Publisher of “LEGO Star Wars” Magazine Runs into Trouble with UK Newsagents Regarding Sales Pilot

The Brick Show tries to cover news of LEGO in all of its possible components – the toys, the TV shows and movies, and even printed media. Several times before, we’ve covered releases of official LEGO magazines from various publishers, like Egmont which rolls out the official LEGO Star Wars mag.

Lately however, a pilot by Egmont to increase the circulation of LEGO Star Wars Magazine is drawing the ire of newsagents in the UK, particularly Federation of Independent Retailers. This is in response to Egmont starting to stock its mag not just with the newsagent outlets but on chain supermarkets.

The sticking point to the Egmont circulation move according to the NFRN is that not only will the supermarkets receive the latest issues of LEGO Star Wars Magazine ahead of the newsagents (four weeks ahead even), but the issues then given to the NFRN retailers will only be return issues unsold from the market chains.

NFRN national president Mike Mitchelson remarked that Egmont is treating their member newsagents as second-class retailers with the preferential treatment to chain supermarkets for magazine stock. A reply from Egmont in turn explains that their pilot project is committed to “testing a sustainable distribution model in the UK independents channel.”

In this matter, LEGO is taking the side of their publishing partner, as the ompany’s senior director of licensing and publishing Andrea Ryder tells NFRN, “We have been assured the practice in handling the distribution of LEGO Star Wars Magazine will be changed to allow all retailers to have the ability to order and also to receive the magazine without a differentiation in delivery timing.”

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LEGO Jurassic Park/World and Other Features Inside “Blocks” Magazine Issue 49

Only one more issue and Blocks, the fan community LEGO magazine for building, collecting and customizing your LEGO will be celebrating its golden issue. But that one actually isn’t until next month. This October however will see the release of Blocks’ penultimate issue 49, the main focus of which is an extensive review of LEGO Jurassic Park/World sets as the year of the franchise’s 25th anniversary comes to a close.

Aside from that review and retrospective on the most popular dinosaur-themed media property around (which includes an interview with one of the set designers in Billund), here are other features and articles one might find in Blocks Magazine Issue 49:

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  • LEGO Masters series 2 on UK’s Channel 4 – features interview with new contestants and contest judge Fran Scott
  • Spotlight on LEGO Star Wars Betrayal at Cloud City (75222) – includes designer interview
  • LEGO Creator Expert Aston Martin DB5 (10262) – tips on assembling brick-built James Bond figure (similar to people figures in LEGOLAND Miniland areas) to drive inside the vehicle
  • Month in MOCs – interpreting tabletop RPG classic Dungeons & Dragons in LEGO

Blocks Magazine is available in print or digital format via online subscription. You can check out their official website to see about getting their 49th issue (newly released) or any other back issues that you might be interested in reading.

Brick Fanatics Magazine Issue #1 Debuts

Brick Fanatics has been a leading source of LEGO news tidbits and info on this side of the web for several years already, and this year marks another milestone on the life of the LEGO news outlet with the launch of their first ever Brick Fanatics Magazine.

Brick Fanatics Magazine Issue #1 covers the latest LEGO Star Wars set particularly the much talked about Betrayal at Cloud City (75222) tagged as LEGO’s first offering in its Master Builder Series. It also includes an exclusive walk-through of the massive Hogwarts Castle (71043) by none other than its LEGO designer, Justin Ramsden, and a dedicated column for LEGO’s  former Community Coordinator for North America just to name a few.

Brick Fanatics Magazine

Read on for Brick Fanatic’s full press release. Brick Fanatics Magazine Issue #1 is now available for purchase, with Issue #2 to be available early 2019.

Brick Fanatics Magazine Issue 1 cover revealed

Brick Fanatics Magazine Issue 1’s cover takes inspiration from 75222 Betrayal at Cloud City and The Empire Strikes Back, and teases a unique LEGO Star Wars build project

This latest large scale LEGO Star Wars release hasn’t been to everyone’s liking, but that’s exactly what makes it such an enticing assignment for the creative team at Brick Fanatics Magazine to take on. Issue 1 leads with a sizeable modification of 75222, in the hopes of elevating it in the eyes of many LEGO fans disappointed in the £300 original. Our cover teases a fantastic project that is presented inside through beautiful layout and photography. It’s LEGO building, literally on another level.

75222 Betrayal at Cloud City’s source material also provided the inspiration for the cover build Brick Fanatics Magazine commissioned. Focusing on the climactic moment in The Empire Strikes Back, we took elements based on it from the official LEGO set, and added our own bricks and creativity for this brick built cinematic recreation.

Issue 1’s cover also hints at a number of other exciting features inside, including LEGO Designer Justin Ramsden’s exclusive walkthrough of 71043 Hogwarts Castle and LEGO Group insider Kevin Hinkle’s debut column. There’s plenty inside the magazine, including a look at the LEGO Group’s foray into crowdsourcing, a photographic review of 21311 Voltron, an interview with the father and son team behind an innovative brick-based charity, and a considered look at the new Batwoman minifigure.

Brick Fanatics Magazine is a new 80-page A5 print publication and is available for purchase now, as a single issue with postage and packaging, and as part of 12-issue and 24-issue subscription packages that offer multi-issue savings and free postage and packaging.

Take advantage of these offers at brickfanatics.com/magazine and guarantee every copy of Brick Fanatics Magazine by subscribing today. Issue 2 is due in early 2019, from when the magazine will be published on a monthly basis.

Stay up to date with all things Brick Fanatics Magazine here, including an introduction to the brand new feature concept Review+.

Cutter Blade Found in Sainsbury’s LEGO Create the World Card Foil Pack

Late last August, UK supermarket chain Sainsbury’s revived one of its promotional partnerships with LEGO, the Create the World collectible card series. A new set of LEGO trading cards were introduced to put together in a new volume called “Incredible Inventions”. But a recent event threatens to put a damper on the LEGO collecting fun. Much like its previous edition, collecting the new LEGO cards consists of buying a minimum £10 shopping tag at a Sainsbury’s store to receive a 4-card foil pack. In Kent however, a mother returning from her local Sainsbury’s to discover a cutter blade in a LEGO card foil pack she brought home for her child.

“It didn’t look like it had been tampered with so when I got home I just put the card packs on the table,” recalls Kirsty Thorne to the BBC. “They were all playing at the table going through the cards and that’s when my son brought it to my attention.”

Cutter Blade

From her own examination the blade, a refill for a snap-off utility cutter blade, was simply placed in the pack with the four cards before sealing, possibly an industrial error. The fact that the blade was small enough to fit the pack meant it was not detected until somebody bought it.

A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s noted that the chain is aware of the cutter blade slipped into a LEGO Create the World card pack and are bringing the matter up with their supplier, though the consensus is that it was an isolated accident. Still, the Sainsbury’s store that Mrs. Thorne shopped from to get the card pack has returned her £10 shopping payment by way of apology.

The mother herself is simply relieved that nothing much worse happened, especially considering that her son had opened the foil pack with his teeth, risking injury from the included blade.

Blocks Magazine Issue 48 Now Available and Features LEGO Ideas Voltron (21311)

It looks to be that time again for another major LEGO fan community magazine Blocks to unleash its latest issue. Last month they gave a lot of focus and attention to the details of the LEGO Technic Bugatti Chiron (42083), which recently got an incredible life-sized drivable brick-built replica. For its October 2018 issue, Blocks Magazine Issue 48 is going for the big stars in current LEGO sets, and you probably can get no bigger these days than the impressive LEGO Ideas Voltron: Defender of the Universe (21311), released August 1.

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There’s really no set by LEGO quite like the Ideas Voltron (21311), which not only comprises five fully poseable lion robot models, but is able to combine them into a similarly articulated (and sturdy) large robot. It’s been the darling of serious LEGO collectors since early appearances at 2018 SDCC.

Aside from their main feature review on LEGO Ideas Voltron (21311), this latest issue of Blocks will also have their two cents on the Mad Max-esque LEGO Ninjago Dieselnaut (70654), and MOC guide for a miniature of the LEGO Creator Aston Martin DB5 (10262).

Finally, they have previews of the latest upcoming BrickHeadz, a licensed-franchise rivalry retrospective on Star Wars and Harry Potter, and so much more in store. Interested fans can get their own copy of Blocks magazine issue 48 (print or digital) by visiting their official website.

LEGO City Magazine Issue 7 Now Comes With Two LEGO City Freebies

The latest issue of LEGO City Magazine is now available, and Issue #7 has double treats for subscribers and fans that will pick up a copy. The LEGO City Magazine Issue 7 now comes with two foil bags instead of one, and for this month’s issue we have a free LEGO City Octan Race Car with a driver minifigure, PLUS another mini vehicle set with its respective minifigure driver as well. The second foil bag may vary though, as shared by Brick Fanatics.

Images courtesy of Brick Fanatics.

The second foil bag freebie seems to be based on previously released free sets as bundled before with past issues of the LEGO City Magazine. Though the LEGO City Octan Race Car foiled bag is pretty much consistent across copies of the LEGO City Magazine Issue 7, the second freebie is somehow random as observed by Bricks Fanz. This particular copy of issue 7 has in fact, an extra minifigure instead together with several fire fighting accessories.

Image courtesy of Bricks Fanz

Inside, the LEGO City Magazine Issue 7 is jam-packed with the usual comics, activity sheets, puzzles, posters and even post cards to share with friends. This current issue also gives us a glimpse of what free item to expect from next month’s issue which is a policeman minifigure and a motorbike. If you’re still missing a mini motorbike in your LEGO City collection, then this is the most cost-effective way to bag this.

Image courtesy of Brick Fanatics.

LEGO Star Wars Magazine Issue 39 with Obi-Wan Kenobi Pilot Minifigure and Trading Card Now Available

One good thing about some official LEGO Magazines for some of its major licensed franchises is that sometimes their freebies are fairly uncommon little things. They can, for instance, be a certain minifigure from a large set; but as a freebie in a LEGO mag you get one technically free. That’s the deal going with the latest LEGO Star Wars Magazine Issue 39 of the official LEGO Star Wars Magazine, as it features one of the minifigures from the LEGO Star Wars set for the Jedi Starfighter with Hyperdrive (75191): Obi-Wan Kenobi. This is a fairly uncommon rendering of the Jedi Master as pilot.

LEGO Star Wars Magazine Issue 39

As for other content, LEGO Star Wars fans will certainly enjoy another month’s issue filled with fun puzzles, posters for their walls, and a variety of LEGO-styled comic stories. Some of them are tied into the included pilot Obi-Wan minifigure, but there’s also a mag promo to win a Kessel Run Millennium Falcon set (75212).

If you’re keeping up with collecting the new LEGO Star Wars trading cards introduced last month, then you’ll get the limited edition card LE02 from this issue 39 of the mag. Naturally, it’s Obi-Wan Kenobi. The official LEGO Star Wars Magazine from The Egmont Group is priced at £3.99 and is available now in Europe.

Blocks Magazine Issue 47 Shines Spotlight on LEGO Technic Chiron Bugatti (42083) and Other Goodies

It seemed like only yesterday when we were talking about what was in store for readers of LEGO fandom publication Blocks magazine, within its 46th issue. That time, it was LEGO Star Wars that was center stage, particularly the UCS Millennium Falcon’s (75192) shinier counterpart, the Kessel Run version (75212).

For their next issue, Blocks will be shifting focus to something more realistic in LEGO, with features on the most recent automobile models they’ve put out. In the front cover we have the beautiful and complex Bugatti Chiron (42083) set from the LEGO Technic line, ready to be thoroughly discussed.

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If readers still want the fantastical in their LEGO, then also covered on Blocks issue 47 is the gadget-laden LEGO Creator Expert Aston Martin DB5 (10262) of James Bond fame. It includes a LEGO Group design team interview and highlights from its Leicester Square launch, graced by Naomie “Moneypenny” Harris.

Other topics of interest in the latest Blocks are the recent LEGO Speed Champions sets, a feature on 3D-printing giant LEGO bricks from Star Wars FX master Matt Denton, a spotlight on the LEGO Incredibles video game, and one final update on the completion of The LEGO Ninjago Movie Bridge MOC.

While dated for September 2018, Blocks magazine issue 47 has been available for online subscription since Thursday, August 23. For more information on getting your own copy, printed on digital, check out their official website.

Somerset, UK Hosting LEGO Exhibit, Spartan Brick Creations

Last month we shone a spotlight on a recent issue of Blocks, one of the major independent publications covering the LEGO scene. Some of the best elements the magazine has going for it are the splendid amount of content within, including building tips, advice and MOC from some knowledgeable contributors. One of Blocks magazine’s most well-known contributors is their Build Specialist Simon Pickard, a LEGO fan and wonder-builder who has also had the good fortune of having his worked showcased on official LEGO books. He’ll also be the principal guest for a LEGO builders’ exhibition in Wellington, Somerset County, UK aptly dubbed as Spartan Brick Creations.

For a single day this weekend, the Wellington Baptist Church will be the host for what has been termed as “An exhibition of creativity in LEGO”, better known as the “Spartan Brick Creations” event. Not only is Simon Pickard at the center of attention, there will also be build showcases of brick animals as featured in the recent “LEGO Animal Atlas” book published by Dorling-Kindersley.

Spartan Brick Creations

With an admission price of £3 per head, with children under 2 allowed in for free, guests to the Spartan Brick Creations will be able to check out the LEGO builds on display, meet and greet with Simon Pickard, try their hand at construction with the free build zone, and of course be able to purchase a variety of LEGO sets both old and newly-released from the event’s partner merchants.

Lest you forget, Spartan Brick Creations is happening this Saturday, August 18, from 11AM to 5PM at the Baptist Church of Wellington in Somerset, UK.

Imperial Probe Droid and More Included in LEGO Star Wars UK Mag Issue 38

A few times before we covered issues of the official LEGO Star Wars Magazine published in the UK, and the nifty special minifigures or polybags that came with them. Well now, LEGO Star Wars UK edition has brought out its issue 38 featuring two limited-edition polybags; one fixed and the other randomly chosen and added. The latest giveaways for LEGO Star Wars UK mag are an Imperial probe droid as seen in Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back, accompanied in the packaging by a random polybag featured from previous issues. Apparently they still have a few pieces left to distribute.

From a certain point of view, the Imperial probe isn’t entirely new itself. Such a probe droid was already included in a past issue of LEGO Star Wars UK mag from two years ago. This time though, it comes with extra bricks to build a stand.

LEGO Star Wars UK Mag

Now as always, you can expect articles, LEGO Star Wars comics, posters, puzzles and games, plus build instructions to make more models and fixtures from the Galaxy Far, Far Away. This LEGO Star Wars UK mag is now available in the UK at £5.99 a copy.

For those who are curious, LEGO Star Wars magazine UK edition has already spoiled what comes next in their issue 39 for September, a minifigure of prequel-era Obi-Wan Kenobi in pilot gear with a lightsaber. It’s up to you if you’ll get the Imperial probe plus extra old set now, or save for next month.