Cuusoo of the Week: Medusa's Temple by Strider
Update: Thanks to generous Brickset fans Medusa's Temple only needs 200 more support to reach 1000. Cheers -GB
It is rather difficult to come up with a good subject for a Cuusoo project. If you go with something really popular it is likely licensed and you have that going against you or LEGO might just already have it in the works. If you make something totally original then it is hard to find a vein of supporters that will carry it to 10k.
This makes ancient history and mythology a good source for material. LEGO has been flirting with it for a while with their minifig series line, and arguably Pharaohs Quest and elements of Atlantis, but they have not pursued dedicated sets.
Myths are old enough, obviously, to be in the public domain and wide spread enough that people can identify with the concepts you are trying to evoke. On top of that, there is enough leeway in the stories to allow the builder to still have a lot of creative input. Thus we find several projects on Cuusoo dedicated to mythology. My favorite of these is Medusa's Temple by Strider.
"A small building, a vehicle, enough minifigures to tell a complete story, and reasonable size make this an appealing and reasonable creation that could be turned into a LEGO set."
This is a Cuusoo set that, though on the large side, does not overdo it with scale or figure count. It is just enough for playability and presentation without going overboard. We all have our own minifigs and bricks to expand this out if we wanted to.
The minifigs are great line up: Perseus, Medusa, and a Petrified Warrior.
Perseus is of course the warrior of Legend that slays the Medusa. Re-made famous in modern culture by the Class of the Titans franchise.
Medusa: We all know that a medusa minifig is coming out shortly, but I see this as promising for the chances of this set rather than a setback. Sure, this one features a hairpiece that can be held by a minifig, which is a very cool but I would be happy to have the set without the feature if need be. I do doubt that a minifig series Medusa will have a snake body though, and the thought of one really appeals to me.
Petrified Warrior: This is one of my favorite parts of the set. Although the world is full of statues, LEGO only seldom grants us statue minifigs. There is the space one, one in Harry Potter, the Statue of Liberty....am I forgetting any others? Regardless, a Petrified Warrior would been be a Golem in my hands.
Some might argue that this is a little too similar to 7985 City of Atlantis. I can't really disagree with that too strongly but I would argue that both sets are striving to capture what the modern, popular opinion is of Greek Architecture, so there are bound to be similarities.
The stone work is great, the golden serpents are a nice touch, and the rugged sparse plants look very appropriate on a rocky island coming out of the ocean. I do like the vines as well but I could do without the snakes coming out of the roof.
Trireme (the Ship)
Every few months someone puts a Trireme (or a similar ship) on Cuusoo. Some are quite lovely but they all tend to be full scale and many come with a ridiculous number of figures. This ship has just enough scale to get the feel of the Trireme down but still keep it down to a scale that you can keep it on a shelf. It is also big enough that you can add a few minifigs from your collection but not so large that Perseus would look absurd in it by himself.
The creation of any piece for a set is unlikely and since LEGO is apparently in the works on a Medusa headpiece, the creation of one which is hold-able is near impossible.
The vase is a bit of a wild card. LEGO has made some rather dedicated parts before but I cannot immediately recall one this large (outside of Duplo that is). I could certainly see this part getting a lot of use though in museums, stores, and homes or with a slightly greebly application in starships and mecha. Regardless, whereas the Medusa headpiece is critical for this set, the vase is a nice touch but ultimately unnecessary.
This set has a lot of promise as a product. It has a lot of viable playability and without having the need for a license, the subject is well known with even some education aspects. I do not however see the vase making it into the final product. I would recommend that Evan Anderson, the part designer of the Strider team, submit the vase as an independent project and see how far he can get with it.
The Medieval Travelling Theatre has been updated to add a bit more flair to the non-stage side of the Travelling Theatre. This adds some nice details making the build more appealing from a variety of angles.
Pick from the New Batch
My favorite project published last week was Police Patrol VTOL Valkyria by RuiQuintas. My review of that, my other picks, and an overview of the most supported project published in the last week can be found here.