Friday, July 4th, 2014 at 8:15pm by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
I looked back through the archives, and while I may have missed it, I think today is our first review of a LEGO Architecture set. It's certainly the first one I've built, and the 4000010 LEGO House is a particularly interesting place to enter the line. If you're interested in learning more about this special edition set, read and watch on!
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
The box of the LEGO House follows the same general pattern of most other Architecture sets - a simple, black, box with the light-colored set popping right out of the front. On the right side, we see that this is a "Special edition" set, which in this case means that it's only available in Billund, Denmark, where the LEGO House is being built. Huge thanks to Kim from LEGO for sending this set to BZPower to review. Below that we see the exclusive minifigure available in the set - this is the first Architecture set to include one of those. One detail I really like is how to the sides of the House we can see some hints of the blueprints of the set - a very nice touch!
On the back there's a brief description of the set in English and Danish, a top-down view of the the set, and a couple concept images of what the building might look like when it's done. It's a nice presentation all around.
The instructions are a real treat, being nicely bound and higher-than-normal quality. In addition to the steps to build the set, the instructions start out with pictures and descriptions (in English and Danish) giving you some background on the LEGO House, The LEGO Group, and the design and construction process. This is a nice touch and helps justify the premium nature of the set.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
The build is not very complex, and is all studs-up with no special techniques. This doesn't mean it's not an interesting build, however, as by constructing the set you learn about the design and structure of the LEGO House itself. For example, I discovered there is a large open area in the center that appears to be an atrium that I'm sure will be impressive in person. There's also a lot of cantilevered sections of the building which add some challenge here and there. Finally, the tiling, while understandable, is a tad tedious.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
Above you can see one of each type of part available in the set. There's a bunch of standard bricks in white as well as trans-clear, and lots of tiles. Lots. As you'll see, nearly every surface in the set is tiled, so there's a lot of white, light grey, and black. There's also the pieces that make up the trees and a selection of plates in white and black as well.
The unique parts include the minifig torso and a 1x8 black tiled with "LEGO House" printed on it. I really like that it's printed and not a sticker - the piece adds to the presentation of the final product. Everything else is a standard part that you could probably pick up on BrickLink or Pick-a-Brick if you really wanted to.
The final product is something fairly different from any Architecture set I've seen. As opposed to a famous landmark, the LEGO House hasn't even been completed yet. And while it certainly has some intriguing architectural features, it's no Frank Lloyd Wright. This is LEGO celebrating LEGO, and there's nothing wrong with that.
The LEGO House is very interesting to look at despite being a bit on the short side. The black border clearly defines the space and the printed tile makes sure you don't forget what you're looking at. The grey tiles evoke a concrete or cement courtyard, which seems odd for a company that is always trying to be green - there are a few trees on the back side though, and perhaps they are meant to represent some more extensive landscaping. Once you get to the actual structure you notice a lot of cantilevers and modular-looking sections that definitely evoke a feeling of stacked LEGO bricks. (I have to imagine though that it will make navigating inside the building difficult.) Just about the entire building is covered with tiles to give it a very finished look, with the exception of a 2x4 brick on the top to let everyone know that this is, in fact, a LEGO house. Another interesting thing is the lack of symmetry in the overall structure, which makes me want to look at it more and figure out what's going on with this crazy design.
There's one minifig in the LEGO House, and it's exclusive to the set. I'm not sure if the face print is unique, but the torso certainly is, saying "LEGO House" on the front and displaying the LEGO logo on the back. It's a nice addition and while it's not the most detailed fig, it's cool to have.
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?
As an Architecture set, the LEGO House doesn't really lend itself to a lot of play features. In this case though, the inclusion of the not-to-scale minifig allows you reenact the Danish version of Godzilla or the Attack of the Fifty-Foot-Tall LEGO Man. And the more minifigs you add, the more havoc you can wreak. Go Kevin, go!
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
What's to like?
- Cool representation of a piece of the LEGO headquarters
- Limited edition minifig
- Interesting design
- Lots of display value
- Very collectible
What's not to like?
- No interesting building techniques
- Few unique pieces
- Hard to acquire
This is certainly a cool set, and if you can get your hands on it I'd recommend doing so. It has a lot of display value and collectibility even if most of the pieces aren't that rare. You're not going to pick this up for the parts, that's for sure. The LEGO House is a unique building that I'd love to visit some day, but until then, this set will do fine.
Thank you all for reading and watching - I hope you've enjoyed the review. Let us know in the Talkback if you have any questions about the set. We've still got plenty more set reviews in the pipe, so keep checking back right here on BZPower!
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