Ninjago versus Monkie Kid: Mech battle [Feature]

Ninjago has produced more mechs than any other LEGO theme over the last decade. And while the Monkie Kid theme is a relative newcomer, having premiered in 2020, there have been many mechs and mech-like models released so far. This includes a bigfig scale Demon Bull King, and a mini-mech for the new Yellow Tusk elephant from the January 2023 wave of sets. But which theme makes better mechs? I decided to compare two mechs from each theme (at a similar price and part count) in an attempt to answer that question.

LEGO 71750 Lloyd’s Hydro Mech is a dark green and sand green submersible with a large canopy that comes in several of the sets from season 14: Seabound. The mech has a samurai-inspired look, with ridged parts attached to the waist, and an asymmetrical design, featuring a pair of pincers for a left hand, and a large shoulder guard using an airplane nose piece upside down.

LEGO 80040: Monkie Kid’s Combi mech is mostly red and gold with turquoise and yellow accents common with Monkie Kid vehicles and mechs. The set is intended to be combined with another set from the wave, LEGO 80041, but we’re just looking at the base form included in the set.


When it comes to LEGO mechs, nothing is more important than articulation. Not just the number of joints, but how they are built and the range of movement each joint allows. Ninjago designers have had a lot of experience designing awesome mechs over the years, especially in the medium set size range. The last few years have turned out some of the best LEGO mechs ever, in my opinion. Sets like LEGO 71738: Zane’s Titan Mech and LEGO 71765: Ninja Ultra Combo are a few particularly good examples. The Hydro Mech has 9 points of articulation (the fixed left hand would have been number 10 if it had not included the cutting blades). One thing that surprised me was the fixed knee connection, which leaves its stance feeling a bit stiff. The mech is still able to strike dynamic poses, but a knee joint would have been nice.

Now let’s see that action pose. “Ka-chow!”

Monkie Kid’s mech has a full set of 10 points of articulation. But instead of elbows and wrists, the forearm and hand are combined. They connect at right angles, so the overall look doesn’t feel as awkward as it might seem.

Contestant number 2, same thing.

Back details

Most mechs have great details from the front and sides, but sometimes, the back can suffer as a result of trying to keep the parts count reasonable and not forcing the set to a higher price point. Ninjago mechs are typically pretty well detailed on the back, especially since many of theme feature jets, missiles, or other accessories that attach there. The flexible tube coming out from the front of the mech suggests maybe an air tank or propeller unit, so it does feel a bit like something is missing.

Despite the fact that the main accessories for the Combi mech come in a different set, the back of it looks pretty smooth, and even includes clips. These are intended to attach to the jetpack, but also work well as a place to stash Monkie Kid’s staff.


The hydro mech has two weapons: the large sword and the slicing pincer claw. And of course, one good fist on the right hand.

The Combi mech has a staff and a large sword. And if those don’t work, both hands have tile shooters.

Interesting parts

When it comes to cool and reusable parts, mechs are usually a pretty good choice, and these two mechs are both loaded with plenty. The hydro mech has 3 of the ridged curved panels in black. One on the right shoulder and two at the hips. The left shoulder shield is pretty cool, and there are 3 sand green angled slopes. The blades of the pincer claw are also very cool.

The Combi mech has that sweet wide sword blade, several gold short cones that are great for engine thrusters, and two red car hoods attached to each shoulder. There is also a single red fender cover behind the pilot’s section. The mech also has a pair of the new formed angled part at the thigh that includes side-facing studs.


As a frequent builder of microscale spaceships (shoutout to MicrospaceLUG), one of the most important parts to look for in a mech is the gold ingot piece in new colors. The Zane Titan mech had over 20 of them in white. The hydro mech has an uninspiring amount in plain gold, two on the hand and wrists, and one on each foot.

The Monkie Kid mech, on the other hand, has six. Each shoulder guard has one in yellow-gold, there is a red one on each hand, and one on the front, and finally, a turquoise ingot at the belt.


The two mechs are similar heights, with the Combi mech at 5 inches and the hydro mech at 6.5 inches. I do wish that the Monkie Kid mech had more of a head since without the added parts from 80041, MK looks a bit vulnerable.


So, I may have misled you all just a tiny bit when I suggested that one of these mechs was superior to the other, as I honestly feel they are pretty evenly matched. That means the final decision as to which one is better belongs to you! For the $20 price tag and the part count, both sets are a great deal. I did find that the Monkie Kid mech had a wider range of motion for both the legs and the arms, but that in no way takes away from the Ninjago mech, which was very sturdy despite being taller. Let me know in the comments which design you think is the winner, or if you’d like to see more set comparisons from TBB in the future.

Hydro Mech

Combi Mech

5 comments on “Ninjago versus Monkie Kid: Mech battle [Feature]

  1. Tobi

    The shoes of the Hydro Mech are a weak construction. As a “play set” after 10x use, it falls off almost immediatly… I can’t recommend to buy it.

  2. Josiah Swartz

    For these small mechs, I do prefer the MK mech. However overall I like Ninjago mechs better. When you get to bigger sizes, mechs like the Jay, Lloyd, and Zane Titans look and pose better than the large MK mechs.

  3. Poison_Mutton

    This is a great idea for a series and the article is super fun! I don’t own either of these sets but the Monkie Kidd Mech is definitely on my list as the first truly solid “cheap” Monkie Kidd set so wins this one. Plus the combing with another “cheap” set is a super fun addition.

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