The brand new LEGO Hidden Side augmented reality product line is available starting today, as well as more than 50 new sets from Architecture, Harry Potter, City, Friends, Jurassic World, Technic and more. LEGO fans in the U.S. have had to wait patiently for this new wave of sets which has been available in Europe for a few months now.
How many times has this happened to you? You call up IKEA customer service and in botching up the admittedly difficult names of one of their do-it-yourself furniture offerings, you unwittingly summon some demon hell-beast from the underworld. Wait, never? I can’t count the amount of times it has happened to me. Avery Robertson knows what I mean. Probably. Using some clever build techniques, she has conjured up Baphomet The Black Goat and now he’s here to loaf on your Söderhamn sofa for awhile. The LEGO wings and star hair clip usually come in pretty pastel colors but with a red filter the whole shebang is made to look scary as hell. Tattooed on his arms are the words “solve” and “coagula” which either means “dissolve and coagulate” or “loveseat and ottoman” in IKEA speak.
I love LEGO dragons, and the air dragon Bandea from this immersive (almost) fully LEGO scene by one of our contributors, Benjamin Stenlund, is one of my favourites from the past few months. The body is chunky and curvy like a “real” dragon is. What gives it the edge are not the Ninjago sword edges, but the awesome background it is presented on. The horizon is put on just the right point with the corresponding camera angle. What I love most are the realistic rocks, made of wedge slopes and polygonal panels fitted together to represent the cracks and angles of a real rock face.
In the realm of LEGO castle builds, most of what we see is based off the European stereotype of grey fortresses, but thankfully this year’s Summer Joust building competition has a category for Middle Eastern creations. Instead of boring old grey, we get intricate tan! Talented castle builder Classical Bricks brings us the gates to a palace called Qasr Alshams, beautifully decorated with a touch of teal to complement its earth tones.
What draws my eye in the build is the amount of depth alluded to by having the different levels climbing higher and higher; what we see is just a small segment of what is undoubtedly a sprawling palace complex, complete with baths, a harem, dining rooms, administrative offices, and everything else that I have read about in the Arabian Nights, but it seems much larger. The battle droid legs make for an excellent railing above the gates, and the heads of the same droids make a nice detail beneath the battlements on the left. My favorite piece usage, though, is the pickaxes for door pulls on the gates. After a long ride on my camel through the desert, across the hot sand—I don’t like sand, since it is coarse and rough and irritating and gets everywhere—this looks to be a welcome place to stop and rest. That’s assuming I make it past the guards, of course.
What do you do if your robot walker develops a waddle? Make it a feature rather than a bug, of course! At least, that’s what I like to think happened in the backstory for Moko‘s latest LEGO creation. This Mecha-Duck is a delight, nicely-built with some cool mechanical details, but also invested with a brilliant sense of fun and character. I’m pleased to see that, like its inspiration, the walker is also amphibious — there’s a little red propeller sitting at the rear, allowing for effective transportation on water too.
A prolific LEGO builder who’s graced our pages before, Ted Andes has presented a creation I resonate with at the moment, Winter. I’m typing this from Victoria, Australia, where the frosts and bleak days have been many. This beautiful vignette, a small capture of a snowy morning on the edge of a siheyuan. I can almost feel the stillness in the air.
Andes’ parts use is always exceptional, though not just in obscure part usage. His harness on basic parts to get the maximum effect is outstanding. The bare tree is made from roughly thirteen different pieces, twisted into some outstanding, gnarled forms. See if you can spot them all — can you see any I’ve missed? The river and its edging is also another highlight for me. The 4L trans-light blue bars surrounding some fish is a nice touch, giving the impression of icy cold, rushing water. Having the land predominantly in two colours has also worked elegantly, while the simple touches of trans-clear near the edge of the river have brought it closer to the reality of the camping trips I’ve taken in winter.
By now the ending of Avengers: Endgame has been well and truly revealed to the world through Disney’s own marketing. The fact that Captain America can wield Thor’s hammer is common knowledge. Regardless of how you feel about that sort of spoiler, you are sure to find joy in Sam Beattie‘s recreation of the iconic moment in LEGO. Sam has enhanced the build with a few custom stickers, but even without them, there’s no question of what you’re looking at. (LEGO has released a large scale figure of Cap in the past – 2012’s Buildable Hero Captain America (Set 4597). I think it’s fair to say that the look there is…somewhat less accurate than’s Sam’s.
Some of the fun details from the build are the use of a gold ingot for Cap’s belt buckle and the whip used to shape Mjolnir’s strap. I also like how the support beams in the rubble work well at this larger scale. Standing atop that rocky and flame-strewn battlefield, Cap looks ready to kick some serious butt. And speaking of butt, here’s a rear view of the build showcasing “America’s ass.”
It’s a Sky Pirate’s worst nightmare when The Valvalevidan hoves into view. AdNorrel‘s massive steampunk flying vessel is a wonderful LEGO creation — beautifully detailed, and packed with functional-looking elements. The overall shape carries a faint whiff of Jabba’s Sail Barge from Return Of The Jedi, but that’s no bad thing. I love the touches of gold and the striped sails, and those lanterns on the raised rear deck are excellent.
The airship is 80 studs in length, making for a formidable construction project which took 9 months to put together. However, all that space is put to great use with some fabulous details. Here’s a close-up view of the impressive motors which keep the ship moving when the wind drops… Continue reading →
A good LEGO creation will be good despite the motive and theme it depicts. Some times though, a build comes up that is both built well and plays on your personal interests. The builder that does that to me most often is Eero Okkonen. If you have been following The Brothers Brick for a while you are probably familiar with Eero’s beautiful character builds of various themes, many of which come from the Magic the Gathering trading card game, just like this particular one.
The build represents an elf planeswalker (basically a glorified mage) important in Magic’s storyline. The character’s likeness is incredibly well captured in LEGO, especially the iconic green markings on her face. The clothing and posing is great as well, with a flowing green cape and a green flame in her hand. You can read more about the build on Eero’s blog, Cyclopic Bricks. The builder is so good at capturing iconic characters that one could call him an Iconic Master…
Marvel Comics has their multiverse — alternate realities where the heroes you know are reimagined as something new. DC comics does something similar with their own characters, usually super grim and dark ones resulting from the timeline being broken by something the Flash did. (Really. It’s a trope.) But sometimes these stories can just be bight spots of fun, and if you’re really lucky you’ll get to enjoy one of them in LEGO form. For instance, have a look at this take on Batman and the Batmobile by Breado’s Bricks. Batman always has a ton of resources, so what if he really leaned into the glitz as much as the flying rodent thing? You might end up with the steampunk version we see here. Decked out in gold chrome elements, cape and cowl, and body armor, this Batman may not be stealthy, but he certainly is shiny.
SteamBat brings this sense of style into his ride as well. The BatRod mixes the traditional BatBlack with new and improved BatGold accents. Mag wheel covers and rims echo the highlights in the engine and exhaust. Even more gold adorns the front grill and headlights.
No matter what angle you view this car from, you’re going to be well aware that SteamBats has a lot of cash to spend. Take that, criminals!
Dear Honorable Darth Vader and the Management Team of the Galactic Empire,
You have an almost infinite budget at your disposal to spend on wages and upskilling of personnel and technological innovation. I’m sure you’ve attended the Business Strategies 101 course at our SPOT (Security, Peace, Order, Terror) University and learned that having quality over quantity is paramount towards a calculated win in all battles. The root cause of all losses has been apparent, and we can narrow it down to one thing: bad aiming (be it Stormtroopers, or TIE pilots). At one time, our Stormtroopers had a reputation for being precise enough to pinpoint a Jawa from two sand dunes away. Until we return to this, you will continue to see mockery in all forms like this one built and sculpted in LEGO form by Pasq67 – Tie Fighters tailing Rebel scum piloting X-Wings Starfighters, which are low-tech vehicles that have little automation and only manual firing systems. However, they are always evading, destroying, and killing so many of our innocent troops and soldiers.
The solution? Invest in better targeting systems, and train the troopers to shoot well and not let them graduate unless they have a decent passing rate for marksmanship. My analysis shows that it’s a simple strategy that will save us from countless numbers of sequels, prequels, animated series, and god knows how many more spinoffs down the road. Until then, toy companies like LEGO will continue to build multi-million dollar businesses from allowing people to recreate scenes and games retelling history on our continuous defeats. It’s embarrassing. Do something.
LEGO has released the build instructions for the 3 Sets that were released at San Diego Comic-Con. If you were not one of the lucky ones that got them at the event, here’s a great way to enjoy them if you’re a builder and would just want to enjoy these for display in your collection.