Posts by Dave Schefcik

TBB Weekly Brick Report: LEGO news roundup for November 11, 2018 [News]

In addition to the amazing LEGO models created by builders all over the world, The Brothers Brick brings you the best of LEGO news and reviews. This is our weekly Brick Report for the second week of November 2018.

TBB NEWS: This week had big legal news on the future of knockoff LEGO, as well as some awesome gifts with purchase now on sale.



TBB EDITORIALS & FEATURES: What does the Brothers Brick think about the new changes to Flickr? Read on to find out.


OTHER NEWS: There were quite a few other interesting LEGO news articles from around the web this week. Here are the best of the rest:

Check out the other LEGO news of the week

LEGO Harry Potter Diagon Alley gift with purchase now available [News]

LEGO Harry Potter has a new microscale set out today. 40289 Diagon Alley is now available as a gift with purchase from LEGO with orders more than $99 USD until Nov. 21 (or until supplies run out). The sizeable set (read our review here) includes 374 pieces (with a few cobblestone prints) and one minifigure of wand-maker Ollivander.

In addition, LEGO VIPs can get double points on two specific sets this month. The first is 71043 Hogwarts Castle, a perfect accompaniment to this month’s gift with purchase. Our review goes into detail about this massive magical set.

The second is this year’s seasonal 10263 Winter Village Fire Station just in time for the holidays. Again, check out our review to see all the fun details in this festive set.

Last day for LEGO Forma pre-orders on Indiegogo [News]

Today is the last day to support LEGO Forma, the new experimental product line featuring kinetic sculptures of fish. The only remaining set available for pre-order on Indiegogo (at the time of publishing) is the UK-only base pack featuring a koi fish. The sets should ship at the beginning of next year.

LEGO Forma was announced as a limited short-batch pilot program designed to target LEGO early adopters and determine if there is a market for unique products that don’t lend themselves to other product lines. While it appears the LEGO Forma launch was successful with many perks selling out, the initial amounts of available perks appear to have been reduced in order to show them being “sold out” by the end of the crowdfunding period. It remains to be seen if LEGO considers the effort a success or if the Forma product line will see a general release.

The Brothers Brick will bring you a review of LEGO Forma when it ships, but until then, check out this reverse-engineered version by Jason Allemann (aka JK Brickworks) built completely out of LEGO bricks rather than using metallic skins.

LEPIN ordered to stop making and selling LEGO imitation products by Chinese court [News]

Earlier today, a district court in China ruled against four companies for infringing multiple LEGO copyrights by producing and distributing LEPIN-branded imitation products. The companies were ordered to “immediately cease producing, selling, exhibiting or in any way promoting the infringing products” and to pay LEGO 4.5 million RMB in damages (about $650,000 US).

The four companies, including Shantou Meizhi Model Co. among others, were held liable by the Guangzhou Yuexiu District Court for copying 18 specific LEGO sets and multiple minifigures in addition to “carrying out unfair competitive acts.” Niels B. Christiansen, CEO of the LEGO Group commented that the rulings “send a clear warning message to other companies who may be copying LEGO products,” and that the company will continue to “take all necessary legal actions to protect our intellectual property rights.”

The ruling is another significant legal victory for LEGO as the company continues to battle imitators in China. Last year, LEGO won a similar case against Bela Bricks for creating, distributing and selling imitation LEGO products. The rulings also provide precedent to continue pursuing many other clone brands who have tried shutting down and reopening with different names to avoid enforcement.

TBB Weekly Brick Report: LEGO news roundup for November 4, 2018 [News]

In addition to the amazing LEGO models created by builders all over the world, The Brothers Brick brings you the best of LEGO news and reviews. This is our weekly Brick Report for the first week of November 2018.

TBB NEWS: LEGO Overwatch made a splash announcing surprise pre-orders while the LEGO Ideas Pop-Up Book went on sale.



TBB FEATURES, REVIEWS & INSTRUCTIONS: We have a variety of content for you this week from an in-depth interview to a review of an upcoming gift with purchase.


OTHER NEWS: There were quite a few other interesting LEGO news articles from around the web this week. Here are the best of the rest:

Check out the other LEGO news of the week

9-foot tall LEGO Overwatch D.Va and her mech tower over BlizzCon [News]

Today at BlizzCon, LEGO not only revealed the entire lineup of Overwatch sets (available for pre-order now), but also showed off this towering 9-foot tall model of D.Va and her mech made from nearly 150,000 pieces.

D.Va and her mech weigh a combined 1,256 pounds, took LEGO master builders 731 hours to build, and contains more than 43,000 pink bricks. The model is based off of the upcoming LEGO Overwatch set 75973 D.Va and Reinhardt.

The model will be on display to attendees of Blizzcon from November 2-3 at the in Anaheim Convention Center. Check out this timelapse of it being built:

Also, take a look at the gallery below for close-ups and a view of the back of the model.

LEGO Overwatch sets unveiled at BlizzCon, available for pre-order today [News]

Today at BlizzCon, the LEGO Overwatch line was officially unveiled with the surprise announcement that all six sets are available for pre-orders immediately. The sets will be available January 1st and range in prices from $14.99 to $89.99 USD.

The LEGO Overwatch line (unintentionally previewed by Target last week) was announced by LEGO Designer Woon Tze Chee. Check out our first impressions of the sets here, our review of the Blizzard Exclusive Omnic Bastion, or keep reading for the official photos and descriptions.

Click to see and pre-order all the new LEGO Overwatch sets

Interview with LEGO Ideas Pop-Up Book fan designers Grant Davis and Jason Allemann [Feature]

Last weekend, The Brothers Brick attended the launch event for the LEGO Ideas 21315 Pop-Up Book in Portland, Oregon, and we chatted with fan designers Grant Davis and Jason Allemann about their collaboration and how the set became a reality.

Both Grant and Jason (aka JK Brickworks) are talented builders and have been featured on The Brothers Brick multiple times. If you haven’t yet, you should read our official review of the set (spoiler: we loved it) and then dive into this behind-the-scenes conversation about creating the set. LEGO Ideas 21315 Pop-Up Book is now available from LEGO for $69.99 US.


The Brothers Brick: Thanks for chatting with us. We really enjoyed building and reviewing your LEGO Pop-Up Book. Can you tell us a little about how the collaboration first began?

Grant Davis: I had an idea for a LEGO pop-up book in late 2014. I created a model originally powered by LEGO rubber bands, but it was significantly more inconsistent than what I knew a set should be. I ended up contacting Jason because of the technical skill I had seen in his creations, and because he showed interest in my original model on Flickr when I posted it.

Grant’s first iteration of his LEGO Pop-Up Book using rubber bands and bendable minifigure legs.

Jason Allemann: Grant got in touch with me in February 2016 via a message on Flickr. I, of course, absolutely loved the original Pop-Up Book model he had posted over a year earlier, so when he asked if I wanted to join him to develop an Ideas project based on that concept, I jumped at the opportunity.

TBB: Had you two ever met each other prior to this collaboration?

Jason: I don’t think we’d ever met in person before the collaboration, but I was very familiar with Grant’s work via Flickr. I do recall he left a comment on my Particle Accelerator video on YouTube at some point, and I even gave him a shout out in one of my follow up videos for that model, all long before we started working on the Pop-Up Book.

Grant: The first time that we actually met was at Brickworld Chicago 2017 after the Ideas project had already launched and had 8,000-9,000 supporters. We both didn’t know that each other were going to be attending. It was pure coincidence that we ran into each other at the convention! We didn’t talk much about the project, but I do remember that we played some two-player arcade games together as our first in person bonding experience.

TBB: What was your collaboration process like?

Jason: We mostly shared info via e-mail and the occasional Skype call. What I remember most about the design period was that it just took a while. We were both pretty busy with other things, so it would often be weeks between development updates, and it took a full six months before we finally submitted the project. We are both easy going people, so working together was really nice, and we were on the same page with most of the design decisions.

Jason’s first prototype of the pop-up mechanism and an early idea for minifigure storage.

Grant: The bulk of the initial contact was done over email. We fleshed out a lot of the nitty gritty details there in long multi-point messages. We talked through how many inserts we should suggest in the project (we suggested two, which is what LEGO themselves decided to stick with). We set up a Google document to work on the exact description for the project as well, which helped lessen the amount of e-mails.

There was even a lengthy discussion on what exactly the project should be called. We talked through several title options for the project before settling on the simple title of “LEGO Pop-Up Book.” We at one point or another considered “Brick Adventures,” “Brick Tales,” and “Brick Worlds.” The “Once Upon a Brick” title that is on the final model of the book was thought up by the LEGO design team.

The first prototype of Grant and Jason’s LEGO Pop-Up Book submitted to LEGO Ideas.
Click to keep reading our interview with the fan designers of the LEGO Pop-Up Book

LEGO Ideas Pop-Up Book and Xtra Accessory Bags now available [News]

The first of the month typically means new sets available from LEGO, and this November is no exception. Last month brought Star Wars and holiday sets, and this month brings the LEGO Ideas Pop-Up Book and new Xtra Accessory Bags.

Take a look at the new sets in detail below.


LEGO Ideas: This set is a stand-out of the Ideas line, showcasing the creativity of the fan designers heightened by official LEGO designers. As we mentioned in our review, this set is a good one with decent price per part value, and we are excited to see all the custom pop-up scenes that are just waiting to be made.

21315 Pop-Up Book | 859 pieces | TBB Review
US: $69.99 | Canada: 89.99 CAD | UK: £59.99


LEGO Xtra: These delightful accessory bags have been available off and on in physical LEGO Stores for a few months, but this is the first time they have been listed for purchase online. The bags include a variety of items from food and plants to bikes and lamps, any of which would be a great way to expand your LEGO City.

40312 Food Accessories | 30 pieces
US: $3.99 | Canada: 4.99 CAD | UK: £2.99

40310 Botanical Accessories | 24 pieces
US: $3.99 | Canada: 4.99 CAD | UK: £299

40311 Traffic Lights | 46 pieces
US: $3.99 | Canada: 4.99 CAD | UK: £2.99

40312 Streetlamps | 34 pieces
US: $3.99 | Canada: 4.99 CAD | UK: £2.99

40313 Bicycles | 21 pieces
US: $3.99 | Canada: 4.99 CAD | UK: £2.99

Only two days left for double LEGO VIP points [News]

It doesn’t happen very often anymore, but LEGO is offering double VIP points for the month of October. Halloween marks the end of the month, so you have two days left to shop and maybe make bigger purchases like the Hogwarts Castle or Betrayal at Cloud City for the best discount. (Double VIP points equates to earning roughly 10% of the order price which can then be applied to a future LEGO purchase.)
Along with double VIP points, LEGO is offering a free minifigure collector frame as a gift with any purchase more than $75. The promotion runs through the 31st or while supplies last. To see all the most recent sets released by LEGO, check our list of new October sets as well as all the new sets from the summer.

(As always, when you click through from The Brothers Brick, a portion of each sale goes to support the site, so thank you in advance!)

LEGO Ideas set revealed as “Once Upon a Brick” 21315 Pop-Up Book [News]

Earlier today, LEGO revealed 21315 Pop-Up Book as the next LEGO Ideas set. The ingenious set comes in the form of a book with two interiors based off of Little Red Riding Hood and Jack and the Beanstalk. The Pop-up Book comes with 859 pieces as well as four minifigures and one microfigure, and will retail for $69.99 USD when it goes on sale November 1st.

The Brothers Brick got an early look at the set, so read our hands-on review here, or continue scrolling for the official photos and press release from LEGO.
Click for more photos of the Pop-Up Book and the official press release

First ever LEGO Overwatch set, 75987 Omnic Bastion [Review]

The first ever set in the LEGO Overwatch line was revealed last week as 75987 Omnic Bastion. The set is a Blizzard exclusive with a limited production run for BlizzCon 2018 next month, however a small amount has been made available for purchase online in the Blizzard Gear Store.

The exclusive set contains 182 pieces and sells for $25.00 USD until supplies run out. More than likely, this set will not be part of the full LEGO Overwatch line available generally when it launches sometime in the next few months, so we suggest getting it before it becomes unavailable if you are interested.

Click to get a closer look at the first ever LEGO Overwatch set