Saturday, September 5th, 2020 at 11:10am by Jason, BZPower Reporter
Hey, let's have a BZPower Set Review about making something pretty. Earlier this year, LEGO released their line of Dots sets, where you can build colorful bracelets and room decor. Today, BZPower Reporter Xccj shows off his fabulous hands to look at a couple of the bracelet sets, including 41900 Rainbow Bracelet, 41912 Love Birds Bracelet, and 41903 Cosmic Wonder Bracelet.
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
The packages are simple colorful bags than can easily be hung from store displays. They're actually a bit tough to open, so I had to use scissors. The main strap element has a cardboard backing, and the small bag of tiles is in a separate pouch of the bag, making it a bit unusual for LEGO packaging. Still, it's easy enough to tear up and get to the pieces. Each pack has a bracelet piece and 32 tiles (plus the extras) and they sell for $4.99 USD. This isn't the first time LEGO has made jewelry sets before, but their old Clickits line never really took off. However, there seems to be more acceptance of Dots because it uses standard LEGO elements for the most part, such as these many colorful tiles.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
From a build perspective, it's very simple. You're getting less of a structural design with these bracelets and more of an artistic 2D layout with the various tiles. The rubbery straps are a bit more difficult to attach the tiles to compared to a standard plate, but it's easy enough. The more difficult part is to get the tiles lined up properly, as the quarter circle tiles never seem to go on at the right angle.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
33 parts for $4.99 is not exactly a great deal, especially when most of the parts are 1x1 tiles. A majority of the price probably goes into the flexible straps, which serve as the primary base for the tiles. And each of these have exclusive printed tiles in decent quantities. Each bracelet comes with a bunch of standard quarter circle tiles in various colors, usually with five of each type, but the printed ones are more interesting. The Rainbow bracelet has a bunch of rainbow tiles that line up. The 1x1 square tile has actually been out in a few other sets in Architecture, but this is technically a cheaper way to get them and more. The Love Birds bracelet has printed tiles with feathers, an eye, and a heart, so you can build a parrot onto the bracelet. The Cosmic Wonder bracelet has two different star prints on the teal quarter circle tiles, as well as three ringed planet round tiles, which are a lot of fun. This bracelet also comes with a new sparkly element that's a bit taller than a tile. BrickSet calls it a "design plate" for what it's worth, but it's a fun new and exclusive piece.
Part of the charm of these bracelets is that you can show off your own cool designs, and there are plenty of extra pieces included so you can diversify a bit in each set. I did make some of the designs show on the package. The Rainbow bracelet makes a few stripes of different colors and then connects some of the printed tiles to form mini rainbows. The white and aqua blue tiles blend together a bit much, but the azure strap makes for a good sky-like backdrop, and it would be easy enough to add some other colors to the mix. The Love Birds bracelet uses the spare tiles to build leafs and such, with two parrot designs in the center, which uses the orange quarter circle tile as the beaks. The Cosmic Wonder bracelet creates have circles to resemble planets, the sparkly design plates stand in as stars, and the teal printed tiles look like strands of the milky way, and these all look excellent on the black strap. I think this one is my favorite of the three.
And as a bonus, here's a look at some of the tiles you get from the Extra Dots packs, including 41908 Series 1 (top two rows) and 41916 Series 2 (bottom two rows.) Both of them include 109 pieces and sell for $3.99, which is actually a pretty decent value for unique tiles. A majority of the bags include some standard round or quarter circle tiles, with the example colors shown on the right of the image. Some of them are pretty unique, and the trans blue tiles are sparkly while the other sparkly tiles are a new milky color. But then there's also a random batch of specialized printed tiles in each one. Series 1 has a bunch of round emoticon styles, with various facial expressions and icons. Series 2 puts the special printing on square 1x1 tiles. Some of the samples have writing on them, while others have cool designs that would be fun to repeat a lot, like the shooting star or splat tiles. A fun selection, and good for impulsive purchases!
The other half of the fun is in playing with the set. How well does the set function and is it enjoyable to play with?
Okay, there are no action features or role playing capabilities with this set, but there is something you can do with it that you can't do with most sets; you can wear it! I mean, kids can wear it, or people with tiny wrists. (Years of wearing a watch and reducing my wrist size have finally paid off!) I was just barely able to get the bracelets strapped on, so I'm guessing this is not meant for most adults, but it should be more than adequate for children. The connections on the bracelet curve pretty well; I think as long as they are 1x1 sizes, you could get all sorts of crazy designs going. I'm especially excited to see various ways AFOLs will use the strap pieces to get elegant curved shapes in larger MOCs, from castles to spaceships, there's lots of potential.
At the very least, this review let me fulfil a lifelong dream of being a hand model. I'm sure that now that these photos are out, I'll be getting so many offers!
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
What's to like?
Fun tiles in rare colors and prints
Decent bracelet builds
What's not to like?
Bracelets generally not large enough for adults
Always want more tiles
LEGO Dots is certainly fulfilling a need we haven't seen from the company in a long time, but the way they've integrated buildable bracelets with common LEGO tiles is nicely done. Even if adult collectors may not be interested in the jewelry aspect of the sets, the various tiles and the potential for the strap piece could be used for some fun building projects. The bags of extra tiles are worthwhile too.
Thanks again for joining us for another quick review, and stay tuned to BZPower for more LEGO Set reviews! Yes, we're going to be doing more!