Tag Archives: lego

Start Off Your Day With A Bowl Of Legend Of Zelda Lego Cereal

Lego artist Baron Von Brunk, builder of transforming Game Boys and massive working NES controllers, is pioneering a new method of stop-motion animation featuring a mix of custom-built Lego puppets and live-action shots. This new project begins, appropriately enough, with a complete The Legend of Zelda breakfast.

Instead of using the iconic Lego minifigure, as many brickbuilt stop-motion animation projects do, the good Baron has created his own assortment of stylized puppets. With mouths that open and close and expressive eyebrows, they add character and depth to Lego people.

They look a little creepy, sure. And when you think about it, the Kakariko’s cereal, which are named after a village that’s appeared in several Legend of Zelda games, is made out of the same material as Link and crew. He’s sort of… eating himself.

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Still, an interesting mix of live-action, stop-motion, and special effects. Read up about the project at Baron Von Brunk’s webpage, and check out his Flickr for behind-the-scenes shots of the models and backgrounds.

Source: Kotaku.com

Lego’s Friends Central Perk Set Is An Impressive Collection Of Tiny White People

Not only is there an official Lego set based on classic sitcom Friends hitting stores on September 1, the set comes with the actual actors from the show. Oh wait, no. Those are generic Lego minifigures. Honest mistake.

This set is the latest from the Lego Ideas program. Fan creators submit their builds to the Lego Ideas website. If they receive 10,000 votes from the community, Lego officials consider the ideas for production as retail products. This Friends set was submitted by user Mric76. You can check out his original submission here.

The release of the set also coincides with the 25th anniversary of the popular sitcom. The $60 set, which recreates one of Friends’ most recognizable locales, is made up of 1,070 pieces, including figures of each of the show’s main characters. The focal point is the couch, chairs, and table that served as the gathering place for Phoebe, Rachel, Ross, Joey, Chandler, and Monica as they navigated the pitfalls of being young and attractive with impossibly nice apartments in New York City. The set also includes the rest of the fixtures of Central Perk: the stage where Phoebe plays her guitar, the coffee bar, and Gunther. Good old Gunther.

The set is framed by a pair of TV lights, a meta reminder that this set is based on a television show. And because every inside has an outside, Central Perk’s facade can be revealed by a clever “turning the entire set around” mechanic.

What’s really cool and slightly disturbing about the set is how well the characters translate into Lego minifigures. Minifigures based on real-life actors are usually suggestive at best, but Joey, Ross, and Chandler are immediately recognizable. And that signature Jennifer Anniston haircut on Rachel? Forget about it.

Source: Kotaku.com

The New Lego Ideas Treehouse Has Leaves Made Of Real Plants

Last year, the Lego Group started making flowers, trees, and shrubs out of plant-based polyethylene using sustainably sourced sugarcane. I can’t imagine a better use for all of those plant plastic parts than this beautiful, 14-inch-tall Lego Ideas Treehouse set.

Lego Ideas is a program that allows fan designers to submit their own unique Lego builds for consideration as retail sets. Kevin Feeser from Nancy, France, submitted his idea for a Lego treehouse to the Lego Ideas website, more than 10,000 community members voted for it, and Lego officials picked it as the next Lego Ideas set to hit store shelves. It’s got a fancy box and everything.

One of the biggest Lego Ideas sets yet, the Treehouse set features more than 3,000 Lego elements and retails for $200. It’s 14 inches tall, 10 inches wide, and 9 inches deep. The build consists of a base, the trunk, and some rickety stairs leading up to three cabins packed with little Lego details. It also comes with two sets of leaves for the top—green for summer, yellow and brown for fall.

The plant-based polyethylene leaves are the first steps in Lego’s plan to switch completely to sustainable materials by 2030. Fans should notice no difference between the look and feel of older plant elements and the new sustainable ones. They’re just better.

Flip through the slideshow for images of the mini-figures and tiny details that make the Lego Ideas Treehouse really sing.

I’m running out of room for constructed Lego sets in my home, but this is the sort of epic build that might see a few of my older favorites broken down to make room.

I can almost smell the fresh plastic air.

Source: Kotaku.com

Moving Sucks, But Especially If You’re a Geek

Moving Legos is hard. Moving Legos in large plastic containers? Not as hard.
Photo: All Images (Germain Lussier)
Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

If you thought moving was hard, try to do it with a 7,000 piece Lego set.

Recently, I moved out of a Los Angeles apartment I’d been in for six years to a house in the San Fernando Valley. It’s a big deal, of course, and something my wife Jayne and I had been planning and saving toward for a while. And yet, as exciting and grown up as the whole prospect was, when we began the actual, serious business of house hunting I almost didn’t want to do it. I didn’t want to do it because it meant I’d have to move…a lot of stuff.

It’s not a revelation to talk about how much moving sucks. Because it does. Moving. Fucking. Sucks. But on top of that general dread was the fact that I’m a bit of an obsessive collector. Posters, Lego, various toys and prop replicas, DVDs, books, you name it and I probably collect it. So to move them all was more than a daunting task. It was a nightmare. And I mean that literally. I had nightmares about it.

You may be wondering what could be so bad. It’s just moving. Throw the stuff in some bubble wrap, write “Fragile” on the side and call it a day. Well, you see, that would be okay for normal people. However, my wife and I are not normal people. Our entire apartment was covered in framed art. And I do mean the entire apartment. You can watch a tour I did at this link right before we started taking things down to move. It’s literally hundreds of frames expertly puzzled together in a manic look most people hate. But we love it.

Plus, if you’ve seen videos like the one above of me building the largest Lego set ever created, you can begin to imagine how many fully constructed Lego sets are on display. So moving those, as well as framed art, as well as a 50-inch wide flat file filled with hundreds of pounds of posters, on top of everything else a normal person would move was, as I said, scary. It was ever scarier when we got hit with a massive penalty.

Quick aside to explain: Everyone told us buying a house in the Los Angeles area was damned near impossible. But it wasn’t for us. After about three months of looking, the first house we put an offer in was eventually accepted. The whole thing happened months before we expected it to, which was great—but also bad, because we were in a lease until the end of the year. So, to break that least, we had to put in two months notice and pay a $4000 penalty, which sucked almost as much as moving. However, we then knew we could stay in our apartment for two months and, in that time, slowly move everything into the new house, which is exactly what happened.

Just a small fraction of the frames waiting to find a new home in our new house.

Twice a week, at least, for two months, Jayne and I took two cars full of crap to the house, which is about 20 minutes away from the apartment. The majority of those trips were framed art and fragile collectibles like Lego sets. Now, if you look online about how to move Lego sets, most people suggest taking them all apart and putting them back together. To me, that was not an option. I love my brick creations but they take hours, days even, to put together. I’d rather them stay intact, thank you very much. So it became about figuring out ways to move not just those, but also hundreds of framed posters and works of art.

The art was relatively simple. Take them off the wall, carefully line them up on a newly-purchased handtruck, bring them to the car, neatly stack them on top of each other separated by towels or sheets, wrap the piled-up frames in towels or sheets and then put a few heavy boxes up against them so they wouldn’t move. Sometimes those boxes were also filled with smaller frames, also stuffed with things to make sure they didn’t scratch. Then it was a matter of driving slowly and carefully to the house and unloading them. Done and done.

I can’t imagine what the process would have been, or what it would have cost, to move further than 20 minutes away, but luckily that’s not a story I’m able to tell.

Legos in plastic containers were a lifesaver.

The Lego sets were, actually, a similar story. My friend Jonathan suggested large plastic containers to move them. This way, if something fell off, it was contained and easy to find. So we bought a few of those and very carefully moved them into those containers. All went well until we got to the massive Lego Millennium Falcon. We couldn’t find any container big enough for it. We found one that came close, though, and it moved to the house with only minor hull damage. It was its very own version of the Kessel Run.

So over the course of the two months, Jayne and I moved all of the posters and Lego builds to the house. We moved other stuff too, but we concentrated mostly on things we knew movers would struggle with. Then, as the move date approached, I realized that my poster-filled flat file was going to be more of an issue than originally thought. This thing is seriously massive, seriously heavy, and filled with lots of very easily damaged limited paper.

My flat file in the new house. Tissue box inserted for scale.

An artist friend suggested moving each draw individually. However, you can’t walk through a doorway with a drawer because it’s too wide. You have to tip and angle it. To do that, he suggested applying pressure to keep the posters from moving when it was being tilted to get through the door. There was some huge risk in that, though. So, over the last week before the move, every trip to the house came with a stack of 30-50 posters, flat, in the back of my car. It turned out that you could stack flat posters pretty high on the handtruck and, as long as you didn’t nick the corners going through doors, it was fairly painless. With the flat file eventually empty, the movers moved it with ease, not having to worry about damaging the valuables inside.

Oh, and as for all the action figures, Hot Toys, Master Replica lightsabers, and more…we had been renting a storage unit to keep empty boxes in for most of those items. So it was just a matter of picking them up, repacking each item, and then moving them normally. It took some foresight but it worked out.

All of which is to say: moving is really hard. But it’s even harder if you have geek shit to think about—valuable, fragile shit you love and trust no one else with. Our movers were great but I think they would have been less great if we told them they had to move 300 framed pieces of art when they arrived.

So that’s my story. What’s yours. Do need tips? Hints? I’ll answer some questions below. But also, feel free to chime in with your own stories.


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Source: Kotaku.com

We Built the 2,300-Piece Stranger Things Lego Set and Now We’re in the Upside Down

Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

Lego my Eggo! When we saw that Stranger Things was getting its own 2,300-piece Lego set, Gizmodo video producer Raul Marrero knew he had to journey into the Upside Down and create this monstrosity. Check out our time-lapse video build of the Byers’ home, just in time for season three of Stranger Things. Be careful: The Mind Flayer might be watching too.

Built in about 12 to 16 hours (over the course of three days), this Stranger Things set recreates both the regular and Upside Down versions of Joyce, Jonathan, and Will’s home, stacked on top of each other. It’s 2,287 pieces of cool Easter eggs and references, featuring special cameos from the Alphabet wall, Will the Wise’s wizard hat, Eleven’s Eggo waffles, and of course a cute little Demogorgon figure you can use to haunt the heroes. If you want to stop him, there’s an oh-so-adorable bear trap too.

Be sure to check out the video to see how this Stranger Things Lego set came together. We’ve also included some amazing photos of the build, so you can get an up-close peek at all the fun details. 

Stranger Things: The Upside Down Lego set is currently available at the Lego Store for $199. Stranger Things 3 is now out on Netflix.


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Source: Kotaku.com

This New Jurassic Park LEGO Set Includes a Sexy Jeff Goldblum Minifigure

God creates dinosaurs. God destroys dinosaurs. God creates man. Man destroys God. Man creates dinosaurs… and then this LEGO set. Welcome to Jurassic Park. It has been 26 years since the iconic film was released in theaters and now there is finally a LEGO set worthy of it.

LEGO released a massive 3,000+ piece set themed all around the original Jurassic Park. Hold onto your butts and get yourself a LEGO Jurassic Park: T. rex Rampage. Fans of the series will enjoy how nostalgia-packed the set is. It includes the adults from the film (sorry, Tim and Lex). And of all the versions of Jeff Goldblum they could have gone with from the Jurassic Park franchise, they obviously chose open-shirt Ian Malcolm. In Jurassic Park, we don’t need any women shedding their clothing, we need Jeff Goldblum shirtless. Along with the sexy Ian Malcolm, the set also includes minifigures for Alan Grant, Ellie Sattler, Ray Arnold, Dennis Nedry, and John Hammond, with his mosquito-in-amber walking stick.

Enjoy an advanced building experience and relive classic movie moments with LEGO® Jurassic World 75936 Jurassic Park: T. rex Rampage. This collectible construction toy includes 3,120 building bricks and features the original Jurassic Park’s iconic gate and a large, fully posable, brick-built T. rex dinosaur toy which is ideal for display. The trigger-activated gate is framed by a wall incorporating 7 detailed, brick-built scenes inspired by the movie, such as John Hammond’s dining room, Ray Arnold’s control room and a bunker for Ian Malcolm. A must-have for Jurassic World fans, this toy construction set includes 6 minifigures and baby dinosaur figure, plus a minifigure display stand with T. rex facts plate.

You can order LEGO Jurassic Park: T. rex Rampage for the T. rex-sized price of $250 on LEGO’s website now.


Source: Kotaku.com

Lego Makes Tiny Tower Just A Little Bit Better

With more than 10 million downloads on iOS and Android devices, Tiny Tower is one of the most successful business simulation games of all time. Now NimbleBit has teamed up with Lego to make essentially the same game, only with Lego bricks and figures. It’s called Lego Tower, and it’s nice.

Tiny Tower is a free-to-play mobile game about building a tower, floor by floor. Residential floors attract little virtual people. Business floors require up to three of those little virtual people to operate. The money amassed from business floors (through virtual people paying rent) is used to build new floors. On the left side of the tower is an elevator, which the player can operate to deliver virtual people to their requested floor, generating more revenue and making the player feel more useful.

Lego Tower, out today on iTunes and Google Play, is all that and a bag of bricks. Instead of NimbleBit’s Bitizens, the virtual people are Lego minifigures, and players can collect different pants, shirts and heads to change their figures’ appearance. The tower background, lobby and roof can be customized with different Lego themes. It’s bright, shiny and happy. I have only just started my tower, yet I am already quite pleased.

As charming as Lego Tower is, it’s also a big ‘ol advertisement for Lego products. Certain customization options, like the builds that top off the tower, carry “Inspired By A Real Set” labels, so folks know they are for sale. Does that Ninjago tower topper look nice? You can buy a set like it in real life and build it yourself. Ask your parents before stealing their credit cards, kids.

Lego Tower is also a free-to-play game, and there are several ways to pay. Users can spend cash on in-game currency to speed up building. Then there’s the Tower Club, a VIP subscription that gives players special benefits like double rent from tower residents, 25 percent off upgrades and automatic elevator control. Five club days costs $1.99. 299 club days is $19.99.

All of the cash purchases are optional, of course. I’ve squeezed plenty of enjoyment out of my early build of the game without spending a cent. In fact, I did a free trial of the Tower Club and found that I preferred the game without it. Automatic elevator control? That’s half the actual gameplay out the window.

One of the easiest ways to create a lovable game is to take an already lovable game and add something else lovable to it. Lego Tower, ladies and gentlemen.

Source: Kotaku.com

Some LEGO Star Wars Fans Want More Grunting

At E3 this past week, WB Games and TT Games revealed the latest and possibly biggest entry in the popular LEGO Star Wars franchise. LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is coming out next year and will be based on all nine films, including the upcoming Star Wars Rise Of Skywalker. But if you check out fan reaction to the announcement, you’ll see fans are really desperate for one thing: grunts.

In the older LEGO Star Wars games, characters would not speak during cutscenes. Instead, they would make different noises, like grunts, grumbling, etc. This made the cutscenes in the game feel more childish and slapstick.

But as TT Games continued to develop and release more LEGO games based on other franchises, the grunts would eventually disappear. This happened with the release of LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, which was the first game from TT Games to use actual voice acting and not grunts or other weird noises. Later games after this, like LEGO Lord Of The Rings, would also use audio clips from the films to give characters in the game voices.

On the one hand, these audio improvements helped TT Games tell more complex stories and jokes in their later LEGO games. But for some fans, these voiced characters hurt the sillier tone and atmosphere of the earlier games. Which leads us to the current situation.

After the announcement of LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga and the reveal that the game will feature voiced characters, fans almost immediately began asking about or begging for grunts to be added into the game.

A tweet posted by TT Games during E3 last week shared a list of some of the features and changes in the game. If you check the replies, a large amount of them are fans asking about grunts or sharing their love for the non-voice acted cutscenes.

“I hope so. Nothing against voice acting but the grunts are pretty nostalgic to me. I grew up with the Complete Saga,” tweeted one fan in response to another fan asking about grunts. Another fan shared their reasoning for wanting grunts to return, tweeting “If we wanted voices we would just watch the films. I want more of the visual comedy that came from the early Lego games!” A lot of the grunt-related replies to this and other TT Games tweets boil down to these two points: That grunts are more nostalgic for some fans and that the grunts are funnier and more comedic than voices.

It might seem odd to think of people having nostalgic memories of LEGO Star Wars, but the first games did come out nearly 15 years ago. For some fans who were kids back then, these games are a huge part of their gaming childhood.

I understand these feelings. I was about 12 and a half years old when the first game was released and I remember playing it for days, unlocking everything I could and staying up way too late on the weekends. Going back and watching old cutscenes from the first games while writing this post I felt a pang of nostalgia. And I get what #TeamGrunt is saying about the feel of these earlier games. There’s a charm to them that the later games lack by having voice acting.

TT Games seems to be aware of how many fans are wanting grunts in the new game and have actually addressed the issue. In an interview with Gamestop, James McLoughlin, the game director on LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga explained that the team had heard all the feedback from fans and was looking into possibly adding a mode or option into the game that would allow players to turn off voices.

So it seems that fans of grunting might get the option to hear only grunts and mumbling when the full game releases next year.

Source: Kotaku.com

The New Lego Star Wars Is Impressive And Surprisingly Different

E3 2019It’s time for the biggest gaming show of the year. We’ve got articles, videos, podcasts and maybe even a GIF or two.  

If a hands-off theater demo of a new video game can over-deliver E3, then Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga sure did. The amount of changes I was shown to the 20-year-old Lego video game formula was startling.

I checked out the game as E3 was winding down on Thursday, taking a front row seat for a look at a game that I expected to come off as a rehash of some of the four previous Lego Star Wars games. After all, three of them have collectively covered seven of the main Star Wars movies, and nine movies are depicted in this new game.

From the start, there were big surprises:

The standout change is the camera angle. We were only shown the open-world portion of the game, but even there the change is pronounced. The camera is closer in and behind-the back, with the character pushed in much closer than usual, similar to how you’d view you the action and the character you’re controlling in a Gears of War game. The camera is controlled freely with the analog stick. This angle will also be used in the game’s levels. “We changed it because kids have changed,” the game’s director, James McLoughlin, later told me in an interview. “They are much more accomplished gamers than they were at the start.” He noted how deftly kids work with free cameras in Minecraft and Fortnite, among others.

Combat now involves light attacks, heavy attacks and force moves, allowing for more complex fighting and button combos, a depth attempted in few Lego games other than the recent Lego NInjago Movie adaptation.

Then there’s the sheer amount of Lego objects in the world. Skywalker Saga’s galaxy isn’t all-virtual-Lego the way that the Lego Videogame Movie games were, but it otherwise looks more like it is composed of Lego bricks than any other game I’ve seen in the franchise. Early in the demo, as we were shown the Millennium Falcon flying through space toward Tatooine, a Star Destroyer suddenly appeared from hyperspace. It looks to be entirely made of Lego—some 18,000,000 bricks, the person running the demo remarked, if it was built in real life. McLoughlin later explained to me that all spaceship interiors in the game are rendered as if fully made of Lego, including action set in the Death Star. Down on Tatooine, the all-Lego Sarlacc Pit was particularly impressive.

The game is set across a swath of Star Wars space. In the demo it was broken up into nine regions, each consisting of two or three planets that are featured in the movies. Players start the game by picking one of the nine main Star Wars films. They can then can start flying to planets that will contain a mix of movie-centric material and more generalized Star Wars activities. Picking a movie unlocks some planets that include levels from those films, though players can always go back and start a new movie before finishing the one they started. Any planets unlocked for one movie will be available to freely visit even once another movie has been selected. So you can be trying to tackle missions in Return of the Jedi but still be able to hop over to planets featured in, say, The Force Awakens, if you’d started playing through that movie already.

The movies are depicted through a mix of activities in the open world and discrete levels. McLoughlin said there will be five levels for each film and that the developers are trying to focus as much as possible on sections of the movies that weren’t turned into levels in previous Lego games. The first mission for the Phantom Menace, for example, will be the underwater chase through the core of the planet Naboo. “We just didn’t have the tech to do that kind of stuff back in the day,” he said. Sections of the movie prior to that, such as Obi-Wan Kenobi and Qui-Gon Jinn’s movie-starting arrival on a trade federation ship, are sequences the player tackles in the game’s open world and aren’t a level proper.

The demo focused on a slice of the game’s open world, specifically the Anchorhead region of Tatooine, which is just one section players can explore on just one of the game’s many planets. It was huge and full of characters, including R2D2, Jawas and Banthas on which the character could ride. We were shown a basic side quest—one of apparently 500 set up for the game—involving translating for and then helping a Gonk droid. It was fine, but as I noted to McLoughlin, the Lego series’ open worlds have largely been filled with dull sidequests or empty expanses. He acknowledged the criticism—”We realized the open worlds needed a bit more oomph”—and cited The Legends Of Zelda: Breath of the Wild as an influence. “One of the things we’ve been doing, kind of, I suppose like Zelda, where at every corner you turn, there’s always something to do, like if it’s rescuing the little dudes stuck under rocks, etcetera, etcetera.” He said they’re filling more of their world with more puzzles. McLoughlin also teased some more interesting types of activities in the open world: bounty hunter missions in which you go to a planet to seek a character hidden on another planet and “smuggler’s runs” where you pick up cargo and have to fly it from system to system without being caught by the Empire.

Here’s another good detail for those frustrated by earlier Lego games’ open worlds: You can stop doing one sidequest before finishing it, start another and the game will remember your progress in the other quests.

The game’s spread across nine movies means it’ll adapt the forthcoming Episode IX: The Rise Of Skywalker. Apparently it hasn’t been put in the game yet, because they haven’t been told the plot. “We know nothing, and that’s not just a line because you’re recording me,” he said. The demo’s movie-select interface depicted a scene from Episode IX’s trailer.

Like the previous Lego games, Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga will support co-op. Because of the new camera controls, the view will be split even during levels. Given all this rethinking of the formula, might they finally add on-line co-op? “We have new technology,” McLoughlin said, stopping right there as if he’d rehearsed for that question. He would not say more. 

Source: Kotaku.com

Forza Horizon 4 Gets A Lego Expansion This Week

E3 2019It’s time for the biggest gaming show of the year. We’ve got articles, videos, podcasts and maybe even a GIF or two.  

Apparently, the Forza Horizon team is creating expansion packs by reaching directly into my mind and rummaging around for a bit. The Lego Speed Champions expansion for Forza Horizon 4 assembles on June 13.

Shades of Forza Horizon 3‘s Hot Wheels expansion, the Lego Speed Champions expansion pack gives racers a Lego wonderland to race through. It’s filled with bricks to smash, Lego cars to drive and oh god I am going to faint.

I am so happy. Carry on.

Source: Kotaku.com