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Archive for January, 2014

Ace Kim | January 30th, 2014 | LEGO, News

Nintendo To Expand Character Licensing

I ran into this article over at Kotaku this morning. For those of who are unfamiliar with the situation, Nintendo recently announced their quarterly earnings and it was bad, really bad. So bad that the media blew a comment made by President Iwata about mobile devices way out of proportion leading some to speculate that Nintendo may be developing games for iOS. All of this lead up to the investor call that Nintendo had last night where Iwata outlined plans for their future. One tidbit in particular stood out to me.

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Pete "bigospedros" Croxson | January 30th, 2014 | LEGO CUUSOO, News

And the next set from Cuusoo will be …

… the Ghostbusters 30th Anniversary set!! Well, I say set … but I rather got the impression from the video that we won’t get the Firehouse, but we will be getting an ECTO-1 and the Ghostbusters minifigures, which is awesome!  No idea if they’ll make a Slimer.  There’s also some other news on some of the other submissions, some good, some bad.

I am really looking forward to seeing the final model, but I do hope two things …

1. They don’t make it ugly as hell, like the BTTF Delorean
2. They triple check all printed parts with words on them … I really don’t need another Flux Capacitor saga!

You can see the original fan submission here.

Nick Martin | January 24th, 2014 | News, The LEGO Movie

Behind the Bricks… the best video you’ll watch all week

Just in case you weren’t already stoked to see The Lego Movie (and if you aren’t… what’s wrong with you?), Lego went and released a trailer that should just make your Friday. My personal highlight was “Ha! First Try” after a batarang throw… what was yours?

Pete "bigospedros" Croxson | January 21st, 2014 | LEGO Star Wars

[UK] London Toy Fair 2014 … a brief report!

Today, I attended the London Toy Fair 2014, on behalf on FBTB.  As always, there were no photos allowed and unlike previous years, I wasn’t allowed a Dealer Catalogue, so I have nothing to refer to here.  Hence, this write up will be relatively brief and I may not be able to answer all your questions.  Of course, the German and US Toy Fairs are only a few weeks away and photos are allowed there, so you may just have to wait till then to get all the answers!

STAR WARS

All of the sets from the Spring and Summer waves were on display, although for the vast majority of the sets (even the Spring ones that are out in the shops already), the minifigures were not present.  Instead, we had little cards showing pictures of the forthcoming minifigures … most of which looked great and several of them had new printing.

I shan’t comment on any of the spring sets, as I am sure you know all about them already.  So, onto the summer sets :

75048 Phantom … £19.99

Looked like the front of a Y-Wing, but not a lot more.  Really didn’t know what to make of it!  Don’t recall which figures came with it … something to do with the Rebels series I think.

75049 Snowspeeder … £34.99

Looked bigger than previous versions.  Comes with the new firing missiles under the wings and the harpoon can be placed in one of the new “stud blaster” guns and can therefore be fired, which is a cool play feature.  3 figures included, Luke, Dak and someone else … I think!

75050 B-Wing … £49.99

I didn’t really get to see this in great detail, it was hanging up … but to me, it looked pretty similar to 6208 to me.  Figure wise, it seems we’ll get 3 new figures, including Ten Numb, Airen Cracken and B-Wing Pilot.  All of which appeared to have new prints and helmets etc.

75051 Jedi Scout Fighter? … £59.99

Again, wasn’t quite sure what to make of this … not a ship I was familiar with, again, something to do with Rebels.  Don’t recall the figures.

75052 Mos Eisley Cantina … £64.99

The Cantina element of the set looked ok … probably not quite big enough for most people’s liking, although it does have representations of the main areas of the Cantina, so you can re-create scenes quite easily.  It can either be closed up or opened out, in a line.  The new Dewback looked great, although it was a preliminary version, without articulation or printing.  The Landspeeder appeared to have a new main colour (possibly from the Friends line).  We get 3 Bith figures, for the band (so you’ll need to buy two to get the whole band) and the Sand Trooper, Luke and Obi Wan figures all looked to have new prints.

75053 The Ghost … £69.99

Looked like an odd mix of Star Wars bits from various other ships, including the Falcon.  Primarily white in colour.  Don’t recall which figures came with it.

75054 AT-AT … £109.99

Again, smaller than previous versions, but captures the overall feel of the AT-AT.  The head is much sturdier than the original version, at least, including more new missile things under the head!  Includes General Veers, plus some Snow Troopers etc

*edit*

I should add here that I was comparing the new version to 4483 as I don’t own either the motorised version of 8129, since I thought they were not as good as 4483 and bought neither!

75055 Imperial Star Destroyer … £119.99

AGAIN, smaller than the last one, built in a similar fashion, although the top comes off easier and the sides open out in a more robust manner.  The guns on the outside of the ship are connected and have a handle, so will rotate in unison, which was neat.  There is a sturdy handle too, perfect for swooshing.  The bridge, unlike the last one, cannot fit any figures in it, by the looks of it.  It looked like the printing on the Darth Vader figures was new, in fact most of them looked new to me!  Instead of having a large trans blue brick with a sticker to represent the Emporer, we get a custom moulded minifig trophy statuette in the shape of the Emporer, in trans blue.  A neat little addition.

75056 Advent Calendar … £24.99

Comes with various mini models, some new, some not (the Y-Wing is the same as the 2011!).  The Landspeeder looked rather similar to the keychain version from a few years ago.  Figure wise, we get a Christmas Darth Vader, a green R2 unit with a cone head (i.e. made to look like a Christmas tree), General Rieekan and a Santa Trooper, plus a few others that are available in other sets.

 

And that is about all I can remember!!!!  I may do another post tomorrow with details of other themes …

Ace Kim | January 17th, 2014 | LEGO The Simpsons, Sales News

71006 The Simpsons House VIP Early Access Now Available

71006 The Simpsons

If you’re a VIP member you can now purchase 71006 The Simpsons House two weeks ahead of the February 1 release date. You have to be logged in to your account to be able to see the product page and add it to your cart. The set comes with Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Maggie and Ned Flanders. 71006 The Simpsons House retails for $199.99 and you’ll get free shipping on this set.

Nick Martin | January 13th, 2014 | News

Michael Douglas is Hank Pym (and Rudd is Scott Lang)

Michael Douglas

In a strange moment of being direct, Marvel.com has announced that Gordon Gekko, i.e., Michael Douglas, is going to be playing a presumably older Hank Pym in the upcoming Ant-Man movie. The rumor mill had previously churned up Paul Rudd in the role, and he is in the movie as Scott Lang, Ant-Man version 2.0. This casting makes a whole lot more sense than Rudd as Pym. I can totally see Douglas smacking the Wasp and then getting tied up in it. And Rudd could easily be a reformed-thief/villain that takes up the mantle in a moment of desperation (and poor decision making).

It also gives us a decent shape on what the movie is going to be about, and where in the comics it ties in. While unknown to cinematic-only fans of the Marvel Universe, Ant-Man is one of the oldest characters in the universe, and snagging an actor of Douglas’ talent is a pretty big coup. I mean, this guy can play good guy who snapped (Falling Down), or a smart guy who snapped, or as a knock-off hero that lives in the shadow of those who came before (see the Indiana Jones knockoff that is Romancing the Stone).

The only real pause I have with Douglas, while being a fine actor, doesn’t have much experience in the whole Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Comic space. I suppose that didn’t stop any of the other actors that have come along, but most of them weren’t nearly as big of a casting as Douglas is.

Nick Martin | January 11th, 2014 | LEGO Star Wars, News, Rants

Apparently there is time to discuss this in committee…

Mickey Emperor

This actually popped up a couple of days ago, but I’d sat on posting it mostly because I’m lazy (and needed a good title). I first saw it on io9, and ArsTechnica has since written an op-ed on it. In short… Disney is going to “address” the Expanded Universe (EU), and decide what’s in canon and what’s not from the EU. Anyone who’s followed Star Wars outside of the movies (which I’ll just assume is pretty much everyone here) knows that the “Official” to “EU” connection is fuzzy at best. Books, video games, some comics (but not all), TV shows, toys… all considered in canon, and often conflicting with each other. There were even levels of canon defined, with the movies at the top, then TV shows, then books, then I think fan fiction…

In short, the whole thing is a mess. Enter Disney, most likely salivating over its multi-billion dollar property and the greatest merchandising machine this side of Cars. Part of their control of the universe is actually controlling the universe. It’s why the comics are going back to Marvel (owned by Disney), why the books have been slowly going away (most likely to move to some other publisher), and why the Clone Wars cartoon was killed off in favor of Rebels on a Disney network.

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Ace Kim | January 8th, 2014 | LEGO The Simpsons, News

LEGO Reveals 71006 The Simpsons House

71006_Front

Following today’s official announcement of The Simpsons license, LEGO has sent over official assets for 71006 The Simpsons House. Available as a Shop@Home D2C exclusive, it is priced at $199 USD. No other details about other sets is available at this time. Given that the press release used “construction set” in singular form, this and the Collectible Minifigure series may be all that we are getting.

Images, designer video and press release

Ace Kim | January 8th, 2014 | LEGO Simpsons, News

LEGO Officially Announces Simpsons License

LEGO finally made it official. Press release says sets available in February so we should be seeing more sets soon!

The LEGO Group Announces Partnership With Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products To Launch LEGO® And THE SIMPSONS Branded Merchandise

Construction Set and Minifigure Series Based on the Popular Show Available Beginning February 2014

Products To Coincide With LEGO-Themed Simpsons Episode, Airing May 2014 on FOX

BILLUND, Denmark, Jan. 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — The LEGO Group today announced a new partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products to produce a construction set and licensed LEGO® minifigures inspired by the iconic television series, THE SIMPSONS. In addition, FOX is scheduled to air a special LEGO episode of THE SIMPSONS in May 2014 featuring Springfield and its cast of characters in LEGO form.

Scheduled to launch this February in LEGO stores and via the LEGO Shop at Home catalog and website, the construction set will recreate the iconic Simpsons family house in LEGO form. Also included in the LEGO and THE SIMPSONS construction set is the entire family: Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie along with neighbor Ned Flanders. A separate line of 16 LEGO THE SIMPSONS minifigures will launch in all mass toy retailers in May 2014.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with Fox during the 25th anniversary year of the Simpsons,” said Jill Wilfert, vice president licensing & entertainment at The LEGO Group. “We know our fans will love the challenge of building the Simpsons’ family home in great detail and the ability to collect quintessential characters in LEGO minifigure form will let them showcase their love of the show in a whole new way. We are also excited that THE SIMPSONS will be created in LEGO form, truly bringing this partnership to life.”

“We are kicking off the 25th anniversary of THE SIMPSONS in a big way, and we think LEGO-loving fans of the show will be impressed with this collaboration that represents the best of both iconic worlds through the LEGO and THE SIMPSONS construction set, minifigures and LEGO-themed episode,” said Jeffrey Godsick, president of Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products. “Our partnership with LEGO is the perfect addition to the range of product lines that will be introduced globally in celebration of this great milestone achievement in television history.”

Created by Matt Groening, THE SIMPSONS is the longest-running scripted show in TV history. Since premiering in December 1989, the series has become a cultural phenomenon, recognizable throughout the world. The show was named the “Best Show of the 20th Century” by Time Magazine, has won 28 Emmys and its theatrical short, “The Longest Daycare,” was nominated for a 2012 Oscar.

The LEGO THE SIMPSONS house will be available February 1st in LEGO retail outlets for $199.99 (USD). The line of LEGO THE SIMPSONS minfigures will launch in May 2014 in all major toy retailers for $3.99 (USD) each.

About the LEGO Group
The LEGO Group is a privately held, family-owned company, based in Billund, Denmark. It was founded in 1932 and today the group is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of play materials for children. The company is committed to the development of children’s creative and imaginative abilities through its products, which can be purchased in more than 130 countries. Visit www.LEGO.com

LEGO and the LEGO logo are trademarks of The LEGO Group. ©2014 The LEGO Group.

About THE SIMPSONS
The longest-running scripted show in television history, THE SIMPSONS exploded into a cultural phenomenon in 1990 and has remained one of the most groundbreaking and innovative entertainment franchises, recognizable throughout the world. Currently airing its record-annihilating 25th season and in production on their 26th season, THE SIMPSONS has won 28 Emmy Awards and been nominated for an Academy Award in 2012 for the theatrical short The Longest Daycare. The Simpsons: Tapped Out is a top grossing mobile App and has ranked number one around the world on the App Store™ charts. The Simpsons Movie had worldwide global acclaim and the revolutionary virtual coaster ride at Universal Studios Florida and Hollywood is a continuous hit, along with the new Springfield experience at Universal Studios Florida. THE SIMPSONS received a Star on The Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2000 and has been honored with five U.S. postal stamps personally designed by Matt Groening. Named the “Best Show of the 20th Century” by Time Magazine, in 2013 Entertainment Weekly named THE SIMPSONS the Greatest American Sitcom. THE SIMPSONS airs Sundays, 8:00-8:30 PM ET/PT on FOX.

THE SIMPSONS is a Gracie Films Production in association with 20th Century Fox Television. James L. Brooks, Matt Groening, and Al Jean are the Executive Producers. The Gracie Films Worldwide Brand Division develops and produces the licensed content for the series. Film Roman is the animation house.

About TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX CONSUMER PRODUCTS
A division 21st Century Fox and recognized industry leader, Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products licenses and markets properties worldwide on behalf of Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Twentieth Century Fox Television and Fox Broadcasting Company, as well as third party lines. The division is aligned with Twentieth Century Fox Television, the flagship studio leading the industry in supplying award-winning and blockbuster primetime television programming and entertainment content.

via PR Newswire

Don "Solo" Reitz | January 7th, 2014 | Contests, LEGO Star Wars

The Last 2013 MOC Madness Tournament Announcement

It’s finally over! The last polls ended a few hours ago and here are the final results:

In first place, pulling ahead with 82% of the final poll, BrickJunkie’s S-Wing “Sue Ann” piloted by Jud raynor:
ImageComplete with rotating blades underneath. Awesome play feature that I’m sure helped sway more than a few voters.

Slithering into second, majortom’s Spirilium Stealth fighter with Hando Tanstarii:
ImageA pretty wild design and one of the most interesting cockpits in the contest to boot.

And lastly, taking third place with 84% of the runners up poll, halfbeak’s V-Wing piloted by Pokludix Zaa:
ImageExcellent use of the Christmas ornament ball and eye catching colorscheme.

I want to again thank everyone who participated for their hard work building all these crazy ships and trudging through the myriad of polls for the past two months. These contests would be nothing without your involvement and support, and you never fail to impress. Congratulations to the winners, and good luck to everyone in the next contest whenever I recover from the exhaustion this one brought on.