I was busy getting ready for BrickCon at the end of September, so I published this article a few weeks late. (I dated the article September 30 to ensure it appears in the right place on the website.)
New at Brick Architect
MOC of the Month
I love how Filbrick plays with multiple artistic styles in this expressive LEGO model. Beautifully mimicing meticulous cut papercraft art, this model features a beautiful color palette.
Humpback Whale, by Les Briques de Loïc / Filbrick.
Learn more and support this project at ideas.LEGO.com and maybe it will become a real LEGO set!
Exciting new sets for AFOLs
A number of exciting sets for AFOL’s were released in October. If you haven’t already added them to your collection, please consider purchasing them using the referral links below – it helps support Brick Architect!
- #10308 Holiday Main Street
The latest addition to the much loved Winter Village series is here! I do not prefer that it features several small builds instead of a single large one, but the streetcar is cute and the price-per-part is excellent, especially given the widespread price increases in recent months.
1514 pieces, $100, available now at LEGO.com
- #75331 The Razor Crest (UCS)
It’s hard not to mention the latest addition to the LEGO Star Wars Ultimate Collector Series. As you would expect, it’s large and expensive, but seems to be very faithful to the source material.
6187 pieces, $600, available now at LEGO.com
- #75574 Toruk Makto & Tree of Souls
I’m not that excited about the new Avatar film, but the LEGO sets feature new longer legs and a wide range of brightly colored parts. This set is especially vibrant!
1212 pieces, $150, available now at LEGO.com
- #21336 The Office (TV Series)
15 Minifigures in a single LEGO set? That’s what you will get with this LEGO set based on the popular TV series. I’m not a big fan of the show, but my friends who are fans are obsessed with this new LEGO set!
1164 pieces, $120, available now at LEGO.com
#10308 Holiday Main Street offers an above-average value.
Best articles from around the web
Here are some highlights this month from around the web – Happy reading!
- Our contest winners: Make a Wishbrick
New Elementary effectively crowdsourced future LEGO part ideas in this awesome contest. Many of the entrants were new variants of SNOT bricks, but there were some inspired entries new ideas too.
- What is This!? Hard to Identify LEGO Parts
While not exhaustive, this article highlights some of the weirder genuine LEGO parts you might encounter, especially when buying used lots.
- Is this LEGO? – Znap
Check out this detailed look at the short-lived LEGO theme featuring unique parts with connections that more closely resemble K’Nex building toy than studded LEGO bricks or Technic pins.
- Piecing it together: How Chesterfield’s months long LEGO deal finally clicked into place
Local coverage explaining how Virginia courted The LEGO Group in selecting Chesterfield County as the future home for the only LEGO Factory in the United States. It’s good to see how inclusivity played a role in bringing The LEGO Group to Virginia.
“And what I did at that point once we realized who the company was … we completely redid the presentation” Wakefield said … “I told them to look over their shoulder, and they would see a building and a company called Costar, and the entire reason that they were here is because North Carolina had an anti-LGBTQ bill in 2016, and Virginia did not discriminate,”
- Powered Up Road map to 2025 revealed, but gaps remain
With the release of a Powered Up Battery box earlier this year, the “smart” new system has completely replaced the Power Functions system which preceded it. Unfortunately, The LEGO Group is still struggling to keep even recent products like the Star Wars BOOST set supported, and has been unable to get autonomous support working on the smaller hubs (even though 3rd party PyBricks software has supported this for several years).
- Interview with LEGO Star Wars design team
This short interview (from the 2022 Fan Media Days) focuses on questions related to the recent LEGO Star Wars sets. My favorite part of the discussion involves considering to use a minidoll instead of a minifigure for a particularly slender alien species — they created a custom head with a long neck instead of considering a minidoll.
- The LEGO Company’s Forgotten Gun Toys
The LEGO Group has long prided itself in avoiding violent or military themes, and even today avoids modern warfare (while historical or Sci-fi themes are allowed). This look at plastic and wooden toy guns from the 1940’s show us that this rose-colored reflection on the brand’s long history doesn’t match the reality.
- LEGO delivers record first half (H1) of 2022 results with over US$3.4BN in revenue
Rather than just re-post the press release, Jay provided a useful summary and a bit of context for the record-breaking growth. He cautions that lowering margins are visible in the numbers, and help explains the recent increase in prices.
—Jay’s Brick Blog
LEGO Masters around the world
Season 3 of LEGO Masters USA debuted on September 21, with a new challenge to build a spaceship. The second episode is inspired by Jurassic World (which we saw excerpts from in a “preview episode” back in June). It is advertised as a 13-episode season… assuming one episode a week, the season finale will be on December 14!
BrickNerd has led the charge with several articles about both the US and international versions of the show.
- How LEGO and ADHD Got Me on TV
My friend Liz Puleo shares her personal journey about buying a ton of LEGO, trying to figure out how to sort it, winning awards at LEGO conventions and becoming a contestant on Season 3 of LEGO Masters USA. Most of all, it is her story about the interplay between coping with ADHD and the LEGO hobby. This includes the role of retail therapy, calming effects of sorting, and creative challenge of creating MOCs.
“For me, ADHD is a vicious cycle of knowing what I have to do, but then not being able to do it because it is too boring or doesn’t give me any dopamine—so it doesn’t get done. … LEGO, being a part of my life now for at least five years, has outlasted any other hobby of mine that I didn’t make my job. This is unusual because dopamine levels tend to dissipate when the hobby has been conquered or isn’t fun anymore or becomes too much effort.”
Liz Puleo / BrickNerd
- Inside LEGO Masters: Family Matters
In Liz’s second article about LEGO Masters, she talks about how the many teams she was nominally competing against became a second family. It’s not every day that we make lifelong friends later in life, but it’s clear that all of the participants created tight bonds of friendship by participating in the show.
- Preparing for LEGO Masters Denmark: Part 1: Casting and Challenges and Part 2: Twists and Time Management
While LEGO Masters USA gets most of the attention, there is a widening selection of LEGO Masters shows in countries around the world. It’s only fair that Denmark, home of the LEGO brick, finally has a version of their own. In this two-part series, Esben Kolind shares how he prepared for the show, including an interesting discussion of the challenges in building without reference materials. (The second article contains spoilers, so you might not want to read it if you are hoping to watch the Danish version of the show in the future.)
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