Brickset news archive: May 2010
We've had loads of emails about this, thanks everyone, and numerous off-topic posts in the news items (...)
It's not really news (yet), just a bit of marketting from Lego - they will be announcing something about Lego Star Wars on 3rd May at 12:01am. Click on the banner in the menu for more details.
I doubt it will be anything completely new; most likely it will be additional information on the already announced Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars video game. The Lego games don't get a lot of coverage here, as our main focus is on sets.
So, please, no more emails; we weren't ignoring them, we didn't think there was anything worth reporting (yet) ! :-)
If you haven't been able to pick up the new TS3 Lotso's Dump Truck yet, and were planning to do so, you may have been rewarded for your patience. Wal-Mart stores in the U.S. have the new set, with regular price being approx. $20 everywhere else, at the 25% off price of $14.37! No word on if this is at all U.S. stores (Wal-Mart is very inconsistent with their prices over here) but it is worth a look. The set has been selling out fast, being the cheapest way to get some LEGO Toy Story 3 action, so if this is on your wish list, act fast!
Several World Racers sets, the two Kingdoms impulse sets, the Farmer and pig set are now listed on LEGOshop.com but don't appear to be available in any countries other than Germany at the moment. (thanks to vidiator for the news)
And, Toy Story 3 sets can now be ordered in the USA!
We've been getting a lot of emails today announcing finds of new sets from across the US. Exact finds vary from location-to-location, but we've had reports of new Space Police, Kingdoms, Atlantis, City, world Racers & Creator sets being available in TRU's & Lego Brand Stores. No sign of the new Star Wars sets yet.
Let us, and Brickset's other Members, know where you've spotted the new sets! Thanks to everyone than emailed this in - thanks guys & gals :-)
Thanks to grogall at Brickshelf, who extracted the images from Amazon.fr, we now have clear photos of three of the summer train sets. I have the freight train on order, I'll tell you all about it when it comes!
You can see the full hi-res photos at Brickshelf, once the folder has been made public.
Update: Building is complete. Check out the flickr gallery to see the set in detail.
I popped into my local Lego Brand Store this evening and was surprised to see many of the mid-2010 sets already on the shelf !
Sets included - Toy Story 3; Space Police 3; Kingdoms (including Battle Packs & Impulse sets); City (including the new trains, the truck & the airport); and World Racers.
No sign yet of - the new Star Wars, the new Atlantis, the new Creator, Hero Factory, or new Technic. (HP isn't expected until much later in the year anyway)
We'd been under the impression that these weren't planned for release in the UK until next week, so it's great news that Lego has decided to release them early
Creator, Space Police, Atlantis and other sets have been added to LEGOshop.com today. They are not yet in our product feed but you can order them from the What's new in 2010 page at LEGO.com. Here's the complete list:
5507 LEGO® DUPLO® Deluxe Brick Box.
5650 Front Loader
5868 Ferocious Creatures
5892 Sonic Boom
5984 Lunar Limo
5985 Space Police Central
7949 Prison Carriage Rescue
8076 Deep Sea Striker
8190 Claw Catcher
8864 Desert of Destruction
8899 Gator Swamp
I've updated many of the site's data sets this evening:
- I've imported the latest minifig data from BrickLink. Several people have emailed to ask about why the collectable minifigs are not showing in their minifig collection when they mark one of the collectable minifig sets as owned. Well, unfortunately BrickLink catalogue admins have made a right pigs-ear of the inventory of the set and have lumped all 16 variants together as one set which means the data is not presented properly for it to be used here. I am hoping that sense will prevail there and it'll become usable, but if that doesn't happen I will have to find a means of adding the data manually here.
- I've also added the images from LEGO.com for the latest batch of new releases, and added a few new instructions that Brent has uncovered over the last week or so.
- Finally, I have moved some of the Brickset images to a differtent server due to restrictions placed on accessing them at 1000Steine.com. The 'additional images', wallpapers and World Show images are now on a new server. When I load set details pages containing additional images I am sometimes presented with 'broken image' symbols instead of the thumbnails. I am trying to resolve that issue with the new web host but so far I have been unsuccessful. I'd be grateful if you'd comment on this message if you also see broken images where the additional image thumbnails should be so I can get a grasp of the scale of the problem.
Following on from news last week that the mid-2010 sets are appearing in UK Brand Stores, we can now add the three large Creator sets to those now availble from Brand Stores in the UK.
The new Duplo sets are also starting to make an appearance, with the Toy Story & Cars sets amongst the sets already released.
All the TS 3 sets can be pre-ordered fromToys R Us. They'll be released on 1st June. If you don't want to wait that long you can get all but the Garbage Truck Getaway from Amazon.fr. Shipping from France to the UK is a very reasonable €7, and the prices are marginally cheaper: the train, for example, is €81 which equates to just over £70 compared to the TRU price of £80.
(thanks keithkram and legocoastguard for the news)
All five sets can now be preordered from LEGOshop.com in the UK and will ship on 9th June. (thanks Andy for spotting them!)
The collectable Minifigures are now available through LEGO's on-line Shop, throughout Europe, Australia and New Zealand. Unfortunately they are still not available to US & Canadian Lego fans.
We've also been told that they are finally available from the Brand Stores in the UK, although we've heard that there may be some rationing due to demand. Please post your experiences & let us know how you get on!
It seems every other news article is about the figs and some of you might be getting fed up with it, but this bit of news is defintely worth reporting and will be of interest to lots of you.
Yellowcastle in the USA wrote to say: "I've been swinging by my TRU every couple of days the closer we got to June and lo and behold they put out a box this morning. Though it was opened, it did indeed have 60 bags. While I do feel bad about it, I bought the whole box. I got to keep the box too!". He didn't say which branch it was: I'd get down to your local one ASAP and grab the box while you can. There was loads of other new stuff on the shelf as well, he adds.
Both Huw & I are travelling for our respective full-time jobs at the moment, so news is a little slower than it would be normally, so apologies for the delay posting this ...
US based Brickset member 'yellowcastle' has obtained a full set of the collectable minifigs from his TRU & has put together a handy 'reference card' for the US bar codes, which he has kindly allowed us to host here on Brickset ! Thanks mate !
UPDATE - I've uploaded a higher resolution version of the 'cheat sheet', again thanks to 'yellowcastle'
Update: thanks for everyone who sent me the hi-res pictures today. I've been out so have only just picked them up. Unfortunately I'm having problems uploading them to the images server at the moment so I can't add them here just yet. This is also affecting the wallpaper repository and World Shows galleries. Normal service will, I hope, be resumed soon.
(thanks to Rob for the news)
Not much to report in terms of content just yet, but the 'Hero Factory' mini-site is open for business.
There is some 'back story' for the the new theme, including some fictional testimonials, and a 'make your own villian' tool. You can also "submit your own mission" for the Hero Factory team to deal with, which includes the fantastic disclaimer:
"IMPORTANT NOTICE: This function is for entertainment purposes only. Do not report "real" problems here. If you have a real-life issue, please talk with a real Hero in your life, like parents or teachers. Do not include any personal information in your submission, such as name, email address, or location. Submissions that do not follow these rules will not be eligible for display in the Hero Factory mission ticker."
Click here to take a look for yourself, but remember to check your region is set correctly.
Thanks to everyone that emailed this one in.
This previously unseen City set appears to be available somewhere judging by the picture over on Toys N Bricks. What's particularly significant about it is that it's a City set (as opposed to Creator) AND it's not a fire/police/other utility building but somewhere for the citizens of LEGO City to live after they've finished being firemen or whatever during the day :-)
I haven't had a chance to exhaustively search our database but I think the last time a Town/City themed house was released was in 1996 and that was a promo set: the 1854 house with Velux windows.
Pictures have emerged of this set, from a Dutch toy shop. It looks great, but as santleyc, who emailed us with the news said, "So much for our hopes of a new monorail..."
(Via Toys N Bricks)
It appears that LEGO might be publishing their store calendar online now: the June one for the US can be downlaoded as a PDF from LEGO.com.
The most significant date on it is the 21st June: that's when the collectable minifigures will be available! (thanks to MasterOfPuzzles for the news)
And...pictures of Harry Potter sets have surfaced at Brickshelf, in whung's folder (again!). I've now added them here.
There's a great clear picture of it at Target.com which I've added here. There's no price yet, but I would estimate US$40-50. It looks like an interesting set, with some unique new minifigures.
(via Toys n Bricks, thanks to everyone who mailed us.)
I ran my 'image sniffer' over the LEGO.com server today and found new pictures of the four new games that will be released, in Europe at least, in the next month or so. One looks particularly interesting: Orient Bazaar. Check out those gold 2x2 round tiles and perfume bottles not seen in a set for years! Don't worry what the game is like: buy it for the parts!
Adi in Germany writes: "The 30061 Attack Wagon is available in Germany. In certain stores you get it free when you spend 20€ or more for the new Kingdoms set (all available). They also have the Kingdoms Battlepacks 10€ each, so when you pick up both of them you already have 30061.
"Interestingly they advertise this promotion with an official poster that shows all the Kingdoms sets in their prototype configuration and the watermarked box pics.
"The Kingdom Battlepacks' minifigures are sadly the poor chinese plastic like their predecessors. All the Kingdom Sets are available in the German Idee & Spiel stores."
Voyanui 8768 brings us news of an offer in Tesco supermarkets in the UK: "there is a lego toy story offer on fun-size bananas. You can collect tokens to reserve different toy story gifts. For 3 tokens you can get 30070 Alien Space ship (which it says is exclusive to tesco), 5 tokens to get 1 of 4 lego toy story keychains and for 7 tokens you can get 852949 toy story magnets (8.99 worth!!!). You do have to pay £2.29 for p&p though. You get one token per pack of bananas."
I haven't been down to my branch to see for myself but it looks like being a great way to get the alien ship, if you like Bananas that is!
Update: There's more information on the Tesco website where you can download an order form.
These are now becoming available in a lot more places: Steve in Australia  says they are now in Toyworld stores in Australia and Lenz in Austria picked them up at TRU near Vienna.
I've now received two complete boxes (thanks Rhys!). Yesterday I wrote about what I thought was the make-up of the boxes, but new information, plus a couple of barcode-reading errors on my part, meant it was inaccurate. The consensus seems to be that every box contains the same selection and having double checked my box last night, I now agree that the contents are as follows:
Indian 3, Cheerleader 3, Caveman 4, Clown 3, Zombie 3, Skater 3, Robot 4, Dummy 5, Magician 4, Wrestler 3, Nurse 3, Ninja 5, Astronaut 4, Archer 4, Diver 5, Cowboy 4
 On the subject of Austraila, Mark wrote to us and suggested that if you're down under to check out this ripper website: http://www.bricksdownunder.com/ for LEGO news and availability information :-)
There's an article on Marketing Magazine's website about LEGO's marketing campaign for the minifigs which it says are launched this week. You can read the whole article by following the link but the last sentence will be most interesting: "Lego will also be offering a free Minifigure to readers of The Beano next month". I wonder if they'll be attached to the front of the comic or whether you'll need to send off for it? How much does the Beano cost these days? There's reference to this on the Beano website as well, and it says it'll be in/on the 5th June issue.
Several people have reported that Argos DO now have the minifigures in stock, and they are now listed on their website.
So, I suggest you check stock at your local branch and reserve them before heading down there tomorrow.
Check this out: another Toy Story set featuring a toy soldier and jeep. No idea where and when it will be available, so keep you eyes out for it!
I've added links to the latest batch of instructions which includes most of the TS3 sets.
Update: For those of you that like to download the latest instructions added at LEGO.com, I've created a page to make it easy for you: The new Latest instructions page lists and links to the most recent additions.
(Thanks, as usual, to Brent for finding them and providing the data!)
The new space shuttle set has now been revealed at a couple of AFOL events in the USA and Portugal. It'll be released in June and will cost $99 in the USA.
Here's the press release from LEGO:
10213 Shuttle Adventure, Ages 16+, 1,204 pieces. US $99.99, CA $129.99, UK £ 79.99, DE 89.99 €
Blast off on an outer space mission!
Standing 17.5″ (44cm) tall and 10″ (25.5cm) from wing tip to wing tip, this detailed and realistic space shuttle is ready to count down and blast off on its next exciting mission into space! You can take off from the launch pad, separate the detachable fuel tank and booster rockets, and deploy the satellite with unfolding antenna and solar cell panels. Shuttle model features realistic engines, retractable landing gear, an opening cockpit with seats for 2 astronauts, opening cargo compartment with a crane that can hold the satellite and a ground maintenance vehicle. Includes 3 minifigures: 1 male and 1 female astronaut, as well as 1 service crew member.
- Includes 3 minifigures: 1 male and 1 female astronaut as well as 1 service crew member!
- Features realistic engines, retractable landing gear, opening cockpit with seats for 2 astronauts and even a ground maintenance vehicle!
- Take off from the launch pad!
- Separate the detachable fuel tank and booster rockets!
- Deploy the satellite with unfolding antenna and solar cell panels!
- Open the cargo compartment to reveal the crane that can hold the satellite!
- Shuttle Adventure stands 17.5″ (44cm) tall and measures 10″ (25.5cm) from wing tip to wing tip!
Click on the image and then More details... to view about a dozen additional images showing all its cool deails.
I'm not sure how widely 'annuals' are known outside of the UK, but they are a staple of Christmas morning here. Looks like Amazon will start shipping this Lego one from August this year.
It seems I've been misinformed about the launch in Argos: Customer Services at my branch said they are not expecting them in their warehouses until 11th May so they won't be in the shops until a week or so later.
They are however appearing in branches WHS but you need to get there quickly: it seems they get just one box per branch. I went to mine this morning at 9:20 only to find somebody had beaten me to it and bought the lot earlier! I may have myself to blame for that if that person read on here about WHS selling them. So, if you were in WHS in Fareham today and you're reading this and have spare a cheerleader, get in touch!
I suspect most branches of TRU will be out of stock by now, and there's no sign of them at LEGOshop.com, so we'll just have to be a bit more patient...
Update 5th May: Apparently these are now making it into Argos stores. However, it seems most branches get one box and they are brought to you from the warehouse so you won't have an opportunity to choose using the barcodes.
I've also had it reported that one shop, maybe a German brand retail shop (I'l check my emails later), has blacked out the barcodes to prevent people picking and choosing!
Andrew at The Brothers Brick has posted an excellent article about the importance of clicking through on the links there, and here, and at every other LEGO site out there in order to keep them free for everyone and always there when you want them. In Brickset's case the income covers hosting costs, and will soon fund additional costs incurred when the site goes onto its own dedicated server. Anything left encourages me to spend time keeping the site current and developing new features: I reckon I must spend an average of 2 hours a night doing so.
You've probably read the about the Star Wars promotion at LEGOshop.com taking place today and tomorrow at other sites: the official announcement time yesterday was past my bedtime :-)
Here are the details:
Free LEGO Star Wars sticker sheet with any purchase on 3rd 4th May 2010.
Every Star Wars purchase made during these two days will receive a free sticker sheet.
Free Shipping on all orders Globally
In order to meet free shipping order must meet the following price thresholds for each region.
- US and Canada $75 or more
- UK £50 or more
- Rest of Europe €55 or more
Star Wars Sales and Deals
- Home One Mon Calamari Cruiser – 30% off
- Republic Dropship with AT-OT Walker – 25% off
- (US & Canada Only) 10179 UCS Millennium Falcon – 25% off
- Various magnet sets
Bronze Boba Fett™ Minifigure Giveaway
Everyone who makes a purchase on May 3-4th will automatically be entered into a contest to win a solid bronze Boba Fett minifigure (1 of 2 in created). Minifigure will come in a presentation box with an authentication certificate. There will be no limit to orders placed and only one grand prize winner globally. (Update: it seems this is limited to US/Canada only)
Click through on the banner in the menu or this link to see everything on offer!
I ordered these on Thursday from Amazon France and they are in my grubby little hands already :-)
Quite why they are available so early in France I have no idea, but if you're in Europe and you can't wait until their official release later in the summer, I suggest you order them now -- shipping was only €7 to the UK.
Now for a bit of fun, I want you to decide which one I should open first. Please cast your vote in this survey and I'll open the winning set and photograph it to post here tomorrow night!
In other shopping news, Toys R Us in the USA has many of the summer releases listed now including Atlantis, Creator and World Racers. There's a lot happening this week, I can't keep up, so if someone fancies gathering up all the images so I can use them here, please do! (thanks vynsane, via Toys N Bricks)
Update: The poll is closed: General Grievous won by some margin! I'll get building now!
Interesting development: It seems Amazon.fr have changed their listings: these are now not shipping until 1st June. I'm beginning to wonder whether LEGO read Brickset and tell retailers to stop selling things they shouldn't as a result! (thanks crispspearce for the news)
News is reaching us at Brickset HQ of a previously unknown Lego-exclusive, 10xxx-series set, expected to be available very soon.
Set #10213 is said to be a minifigure-scale Space Shuttle, with 3 figures and 1204 parts. No news yet on price or availability, but expect it to be hitting the shelves of Lego Brand Stores very soon. More info as we receive it !
Update 6th May: Image removed at LEGO's request.
An overwhelming majority of you wanted to see General Grievous Starfighter unboxed first, so here it is!
I haven't built it all yet, but I thought you'd like to see pictures of Grievous and the other figs, so click on the image or view the entire set on flickr.
First impressions are poisitive: GG is well made and very detailed. His arms are a bit odd, though, as you will see, and it's difficult to get his light sabres looking good.
Update: The model is now complete! And very nice it is too. Grievous is a very cool figure, much better than his previous incarnation, and the starfighter is a good build and very 'swooshable'. The cockpit slides forward and there is a very ingenious method used to keep it shut. The only criticism I can make is that to comfortably get GG into it you need to take off two of his arms.
I'm pleased to announce that a version of Brickset optimised for browsers in smartphones and other devices with small screens is now live. It's at http://m.brickset.com. If you're using one of the common mobile devices to view this page you shoud be greeted with a nice big link to it at the top, and there's also a link to it in the menu.
It is NOT intended to be a complete replacement for the main site, it complements it. It is deliberately lightweight so that it loads quickly on even the slowest GPRS links. It provides links to the main site on every page so that you can easily access content that isn't available on the mobile site if you're on a fast connection.
I've tested it thoroughly on my Android phone and my daughter's iPod and it is optimised for the screen size of these devices and the iPhone. It also works on my other daughter's Blackberry and beta testers have tried it on a myriad of other devices and have reported success. If you have an iPhone/iPod I have provided a screen icon which will automatically be used if you bookmark it.
In future, if it becomes widely used, I will provide some form of price comparison functionality and links to eBay/Amazon/LEGOshop.com and possibly also integrate barcode scanning on Android devices.
I'd like to thank everyone who tested it, provided feedback and helped me solve the iPhone display problems.
So, give it a go and let me know what you think.
Here are a few items of news that have been brought to my attention over the last few days:
- Prince of Persia sets are now available from LEGOshop.com in central Europe, including Germany.
- Toys R Us in the UK has many of the new train sets and the 3221 truck in store and online.
- Sainsburys in the UK has a buy 2 get one free offer on City sets.
- The shuttle 10213 will be available from LEGOshop.com on June 30 in the US and a week later in the UK and elsewhere in Europe.
- Marketing Magazine has an article about the marketing of the collectable figs.
Thanks to everyone that keeps us updated so we can keep you updated.
Following a suggestion by a fellow Brickish member, barcode scanning and searching is now supported on Mobile Brickset.
There's a new button on the home page which will launch the scanner. It will work on Android devices, once you've installed ZXing from the marketplace, and it should also work on iPhones once you've installed the Barcodes application from the AppStore.
That was the easy bit: the difficult bit is populating the database :) I've added the European codes for Atlantis sets for test purposes, so that's all it will recognise at the moment. I've asked LEGO whether they can provide a list of EAN numbers. I haven't had an answer yet but if it's a negative I'll provide something on the site to enable codes to be scanned and linked to a set.
If you have the three prerequisites (Android phone and ZXing or iPhone and Barcodes, and a European Atlantis set) give it a go and let me know how you get on.
Update: Users have experienced problems getting this working on iPhones. Unfortunately I am unable to help, but if you are, please comment here.
While my family are watching the tedium that is the Eurovision Song Contest I've been beavering away on the barcode functionality of the mobile site.
I have enhanced it so that, if you are logged in and you scan a barcode which is not in the database, it will prompt you to enter the number of the set you've just scanned. This should help build up the database quickly, I hope.
Also... while testing this functionality, I scanned all the barcodes for the collectable minifigs (both European and North American) so you can now use Mobile Brickset to find out what's inside the packet before you buy!
Unfortunately the barcode scanning only seems to be working on Android phones at the moment, so if you have something inferior made by a fruit company, consider upgrading to something decent (ducks for cover.... :-) )
Here's some news that's come my way over the last few days:
- The World Racers microsite is now live at LEGO.com (thanks stc2nd)
- Atlantis 30042 mini-sub has been spotted in Tesco stores in the UK (thanks winspeardavid3)
- City Truck 3221 is now showing as available now at LEGOshop.com in the UK (thanks DrDave)
- Knights sets are hitting the shelves in various places including Holland (thanks Maarten)
- Collectable minifigs are available in Wal-Mart in Canada, and MrVx says "They're 2,86$ CDN each, which is good!"
While on the subject of news, what do you think of the news coverage here? How could it be improved? What other sites do you visit for LEGO news? I'm consious of the fact that I can be a bottleneck in getting items like the above published and I've been thinking of ways to prevent that. We have a team of news correspondents in most English speaking countries but they, for one reason or another, are not very active at the moment. With bluemoose and I reporting most of it, that tends to mean that the news is very UK-centric and UK visitors account for a relatively small percentage of the total audience here, so that is not good. Should I let more people contribute? Make it a free-for-all? Let me know what you think...
It's been a long time coming, but finally, from tomorrow, you'll be able to pre-order LEGO Universe. By pre-ordering, you'll be guaranteed to have the Game DVD in home on the day the game is officially live. Additionally, if you get in quick you'll receive an Exclusive LEGO Universe Minifigure and code card that will unlock its digital counterpart within the game.
Click on the banner in the menu to find out more. I can't see an actual launch date on the site but presumably it is imminent.
The small print:
- Pre-Orders will be accepted in all LEGO Shop markets with the exception of Australia / New Zealand & Asia / South Korea.
- The offer is limited to 5 per purchase
- The LEGO Universe Game (DVD) will only be offered in: English (US); English (UK); French (Canada); German (Central Europe).
- Offer is valid starting May 14, 2010 while supplies last only. Offer is available only by purchasing LEGO® Universe Massively Multiplayer Online Game DVD. Premium consists of one exclusive LEGO Universe Astronaut Minifigure and one Code Card, which may be used to access an exclusive in-game accessory. One exclusive Minifigure and Code Card per customer. Minifigure and Code Card are available exclusively through this offer; additional Minifigures and Code Cards cannot be purchased. Minifigure and Code Card will ship with DVD. Offer is valid in LEGO Stores, through LEGO Catalog and on shop.LEGO.com. Offer is not valid at LEGOLAND® Parks and LEGOLAND Discovery Centers. The LEGO Group reserves the right to cancel or modify this promotion at any time without prior notice. Minifigure value is approximately $2.99 (US) / 1.99 € (DE) / £1.49 (GBP).
LEGO has noticed your concerns here and elsewhere about the lack of information on LEGO Universe subscription costs and have kindly provided the following information and a picture of the exclusive minifig!
Currency 1 month 6 months 12 months US USD 9.99 49.99 89.99 Canada CAD 12.99 64.99 119.99 Germany EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Switzerland CHF 16.9 79.9 149.9 Austria EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Denmark DKK 74.95 374.95 674.95 Sweden SEK 99.5 499.5 899.5 Norway NOK 89.5 449.5 799.5 Finland EUR 9.99 49.95 89.99 Holland EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Belgium EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 UK GBP 7.49 39.99 69.99 Ireland EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 France EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Spain EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Portugal EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Italy EUR 9.99 49.99 89.99 Hungary HUF 2890 14450 25999 Poland PLN 39.95 199.95 359.95 Czech CZK 249 1249 2249
It's disconcerting to see that Aus. and NZ are not in the list. I hope this doesn't mean it won't be available in those countries. I will try and find out for you.
Dominic emailed us earlier with news that the VIP programme has now been extended in the US & now covers both phoned-in & online orders through Lego Shop. Great news for everyone that buys Lego direct from ... er ... Lego ;-)
I believe this was already true for UK & German customers, as of a week or two ago.
For those that don't know, VIP is the Lego company's loyalty card scheme. You can earn points for every every pound/dollar/euro/etc. you spend directly with Lego & these points can be exchanged for discounts on future purchases. The points scheme effectively equates to a ~5% discount on your purchases. Which is nice.
I'm back from my short travels and I'd like to thank bluemoose for keeping you all updated while I was away: yesterday was a busy day for news by the looks of things!
I had no wifi internet access in my hotel, which was rather odd given it was a Hilton in the middle of a capital city but I did have my shiny new HTC Desire so I could keep up to date here and with emails using that. In fact I'm developing a mobile version of Brickset to make it easier and yesterday was a good test of it. It's not an iPhone or Android app, but a mobile version of the website that's optimised for use on mobile devices. Using that I could keep abreast of the news and comments and even do a little browing of the database.
Do you use the internet on your phone? Would you like to test mobile Brickset before I launch it? If so, get in touch. Let me know what phone you'll be using. If you have developed mobile-optimised websites yourself even better because I still have a few outstanding issues I need to resolve before it can hit the big time, and you might know the answers...
Update: I have enough testers now, and I think I have a solution to the problem, too, so with luck I'll get this launched in the next week or so!
LEGO has extended its VIP points programme to LEGOshop.com purchases which is great news for those of us that don't live near LEGO brand stores.
The VIP programme page explains "The LEGO VIP Program is our way of thanking you for shopping with us, at your local LEGO Store, through shop.LEGO.com or over the phone. Earn 1 point for every £1 you spend and for every 100 points we’ll give you £5 to spend on more sets for your favorite LEGO fan!" So, effectively that's a 5% discount on online purchases.
It looks as if this may be limited to the UK only at the moment, if your country is set to something other than the UK, the page linked to above does not mention online purchases. However I'm sure it's only a matter of time before it's rolled out globally.
(thanks atkinsar for the news!)
Here's the second of my pictorial unveiling of the new Star Wars sets I recently acquired from Amazon.fr (and which are no longer available from there). This is the cheapest of the summer sets and is very similar in design to the previous Anakin's and Akosha's starfighters, but it's nice to have a spaceship in blue for a change instead of grey or white.
There's not much to say about it really: if you've built either of the other two there will be no surprises except for a strange mechanism to flip Plo out of the cockpit from below. See the entire flickr gallery.
It's been a very busy couple of week for news and some of the more important articles have disappeared into the archive already, so here's a quick round-up:
- After a shaky start, the collectable minifigs are now readily available in the UK in Argos, WHS and TRU. The FAQ covers everything you need to know about them
- Amazon.fr has started selling many of the summer sets. For a few days it was also selling the Star Wars sets, until someone from LEGO read here that they were and asked them to stop (that's my theory, anyway)
- Issue 10 of Brickjournal has been published and is now available in print form. There's a 4 page article about Brickset and our visit to the LEGO archive in Denmark where we photographed the 1970s sets we've been adding recently. Read it for yourself by clicking through on the banner in the menu.
- A new Toy Story set was discovered in LEGO's instruction archive, and the one we already knew about is available in the UK (see below)
- Brickset had a world exclusive with news of the new space shuttle set last week. It was officially launched at the weekend.
Hopefully I'll have time to come up for air this week. I'm working my way through building the new Star Wars sets, I still have loads of images to add from the LEGO archive, and I hope to start adding scans of the classic UK LEGO Club magazine 'Bricks and Pieces' from the 1980's soon as well.
Here is the third of my photographic studies of the new Star Wars sets: 8089 Hoth Wampa Cave features yet another snowspeeder, the 4th minfig scale one, and a new creature: a Wampa. Check out my flickr gallery to see them both in detail.
Slave 1 will be next...
I've just finished building the new Slave 1 and I have to say it's an excellent set. The ship is iconic in the Star Wars universe, and being somewhat unconventional in design, it is also interesting. This is the fourth minifig scale Slave 1 we've had and, while similar to others, this is definitely the best.
What's more the minifigs are excellent. Not only do you get a new Boba Fett, which has to be, in my opinion, the best minifig ever, but also Bossk, a reptilian baddie with a new unique head, and Han in a block of carbonite which is extremely well done.
Check out all the pictures on flickr and see for yourself why you will need to buy this when it comes more readily available.
I have started building this, the last of the five summer Star Wars sets I acquired from Amazon.fr a week or so ago before they moved the shipping date back to June. It looks to be the weakest of the five in terms of design and build: for example, it's a mainly Technic build, but I'll reserve judgement until I've finished.
I'll be adding pictures to my flickr set as I go and as you can see already the figs are pretty neat...