It may already be gone by the time you read this, but in case it’s not, 21102 LEGO Minecraft is back in stock at the LEGO Shop online.
Here’s a video review of the newly released 21102 Minecraft set, the first CUUSOO product to be released outside of Japan. You can get it starting today for $34.99 on Lego Shop at Home.
Summary: the Minecraft set is a decent buy for a collection of small plates and tiles. It is more geared for display with its detailed texture and modular sections. Even though I am not a Minecraft player, I’m believe that Lego has succeeded in turning the game concept into a product (although my initial sentiments still stand).
There’s been a lot of speculation about the first LEGO CUUSOO set, so the official announcement is a welcome relief. The set is due out this summer.
The set splits into four sections.
See all the photos in my photoset on Flickr.
Here’s the official press release:
LEGO® Minecraft™ Micro World details unveiled, available for pre-order
BILLUND, Denmark – The LEGO Group and Mojang have released purchase details and pictures of the LEGO® Minecraft™ Micro World today.
The new set, which was the first to receive 10,000 votes of support from users on the global LEGO CUUSOO idea collection platform, will be available for purchase in summer 2012, but can be pre-ordered from today, exclusively through Mojang retail partner Jinx.com for $34.99 €34.99 at http://www.jinx.com/LEGOMinecraft. The sets will also be sold in select LEGO brand retail stores and the LEGO online shop from summer 2012.
“LEGO Minecraft Micro World is designed to celebrate the essence of the LEGO concept and the Minecraft gaming experience,” said Paal Smith-Meyer, Head of the LEGO New Business Group. Each set features four cubic modular vignettes that can be connected to recreate the Minecraft experience in LEGO bricks. One Minecraft block is represented as one 1×1 LEGO plate with a tile on top — not a perfect cube, but the best approximation at the chosen scale.
LEGO Minecraft Micro World includes two of Minecraft’s most iconic characters, Steve and a Creeper, represented as “Micro Mobs.” The model presents a standard for building a Minecraft world that can be configured any way the builder likes.
The surface of the modules comes off to reveal mines and hidden resources beneath. Fans can build their own landscapes, stack cubes on top of each other, to build the world of Minecraft as they wish.
The product was developed in collaboration with four LEGO fans: Chris Malloy, Michael Thomas, Kyle Tingey, and Bjarne Panduro Tveskov. These fans developed concepts alongside LEGO designers and helped shape the product into its final version.
Upon seeing the physical model the first time, Mojang founder Markus “Notch” Persson exclaimed: “Woohoo!”
LEGO CUUSOO is a website where LEGO fans can submit their ideas for new LEGO products and collect votes to make their ideas become a reality. They can also vote for other users’ ideas. It can be found at http://lego.cuusoo.com.
Ideas that are supported by 10,000 votes have a chance of being selected to become part of the LEGO Group’s product portfolio. Consumers who have their ideas chosen will earn 1% of the total net sales of the product.
Mojang will donate the 1% proceeds from LEGO CUUSOO to charity.
For more on the co-creation process for LEGO Minecraft Micro World, see the LEGO CUUSOO blog at http://legocuusoo.posterous.com.
Special congratulations to TBB’s own Chris Malloy for his involvement in the launch of the first global LEGO CUUSOO project!
Let the inevitable discussion ensue.
Until now, the LEGO Minecraft project has been undergoing the standard review process that all projects coming out Cuusoo will have. However, LEGO has now officially decided that the Minecraft project has what it takes to be a viable set. You can read the press release here.
The set seems to be picking up a lot of interest outside of the normal LEGO fan circles, even getting a nod in this week’s Penny Arcade comic (strong language).
Here’s the official press release from Lego:
BILLUND, Denmark – A project backed by Minecraft developer Mojang has become the first user-sponsored project to reach the 10,000 vote threshold on the new global version of LEGO® CUUSOO, opening the way for a LEGO set featuring Minecraft to become a reality.
It took the project only 48 hours to gather votes from 10,000 fans of the project from around the world.
“We’re really excited to see the fantastic enthusiasm of the Minecraft community. This is what LEGO CUUSOO is all about, connecting people’s passion to the LEGO brick,” says Paal Smith-Meyer, Head of the LEGO New Business Group. “It is still too early to say whether a Minecraft play set will become a LEGO product as it still needs to go through a review and approval process to ensure it meets our usual LEGO standards, but it is certainly a lot closer.”
A go/no-go decision should be reached within the next few weeks. Assuming it is given a “go,” then development on any new sets will begin. During this time, LEGO model designers refine the product, while packaging, instructions, and marketing are developed ready for a production run. This will take several months.
LEGO CUUSOO is an idea collection system that asks the Danish toy manufacturers’ consumers to submit and vote for their favourite ideas for new LEGO products. It can be found at http://lego.cuusoo.com . The site is currently in “open beta” and has been well received by fans and niche interest groups eager to see their ideas become official LEGO products.
CUUSOO, which means ‘imagination’ or sometimes ‘wish’ in Japanese, has been developed with CUUSOO SYSTEM, a subsidiary of Japan-based Elephant Design that has worked with open innovation and crowd sourcing for more than 10 years.
The LEGO Group has worked with CUUSOO since 2008 on a Japanese site that has attracted hundreds of ideas and seen thousands of votes cast by a 35,000-strong community. Now the time has come to test the concept internationally.
The first Japanese product, the Shinkai 6500 submersible, went on sale in Japan in February 2011. The next Japanese LEGO CUUSOO model will be the Hayabusa unmanned spacecraft launched in the first quarter of next year.
It took the Shinkai 6500, 420 days to reach 1,000 votes in Japan. Hayabusa took 57 days to 1,000. With the launch of the LEGO CUUSOO worldwide site the threshold was raised to 10,000 to reflect the larger audience.
On LEGO CUUSOO, ideas that are supported by enough votes will be examined by a LEGO jury that will check that the models meet LEGO standards of safety and playability and support the LEGO brand. Consumers who have their ideas chosen for production will earn 1% of the total net sales of the product.
In the case of the Minecraft project, Mojang and the collaborators have offered the 1% CUUSOO royalty to a charity of Mojang’s choice.
What’s the first thing everyone says when they try Minecraft? “It’s like building with Lego!” And to me, Minecraft really is the perfect Lego-esque game. So, it was natural to combine two of my favorite things, which already seemed destined to be together. Some of you may have seen this at Brickcon 2011 back in October where I displayed it, but now it’s finally online just in time for the official game release date tomorrow!