They hit the shops, a couple of weeks before they were supposed to, late last week. Many branches of John Lewis broke the 'embargo' on selling before July 1st but my branch refused to sell them to me. However, thanks to Brickset member richo I now have a set.
It must be incredibly frustrating if you're not in the UK and you want to get hold of them, and I sympathise with you. Unfortunately my mini-review won't make you want them any less because, frankly, they are excellent.
I'm not going to write huge descriptions because the photos below will show you all you need to know. Instead I'll just point out a few things that aren't obvious from looking at them:
- The horse rider's helmet is the only new piece. It's slightly rubbery. The rider has a ponytail, of course :).
- Some pieces appear in new colours, like the weights and the tennis racquet
- Only the judo fighter has a printed back: the Team GB logo in black and a continuation of her black belt
- The relay runner's competitor number is 1948, the year that the Olympics were last held in London
I've photographed them without their medals so you can see the full detail of the torso printing, which is superb.
LEGO has done a magnificent job with these, they are miniature works of art, almost. If you are outside the UK and you want to get hold of a set, you have two choices: you can resort to eBay or BrickLink and pay a bit of a premium for them, or you could post a message in the marketplace topic of the forum, hook up with someone in the UK and sort out a trade. There are, after all, plenty of sets around that are not available in the UK to barter with.