All Aboard for the Wonderful World of Disney [Announcement 71044 Disney Train and Station]

Disneyland is often described as the Happiest Place on Earth, and one of the evergreen attractions is the recently reopened Disneyland Railway (following a diversion during the construction of Star Wars Land). Today, LEGO® announce the arrival of the 71044 Disney Train and Station, recreating the Steam Locomotive, Tender, ‘Blue holiday train carriage’, and a Parlor car, as well the American Main Street station. The set comes with five minifigures: Mickey, Minnie, Chip’n’Dale – in new outfits – as well as Goofy: until now, a gaping hole in the Disney Minifigure range.

The 71044 Disney Train and Station is recommended for Ages 12+ and has 2925 pieces. $549.99$499.99 AUD. Available August 21 VIPs, Sept 1 For general release in LEGO stores. [Edit: on release in Australia, the Disney train set seems to be selling for $499.99. That feels like a much better price]

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A Man’s Got to Know His Limitations: Control+ and Powered Up Apps [August 2019]

The New Technic Smart hub became available this week, as part of 42099 X-treme 4×4 Off Roader. This article discusses what we can expect the long awaited Control+ App to do and what it won’t. I also take a look at the ever expanding range of connected apps produced by LEGO A/S today.

The first of August has past and there have been a number of new, released. If you are a Technic Fan, you are possibly curious about the new 4×4 X-treme Off Roader 42099. Certainly, it’s one I have been looking forward to seeing.

I had an opportunity to see this new model, as well as the new Control+ App demonstrated by members of the design team while in Billund, at the Recognised Fan Media days in May this year. Amongst other things, the set features the new Technic Smart Hub, 2 new Technic XL linear motors, and one Technic L linear motor. I am excited to get my hands on this set as soon as possible, to build the set and experience the new Control+ App. I might have to wait until the Australian online store gets more stock.

I also hope to incorporate the new Control+ Hub in a MOC later in the year.

But Not today.

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First Images Technic Powered Up Hub

I’m in Billund today, taking part in the Fan Media Days. We have just had a presentation from the Powered Up team.

We have now seen the new technic hub unveiled, as well as two new motors designed to run with the platform.

The new Technic hub has 4 ports, as well as connectors around the border. Unlike the current Smart Hub used in LEGO City trains, it will be powered by AA Rather than AAA Batteries.

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The Powered Up App Receives a Boost

I have not been so excited about seeing a software upgrade delivered as I have been this weekend. The LEGO Powered Up app has just been given a substantial bump up in its functionality.

Long time readers of the blog will know how I feel about LEGO Boost: a great set, and a simple way to automate any models that you might make. Since it was released 18 months ago, we have seen all sorts of creations, as well as ideas through the primary models in the set. But there are a few challenges: you need to work through the models to gain all functionality; and the hub itself is a little bulky for some applications, but certainly adds a lot of fun to some sets. In some ways, I see it as the natural successor to the early motor kits, used in the 60’s and 70’s to automate wheels models, and see them propelled under there own power. Unfortunately, despite sharing a plug system, it has not been compatible with other similarly plugged devices…until now.

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Time to get moving: first steps into the Powered Up system [Review: Passenger Train 60197]

img_2285In which I finally get my hands onto some of the new Powered Up components and find myself dealing with a system full of immense potential. I compare the Powered Up system with the old Power Functions system for driving the train, draining the batteries in the process. And I start to wish for a little bit of magic…

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Powered Up App: Puppy Preview

Over recent weeks, the LEGO® Powered Up App has become available, initially with programs for running both the  new Passenger train and Cargo Train Sets, and now also the Powered Up Batmobile.

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As well as controlling the speed of movement, there are also a number of sound effects associated with the app.  The sound effects are played through the phone/tablet speakers, rather than the powered up brick itself. While exploring the app at the breakfast table one morning, Mabel the Cavoodle hopped up to join us.  She was more engaged with the sounds made by the Batmobile App than the City Passenger Train App. Except for the one that sounds a little like our front door bell. Her responses were captured for your enjoyment.

I have a more comprehensive review of the passenger train coming up in the near future. In the mean time, don’t forget about our Antman and the Wasp MOC Competition, open until the 15th of August. Until next time,

Play Well!