Following fast on the heels of our hands-on review of 70620 Ninjago City, the third-largest LEGO set of all time is now available to order from the LEGO Shop online. The set includes 4,867 pieces and 19 minifigures (by our count), and retails for $299.99 in the United States.
The set will be available more broadly starting on September 1st, but is currently available only to LEGO VIP Program members. Of course, you can just sign up for a VIP membership for free, so that means the set is available to everyone now, assuming you’re ready and able to cough up the three hundred bucks for it. We think it’s totally worth it.
70620 Ninjago City joins 10258 London Bus, LEGO Boost, and the rest of the LEGO Ninjago Movie sets released on August 1st.
Talented LEGO Star Wars builder Inthert has been dabbling with circular dioramas over the last few months, and his latest depicts a key scene in Star Wars Rebels when the crew of the Ghost speed out of town after stealing Imperial munitions. The base mixes vertically oriented cheese slopes with embedded 1×2 slopes, as well as a couple of different scales — a trio of microscale vehicles with a tiny but perfect “nano-scale” communications tower.
What I really love about this little diorama, though, is the amazing exploding TIE fighter.
While it’s hard to surpass Tyler’s LEGO Blade Runner spinner police hover-car, many great LEGO builders continue to take up the challenge, and we can all enjoy the results. The latest challenger is Calin, who achieves a smooth, virtually stud-free look with some great parts usage — just check out the baseball cap on the front “wheel.”
With the new Blade Runner 2049 due out in just a couple of months, it’s also great to see LEGO creations inspired by the next movie. Calin has built a small-scale version of the police hover-car, with its more angular lines.
There are many ways in which summer can come to an end — going back to school, traveling to a different hemisphere, or — as Tokyo Tag Team demonstrates — as a result of an invasion by body-snatching, one-eyed aliens who sneak up from behind while you’re playing at the beach with a big green ball. The alien’s arms are fairly standard, but the dark tan pieces encircling the creature give it a fearsome, armored look, while the large Mixels eye gives the terrifying entity a comical appearance.
Back in 2012, filmmaker Justin McAleece used Bricks by the Bay as a background to film scenes for his independent film Brick Madness. Five years later, the director has shared the first official teaser trailer for the mockumentary, scheduled to premiere on August 13.
Brick MADNESS Teaser Trailer from Blare Media on Vimeo.
One of the really cool real-life aspects of the movie is that Carl Merriam designed many of the models used by the actors in the movie back during filming, and now Carl works full-time as a set designer in Billund.
Back in 2011, LEGO introduced the 10220 Volkswagen T1 Camper Van to its line of Creator vehicles (followed more recently by the lovely 10252 Volkswagen Beetle). Both these official sets are at a larger scale than LEGO’s own Miniland scale, which is the scale that TBB’s own Ralph Savelsberg frequently builds his cars and trucks in. Ralph’s latest vehicle is VW’s T3 Westfalia camper van, complete with a pop-up top for extra head room when you head inside after a long day of drinking cold beverages from a cooler while sitting in your lawn chair.
Ralph makes extensive use of hinged connections and 1×1 “cheese” slopes attached sideways to achieve subtle angles throughout the model, from the section below the windscreen to the shape of the van’s body underneath the sliding door. Naturally, the interior upholstery is a lovely checked pattern of orange and tan.
There’s a strong possibility that I’ll be traveling to Japan for work later this year, and I’ve spent the last couple of evenings revisiting childhood haunts via Google Maps and looking at rail connections to get from one end of the country to the other. This train station by Japanese builder Kaz Fuji was thus quite timely as I plan potential rail travel to places like Kyoto and Nara.
See more of these Japanese trains and the train station
We’ve featured the marvelous structures of master LEGO architect Rocco Buttliere quite frequently here at The Brothers Brick, from downtown Chicago to his recent 12-foot Golden Gate Bridge. Rocco’s latest LEGO build captures the heart of the sprawling Westminster World Heritage Site in the City of London, centered (or centred, if you prefer) on Westminster Abbey, the Church of St Margaret, and the Palace of Westminster where the UK Parliament meets.
See more of this iconic London location
Master LEGO shipwright Arjan Oude Kotte continues to impress with his latest watercraft, a highly detailed American harbor tug that would look at home on Elliot Bay here in Seattle or on the Hudson River in New York. A sliding door opens into the detailed wheelhouse, with an engine under the stack.
Arjan’s tugboat looks beautiful as a model displayed on a stand, but the lower hull is removable for inclusion in a display like this lovely harbor scene full of maritime charm.
Check out Arjan’s photoset on Flickr for more interior and breakdown shots.
The Jedha ambush scene in Rogue One has proven to be a popular subject for LEGO Star Wars builders, with some excellent scenes by builders such as Dunedain98 and Graham Gidman. Now, German builder Boba-1980 has built a rather substantial version of this pivotal scene, with uniquely “Star Wars-y” buildings surrounding the action in the square itself.
My favorite building is the one left of the arch with the balcony, populated by some ill-fated partisans. The builder has achieved the curve of the balconies by combining 1×1 round bricks with regular bricks.
There are realistic details throughout the diorama, including inset sections of walls that look like sections of plaster have flaked off in the ancient city.
We’ve seen plenty of great LEGO TARDIS models over the years, including the rather excellent LEGO Ideas 21304 Doctor Who set released at the end of 2015. Prior to the official set, most builders focused on creating great police boxes, rather than the detailed interiors that generally vary from Doctor to Doctor. Inthert corrects this oversight with the main console room of the 11th Doctor’s TARDIS, including the white interior of the front door and the sloped walls with circular openings.
The console itself is lovely, with various controls that only the Doctor and a few experienced companions understand how to operate. The floor is built from trans-clear plates, and various walkways lead off to other parts of the vessel’s enormous interior.
My only complaint is that the scene feels a bit quiet, so I’ll just assume that the Doctor is off on an adventure with Amy and Rory.
While it’s always going to be hard to top the massive 20,000-brick diorama of The Last of Us by Tim Schwalfenberg that we featured earlier this year, the post-apocalyptic video game is so full of atmosphere that I’m glad to see other LEGO builders tackle the haunting game. Christophe captures the protagonists as they approach a dilapidated building. Foliage cascades from an upper floor, with broken glass hanging from windows. My favorite detail is the air conditioning unit on the second floor.
I do wonder what kind of interior Christophe has included in his build, because one of the only shots other than the one above is of Ellie’s guitar sitting silent in an empty room.