Tag Archives: Asia

The diverse cultures and complex history of Asia continue to inspire LEGO builders all over the world. China, Japan, and Korea also have large and active LEGO fan communities that contribute to the global conversation through their LEGO models. This page features LEGO models inspired by Asia, coverage of events that happen in Asia, and background about models by Asian builders.

Reaching for the sky in China

Spencer Rezkalla (Spencer R) is a master of micro-scale skyscrapers, and his models have been featured on TBB many times. That does not stop me from calling your attention to his latest project, however. The US may be known for cities full of skyscrapers, such as Chicago and New York, but nowadays most such buildings are being constructed in Asia and Spencer has now turned his attention to China, building the Shanghai World Financial Center and the Jin Mao Tower.

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The subtle curve and the way the façades intersect on the Shanghai Financial Tower is particularly noteworthy. A third skyscraper, called the Shanghai Tower, is currently under construction next to these two and is due for completion in 2014. As you can see from the picture above, Spencer has already saved a spot for it.

圖窮匕現 or A Knife to the Face!

I’m not completely sure what’s going on with fvin&yan’s latest effort, but the unfortunate fellow with the dapper hat is about to get a knife to the face! This model is simply stunning from top to bottom and features a pleasingly wide range of color. Perhaps one of our readers can help with the translation of the title and very brief accompanying text, the best I was able to come up with was “Poor included bei, also from Emperor Jing Ke Thorn”.

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TICO Mini Bricks. The New Tiny Kid on the Block.

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During my recent trip to Taiwan, I came across a new line of micro brick construction toys called TICO. It appears to be a Taiwan made clone brand of the Japanese brand Nanoblock at only half the price. I bought a set, #3010 Battle Robot (RxB) for NT$180, which comes out to a little more than $6 US for around 80 pieces.

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The elements are very tiny and are rather difficult to handle, requiring a great deal of fine motor control. The instructions are straight forward, however, they use a technique of hi-lighting the pieces used in the current step by showing the pieces a shade lighter.  This is a problem when the set includes 2 shades of grey, creating confusion as to which shade of grey is needed at which step.  Secondly, the elements have no way of locking the studs of a connecting element on the long axis of an element, allowing the element on the underside to slide around.  This creates a lot of play in the construction, making it somewhat difficult to line pieces up correctly.

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The final model is very loose and fragile as it has many one stud connections.  The overall construction is less the sturdy, lacking in overlapping elements to lock things in place.  If micro bricks are your thing, TICO Mini Bricks are an affordable alternative to the pricier Nanoblock.  According to their website, TICO appears to have licensed sets for Totoro, Angry Birds and One Piece, which are all very popular in Taiwan.

Chinese landscape painting and jade seal

Ericmok from Hong Kong built a scene from Romance of the Three Kingdoms in the style of a Chinese painting, using monochrome shades to mimic the effect of a painting in black ink. The scroll background is a perfect way to frame the scene, making it very presentable.

Chinese Landscape Painting

His jade seal is also worthy of a mention, in which green and sand green are used to convey the texture of the jade. The characters on the seal say “Three Kingdoms.”

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An Unexpected Discovery

As soon as I’ve seen this photo’s thumbnail, it reminded me of Avatar. I turns out that -infomaniac- really based this creation on the Western Air Temple from the show. Amazing rock work, beautiful trees and architecture is what makes me like this.

An Unexpected Discovery

On the side note, if you still haven’t, it’s time to start watching the sequel to Avatar – Legend of Korra. You too might get inspired to build something as awesome as this.