LEGO as a company may have a range of products that cater to many age groups today. That doesn’t change the fact that children remain their original and primary focus. The LEGO Foundation charity arm does its part in helping meet the needs of disadvantaged children around the world. And they have been especially busy since 2020 in aiding global response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As recently as this past June, LEGO Foundation has donated $23 million to improve access to education in pandemic-locked areas. Now they are announcing their biggest charitable contribution yet, for the sake of pandemic-affected children.
As Brick Fanatics reports, LEGO announced this past Sunday its pledge of $150 million for children and community support. The reason, as stated in their social media accounts this past Sunday, September 26, is obvious. Lifestyle changes wrought by the pandemic, in how children access education and parents earn a living, constitutes a crisis. Thus, their donation of $150 million will be divided between two major beneficiaries for supporting COVID-affected communities worldwide. $70 million of the pledge will go to UNICEF for vaccines and health supplies. The remaining $60 million will be distributed to LEGO’s partner charities to help accelerate COVID recovery with child cases.
LEGO Foundation CEO Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen described the ongoing pandemic as a transformative moment for the world’s educational systems. The sizable donation they have given to UNICEF and their partner charities are in hopes of finding creative solutions to challenges brought by COVID. She also called on world governments and the private sector to not let up on donations to COVID response. In her words, “No one is safe until we are all safe.” Albrectsen gave this speech during the Global Citizen Live event last weekend.
This past weekend saw LEGO, WB Games and Lucasfilm Games give a mobile game its greatest second chance. The original Android/iOS debut of “LEGO Star Wars Battles” in 2020 wasn’t so hot, closing only months ago. Its publishers however believe the mobile game app had potential. So last month they announced its revival for the subscription-based Apple Arcade platform. And this past Friday, September 24, “LEGO Star Wars Battles” went live anew in its new home. To commemorate the occasion and drum up interest with Apple Arcade subscribers, WB Games revealed a short launch trailer.
The half-minute “LEGO Star Wars Battles” trailer calls on “Star Wars” and mobile RTS fans to “Build, Battle and Repeat” once more. One-one-one multiplayer sees the struggle between the Dark and Light Sides from various “Star Wars” media. Players can collect troops and named characters from the “Star Wars” films, “Clone Wars” series and spinoffs like “Rogue One.”
Choose a planetary battlefield from the “Star Wars” Galaxy and deploy your forces. Construct LEGO-brick structures, defenses and combat vehicles as you command your army to victory. Whether it’s the beaches of Scarif, the ice-fields of Hoth or the Ewok forests of Endor, battle is always waiting.
Check out “LEGO Star Wars Battles,” available now on Apple Arcade for a $4.99 monthly subscription. A one-month free trial is also an option. Apple Arcade is open on iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple TV. For more info and discussion, you may visit “LEGO Star Wars Games” social media at Facebook and Twitter .
It’s beginning to feel like getting 10,000 supporters for one’s LEGO Ideas product idea is really quick now. Just look at the sheer number of 10-K builds from the First 2021 Review Stage (57!). One can see where that impression comes from. But LEGO Ideas plays hosts to a lot of product ideas just waiting to achieve the magic number. Every product idea that gains the necessary support does so because plenty of people want them. So over the weekend, the Third 2021 Review Stage grew to five after three more sets hit 10-K support.
Set number 3 on the LEGO Ideas Third 2021 Review Stage is kris-kelvin’s “Great Coral Reef.” We might cite similarities to Ralf Ranghaal’s Land Ahoy submission, being a set built on a base. But this product idea features one of the most intricate environmental depictions yet done in LEGO. Even better, rather than plants the “vegetation” is coral. Great Coral Reef undoubtedly pays homage to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, a Natural World Wonder. Other than the reef, this set will net plentiful vegetation/coral pieces for decorative-oriented LEGO builders. Its short support-gathering phase (presented only last June) also speaks to its popularity with LEGO Ideas voters.
The Last Airbender
The other two new additions, both from licensed IPs, were submitted by their builders last year. Set 2 evokes one of the most iconic 21st-Century animated series, “Avatar: The Last Airbender.” “The Avatar Returns” by ky-e depicts the Nickelodeon show’s pilot arc. Remember how Katara and Sokka rescued Avatar Aang from Prince Zuko and General Iroh’s Fire Nation ship? This could be an Avatar-fan’s chance to replay that scene. Furthermore, ky-e wants to see this build become the next LEGO Ideas set to launch a full line. Surely Nickelodeon’s “Avatar” in its two series can have as big a LEGO fandom as “Minecraft” does.
Zelda and Link
Finally, 10-K Club member BrickGallery channels Nintendo’s “Legend of Zelda” with his product idea. “Hyrule Castle 30th Anniversary” celebrates the aforementioned landmark from the “Zelda” games. While Nintendo released the first installment on NES in 1986, Hyrule Castle only debuted in “A Link to the Past” for SNES in 1991 (JPN) and 1992 (US/EU). This iteration of Hyrule Castle however hails from “Breath of the Wild,” released 2017 for the Nintendo Switch. Princess Zelda and Link must battle through the castle to confront Calamity Ganon before he destroys the world.
There three submissions join Land Ahoy and Terrariums to make five 10-K sets for the Third 2021 Review Stage. It’s certainly shaping up to be a great selection for the LEGO Ideas crew when the stage ends January next year.
Over the past several weeks LEGO has been tweaking some things online with their website, particularly Shop@Home. We all recall the “color select” option provided for selected sets that was pilot-tested in the UK and Ireland. Perhaps they have other settings on the site to adjust or something. That might explain this curious phenomenon caught by Brick Fanatics. Said phenomenon affects certain LEGO sets already available for online purchase or at least pre-order at Shop@Home. Any pre-order links on their listings no longer work.
There are several LEGO sets prominently affected by this seeming Shop@Home problem. Creator Expert Pickup Truck (10290) and Batman Batmobile Tumbler (76240) were at least available on pre-order already. Now the yellow pre-order tag no longer leads to any pre-ordering page for these sets. The same goes for the DC Classic TV Series Batman Cowl (76238). What could be going on with Shop@Home at this time? LEGO has made no announcement or given explanation for the sudden inability to pre-order sets that already allowed it.
So far, only LEGO Shop@Home US manifests any problem with pre-orders on sets that were already allowing it. Could it be a coding bug? Was LEGO in the middle of implementing some other interface feature? It really is peculiar and hopefully it gets resolved soon.
Microsoft Xbox game franchise “Halo” and Mega Brands’ Mega Construx have been a marketing match made in heaven. With the former’s latest installment coming December, tie-in Mega Construx products have arrived early. This year saw the release of several “Halo Infinite” Mega Construx Series 3 microfigures. And it just so happens that our Brick Show Shop has eight of them listed for “Halo” figure collectors. All come from the Mega Construx Series 3 microfigure mystery packs, and not a one costs over $10 too. The catch: we’ve got limited units in stock! So take a gander at our offerings below:
The Brick Show Shop guarantees all items are new. Check out our collection right now, before they all run out! “Halo Infinite,” from 343 Industries and Xbox Game Studios, releases on December 8. Catch the game on Windows, Xbox One and the Xbox Series X/S.
LEGO House, opened in Billund, Denmark in 2017, is the ultimate experience venue for fans of the LEGO brand. It’s a museum, events place, activity center and even occasional Airbnb destination. LEGO brick-heads never fail to be astounded by it. In 2018 the streaming giant Netflix made a documentary on the appropriately-called Home of the Brick. In almost an hour of runtime, the program delves into the history of LEGO House. Unfortunately for most interested viewers the documentary has been accessible only to Netflix subscribers. This week however, LEGO prevailed on Netflix to make this special available to all audiences.
According to Brick Fanatics, the “LEGO House Documentary” can finally be seen free on YouTube. As of September 20 the special is now hosted on the official LEGO House YouTube channel. In 47 minutes viewers may learn the conception of the Home of the Brick and its challenges in construction. Featured interviews include the key members of the LEGO House project. Even Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen has his own piece to say about the genesis of the Home of the Brick. The third-generation majority-owner of The LEGO Group was one of the project’s guiding hands after all.
LEGO might have sound reason for making the Netflix documentary open to all. The actual LEGO House itself closed down in the recent past due to the pandemic. They have only recently begun attempts at normalizing the events schedule again. LEGO House Fan Day, the first after the appearance of COVID, happened Thursday, September 23. The former streaming-exclusive documentary could help drum up renewed attention to the Home of the Brick. Perhaps as the pandemic comes more under control a new wave of guests could check out LEGO House. Until then, the documentary is up for all those curious.
Now that the Marvel Cinematic Universe is moving again, screening- and streaming-wise, LEGO’s got some new Marvel sets waiting. At least that’s the rumor according to The Brick Fan, after they noticed more listings on Brickmerge.de. The German LEGO price comparison site apparently has listed at least nine Marvel-themed items arriving in 2022. They have some (semi-descripitive) names, but not all of these are even MCU tie-ins. Three of these have “Classic” in their name. It’s possible they may depict Marvel characters outside of their MCU portrayals. But we’ve talked long enough. Here are those LEGO Marvel sets Brickmerge mentions:
- Spider-Man’s Techno Trike (10781) – €9.99/$11.71
- Hulks and Rhinos Truck Duel (10782) – €19.99/$23.43
- Spider-Man in Doc Ock’s Laboratory (10783) – €29.99/$36.15
- Spider-Man’s Headquarters (10784) – €49.99/$58.59
- Marvel Avengers Classic (Set A?) (76202) – €9.99/$11.71
- Marvel Avengers Classic (Set B?) (76203) – €9.99/$11.71
- Marvel Spider-Man (76204) – €9.99/$11.71
- Marvel New Theatrical (MCU?) (76205) – €29.99/$36.15
- Marvel Avengers Classic (Set C?) (76206) – €39.99/$11.71
All suggested retail prices in dollars are direct conversions.
There are also six “LEGO Super Hero” sets listed on Brickmerge’s database without descriptor names. We’ve decided not to include them in case the Super Hero characters they depict are from DC. The three Marvel Avengers “Classic” sets above are very interesting in their labeling. One should see distinct differences in how Marvel Super Heroes look between their iconic comic-book and MCU selves. We can’t help but wonder what they’ll be like. But we digress. Even when listed in Brickmerge, we must treat these set numbers as rumors until LEGO confirms/debunks them.
The LEGO Ideas Pop-Up Book (21315) is a retired set now. However its spirit lives on, sort of, in the 2021 Bricktober sets exclusive to Toys R Us. Well, make that the TRU stores in the Asia-Pacific region anyways. The three fairytales depicted in the original Ideas set became three separate micro-builds atop LEGO books. This year’s Bricktober series even has a fourth set with all-new story. We were able to get nice images of three of the Bricktobers on TRU Singapore’s website. The fourth set however has gone un-depicted, until images of it popped up on social media.
Shanghai-based LEGO fan dylanchow just shared new images of the LEGO Bricktober sets on Instagram. Among them is the fourth set that wasn’t listed yet on Toys R Us Singapore when we checked. Said set refers to “Alice in Wonderland” and depicts the table in the Mad Hatter’s tea party.
Given this Bricktober set’s lack of presence in a TRU website, there’s a possibility that it might become available with another retailer. Supposedly this Alice Bricktober set comes out October 15 to 31. Therefore, as that date approaches next month we may have concrete details on the set’s availability.
Each LEGO Bricktober 2021 set showcases a fairytale diorama assembled atop a brick-built book. In addition to building instructions they will also have fold-up storybooks with abridged versions of the stories. The Bricktobers come free with every purchase of LEGO sets $69 and up on TRU stores and online. There is still no word on where and how the series will be available outside Asia.
Given how many different LEGO sets there are at any time, actively collecting them isn’t exactly cheap. That’s why one needs to keep an eye on the pricing too, especially when one purchases from retailers. Recently there was a buzz in some European countries about LEGO planning to up retail prices by 2022. German LEGO news sites such as StoneWars.de and Zusammengebaut.com then published an official statement from The LEGO Group. Initially it sounded like the company was hiking some recommended retail prices (RRP) in Europe next year. However a short time later LEGO issued a follow-up clarification, as reported on by Brickset.com on Wednesday.
Now, LEGO is saying that there will be no RRP increase in European markets in 2022. Their original statement mentioned upping the recommended/suggested pricing for retail partners (even if the retailers have final say). This was supposed to be a move towards “continuity” and “transparency” with retail partners. After all, LEGO offers “good value for money.” The follow-up announcement has LEGO insisting that there will be no RRP hike. It was simply to bring a consistency in retail pricing across multiple countries in Europe. So while some LEGO sets might get pricier, others could actually become cheaper. And the RRP adjustment is just for Europe.
With that in mind, LEGO retailers in the Americas, Asia and elsewhere need not worry for now. Other unaffected sectors are the LEGO Stores and LEGO Shop@Home. While the company did not give a list of affected LEGO sets in European retail markets, there are rumors. One product named by StoneWars to allegedly get an adjusted RRP next year is LEGO Marvel Infinity Gauntlet (76191, seen above). Much as the idea of European LEGO retail prices changing in a finger-snap is hyper-imaginative, let’s just wait.
Hey, it’s been a while since we did a piece on those many wonderful LEGO books from DK Publishing. Nowadays they might be available online in digital format, but it’s the hardcopy editions that are sought after more. After all, it’s just like LEGO and DK to stick a collectible minifigure in them. If you’re a LEGO bibliophile and enjoy getting their DK-published books, keep an eye out in 2022. There’s another volume chronicling LEGO CMFs coming out then. And true to form, it’s got an exclusive collectible minifig included.
From authors Helen Murray and Julia March, LEGO and DK are introducing “Meet the Minifigures.” It’s a visual-heavy encyclopedia on LEGO collectible minifigs. That means you can expect great trivia, anecdotes, jokes, and play suggestions illustrated by vivid photos across 128 pages. And yes, let’s not forget the included exclusive CMF: Rock Star. Boy, he certainly does look the part: long hair, face-paint, skull shirt, lightning-bolt pants, and microphone stand. While the book isn’t due out until June 14 next year, it’s already available for pre-orders on Amazon. Really, who can say no to another DK book with sweet CMF?
Check out the Amazon listing blurb below:
Meet the coolest, funniest, and quirkiest LEGO® Minifigures!
Discover fun facts, jokes, and play ideas, and build inspiration from your favorite collectible minifigures.
- Take on a LEGO speed-building challenge with Race Car Guy.
- Find out Party Clown’s funniest joke.
- Build a LEGO underwater creature with Sea Rescuer.
- Learn a fun real-world fact about the number of pizzas eaten per second from Pizza Costume Guy.
And much more!
Comes with an exclusive collectible LEGO Minifigure.
©2021 The LEGO Group.