Review: 5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

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Despite being an original LEGO theme, there is not enough space for every character and their respective variants within the brilliant NINJAGO range. 5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection is therefore an appealing prospect as this pack includes a variety of minifigures from previous seasons of the animated series.

Furthermore, these minifigures are exceptionally detailed, following the impressive standard set by the Bricktober collection that was released during 2017. Their limited distribution is disappointing but this NINJAGO pack is comparatively inexpensive on the secondary market.

Minifigures

The revelation that Harumi is aligned with the Sons of Garmadon in resurrecting Lord Garmadon was probably among the most interesting twists from NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu so I am delighted that her villainous form is now available here. She sports the Oni Mask of Hatred, granting invincibility to its wearer and turning Harumi's body into magma stone. The textured design looks superb and covers the entire figure.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

Characters empowered by the Oni crackle with purple destructive energy which is present on the front of the torso. However, some evidence of Harumi's original appearance does remain as the black fabric visible beneath her rocky exterior features the same floral pattern as the minifigure from 70643 Temple of Resurrection! I appreciate this consistency between different versions of the same villainess.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

Raising the mask reveals a unique double-sided head that features a smile and an angry expression. The white band across her face looks great and a NINJAGO letter H is stenciled beside her right eye. Moreover, this minifigure includes a textured shoulder armour element which originated in the NEXO Knights theme along with two red katana.

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Jay and his friends journey through an ice maze during season five and discover that its frozen walls reflect their future selves. This minifigure did not particularly stand out when the pack was announced but it has exceeded my expectations, due primarily to the metallic silver dots which are printed across the torso. This design is incredibly intricate and continues on both arms beside metallic silver bands.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

A unique alphabet was developed for The LEGO NINJAGO Movie in 2017 but this character appeared in an earlier episode during 2015. The letters on his clothing cannot therefore be deciphered, although their style does resemble the written NINJAGO language. Perhaps the alphabet changes between the present day and the future inhabited by this minifigure!

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

The back of the torso is decorated with Jay's elemental symbol and two silver shuriken. Unfortunately, there is no alternative face but I do like his eye patch and ginger beard, matching the ninja's hair piece. Jay carries a wooden staff which is represented by a reddish brown 6L bar, like that wielded by Master Wu.

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Season eight introduced the Sons of Garmadon, a biker gang that sought to resurrect Lord Garmadon. Several members of the group appeared at the beginning of 2018 but Mohawk is exclusively available here, wearing a sleeveless leather jacket and trousers. These parts are new but correspond with other Sons of Garmadon. For instance, the shirt underneath his jacket includes a skull which is a consistent feature of the gang.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

Moreover, the striking Sons of Garmadon emblem is printed on the back of Mohawk's torso, combining Lord Garmadon's distinctive helmet with a pair of motorcycle handlebars. This looks wonderful and the same design is tattooed on the minifigure's arm, along with some chains that appear on the side of his legs as well.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

Skull face paint is worn by numerous Sons of Garmadon minifigures but this example is new, including two stars above the eyes. Naturally, the character features a mohawk hair component but my favourite aspect of this minifigure is certainly his weapon. Baseball bats have been available since 2011 but this version is metallic silver and it looks magnificent.

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Master Chen appeared during the fourth season of NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu and enjoys kabuki theatre, enabling Nya to infiltrate his palace by disguising herself as one of the actors. This minifigure looks absolutely marvellous! Her dark red attire is adorned with two white dragons and these begin at the front before continuing onto the back of the torso, as demonstrated in the images below.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

There is similar continuity between the dark green band and metallic gold pattern on the sash around Nya's waist. This design looks perfect in relation to the animated series, as one would expect, but may also be used for characters beyond NINJAGO if you wish. The head is decorated with red stripes which are known as kumadori and two characterful facial expressions are included.

5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection

Nya wears golden bands around her wrists and comes with a medium nougat fan. This new accessory features some floral designs and looks wonderful, although the fan is only actually printed on one side which is slightly disappointing. Nevertheless, I am delighted with this minifigure.

View image at flickr

Overall

There are numerous characters from the NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu series who have yet to appear as physical minifigures and this is an impressive selection. Both characters from the Sons of Garmadon season are very welcome and I love Future Jay and Kabuki Nya, although I would not necessarily have chosen those figures before seeing how detailed they actually are!

View image at flickr

This minifigure pack is currently available for approximately £17 or $22 on the secondary market which is reasonable in my opinion. On that basis, I would certainly recommend 5005257 NINJAGO Minifigure Collection to fans of the animated series, especially if you have enjoyed the recent Sons of Garmadon narrative.

I hope you have found this review informative. Let us know by liking this article and share your thoughts on the set in the comments below.

19 comments on this article

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By in United States,

Biker guy would make a good Black Metaller.

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By in United States,

This set looks great for Nya alone.

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By in Netherlands,

I personally like all of the figures except for Mohawk. They definetely wasted a spot on him if you ask me

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By in United States,

Nice to see Nya has her Samurai X watch/band. I can't remember if they ever printed it on her previous minifgures, but it was some nice foreshadowing in the show.

Given we just got a ton of SoG bikers in the last wave I would've rather gotten another Future Ninja or one of the Elemental Masters instead of Mohawk. Harumi with the mask of Hatred was definitely a needed fig, but I feel like they could've weaved it into an existing set.

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By in United States,

There you go! A review with Kabuki Nya, my pick for best minifig in the poll. Yay!

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By in United States,

I'll probably get this set just for Nya.

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By in United States,

I never understood why LEGO made such a grievous cultural error: Kabuki is for males only, and they dress in drag if necessary, but all of Chen's concubines were female!

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By in Germany,

I admit I have never ever seen a single episode of Ninjago, so haven't got the slightest clue about who these characters are, what they do and how they fit into the storylines. I also admit I don't care the least about that background stuff.

That being said, I have loved Ninjago sets for years and have got quite a few. These figures look great even to someone like me who doesn't know anything about who they are.
My interest is in the Asian theme, especially the architecture. Ninjago sets go very well with (for example) the excellent Xingbao range of Asian modulars.

Brilliant set therefor imho and I am certain I will keep a lookout for it.

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By in United States,

Great review!!! This is a great minifigure pack and I still need to get around to purchasing one online. In my opinion the figures' uniqueness and level of detail easily justifies even a $20-ish price tag for four figures.

It's neat to see how promotional figures like these sometimes add more detail than the actual depictions of these characters/costumes in the show. For example, in previous releases, the Stone Armor Kai, Cole, and Jay minifigures and the Golden Power/Digiverse Kai minifigure added leg printing that wasn't present in the show.

In Future Jay's case, he had no sleeve patterns in the show, and I can't remember whether he was even shown from the waist down — nevertheless, this minifigure includes leg printing extending to the sides of the legs, as well as sleeve printing with Jay's symbol from The LEGO Ninjago Movie (which I've been unable to decipher — unlike many of the other ninja symbols, it does not appear to be a letter or number).

The language used on the front of his robes actually CAN be deciphered, but not with any particular meaning, since these symbols are generic letters of the Latin alphabet borrowed from a pseudo-Asian font called Fusaka: https://fonts.adobe.com/fonts/fusaka

Specifically, from top to bottom they are an upside-down letter I (used as Kai's symbol), a slightly modified letter B or D (Cole's symbol), a letter Y (Jay's symbol), and a letter L (Lloyd's symbol). Surprisingly, Zane's symbol (a backwards letter W) does not appear here. Nya's backwards letter H symbol is more understandable since she was not given a symbol from this point until Season 6.

Oni Harumi in the show only appeared when wearing the Mask of Hatred, so her transformed face was never shown. And for that matter, the mask itself always had its facial expression fixed in a closed-mouth grin, as in the Sons of Garmadon sets, but here the designers took advantage of having a bigger than usual budget for new decorations by giving it an open-mouthed grin instead. In general I love when the LEGO Group's graphic designers go above and beyond like this!

That said, the minifigure being based on her casual outfit from the show ( https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/ninjago/images/e/e0/LloyRumi_5.JPG ), rather than her Jade Princess regalia that appeared in the Temple of Resurrection set, makes me even more enthusiastic to see that outfit without the Oni mask transformation as a physical minifigure!

On a side note, it only just occurred to me that the reason for the grey skin tone of Ultra Violet and Killow (despite both being intended to represent ordinary human characters whose skin color is merely body paint) was probably so that they wouldn't need as many uniquely decorated elements for kids to depict them in both their masked and unmasked forms.

Kabuki Nya is another great minifigure here, even though I wasn't necessarily hoping for a physical version of this costume as much as the more casual outfit she wore more often in Seasons 3, 4, and 5 ( https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/ninjago/images/1/12/Season5Nya.png ). The level of detail is impeccable, and while the physical figure doesn't add any more detail than appeared in the show, it IS the first Nya minifigure to have her bracelet, which was a standard part of her wardrobe prior to Season 7 and secretly one of her high-tech Samurai X gadgets. The printed fan is a great bonus, as she could have just as easily been given a more common/generic accessory.

(continued in next post)

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By in United States,

(continued from previous post) Mohawk is kind of the odd character out here. While more variety in Sons of Garmadon members is always nice, particularly considering the lack of variety among the lower-ranking bikers in the standard sets, he didn't make much of an impression in the show, and I would have honestly preferred one of the numerous female bikers that appear in Season 8 crowd scenes. But of course, I understand that this pack being entirely gender balanced is something of a pleasant surprise and it's unlikely that LEGO would have made 3/4 of its characters female!

And as unassuming as his design and role in the show were, the physical Mohawk minifigure doesn't disappoint in terms of his level of detail. Besides his leather jacket, ripped sleeves, and, er, mohawk, the designers also added arm tattoos that the animated version of the character lacked. The side printing on his right leg for his chain and the newly recolored aluminum baseball bat accessory are just icing on the cake that rounds out this pack's impressive commitment to detail.

Overall, I think this and the Marvel packs are the standouts of the 2018 Bricktober collection, and that's not just my opinion as a Ninjago fan: both have 14 new printed elements, including totally new costumes for the 3 returning characters and side printed arms and/or legs on every minifigure — a much rarer feature in normal sets, since LEGO still has far fewer machines that can do this than ones that print the usual front and back surfaces.

This makes make the cost of those two packs a lot easier to swallow from my perspective compared to the packs for Harry Potter (9 new printed elements, 1 new recolored element, and 1 fig with side-printed legs) and Jurassic World (8 new prints, no new recolors, 1 fig with printed arms).

Thanks again for this in-depth look! I guess I should probably buckle down and buy that Ninjago pack in case the "Brickset effect" drives up the prices…

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By in United States,

@Norikins it’s an Asian-INFLUENCED culture; they don’t necessarily have to follow everything to the letter. Also, I don’t recall anything about the kabuki being Chen’s concubines.

Nya looks good, though honestly I think she, Mohawk, and Future Jay could have been replaced with more significant variants or as yet nonphysical characters. As MataNui2009 said, Harumi also seems like she could have been worked into a set.

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By in United States,

Nya is the most versatile character for MOC.

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By in United States,

Norikins, it's really important LEGO sticks to sexist traditions from real world Asia in a theme that kid ninjas fight skeletons, human snakes, one of the kids dad is a four handed bad guy who dies and comes back as a zombie. But yes, we need to make sure Kabuki is 100% accurate.

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By in United States,

Mohawk’s bat would work well for a Scout fig.

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By in Poland,

@Norikins: Believe it or not, but the very first Kabuki troupe consisted of Female actresses! Unfortunately, the Shogun thought the very expressive Kabuki plays were too scandalous for women to perform, so he banned females from the stage...

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By in United States,

The most impressive thing to me is that they printed a flesh tone on a black torso and it matches the color of the plastic.
See, LEGO? You can do it.

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By in Norway,

Another set of somewhat-nice figures only available in specific stores in specific countries based on specific conditions? Yawnnn... Count me out.

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By in United States,

My copy of this set had an Oni mask that's very loose on Harumi! It falls open when the ponytails are rotated back. Does this happen to anyone else? I asked LEGO for a replacement part, but it's been months, I don't think it's coming.

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