra inspiration to older people who build it…just in time for the LEGO Group’s 90th birthday!

The set will go on sale on January 1 2022 from LEGO.com, ad branded retail stores. At this stage, I do not believe it will be routinely available from independent retailers in Australia.

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80030: Monkie Kid’s Staff Creations: New Elements, New Techniques

Last week, the new Monkie Kid sets for 2022 were revealed at LEGO.com. Across the range, we see a mashup of old-school space, along with an appearance from classic town. This compares with Ninjago, which often brings more of a mashup of science-fiction/Space and medieval fantasy/Castle vibe to the picture.

Over the next couple of months, I’ll bring you reviews of most of the sets coming up in the new Monkie Kid wave – and it looks like it will have something for everyone.

Today, I’d like to start with 80030 Monkey King Staff Creations. This set has 309 pieces and will retail for $49.99 AUD; $34.99 USD;$44.99 CAD; £24.99 GBP; €29.99. It comes with 2 minifigures: Monkie Kid/MK and Monkey King.

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Whatever Happened To Classic LEGO® Themes? Part I: Prelude

The last time I was having a chat to adult visitors at a public exhibition (remember those?), something came up on more than one occasion: LEGO® Themes these days are not what they used to be. It used to be pretty simple – you’d build the set (and it was probably Town, Space or Castle. Unless you were a bit younger – then it may well have been a Pirates set) – and you’d pull it apart and build something else. It might be one of the alternate builds on the back of the box, it might be something completely different. It may not have even been related to the original theme.

These days, many sets thrive on 3rd party IP, and the majority of the in-house, story-driven themes are tied in with either an animated series or an overly complicated app.

For those of us yearning for a simpler time, in a world where things have become increasingly complicated, things are looking bleak! Unless you want to go straight to the 4+ sets.

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Monkie Kid Commences Broadcast/Streaming in Australia

The Monkie Kid LEGO® sets arrived around ten months ago, and the second year’s sets have just been released. and I am excited to discover that the series has recently arrived on Australian television. Last weekend, the Pilot episode was braodcast on 9Go, and is now available to stream using the 9Now app. The series is available in full for New Zealand residents to watch on TVNZ’s on demand website. New Episodes are braodcast on 9Go on Saturday 10:00 am (Eastern Australian Time), and repeated at 4:50am Sunday! They are broadcast as double episodes, back to back. Episodes can be viewed after broadcast the 9Now website/App.

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