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Design byMe To Close

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Design byMe To Close

Postby Staff » Wed Nov 09, 2011 12:06 pm


LEGO Design byMe


I don't have much to say on the matter since I never used it's services nor knew anyone who did. The official press release is as follows:


Design byME to close in January

The LEGO Group is closing that part of the Design byMe customization service that allows consumers to order digital models in real bricks. We will be accepting orders until January 16, 2012.

Consumers will still be able to design what they want with LEGO Digital Designer and upload models into a public gallery as before. All existing models will be transferred to a new gallery on the LDD website. Consumers will also be able to download the instructions generated from LEGO Digital Designer.

The HERO Recon Team Hero Creator will be unchanged and consumers will still be able to build and buy their own customized Hero. Bricks can be bought separately, using the Pick a Brick service http://shop.lego.com/en-US/Pick-A-Brick-ByTheme.

This is not the end of customization for the LEGO Group, but a revision. We believe in the future of customization, but the service we offer has to be right for our consumers and Design byME has proven to be too complex for children.

The original Design byMe vision was for a unique customization service, where consumers could design whatever they imagined, display it and get the model sent to in their own LEGO box. Design byMe as a concept attracts several million people each year to build a huge range of amazing creations using the LEGO Digital Designer (LDD) software. Despite this success, the overall Design byMe experience has struggled to live up to the quality standards for a LEGO service.

Over the years, we have also added other simpler customized building experiences like Hero Recon Team. However, the overall Design byMe experience has struggled to live up to the quality standards for a LEGO service. The feedback from Design byMe users has taught us that we would need to rebuild the entire setup of Design byMe to fix this. This would only make the service too expensive.

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Permalink: http://www.fbtb.net/2011/11/09/design-byme-to-close/
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby Brickaholic » Wed Nov 09, 2011 12:18 pm

Well this blows.


I was working on a massive set to buy, but now it's gone, unless I order before 2012..


Hmm, so LEGO are closing Universe and now this?

What else?
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby Draykov » Wed Nov 09, 2011 1:06 pm

This may be a bit too optimistic on my part, but if they're keeping LDD around, maybe this will allow them to provide a more consistent and expansive parts palette. It seemed like under the old model (at least prior to the addition of the LEGO Universe palette), they'd regularly have to pull elements from the palette that were not currently in circulation in current sets or Pick-a-Brick.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby MrCRskater » Wed Nov 09, 2011 1:56 pm

I'm surprised that their business model could be sustained even this long. While it's a great concept, the Design byMe/LEGO Factory thing had two major achilles heels: A) parts selection was never quite good enough (imo), and 2) it was grossly overpriced. I never could figure out how to make it a worthwhile expenditure. Mini models ran around $15-$20 for fewer than 100 parts, system-scale models could run you hundreds of dollars. Not to mention that the LDD software was pretty limited in what it could accomplish, especially in the first few versions.

The whole thing needs to be reconceived. But making this affordable for the consumer and profitable for LEGO may mean structural changes in the manufacturing process, which will probably be too costly. Kinda sad, as it seems that this could be a great niche to expand in.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby Mister Ed » Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:05 pm

The feedback from Design byMe users has taught us that we would need to rebuild the entire setup of Design byMe to fix this. This would only make the service too expensive.


THIS would "make" the service too expensive? From where I'm standing, one of the main problems (as MrCRskater pointed out) was that the service was ALREADY too expensive. I would have LOVED to have made use of this for some cool, personalized gift-giving, but whenever I tried (assuming I could actually build what I wanted with the limited palette) I was always flabbergasted by how much the result was going to cost.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby Draykov » Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:50 pm

Mister Ed wrote:THIS would "make" the service too expensive? From where I'm standing, one of the main problems (as MrCRskater pointed out) was that the service was ALREADY too expensive.


I don't disagree with the sentiment, but I just assumed that comment meant too expensive for LEGO, not the consumer.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby Mister Ed » Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:03 pm

Draykov wrote:
Mister Ed wrote:THIS would "make" the service too expensive? From where I'm standing, one of the main problems (as MrCRskater pointed out) was that the service was ALREADY too expensive.


I don't disagree with the sentiment, but I just assumed that comment meant too expensive for LEGO, not the consumer.


You might be right. I assumed that, had they been talking about expense to LEGO, they would have said "This would be too expensive" rather than "This would make the service too expensive". But I could well have been interpreting it incorrectly.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby Draykov » Wed Nov 09, 2011 6:52 pm

You make a good point...maybe I'm just a cynic and I think the expense to LEGO is more important to them than added expense to the consumer. Or maybe LEGO just has wild ideas about what "expensive" means.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby darth_fett » Thu Nov 10, 2011 9:30 am

I tried uploading a 350 piece Front Mission model expecting close to the golden $.10 part rule and found out my set was around $60! I'm guessing much of the expense comes from making custom boxes & instructions so i wouldn't have minded those being eliminated. I guess they wanted to make something different from brinklink, et al. Considering i have 4 of those models so far there's no way i'd pay that much for each, but hopefully they continue this somehow. I mean since you built it in LDD you don't need instructions. I find i've been building in LDD recently instead my real collection cos its sorted & in any color i want it. I wish this site would allow LDD submissions for contests or have a contest featuring LDD. I had my bounty hunter ship built inside of the first week in LDD but couldnt find the parts in my collection to submit it.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby darth_fett » Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:33 am

Now that i think about it i wonder which is *really* cheaper: parting out customs on several bricklink stores or getting it all in one place direct from Lego? Too lazy to use my phone to check bricklink for my Front Mission mech & faaaar too lazy to hike the 10 minutes to the library to use their free internet.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby DemoGoblin » Thu Nov 10, 2011 6:10 pm

I used it to make my wedding cake topper and it turned out wonderful, a set with a custom box to remember a great day. The cost wasn't unreasonable at $55 if I remember right. The only thing I can see it being used for would be a aofl birthday present or special projects like mine. Guess I will have to think of a anniversary set and make it before it closes. Its sad to see it go but no big surprise really.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby turtle » Thu Nov 10, 2011 11:49 pm

Hopefully we're not seeing the end of updates to LDD.... but we probably are.
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Re: Design byMe To Close

Postby vynsane » Fri Nov 11, 2011 7:45 am

The original press release and additional comments by Mark Stafford over at Brickset have already confirmed that LDD will continue to be developed and that this is not the end of customization at LEGO, but a re-evaluation of the process.

That is not to say that I don't still harbor some trepidation about the future of LDD, but TLG seems to be committed to further development of the software. Hopefully whatever follows DbM will only further enhance LDD.
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