Welcome to another instalment of Monday Musings – a fortnightly series devoted to random musings on the LEGO hobby, community, my collection and beyond.
(sorry, I missed last fortnight as I got a little caught up with work)
In case you missed it, Monday Musings can be long-form, or short bursts of whatever strikes my fancy, and be more traditional “blog-type” content. You may have noticed that I’m doing more news and launch posts, which I enjoy and still find ways to inject my opinions, instead of say, just drop a random gallery of images and call it a day, but I like writing, and want to give you guys a peek into how I’m perceiving things in the LEGO World – hence, Monday musings.
To check out my previous 2 posts, check out:
For Monday Musings #3, this is a fresh reaction to the reaction by some parts of the LEGO Fan Community to the UCS Republic Gunship, which was unveiled last Thursday, and which was the subject of my latest LEGO review.
Finishing reviews is fun for me, because it means I get to read everyone else’s reviews and turn off my social media filter. Yeah, for sets I plan on reviewing, I try not to read or watch other reviewers to form my own opinion, and not get my review get clouded by what others think.
Here’s some of my favourite reviews on the LEGO UCS Republic Gunship. Check ’em out if you haven’t already!
Waaaaaaaaa, LEGO doesn’t listen to the fans
There are a lot of voices in the LEGO community, and it’s very much like high school with many different cliques. You have your Instagram Leakers, always on the pulse ready to crowd the #legoleaks hashtag at a moment’s notice, old school Bloggers/LEGO Fan websites who tend to be a lot more chill, and laidback, LEGO Storytime-style Vloggers/Channels on Youtube who are mostly about positive vibes, and then you have the whiny, reactionary man-babies on Youtube who unfortunately, are the loudest voices, and command some of the biggest followings online.
The UCS Republic Gunship is one of the most important LEGO Star Wars releases this year, itself the culmination of a fan vote, and an almost-two year wait before its eventual unveiling. The hype was off the charts, considering it’s one of the first Prequel UCS sets in almost a decade.
The uh… conversation surrounding the Gunship has been a cesspool of toxicity, with more bad takes than an Uwe Boll movie and catching up on all the conversations has left me feeling quite puzzled.
The primary thesis put forward is that LEGO completely sidelined the fans with the minifigure selection, and the takes have been riddled with hyperbole, with many fans seemingly feeling personally insulted that their favourite Jedi Bob wasn’t in, and that the minifigures were a complete dealbreaker that has led to one guy quitting LEGO altogether.
I think this video is pretty genius, because I genuinely cannot tell if this kid is serious, or if this is just S-Tier satire.
10/10 delivery in either case.
Now the UCS Republic Gunship is far from perfect, and yes, the minifigure selection could’ve been improved slightly, but boy, the level of vitriol and entitlement emanating from some parts of the community has been comically bad.
Anyway, back to the common thread of gripes – LEGO doesn’t listen or care about their fans. I vehemently disagree here, and I’ll just rattle off a few examples.
LEGO UCS Fan Vote 2020
Without a hint of irony, the fact that all this negativity is coming out of a set that… wait for it… was put into the hands of fans by LEGO to choose the next UCS set is uh, startling?
Absolutely zero self-awareness here.
I also think that LEGO Star Wars, placing the choice of an Ultimate Collectors Series (the marque release in the Star Wars theme) set in the hands of its fans is something truly special, and fans just don’t realise how rare this is.
Imagine if Apple went out to its community/fanbase and asked them what colour their next iPhone would be.
Bricklink Designer Program Second Chance
People have extremely poor memories but this is literally about 10 days old.
Remember the absolute shitstorm that was Round 1 of the Bricklink Designer Program? Criticism was fast and furious from all corners of the LEGO Fan Community (including yours truly), and LEGO was out on full blast with just how badly they handled the rollout.
The result? LEGO listened, took on board the feedback and opened up the Designer Program for a second chance (except for the Castle..) on 3 August. In record time, mind you.
LEGO VIP Coins Restock
Remember VIP coins, and how quickly they sold out, with enterprising individuals re-selling them on eBay for ludicrous amounts?
Well LEGO seems to have well-placed spies across the globe, as they took on board the feedback that these were too limited, and will re-release the coins in greater quantities later this year.
LEGO has no love for the Prequels
What a sick upcoming lineup.
Re-releasing popular sets, keeping them alive well beyond their intended lifespan
Let’s also not forget LEGO artificially extending the life-span of two very popular LEGO Ideas sets, the 92176 Saturn V and 92177 Ship in a Bottle, even going as far as to give them new set numbers in a re-release.
A whole LEGO theme devoted to giving fans what they want
LEGO Ideas, you might have heard of the theme. Last I checked, it was pretty popular.
Does LEGO get things wrong? Of course they do. All the time. Remember the Ulysses Probe? And they will continue to mistakes, and missteps here and there. It’s only natural when you’re a behemoth of a brand/company, and you’re constantly trying to please millions of fans, new and old.
In fact, LEGO is running 2 surveys at the moment, seeking to better understand its adult fans.
One on learning more about what Adult Fans of LEGO (AFOLs) are passionate about, and another on a page on LEGO.com dedicated for Adult LEGO Hobbyists. Both surveys can be taken anonymously, and it’s a great opportunity for you to make your voice heard.
In some ways, being a fan of LEGO can feel a little like stockholm syndrome, especially in the face of rising prices, LEGO doing weird branded collaborations, and releasing weird sets like buildable sneakers. It may feel like LEGO is not listening to fans, by not giving us another proper LEGO Castle, or more Classic Space, or Bionicle.
But to confidently make an assertion that LEGO doesn’t care about its fans is dishonest.
In fact, I think LEGO sometimes cares too much about their fans, and takes too much stock in what certain pockets/cliques of the fan community choose as their drama flavour of the month.
But that’s the challenge of key decision-makers in large organisations like LEGO – separating the signal from the noise, and knowing when something is the result of whiny man-babies, or a sustained consumer trend.
They’ll get some things right, and they’ll get some things wrong, and in some cases, change might be slow to some as product development cycles are famously long in Billund.
I just feel like for LEGO fans who spend all their time on Youtube without any real-world experience, you can sometimes interpret silence or inaction as dismissiveness.
What do you think? As a LEGO fan, do you think LEGO listens to their fan community, and are they responsive enough?
Thanks for reading!
In case you missed it, be sure to check out my review of 75309 UCS Republic Gunship to see what the fuss is all bout!
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Nathan DuPhene says
Really my biggest problem with Lego is that they sold out of the preorders for Forest Castle on Day 1 of a 90 day preorder period and didn’t think to perhaps open that set up for as many preorders as they can get. I wanted to build a double-set MOC, and have a single one, too, and get one set for each of my daughters to have for when they are older. 5 sets just for my personal and family use.
But my computer has been broken, and I missed the 20 hour window (out of a supposedly 90 day term) so now I get no chance to order a Forest Castle. Why not wholesale the sets? Why not take a bigger preorder? Isn’t the whole point of Lego to sell more sets? They seem to want to empower scalpers and create a culture of sky-high resale values for certain sets. Look at Castle Lowengrin, for example. I would rather pay Lego 20% more for a new set than not get the set because it’s going for a 300% markup on the aftermarket. Missing the preorder on Forest Castle (which I had been following for months) felt like a gut-punch and made me feel like I’m not worthwhile to Lego as a customer.
I want to buy the 3-in-1 castle, but I feel like it’s rewarding the company for bad behavior on this botched Creator program. I think a lot of fans would love Lego to put more parts onto Bricks n pieces so we can build some of the many great MOCs posted on places such as inst*gram.
I’m sorry to hear that – and like you, I missed out as well of the Forest Castle. I think it’s important to realise that these were always meant to be a limited run and a pilot program by Bricklink. This has absolutely showed them that there is demand for these super-detailed Castle sets, so I hope this isn’t the last we see of it, and they miraculously put out another production run in the future.
They’ve definitely gotten feedback from fans loud and clear, so fingers crossed they don’t make this mistake ever again.
Andrew McCanna says
But why didn’t you use your phone or someone else’s computer? It’s not LEGOs fault that this happened. Also, the whole point is for the sets to be scarce. That’s what they said.
Hey great musings Jay!. Now I’m interested in reading your other posts. I’m also going to do the survey and mention I’d like to see a new fantasy (had to correct initially wrote ‘adult fantasy’ – doesn’t sound right ) range as I enjoyed collectIng the LOTR and Hobbit series that was canned. Anyway it seems some castle stuff is coming out and I can brick-pillage from Harry Potter or Winnie the Pooh ( Sorry Winnie – but like HP my nieces will gladly adopt you )
Anyway, thanks Jay for your service to the brick and a well balanced, thoughtful and entertaining blog
While I don’t agree with everything in the video I do feel that Lego is more interested in making dollars now more so than anything else. During the pandemic they have increased their market share worldwide and they have increased the amount if sets released to at least double what they used to release going back 3-4 years ago. The big thing for me is the price points if the sets the price count per set has fallen dramatically and the prices have increased at the same time.
Example is the Star Wars helmets I paid $69 each for the first releases and then this year’s series were $20 dearer and had smaller piece counts, fir me that is just clear price gouging. I will still collect however I now refuse to actually buy from Lego I will go elsewhere to ensure I get the best prices.
Jake Teske says
You make great points. I’m not particularly upset about the gunship, but I can’t disagree with some of the outspoken criticism of the set and the minifigs. If Lego is going to hold a fan vote on what minifigs should be in a fan voted set, why the backtracking on it later? People voted for a Commander Cody. So why throw in Mace Windu instead? I think a lot of the fans got even more infuriated by The designer’s comments regarding the set. First was the “let’s be honest” remark and then the “we hope there is demand” comment. Both are pretty dismissive of the fan base. Does that mean Lego overall doesn’t listen to the fans? No, for all the reasons you just pointed out. But there’s also plenty of instances where they haven’t, and in this particular case, it’s pretty clear the designer’s comments show a lack of understanding of the Star Wars fan community. He should really apologize for being so dismissive.
There are a few things that LEGO has done that honestly make me infuriated. I will explain them all to you.
1. Why did LEGO get rid of half of its Elements? There are plenty of old and retired LEGO Elements that would be great for modern LEGO Themes and Sets. Halving the amount of LEGO Elements was honestly a bad idea. Do not get me wrong, I totally love the vast majority of new LEGO Elements that have been released since 2004, but I also am convinced that LEGO should have never tinkered around with its variety of LEGO Elements, as LEGO is supposed to be a toy about the limitless power of imagination.
2. Why does LEGO flat out refuse to make the Classic Blue and Classic Gray color options available once again? Unlike most people that bring up this issue, I actually do not have a problem with the New Blue and New Gray color options for LEGO Elements, but what I DO have a problem with is when LEGO gets rid of color options for its customers.
3. Why does LEGO pander to political groups instead of caring more about the concept of imagination?
4. The LGBT promoting set that LEGO made honestly undermines the whole concept of LEGO, as well as peddles a form of discrimination that poses as a form of so-called “diversity” because anyone that has a brain knows that LGBT ways of thought are ironically lacking in diversity in the end because when they get their way over their competition, then they will inevitably, as well as eventually, turn on one another in the end. Moreover, even LGBT fans of LEGO ironically hate the set because even the vast majority of the fans know that LEGO is supposed to be about fun, creativity, and the limitless power of imagination and forcing an agenda upon people that will never buy into said agenda is honestly a bit dictatorial, as well as contrary to the whole point of LEGO itself, which is an art form and a toy that bring about the limitless power of imagination.
4. BLM, crooked police and government officials, and race baiting groups of ALL skin, hair, and eye colors have all ruined potentially good things like the LEGO City Undercover video game franchise, as well as LEGO Town/City. Moreover, in real life, people such as those do not want justice, they just want to peddle agendas, as well as have a carte blanche to do as they please without proper reprocussions towards the actions that they all are doing in their lives and those precedents are not just bad, but that they are also cataclysmic in scope in the long run.
5. LEGO is hypocritical in regards to its bans on weapons of war, with two of those reasons already being mentioned, but also because pacifism is ironically a form of war itself, as a lack of action to do the right thing in life is tantamount to essentially make war and violence happen in the first place. Moreover, as long as sin, imperfection, wickedness, evil, human bodies that do those things, and human minds that devise various ways to do those things, all exist, then no weapon bans will ever be effective because of those things, as well as the simple facts that people will need to break unjust laws in order to stop evildoers and evildoers that will also likewise not care for the laws, or lack of laws thereof, in regards to doing as they please in life. The point is that blaming guns and other potential weapons for war is like blaming fire for being hot and burning things, blaming ice for being cold and causing frostbite, and blaming food because it makes people fat…the weapons are not the problem, the evil people are the problem!
6. The New Style Road Baseplates are horrible and no one likes them…we want the Old Style Road Baseplates back! The New Style Road Baseplates look cheap and horrible and they are also completely at odds with the whole aesthetic of LEGO, like even worse than Clikets and Galidor.
7. LEGO needs to have other intellectual properties in its lineup, such as anime, manga, video game, and other literary franchises like Dynasty Warriors/Shin Sengokumusou and Mobile Suit Gundam. Even newer franchises like My Hero Academia would be very much welcome in LEGO form.
8. Why, LEGO, did you ban the V-22 Osprey Creator set? All kinds of aircraft can be used for war, as well as land, sea, and space based vehicles, so why did you not ban those things as well, you bunch of hypocrites?
9. Is it me, or is LEGO ironically in a worse spot than it was in the year 2004? LEGO honestly not only needs to get rid of its leadership, but that it also needs to have the family that made the company exist in the first place not have any sort of ownership in it anymore, as they have all clearly lost the plot in regards to how to operate LEGO. Please do not get me wrong, having media and video game outlets for LEGO are good things, but when all of those things not only ironically outshine the actual LEGO Themes and Elements, as well as cause their prices to skyrocket, well, those things are BIG problems for the future of LEGO.
I honestly could go on and on with the massive list of screwups that have been made by LEGO, but these screwups are just the tip of the iceberg and I also happen to have a life that is outside of the internet.
“anyone that has a brain knows that LGBT ways of thought are ironically lacking in diversity”, “forcing an agenda” Yeah, doesn’t sound like a good-faith argument.
Great article Jay! I think Lego is definitely trying to listen and reach out to more of their fans as evident by all of your points above which I completely agree. I was quite surprised in a positive way that they actually made changes to the bricklink designer program after listening to the feedback (although they should have listened to ambassadors that already pointed these things out beforehand).
As for the Gunship, a UCS model’s main focus should be the build and minifigs a secondary concern. Lego shot themselves in the foot when they asked what figs fans want to see as star wars fans are known to be hard to please and Lego themselves are restricted by disney when it comes to fig selections. The worry now is Lego will shy away from fan vote given the backlash.
But I think the main thing that made people so angry are the comments from the head designer during a LAN roundtable interview which have rubbed fans the wrong way;
“Let’s be honest, all most people remember from the movies is that there was a Clone Trooper with some yellow markings on the helmet piloting the vehicle”
“We do hope there is a demand. I mean, you told us, ‘We want this, we want it to be reasonably big,’ and I hope that not everybody will now say, ‘No, I don’t like the minifigures,’ or ‘I’m not buying it because I don’t like that brick there.’ So yeah, I guess if you want to see more sets like this, go and buy it”
Quote taken from brick fanatics website. It just come off a bit disrespectful to fans and some what of a semi threat to buy it or prequel will go back into another 10 year hiatus for a ucs treatment.
Nick Gee says
A great read as always Jay, but I have to disagree. Lego has completely stuffed up this time, and to be fair to some of the “whiny, reactionary man-babies on Youtube” they do make some good points in amongst the raging. You need to remember that these people live and die Lego starwars (and we could make all kinds of judgments about them for that, but doing so on a Lego blog would be too ironic). The incorrect logo, asking people what figs the want and then ignoring it, talking about how every weapon has to be perfect in a video and then zooming in on the darksaber, and finally the suggestion that if you don’t like it too bad, but you better buy it or there won’t be any more prequel sets. You can understand that if you live and breathe this stuff you would be unhappy.
Consider the themes that you are a fan of. Just imagine if they had used the wrong flag on the Chinese New Year sets, had proved prints of foods that were not appropriate to the celebration, had not include any female mini figs, and had only offered the Duplo set and said if you don’t buy it, we won’t make any more. I would hope that you would be rightfully unimpressed (albeit in an age appropriate manner).
As fans we have every right to be unhappy, some (not all) in the Lego community (but often LAN members) often have the perspective that Lego is amazing and can do no wrong. This is a level of brand loyalty that can be very problematic, even dangerous for younger fans, it almost becomes a religious or cult affiliation (that’s not to say that the constant demands and whinging are any better). But we as consumers have every right to complain, and the world is littered with collapsed companies that failed to listen…
PS. Sands is amazing
Hey Nick, thanks for weighing in!
I think that’s the danger of cherry-picking and honing in on gotcha statements. Like the “if you want to see more Clone Wars-era sets, you should definitely buy it” statement is true of any theme. LEGO makes commercial decisions, and of course, if a set sells well, they’ll make more of it.
They’re also (quite rightly) burned by the poor performance of the Clone Wars-era sets, when the Prequels weren’t as popular, so they’re rightfully treading quite carefully in this space, especially since outside of the Bad Batch, and Season 7 of the Clone Wars, there just isn’t a lot of media surrounding the era to support sales of products.
I missed the Darksaber bit and didn’t catch it, but for what it’s worth, we should have absolutely gotten a new mould for it, instead of the rod.
Could the UCS Gunship have been improved, especially in the minifigure department? Sure, but I’ll hold my ground here – UCS sets have never been about minifigures, so I disagree with the assertion that LEGO completely ruined the set. Not including the Pilot is a huge miss, but for the average LEGO Star Wars fan who collects UCS sets (not hardcore die-hard fans), I really don’t think it’s a dealbreaker.
It’s just important to filter out the more militant parts of the community, and the silent minority who simply enjoy LEGO Star Wars, and not hang on the words of Youtubers as gospel. LEGO in the position they’re in, need to straddle this balance, which is why I disagree when these fans say they don’t care or listen.
Nick Gee says
Thanks for the reply, and i’m not sure I really disagree with any of that 🙂
But, if this is the space that Lego wants to build its market and lets be real its the die hards that are going to be regularly spending $500-1500 on these sets they need to do a better job of understanding that market (as indulgent as it may be). To be fair if Lego made those type of mistakes (missteps, miscalculations?) in Marvel, DC or Ninjago sets I think the response would be similar from those fans. It just seems like a run of poor decisions all in the starwars space and given this is the theme that they are really flooding the AFOL market with right now (and presumably marketing and design budgets as well), it seems like they could do better even if its somethings about managing expectations (LegoCon i’m looking at you).
Looking forward to next week’s installment!
Well said jay. However, i still have some things to point out that alot of people dont understand.
As you said, Lego really cares abou their fans, but people like sands are actually complaining about the designers from lego star wars only. He didnt quit Lego, he only quit lego star wars and it is not because he felt insulted that jedi bob isnt included, he felt insulted because the designers are still hating the prequels, thinking that no one would be a fan of prequels to realise that the clone commander isnt the pilot of the gunship(refer to 1414falconfan for that). Also, the designers threatened the lego star wars community to buy the ucs gunship or else they wont make any more prequel sets.
You said that they still put out alot of prequel sets, but that is a little wrong there. The sets that are coming out in august are clone wars sets.
I personally am okay with whatever minifig they included with ucs sets. I am just a little sad about the designers words.
Still, i really like your contents. I just think i should point out some stuff that you might not know.
You know, having spoken to the designers a few times, I agree – they do come from a different generation, and I agree, that they don’t fully understand the Prequels, and their vocal fanbase but I think they’re eventually coming around.
The “buy the Gunship if not we won’t make any more” isn’t a threat, it’s really a fair comment – this is LEGO’s first Prequel UCS set in almost 10 years, released when there’s no movie, TV series or large-scale media to support it. It’s very much saying, vote with your wallet. If it sells well, the LEGO Design team can then go back to the business with the case that there’s tons of demand for Prequel sets.
Social media sentiment, youtube videos, and chatter on forums are a useful gauge, but unless Prequel fans come out in droves to buy this and back it up with actual sales, they won’t make more. That’s just life.
I want more Pacific Rim movies, or for Elves to come back as a LEGO theme, but when they were out, they just didn’t sell well, so again, it’s really important to vote with your wallet to send a signal. It’s not a threat at all, and my issue is how that statement has been misconstrued as LEGO doesn’t care about fans.
I think your argument is quite poor specifically regarding LEGO showing no love for the prequel movies. Two of the three sets you showed are from The Clone Wars, not the prequel movies. The Gunship is, but that was only introduced because it won the fan vote. To quote the designers: “We didn’t expect the Gunship to win, we don’t even have a plan on how to make it.”
They didn’t expect it to win because the designers are still in 2005’s ‘everyone hates the prequel trilogy’ mode. We’re lucky to get one or two sets a year and most of them are small. When was the last time we got a set based on Naboo, Geonosis or Coruscant? It’s been quite some time.
As for the rest of the article, I respect your opinions but really, LEGO blatantly ignored fans who requested Jedi Bob and Commander Cody which thousands upon thousands of fans were after.
If the figures don’t matter much to LEGO, then surely just appeasing the fans and putting what’s most requested in the set wouldn’t be hard.
Hey Fraze, sorry my mistake – when I refer to the Prequel movies, I’m referring to that era of Star Wars which also includes Filoni’s Clone Wars.
I agree that the designers definitely have an Original Trilogy bias, but if you venture out of the internet, a lot of old school Star Wars fans are like that and don’t get the prequels.
Another important thing to note is that LEGO probably doesn’t make these decisions in isolation – they work closely with Disney on TV, movie and media releases as they need the support of those properties to drive sales of sets.
If we see more shows like the Bad Batch, I wouldn’t put it pass LEGO to release more Prequel-era sets.
Jedi Bob (and Commander Cody) are unfortunately internet memes. They make sense to fans that spend much of their time on Twitter, Youtube, Instagram etc but beyond that… to the average LEGO Star Wars UCS collector, you’ll need to explain why Jedi Bob is a thing, so it just doesn’t make sense. For what it’s worth, I think we’ll see him pop up in a future minifig-scale set.
LEGO needs to appease ALL fans, and balance the needs/wants of everyone, not just the die-hard fans online. It’s a delicate balance, and they can’t and won’t please anyone.
Great post. I do enjoy the musings, thank you.
In a very short space of time, Lego has gone from a policy of its primary market being children, to having an equal focus on AFOLs. In such a huge shift it’s inevitable that mistakes will be made (black instruction books anyone?). I reckon though that the focus on the fans is better than it has ever been, and there’s no denying that there have been some absolutely stunning sets for both adults and children in recent times.
Like everyone else, they’d be dealing with Covid as well, and have a reduced ability to act as quickly and as completely as they like.
Ideas is my favourite theme, even though there is far too much focus recently on unfunny American sitcoms ;). However, that just leaves more money in the pocket for the next upcoming stunning release. By broadening the product portfolio there genuinely is something for everyone.
Oh, if anyone from Lego is reading, Wallace and Gromit please 😀
Yeah that’s a really good point, and I bet LEGO are also learning as they go along. Their near-bankruptcy has left an indelible mark on the company, so they have to move forward with some level of precaution instead of just doing whatever they fancy.
It’s hard to please everyone, and it would be bad business to try and please everyone, because it will never end.
Covid is a good one too, and I’m the supply chain constraints, and toy stores buying stock as well could’ve been a factor.
I’ll probably skip the Seinfeld set as the first Ideas set I forgo, which is a big deal, but like you, American sitcoms don’t really appeal to me, which is fine.
Sign me up for Wallace and Gromit too!
Thoughtfully articulated and we’ll said. Great job.
Thanks Chris, bit reactionary, but was good to put my thoughts to words.
Before you consider that Lego listens.. consider the Goat and the Cow. These are common animals that are fan favourites.. exist in one set only.. and very much retired and up to scalpers to determine the price/availability. I don’t buy for a second Lego’s lame excuse “we don’t have a mould… we can’t do it”.. considering the huge amount of new releases of mould redesigns each year across all their lines, being straight up lied to isn’t cool.
Oh wow, I didn’t realise Cows had gotten so expensive, I thought it was only Goats.
But yeah, look – the designers did try to get a Goat into the Blacksmith, but was famously denied by Matthew Ashton (or whoever the VP for Design was at the time) so….
They’re also probably sick of hearing about the Goat, but hey, at least we got sheep.
LEGO is you’re reading, we want more Farm sets/Livestock. Thanks.
‘ Consider the goat and the cow’ Yes wise words Sensei. But seriously what’s up with that? I need some for my fantasy/ medieval setting. I can find a few cows but goats nada. I’ve got the mill set but too afraid to bust it open in case I need to sell it to pay the bills or something! I’m surprised the knock off merchants haven’t got onto this.
Not everything lego makes has to appeal to everyone.
If lego decides to make a neo classical space line I’d be all over it. But a rerelease of the classic space line- no thanks
Hopefully the 90th Anniversary set…
Honestly, if anything, I lean toward “LEGO listens too much,” rather than the opposite, but that’s not a bad way to err. And my issue with them, if it’s really with them, is that it’s a symptom of chasing too much. While I don’t want a return to the insolvent early ’00s, a LEGO that was more willing to just make what they make and let the fans come it is less exhausting than the always-topping-last-year LEGO.
I have a similar problem as a Star Wars fan…
Yeah, it’s a fine balance – having to juggle meeting fan expectations, commercial results, tight budgets that are present in any organisation or project.
You could tell LEGO were bracing for this as they could expect how the fan community would respond if they got things wrong.
That said, I think history will be kind to the set and in hindsight, it’ll be a classic UCS set.
Joel H. says
Thanks for this post. You’ve summed up well a strong case against all of the criticism that LEGO doesn’t listen to or care about their fans. I would add, too, if you look at the comment sections in set pages on LEGO.com, a decent number of the complaints about sets garner responses from LEGO. Whether or not those are helpful is up to the customers, I suppose.
The factions complaining about minifigures in the UCS Gunship don’t reflect my views. The ship is beautiful and fulfills what I’ve come to expect from UCS Star Wars sets – tremendous size/display presence, an interesting and challenging build, a handful of interesting functions, and a couple of minifigures to boot (without which I still would buy every single UCS set I already have). I can also appreciate the rareness and coolness of the opportunity to actually pick a UCS model, although I do wonder how things would be different if they had avoided the minifigure feedback option altogether.
Thanks again. Cheers and keep up the good work.
Haha! You had me at “reactionary man-babies”!
Your posts are always entertaining, especially the musings. Thanks!
Good article. FYI, one paragraph is incomplete. It starts “But to” and that’s it. I’ll go back and review tonight when I have more time. Thanks!
Thanks, I missed that part.
Great article. I get people are disappointed with the minifigures but did Lego ever say which minifigures were the most popular in the vote, as for all we know these were the most popular choices?
Nope – I suspect it was Jedi Bob or Cody. There wasn’t any transparency there.