Category Archives: News

Stay current on the latest news and information about LEGO, from sales & deals to new set announcements. We also cover LEGO events and conventions all over the world.

Breann Sledge wins 24k gold grand prize in the Bionicle Battle for the Golden Mask Contest

This mask was up for grabs in a multi-site contest, designed to welcome back the Bionicle theme. Each of the sites involved ran a contest and the winners went head-to-head for the grand-prize.

Breann Sledge won the gold mask with this highly detailed bad boy, Akutahn the Makuta of Okoto. I think I detect a bit of Breann’s Alaskan roots in that name. Standing over 20 inches tall and loaded with all the awesome detailing and posability that we expect from Breann, this top-notch villain is totally a winner.

Akutahn, Makuta of Okoto

Check out the other incredible finalists after the break!
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LEGO Movie snubbed by the Oscars, then wins Critics Choice award ...all in the same day [News]

Yesterday the 2015 Oscar nominations were announced, and The LEGO Movie was notably absent from the list of nominees for best animated feature. In response to this news, the movie’s writer and director Philip Lord tweeted “It’s okay. Made my own!” accompanied by a photo of a brick-built Oscar trophy. In reality, the uncredited creation was the work of brick artist Nathan Sawaya, although Lord did later admit that he just grabbed the image from a Google Image search.

 

LEGO fans everywhere were no doubt dismayed at the lack of an Oscar nod for this critically acclaimed and commercially successful movie. But later that very day, the critics themselves came to the rescue when the movie won Best Animated Film at the Critics Choice Awards!

 

As the saying goes… Every dark bluish gray cloud has a light bluish gray lining.

Ask a Lemur – LEGO Certified Professionals, Extra Pieces & Glued Models.

Noana aho, friendly readers!

lemur thumbs up

Another week has gone by. I’m hoping it was a good one for you. It was a great one for me! This week the contributors held their annual five day conference to figure out the vision for the year and such things. I wasn’t too interested in the meetings themselves. Andrew said that there were lemur issues on the agenda, which got me rather concerned. I looked it over and didn’t see anything. Maybe some got on his copy. Anyway, the real highlight was the catering. It was so incredibly scrumptious and they just kept bringing in more and more! They even had a table in the corner just for me! It was set up in the middle of a lovely blue tarp, which made it so much easier to take the leftovers back to my room at the end of each day.

I love this place!

Anyway, enough about me. Let’s get to your questions.

What is a LEGO Certified Professional?
LCPs are builders who have made a full-time job out of their LEGO building and are jumped through the proper hoops to be certified by LEGO. They are not employees but have a business relationship with the company. I believe there are currently 12, but the number is subject to change. Each LCP runs their own business but it has to fit within certain guidelines from the company.

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Ask A Lemur – Running LUG Meetings, Minifig Customization and Lemur Pics

Salutations and Salivations, Dearest Readers!

lemurbrickchew

It is I, the TBB Lemur! Here, once again, to answer all those questions about the LEGO fan community that you have been too afraid to ask. There are no stupid questions here.

You know this week was pretty exciting. We got in a truckload of Lemur Loot! I have postcards with my handsome self on them, TBB pins and custom-printed bricks! The gnomes down in the mail department will finally be able to catch up on the backlog. They’ve been sending out some rather nasty memos. Hopefully those will stop now. Not much can give me indigestion but those memos tasted funny. Josh will be contacting the people who have asked the questions that I have answered, to get their addresses. I will personally be signing postcards to each one as well as sending them each a pin and brick. It’s so exciting! I’ve never signed autographs before. The contributors often get mobbed by autograph hounds when they leave the compound but this is a first for me!

Anyway, onward and upward.

How should I go about [running] it so that the LUG meetings don’t drag on and get boring?
The first thing to remember is that LUG (LEGO User Group) meetings aren’t about you. It’s about whatever the entire group wants. Meetings generally get boring and drag on for one of two reasons.

The first is if one person hogs the time and won’t be quiet. I get really hungry when that happens. The second is if no one is talking at all. Find out what your group wants to talk about and figure out some activities that most are interested in. For example, talking about local LEGO Sales and Deals for an hour won’t go over well if no one is planning on buying anything new right away, but it could be really interesting if people have money to spend. It depends on the group.

Personally, I find LUG meetings with agendas and such to be a real downer. I prefer time to talk and catch up, perhaps a “show and tell” time to let people show off the features of whatever creations they have brought and an activity or two. Good activities might be drafting a small set or running a build challenge such as 101 bricks. Just remember to find out what your members want and then do that.

Another thing that helps LUG meetings along is snacks. Lots and lots of snacks.

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Brick Warriors’ Dragonmen, Jester and More [Review]

Brick Warriors has been releasing some really interesting items lately. Having bought some of the new items and some old, I thought I would share my thoughts, as it’s been a while since we reviewed Brick Warriors here.

For brick warriors review.

The first new item that caught my eye was their Dragonman Head. It has really nice detailing, including forehead ridges, spikes on the side of the head and segmented scale up the back of the head. The nose/snout and jawline slope sharply down and forward, giving the head a really nice profile. The fit is excellent, not too tight or loose. The head is available in 5 colors: Black, Gold, Green, Dark Red and Brown. I bought a green, dark red and brown. All three are a very close match to official LEGO colors. There is a slightly different feel to the plastic in comparison to LEGO, but it is barely noticeable. When combined with Brick Warrior’s Dragon Wings and either the Dragon Tail or the Barbed Tail, you can make a great Dragonman figure.

For brick warriors review.

Supplementing the release of the Dragonman head, they have also created a Lizardman weapon, armor and shield. I picked up a couple of the armor pieces and one each of the weapon and shield. The details on the pieces are really cool. The armor looks like it made of stitched-together plates and has a nice fantasy feel to it. It has a large spike on each shoulder, two clips on the back for wings, and a single, hollow stud for the tail. The weapon is spiked club that looks like various teeth have been fastened to it. The shield is probably my favorite. It is a scalloped circle with what appears to be the jawbone of a dragon lashed onto it. Quite the barbaric piece!

For brick warriors review.

I ordered all the Lizardman pieces in black, so there are no color issues at all. There is one minor issue with the armor in that the wings are a bit loose, especially on the left side. The wings fit tightly on the Demon armor and in official LEGO clips, so it is only an issue with the Lizardman armor. The wings stay on and are still easily posed, so the issue is minor. To change things up a bit, I also ordered the lantern shield, bearded axe, demon sword and demon shield to go with the other two dragonmen. All items have excellent detail and fit perfectly. These dragonmen and accessories are a huge hit in my house! I originally ordered a single green dragonman, but each of my boys decided they had to have their own. After raiding on their piggy banks and two more orders later, three dragonmen now live in my home…but in completely separate collections.

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Top 10 LEGO reviews of 2014 from The Brothers Brick

At the Brothers Brick, we regularly review the latest and most interesting LEGO sets and, this year, a movie too! With the already having started in some parts of the world, it is time for me to present the Top Ten LEGO reviews of 2014.

  1. Lego 21116 Minecraft Crafting Box 8-in-1 [Review]
    LEGO Minecraft 21116 Crafting Box
    Our very own Chris was involved in the design of the first Minecraft set, which made him the obvious choice for reviewing the first new minifig scale Minecraft set. He wasn’t overly impressed, but that has not stopped the review from being our most popular of the year. The world loves Minecraft.
  2. Lego Ideas Exo Suit out today [Review & Giveaway]
    LEGO Ideas sets are featured pretty heavily in our Top Ten and the Exo Suit is one of the more original ideas to come out of it and one very much anticipated by adult fans of LEGO (as opposed to mere fans of pop culture). Peter Reid’s design looked a bit too flimsy to work as a set, but somehow the set designers pulled it off, whilst maintaining the overall greebly look. As an added bonus, we had a copy of the set to give away to one of our readers.
  3. The Tumbler LEGO Set Review (76023)
    What can I say? Batman gets the coolest gadgets!
  4. LEGO Ideas Ghostbusters Ecto-1 Review
    The pleasure of reviewing this was all mine. It’s another Ideas set, based on one of the funniest movies from the eighties. The end result is a cool car with some very useful parts.
  5. Lego Simpsons House 71006 [Review]
    Opinions on this set are divided among fans (does LEGO really want to be associated with this dysfunctional family?), but Nannan liked it; lots of neat details, parts and play features at a decent price per part.
  6. 70816 Benny’s Spaceship, Spaceship, SPACESHIP! [Review]
    Most of us at the Brothers Brick are old enough to have fond memories of Classic Space sets. Benny’s spaceship, from the LEGO Movie, ticked all the right boxes for Dan.
    The LEGO Movie: Blue Spaceman
  7. Full of sly humor, the LEGO movie is a must-watch for all Lego fans -especially adults [Review]
    I know that many of us were apprehensive about a movie about LEGO, expecting it to be a bit rubbish. However, Andrew liked it and I have yet to meet a LEGO fan who didn’t.
  8. Lego Star Wars 75060 Slave-I [Review]
    Depending on your view, the Slave I is either one of the coolest or one of the weirdest spaceships from the Star Wars franchise. Previous LEGO sets of this ship were relatively small, but even though the new version is also intended for minifigs, it is much bigger and far more detailed.
  9. Lego Ideas 21110 research institute [Review]
    LEGO sets have been criticised for enforcing gender stereotypes. I’m not sure whether the Research Institute is a successful LEGO Ideas set because of this, but Caylin certainly enjoyed seeing female minifigs in “real” life jobs that are fascinating, engaging, and fun.
  10. 10242: Mini Cooper [Review]
    Last, but certainly not least in my book, is the Mini Cooper. In the last few years, car fans have been spoiled with excellent sets of classic cars and the Mini Cooper is no exception. It’s also full of very useful (dark green) parts

All in all, I think these are pretty neat sets. Of course, we do tend to pick those that we think you’ll like. In fact, we are already poring over lists and images of sets that will be released next year, so that we can keep the reviews coming. Happy New Year, everyone.

Ask A Lemur – Minifigs, Conventions and Scale

Greetings, My Friends!

Lemur StretchI’m so happy to speak with you again. This week has flown by and it was all very fun and exciting! Though, to be honest, I’m quite worn out from all the activity. As fun as it has been, it will be nice to get back to normal life. How are your holidays going? I hope very well and tasty. I swear that I must weigh all of twelve pounds now! It’s so hard to turn down all the bits and such laying about. And the wrapping paper! Oh, so very yummy. I’m still stuffed.

I finally got the office cleaned up and everything back in its place, which is refreshing. We had a bit of a holiday bash last night and it took its toll on the facilities. The worst were the reindeer hoof-prints all over the ceiling. I hope we don’t invite them again next year. You can’t really comprehend the phrase “There arose such a clatter” until you’ve heard Simon and eight tiny reindeer singing bawdy drinking songs until all hours of the night.

Anyway, enough about me! On to your questions!

Is the Lemur going to any conventions? What conventions will be graced by The Brothers Brick contributors?:
I plan to attend as many conventions as I can this year. Conventions are a ton of fun! I don’t know which conventions each of the contributors plans to attend but I’m sure most of them plan to attend at least one. Ralph tends to represent us at various British and European conventions, though he has attended some conventions on the east coast of the US in the past. I know Simon attends as many North American conventions as he can. There is usually a large contingent of contributors at BrickCon and BrickWorld. Keep an ear to the ground as your favorite conventions come nearer and we may have more information as to who will be appearing at which venue. If you see me at a Con, please feel free to say hello. Conventions can be overwhelming and it would be nice to see some friendly faces!

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Team SCA’s yacht recreated for the Volvo Ocean Race using over 100,000 LEGO pieces and 1200 man-hours

The Volvo Ocean Race is a yacht race around the entire world. It is held every three years and generally takes approximately 9 months to complete. Each boat has a crew of 9, who race 24 hours a day for up to 20 days at a time, living off of freeze-dried food and raw courage. It isn’t a race for the weak or faint of heart.

This incredible LEGO model was built by Johan Sahlstrom, who works for Volvo, and Anders Christensen, who works for LEGO. After deciding to build a model of the Volvo Ocean Race boats, they chose Team SCA, the first all-female crew in over 10 years, because “Team SCA is definitely the coolest looking”, according to Sahlstrom.

The SCA boat is 2 1/2 meters long and 3 1/2 meters tall, using over 100,000 pieces. It includes fully functional halyards, winches, grinding pedestals and a canting keel. It is completely to scale, took over 1200 man-hours to build and uses no glue. Creating it was a quite the feat in and of itself!

Ask A Lemur – Sorting, Joining a LUG & the Founding of the Blog

Merry Christmas, Dearest Readers!

It’s the TBB Lemur Intern here, once again, to answer your questions and be your window into the deepest, darkest reaches of the LEGO hobby. Well, that and candy canes, cookies and all the other yummy bits that people keep leaving about. Such a scrumptious time of year! I’m loving everybody! Caylin let me lick the bowl after she made her world famous fudge and Ralph needed a guinea pig for his egg-nog experiment. I said I didn’t know any guinea pigs so he said I would have to do. It was really yummy! Not sure what the experiment was, but as long as he turns out delicious nog, I’m happy.

Oh, I have a bit of news. There is now a Lemur button on the sidebar! If you want to ask me a question, just click on it and leave a comment in the most recent ‘Ask A Lemur’ post. There is also a bit of delay in the Lemur Loot. Once it gets here, the mail room gnomes will gather all the addresses and get caught up on the backlog.

On to your questions!

How do you sort your Lego collection? And what ways of sorting have you found work best for which styles of building?

That is a great question! It is also not an easy question to answer because everyone sorts a little bit differently. There are two main ways though. Sorting by color and sorting by piece. Many fans first begin by sorting their collections by color.

The problem with that is once all your pieces are in bins of the same color, it is really hard to pick out the pieces you need because everything sort of blurs together. So most builders then move onto some version of sorting by piece. The problem there is that there are so many different pieces you can spend the rest of your life sorting your collection in the various pieces.

A good way to start is to do what many call a “rough sort”. Figure out what kinds of pieces you use most and separate them from the mass of pieces you don’t use. Then you can sort those into similar categories. If you have a lot of the same pieces, you might want to sort those by color. Some do and some don’t. I’m sure other readers will chime in and talk about the specifics of how they sort.

Personally, I sort my collection by taste. It takes a very keen set of taste buds but it’s totally worth it.

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Weekly Amazon LEGO Deals – Hobbit, Ninjago, Architecture & More

This week’s Amazon LEGO sales feature some really decent sets and remember, you can still get these in time for Christmas! It’s getting close so finish up your shopping while you can. Here is are couple of sets that I thought were interesting.

LEGO The Hobbit Dol Guldur Ambush 79011

This set is currently available for $15.99, down from $19.99. That seems like a good deal. This is the only set that has Beorn, plus you get two Orcs. Could be good for building up your Orc army and all that dark grey is great for building cliffs or other landscaping.

LEGO Ninjago 9450 Epic Dragon Battle

This one is an expensive set but is marked off quite a bit. It’s currently available for $87.87, down from $119.99. It comes with some good figures and over 900 pieces that are good for creature building among other things. I’m rather tempted by this one.

LEGO City Police High Speed Chase 60007

This is a fun, little set. Currently available for $22.39, down from $29.99, it has lots of vehicle parts, of course. It also has decent figures and a length of light grey track.

LEGO® Architecture Brandenburg Gate 21011

This one is on sale for $26.40, down from $34.99. These Architecture sets are over-priced, in my opinion, but if you are looking for this set or just want it for all the tan and sand-green, this price is much more reasonable.

LEGO Chima Target Practice 70101

This small set is rather fun and would make a good stocking stuffer-type of gift. It’s heavily discounted at $6.38, down from $14.99. It’s not worth the original price but is great at the discounted price. It includes a Chima figure, some weapons, a spring-loaded dart gun, a Speedor and a variety of parts. The Speedorz are actually rather fun and are made up of some interesting and useful parts. Definitely worth it if you can get them on sale.