Inside Look at the Mechanics of Building the Shanghai Centre Tower on LEGO Architect Shanghai (21039) Set

While the official worldwide release of the LEGO Architecture Shanghai (21039) building set won’t be until January 1st of 2018, residents of the city in question will already have a head start in acquiring this superb example of brick building design. LEGO stores in Shanghai and in Shanghai Disneyland will have already started carrying set 21039 since Saturday, December 2.

To those who need a refresher, LEGO Architecture Shanghai (21039) replicates six well-known structures in the iconic Chinese port city. Four of them are veritable skyscrapers, the tallest of which is the unique Shanghai Centre Building with the twisting shape.


If you’re curious as to how the twist of the Shanghai Centre Building was translated into interconnecting LEGO bricks, the mechanics were revealed online by builder NateV, who posted screenshots of the building process for the skyscraper, of which the real structure is the third tallest in the world, behind only the Tokyo Skytree and Dubai’s Burj Khalifa.

LEGO Architecture simply needed to copy the building design for the Shanghai Centre Building, which are actually nine building segments stacked atop each other. As seen above, the ground-level structure is a base for support pillars wherein the flat blocks representing each of the 127 floors is then threaded and stacked. Every boundary of the building segment is represented by a light-colored brick.

After the floor blocks are stacked, the builder only needs to twist the structure to replicate the actual building.

It’s an impressive mechanical design that will surely fire up the imaginations of anyone buying the LEGO Architecture Shanghai (21039) building set, whether in Shanghai now, or later globally at the start of the New Year.

LEGO Seasonal Year of the Dog (40235) Set Revealed – Building Instructions Now Available Online.

A few moments ago, I reported that LEGO has recently uploaded a new stash of building instructions for this month of December, including the last to be revealed LEGO Nexo Knights set, Lance’s Hover Jouster (72001). Brickset took the liberty of gathering them in one place so you can have a quick overview of what LEGO has made available on its servers. To our surprise, LEGO has also revealed its next seasonal, commemorative set to celebrate 2018’s Lunar New Year. This year, we saw the Year of the Rooster (40234) as 2017’s seasonal set, and for 2018, we have the Year of the Dog (40235) seasonal set to look forward to. Here’s how the set looks like based on its building instructions as uploaded by LEGO.

Coming in at 155 pieces, it is interesting to note that since 2016’s Year of the Monkey (40207) seasonal set, LEGO seems to have been observing a common design for these Lunar New Year commemorative sets – each of them following a straightforward build, resting on a circular baseplate as pointed out by Brickfinder. Will this be a regular thing from LEGO? I guess only time can tell. The Year of the Dog (40235) may likely come as another LEGO Store promotional (a gift with purchase set) that comes with a minimum purchase amount of any LEGO set. I’ll give you updates as soon as more news comes in, and for the meantime, you may want to check out the parts list for this set below and see if you can build this little puppy using the LEGO bricks that you have.

Thanks you once again to Brickset for the tip.

2018 LEGO Nexo Knights Lance’s Hover Jouster (72001) Finally Revealed.

The latest 2018 LEGO Nexo Knights are now on sale both in-store and online at However, since the release of Season 5’s latest sets earlier in November, there is one set is noticeably missing from the reveals. With 5 out of 6 sets already unveiled, we still yet to see an image of Lance’s newest battle gear against the latest threat of tech infection – until today. Thanks to Brickset’s updated list of published instructions for this month of December, we now have an idea of how the LEGO Nexo Knights Lance’s Hover Jouster (72001) will look like. It’s kind of odd actually to see that the building instructions for this set are already available online, even before the official images are released. Nevertheless, it gives us a glimpse of this set as we can see from the image below.

Same as the rest of the sets in this wave of Nexo Knights sets, Lance’s Hover Jouster (72001) comes with two separate builds. The main build consists of the Hover Jouster, while the second one is a creepy looking version of a Cyberbyter, whose lower torso is made up spider-like robotic legs. Imagine Babyface from Toy Story and you’ll get the idea.

Frankly speaking, I’m expecting more from the Hover Jouster in terms of keeping with the aesthetics of the rest of the sets in this series. By far, this is the least appealing among the rest of this Nexo Knights subtheme, with the Hover Jouster looking more like a mobile turret rather than any particular type of vehicle as seen in the latest series. To create the build’s ‘hovering’ effect, the wheels below the Hover Jouster are cleverly hidden from sight using several 2×4 plates with brackets. The wheels also seem to pivot beneath the circular plates where they are attached. I believe the designers could have done better – perhaps even better than Season 1’s Lance’s Mecha Horse (70312) and the subsequent Lance vs. Lightning (70359) set. It gives me the impression that this set was designed hurriedly, without giving much thought on how it can fit to the overall feel of the latest series.

The set is not that all bad though, since one of the main selling points of these latest Nexo Knights sets are its impressive use of black and trans green parts to create the vehicles and other builds for the Cyberbyters. As I pointed out in my earlier post, the choice of color scheme for Knighton’s latest threat is a good call which gives the set a sort of revived interest for the classic LEGO Space theme particularly for the Blacktron series. The bionic looking, spider-like Cyberbyter in this set is also impressive in spite of its relatively easy build. My only criticism is that I wish the minifigure torso is resting on a rotating circular plate so it can turn from left to right as an added play feature.

The LEGO Nexo Knights Lance’s Hover Jouster (72001) comes in at 218 pieces and is expected to retail for $19.99. So what do you think about this set? Will you pick this up once it appears on toy shelves? Share what you think in the comments below.

Save Mushroom Kingdom from the Clutches of the Custom LEGO Bowser MOC!

What’s better than a custom Super Mario and Yoshi MOC? Well, but of course – a custom Super Mario, Yoshi, AND a Bowser MOC! Yup, you heard it right, because just after Tyler’s latest super cool Mario MOC from Super Mario Odyssey, now comes the most iconic turtle baddie of all time – Bowser!

To begin with, this custom LEGO Bowser is absolutely spot-on! I couldn’t overemphasize how this next brick-built creation from Tyler is so close to how we imagine Bowser to be. The scale and color combination is superb. Admittedly, it was quite a fun challenge for Tyler and in fact, it took him some time before he got Bowser just right. For example, if you look closely at Bowser’s head, you’ll see a lot of different angles and weird shapes. Coming up with Bowser’s shell is also kind of tough considering the relative difficulty of coming up with domed shapes using a combination of LEGO plates and pieces. Nevertheless, the result was all worth it.

The level of detail that Tyler added to Bowser’s head is very impressive. He even added several hinge pieces for the mouth and jaw to make him look more menacing, plus on the lower jaw, you’ll see that Tyler added a sort of a movable lip to add more expression to Bowser’s already intimidating stare. The mouth completely opens and closes with his teeth and jaw on perfect alignment.

As it turns out, Bowser’s shell is also removable and you can easily replace it with any color that you want. It is made of many LEGO panel pieces that are hinged on a central piece.

Due to the sheer size and weight of this LEGO Bowser MOC, it is understandable that movement along its points of articulation may somehow be limited. Nevertheless, Tyler managed to add some play features that allow some minimal movement on its arms, hip and feet. Bowser’s fingers can also move and his hands can hold a weapon or two if you wish. I love how the hands turned out, with its menacing claws and joints.

In case you’re wondering how this custom LEGO Bowser will fare with Tyler’s earlier rendition of Mario, well, here they are with both MOCs scaled just right.

I would certainly want to see this iconic pair standing side by side on my LEGO workstation. Here’s Tyler with more about this LEGO Bowser custom build.

If you wish to add Bowser to your roster of brick-built Super Mario characters, then be sure to check out Build Better Bricks on how to come up with your own. While you’re at it, be sure to see Tyler’s building instructions on how to make your very own Mario from Super Mario Odyssey, and everyone’s favorite Nintendo dinosaur, Yoshi. Happy building!


Hello, it’s me… LEGO Mario!

If there is any Nintendo game that gets better and better with each release, I have to give credit to Super Mario. I remember the time that I played this 8-bit game on a Nintendo Family Computer or FamiCom. This was my very first dive into the gaming scene, and I was hooked since then. Since its inception in 1985, Nintendo just kept on pushing the boundary of gameplay with Super Mario. With the advent of the Switch, Mario is now taken at a whole new level with a lot of new characters, and an awesome sandbox type of environment to explore. Super Mario Odyssey, which was officially released a few weeks ago, is now considered as the fastest selling Mario game in the US,  selling  2 million copies in just 3 days after its release last October 27. It is proof of how the humble plumber from Mushroom Kingdom is still very close to everyone’s heart.

To celebrate the release Mario’s next adventure in Super Mario Odyssey, Tyler got busy again in his studio and the result is short of breathtaking – it is a custom, LEGO Mario from Super Mario Odyssey, together with his new pal, Cappy!

Tyler created Mario in a similar scale to that of his custom LEGO Yoshi MOC which he did before. Though it may look great to have this brick-built Mario mount on the back of Yoshi as an added play feature seen from the video game, Tyler opted not to so we can better appreciate the articulation on these MOCs.

Similar to the Yoshi figure, there are a lot of ball joints in this custom built Mario that added plenty of movement and articulation to this set. From its ankles, hips, arms and neck, you can add plenty of motion on this MOC without compromising its stability. The joints add more life and fluidity to the build, which is only fitting considering how dynamic Mario’s character is in Odyssey. Tyler even added that extra play feature of adding movement to Mario’s mouth using some hinge pieces. It adds a little more expression to his face, together with the head’s movement.

I think one of the best features of this custom LEGO Mario is Tyler’s rendition of Mario’s newest companion, Cappy. Tyler nailed it perfectly when he recreated those pair of wide-opened googly eyes on Mario’s cap, and the cool thing is, you can easily switch back into Mario’s classic cap with its iconic logo. The classic M logo was custom printed on a round tile.

Tyler also added the classic gold coin to give that Super Mario vibe. You can also easily make one using a gold plate and a gold tile, mounted on a clear bar piece to give that floating effect. Here’s Tyler with more on his custom LEGO Mario. Watch this.

If you enjoyed watching this video, then you’ll be glad to know that you can also build one of your own. You can visit BuildBetterBricks to see how you can come up with your own custom LEGO Mario, and with a minimal fee, you can download the building instructions together with a parts list that allows you to easily export to BrickLink and order the LEGO pieces that you need. In fact, you can even get a 20% discount on all the building instructions across the store during this entire month of November when you enter the coupon code BRICKSET at checkout. These, and the rest of Tyler and Sean’s creations, were so cool that even Brickset took notice.

So what do you think about this latest creation from Tyler? Are you a Super Mario fan just as we are? Show the Super Mario in you by adding your comment down below!