The first issue of Blocks magazine has been released at WHSmith today, and as such, I thought it might be worth bringing you a quick overview of it. Let me begin by stating that if you are on the fence about whether to pick this up, I thoroughly recommend that you do.
There are so many aspects to collecting LEGO, that it must have been very challenging to condense it all into a single magazine. However, I think Blocks has achieved this in exemplary fashion. There is a wide spread of articles to suit any LEGO related interests, and a few of the highlights are detailed after the break:
- Introductory Features - There are some features included for those new to LEGO as a hobby, including a timeline of the company's history, a glossary of common terms and a useful guide on how to get started with LEGO - These will undoubtedly be incredibly useful to some, and I have to admit that one or two of the terms glossed were new to me. It is all written informatively and simply, without being patronising in the slightest.
- Reviews - There are ten reviews in this edition of some of the flagship sets from the last year or so, including 10236 Ewok Village, 75059 Sandcrawler and 21108 Ghostbusters Ecto-1. There are also brief reviews of a few of the books which have recently been released, including titles by DK and more specialist books written by fans - The reviews are all well written and the photography is superb. The conclusions are well reasoned and the detail given is sufficient to allow one to make an informed decision on a particular set.
- Blocks Showcase - A look at some of the best MOCs from around the world accompanied by interviews with their creators - The standard of the models featured is of course incredible, and the interviews are also very interesting.
- Future Classics - A section featuring some of the recently, or soon to be, retired sets that might one day qualify as 'classics' - Perhaps the section that appealed most to me as it gives an unusual perspective on some of the greatest sets of recent years. You will have to buy the magazine yourself to find out what their picks are, but I can safely say that some may surprise you, although they are well justified.
- Collecting Old Sets - Details of some classic sets, this time a feature concerning Blacktron, written by one Huw Millington - A feature which will inevitably bring many new fans into the hobby, as well as allowing some more seasoned FOLs to relive some of the golden years of LEGO.
Throughout, the writing is informed and every contributor seems truly interested in their subject matter, which naturally leaves the reader more interested as well. There are one or two typing errors I have come across, but that is only to be expected with the volume of information included. With regard to the accuracy of this information, I cannot find fault with it. The presentation is very glossy and the pages feel as though they are fairly resistant to tearing, so I have no issues with the quality of the magazine either.
I do not want to give away everything here as there is a huge amount to cover in this 131-page volume, but suffice to say your £5.99 will be well spent by purchasing a copy of Blocks magazine in my opinion. I have my fingers crossed that Blocks will become a quarterly or even monthly issue very soon!
Not in the UK? You can order a copy by phoning 0044 7858 892859 or emailing accounts [at] ppcmag [dot] co [dot] uk.