After a sneak peek earlier today, I’m proud to be able to share a quick review of the next LEGO Ideas gift with purchase (GWP) set – 40533 Cosmic Cardboard Adventures!
The 40533 Cosmic Cardboard Adventures gift with purchase (GWP) will be available from 16-30 May (conveniently before the June 2022 releases launch!) from LEGO.com. It’ll be free with purchases of US$160 / £160 / AU$229.
Update (29/5): The promotion for this has been extended to 14 June 2022 in the US and Europe, which is great news as all the new June 2022 releases will qualify you for the set – while stocks last obviously.
The set was originally submitted as the Adventures of the USS Cardboard by Bulldoozer which was the winner of the Out of This World Space Builds contest. It’s the fourth LEGO Ideas GWP, after 40335 Space Rocket Ride, 40448 Vintage Car, and 40487 Sailboat Adventure!
Let’s see if this set is worth your money, but I reckon if you’re a fan of Classic Space, you won’t need much convincing.
Special thanks to the LEGO Group for providing this set for review
40533 Cosmic Cardboard Adventures Set Details
Name: Cosmic Cardboard Adventures
Set Number: 40533
Price: N/A- Buy from LEGO.com [US] [AUS] [UK]
Exclusive to: LEGO.com, LEGO Brand Retail Stores
GWP Threshold: US$160 / £160 / AU$229
Theme: LEGO Ideas
LEGO Designer: TBD
Release Date: 16 – 30 May 2022
Here’s a look at the back and the sides of the box – I really like the cardboard printout with the set’s name on the side, alongside the minifigure.
Here’s a look at the instruction manual, with a neat profile of the fan designer Ivan Guerrero. If his name rings a bell, it’s because this is his second successful LEGO Ideas set, his first being 21324 123 Sesame Street, one of my favourite sets of 2020!
Unfortunately, stickers are abundant in the set, with most of the decorations relying on stickers.
Here’s a look at the minifigure, a young, eager space fan, and his trusty cat. He sports torso, with the legendary 918 One Man Space Ship printed on it, which first made an appearance in the Space Fan from Minifigures Series 20. His cardboard-coloured motorcycle helmet is brand new in this shade.
Here’s a look at the back printing and his alternate face.
The first Classic Space nod is this adorable Teddy Bear Exo Suit. He has some really cool features, like red and blue skate feet, umbrellas that represent rockets on his back, and a whisk and hairdryer as attachments on the Exo Suit’s arms.
It’s a lovely nod to 2014’s LEGO Ideas Exo Suit, which is both one of the most legendary LEGO Ideas sets, and a great love letter to Neo Classic Space.
You first build the room, which has 2 wall sections, featuring some stars, and a brick-built rocket attached to the wall. The carpet is a nice build, and serves as a “landing pad” for the Cardboard Spaceship.
To make it look like a toy-obsessed kids room, there are 3 green toy soldiers, as well as a paintbrush and green paint in one corner of the room, as well as a pair of scissors that the boy uses to build his cardboard spaceship.
Here’s a look at the Cosmic Cardboard spaceship. It’s a neat and tidy little build, with plenty of stickers which mimic kiddy drawings. There are cardboard box remnants, like This Side Up on the front, as well as handdrawn fireballs on the side, and yellow arrows, which are a nod to LEGO Classic Spaceships.
I especially love the crudely drawn dials on the side, as well as control panels, and the fact that there’s also room for the cat as an interstellar companion!
A really cool design detail is the use of Vita Rush (official energy drink of LEGO City) cans for the thrusters on the back!
Oh, and here’s a comparison with the granddaddy of all spaceships – LEGO 928 Galaxy Explorer.
And here’s the Cosmic Cardboard Spaceship within the room. It fits in comfortably, and makes for a tidy little diorama that looks great on display, yet can be swooshed or played with easily.
The colours of the model are the unsung heroes, as they complement each other very nicely, and I love how the cardboard elements, with the spaceship’s stark brown and grey colours contrasting nicely against the poppy yellow flooring, and blue walls.
And one for the Classic Space fans – the Classic Space fanboy also has a handdrawn flag with 493 Space Command Center flying in the corner of the room. Again, I love the crude kiddy-style drawing on the flag!
What I liked:
- A really cute, mini-diorama oozing with nostalgia
- Classic Space references galore
- Really fun and engaging build
- That 493 Space Command Center flag
What I didn’t like:
- Outrageously high GWP purchase
- Timing of this is terrible with June releases
- Way too many stickers, no printed elements
This is a fantastic LEGO Ideas GWP that oozes Classic Space and childhood nostalgia. The cardboard spaceship, which hasn’t been changed much from the original Ideas Contest submission.
I love the overall concept of this, with the space-obsessed boy constructing a spacecraft out of cardboard. The little touches that the stickers offer, add a whole other dimension to the build, topped by the adorable 493 Space Command Center flag.
This is really an ode to Classic Space, and old-timey space fans (like yours truly) will be enamoured by this set.
The only thing I really dislike is… the purchase threshold, which is really high at US$160 / AU$229 for what is quite a small set. It’s slightly better than the ridiculous purchase threshold for the Sailboat Adventure GWP, but it’s still a significant amount.
Add to the fact that the timing is just shy off all the new Summer 2022/June 2022 releases (at least in Europe/Australia), most of us would be saving up to jump at the new releases, which doesn’t make this a compelling purchase.
As a set, 40533 Cosmic Cardboard Adventures is brilliantly nostalgic that will make Classic Space fans very happy. As a GWP, this is a stinker. If you want this set, and I’m sure most LEGO Ideas fans will, I sure hope you have something on your list to purchase.
That said, if you pre-order some of the upcoming Summer 2022 sets, you’ll technically qualify for this, and at the very least, you can also potentially redeem the Ulysses Space Probe at the same time. With LEGO Stores cleaned out after May the 4th, and also new releases like the 76989 Horizon Forbidden West: Tallneck out of stock, it’s slim pickings at the moment.
Rating and score: 3/5 ★★★✰✰
Build  – A fun little diorama-style build, with interesting techniques. Loved the Teddy Exo Suit
Real Value  – The GWP redemption threshold is overly expensive
Innovation  – Great to see LEGO Ideas being used as another vehicle for 90th Anniversary Classic Space nostalgia
Coolness  – I’m a big Classic Space fan, so this is right up my alley
Keepability  – Slightly out of reach GWP which means limited numbers, and LEGO Ideas branding make for this one to be a boon for collectors.
The 40533 Cosmic Cardboard Adventures gift with purchase (GWP) will be available from 16-30 May 2022 from LEGO.com. It’ll be free with purchases of US$160 / £160 / AU$229.
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Special thanks to the LEGO Group for providing this set for review.