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Lego Animals: Minifigure Scale, Constructed

vwong19vwong19 Member Posts: 1,191
edited July 2011 in Building and Techniques
I just received the Mill Village Raid recently and am excited to add several Lego animals to my Lego universe. After coming out of the Dark Ages, I bought mostly Star Wars, but expanded to Castle and City with a big reason being Lego animals. Any new set that comes with a unique Lego animal is pretty much a must have to me, such as the Farm and PoP sets.

The set that got me to expand from Star Wars was the Medievil Marketplaces. It comes with 2 brown cows, but also constructed ducks and chicken. With the Mill Village Raid including proper Lego chickens, I'm wondering how many people are content with displaying both versions of the birds to their diromas.

I hope Lego continues to add more Lego animals to future sets and re-release other animals such as the elephant. I wonder what people's wish list are, but I'm sure the goal is to eventually have every animal represented in Lego form. To add more to the farm scene, I'd like a sheep. For the zoo scene, I'd like for lions, tigers and giraffe. For Xmas, I'd like reindeers. For now these will have to be represented by Lego bricks.



  • andheandhe Member Posts: 4,001
    edited July 2011
    Yeah I found that the brickbuilt chickens as found in the MMV are pretty much redundant now that there are moulded ones. Looks odd displaying them side by side. It seemed an odd choice of animal to make considering that the brickbuilt version was a good solution.

    I'd hope to see sheep and other cross-theme animals (fit with castle and city themes) such as a donkey and a generic deer torso that could have changeable 'horns' eg to use a a stag/reindeer/antelope.

    And maybe some ducks and rabbits. One or two stud like the rats.
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    The lego animals are amazing, they appeal to me so much. I would love more prefabricated ones, but also, some instructions for more minifig size brick built ones would be great. My creativity is sadly lacking in this department.

    I'd love more zoo animals and farm animals too. I think the old elephant is ugly though!
  • thesinisterpenguinthesinisterpenguin Member Posts: 96
    edited July 2011
    I love the chickens and goats! They are so little and awesome! I never really liked brick built animals, unless it was a really inventive giant squid or something. IF I were to, I think I would only want to display the proper animals.
  • princedravenprincedraven Member Posts: 3,764
    I do quite like the animals, the pig and goat in MVR are really nice, but at what point do they become 'just plastic animals' and not Lego??
    If all they are going to do is mould all different animal shapes I am not sure what the point is or what makes them different from the millions of other plastic animals on sale (other than having stud holes in their feet).
    Bit torn on this one as I do see the appeal, but think it is kinda going against what Lego is about in my eyes.. There is zero building involved, may as well buy Playmobil animals, but saying that the MVR pig is cute :)
  • brickbusterbrickbuster Member Posts: 6
    I'm with princedraven a bit mixed with the free molded elements compared to the combined element designs.The Lego group has increased lots of new specialised large elementsincluding some of the animals which take away the creativity to a point. these elements are harder to adapt to other things if they don't have many studs incoperated with them
  • vwong19vwong19 Member Posts: 1,191
    I see princedraven's point, but then again Lego established Lego animals pretty early with the horse in 1984. I don't believe its introduction had a negative impact in creativity in the Lego world, but complimented the playability of Lego with the minifig. I think in terms of minifig scale, it is only natural that more animals are Legoed (not sure about the proper term) as the horse. I'm not sure why the horse should be considered a special animal. I would think the dog could have been molded first.

    Some people consider this period of Lego popularity to be a Golden Age. I think a good reason for this is attributed to the expanding library and colors of Lego pieces. Back when I started with Lego, there was only the horse and each minifig had the same expression. I don't think Lego food was introduced yet and minifig accessories were pretty rare.

    Lego definitely has to balance playability and creativity. Unfortunately creativity has taken a back seat with Lego spoon feeding us these great new set designs each year. My creativity is pretty low now and I depend primarily on Lego designs to create my Lego world... which I'm more than happy to accept. I'm a builder and less of a creator.
  • war44lockwar44lock Member Posts: 75
    I have to say I love the animals, they are well made and the new goat especially is a must have for me. I see @princedraven's point too its not really Lego as such however if you want a good, fairly realistic looking animal for a display they are fantastic, and its good to at least have the option. If your anything like me you don't mix anything non Lego with your Lego displays : )
  • princedravenprincedraven Member Posts: 3,764
    ^^ I agree that the horse is a real compliment, but see it almost as a minifig accessory, my concern is, if they release a Lego Zoo, which I have heard call for and in some ways love the idea (someone suggested a modular zoo which I think would be great!), but can see how it would just be lots of molded animals.
    When it is one or 2 to compliment a set, so the soldiers have something to ride or a cat on a modular roof or as stated a pig and goat in MVR I think they work great, but if it is more than a couple I would be concerned it turns into a playset not a constructon set.
  • war44lockwar44lock Member Posts: 75
    Yeah fair enough. As long as its a novelty and not the main focus of a set it should be just like any other accessory. A zoo as I can imagine it would be boring to an AFOL for sure if it was a few molded lumps and some grass and fences.
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    edited July 2011
    Choice is good; moulded or brick-built is the builders choice. I guess I personally prefer the brick-built birds in the MMV set over the new moulded chickens ... but then I'm not so keen on the newer 'duplo-esque' moulded animals.

    I was thinking about this earlier ... I was surprised how many 'real world' animals are already in the 'inventory' when you list them (ignoring fantasy, pre-historic, Belville/Scala, Star Wars, etc., and ignoring colour/printing variations) ...
    - frog
    - bat
    - spider
    - snake
    - cat
    - dog (2 different moulds)
    - rat (2 different moulds)
    - owl (2 different moulds)
    - sawfish
    - dolphin
    - shark (2 different moulds)
    - clam/shellfish
    - seastar/starfish
    - jelly/jellyfish
    - crab
    - manta ray
    - alligator
    - fish
    - octopus
    - ant
    - horse
    - pony
    - camel
    - ostrich
    - chicken
    - cow
    - goat
    - elephant
    - polar bear
    - parrot
    - monkey
    ... and I'm not sure I've got them all either ...
    ADDED -
    - scorpion
    - pig
  • prof1515prof1515 Member Posts: 1,550
    Rather than a zoo, a safari theme would be more appealling to both children and collectors. A pair of figures with a jeep observing some antelope and a lion, a helicopter flying over a couple of elephants and giraffes, a boat on the river with a hippopatumus and some crocodiles, a photographer and some chimpanzees or gorillas, a tent camp with an assortment of the above animals...the potential is far more impressive.
  • prof1515prof1515 Member Posts: 1,550
    edited July 2011
    ... and I'm not sure I've got them all either ...
    You forgot the scorpion and the upcoming chimpanzee (Series 5 figures) not to mention a few Scala animals (several types of dogs and cats, including the one you listed, were found in this line first) that could stand in as other types of creatures much like the Scala kitten doubles as the Lego cat.
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    edited July 2011
    The scorpion I did forget about (thanks, added now); the chimp I excluded because it's not out yet; I chose to deliberately exclude the Belville/Scala animals ... that rabbit still gives me nightmares ... ... the kitten/cat I included as it's been extensively used in 'system' sets.
  • prof1515prof1515 Member Posts: 1,550
    You included the cat though and it originated as a kitten in the Belville/Scala line. The starfish, crab and clam also originated there.
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    edited July 2011
    ^ true, but they've all been used in 'system' sets (for want of a better term) as animals; I don't think any of the other Belville/Scala animals have been used in 'system' sets as animals (the teddy bear has been a teddy bear in both Scala/Belville & 'system', but as a teddy bear, not a real animal)
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    Glad it's not just me that find the rabbit terrifying - why is so huge?? I've got one in my Holiday Train set, and it just looks ridiculous.
    (off topic - why does the holiday train include a rat? who would want a toy rat??)
  • andheandhe Member Posts: 4,001
    I got one of the belville (?) dogs in an eBay lot. Thought it might be just a bit larger than minfig scale like a st.Bernard or something, but it's huge! like the hound of the baskervilles!
    The rabbit is a ridiculous scale even for scala. A minfig scale one like the mice would be cool.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    Anything which can be brick built well should be left IMO eg llamas and sheep, with new moulds reserved for smaller animals which cant be brick built e.g. a new rabbit or a fox would be good.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179



    Someone should really produce a book of all of these things!
  • princedravenprincedraven Member Posts: 3,764
    ^ Those sheep are awesome, probably sounds silly as they look like they only have about 12 peices in them, but have you instructions on how to make them? Or pictures from other angles?
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    more pics and the MoC-ers info here:


  • war44lockwar44lock Member Posts: 75
    The sheep are nice but that horse is awesome! That is so cool and when I see the parts used it shows I really have a long way to go in my creativity. I mean I wouldn't have thought to use half those pieces. Thats really cool.
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    yay! my farm will have sheep in it soon (are the legs spanners?)

    I love the llama (?) - i have NO creativity when it comes to making stuff. But copying is fine. Any other animals out there please?
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    Just do a search on mocpages for whatever animal youre looking for
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    are the legs spanners?
    They look like minifig hands to me.
  • sonsofscevasonsofsceva Member Posts: 542
    I remember when the Lego horse first came out and I was outraged (and nine). I thought they were going the way of Playmobil and it distressed me. I agree with Si_Dorking_Surrey_UK that anything that can be made well by brick should be left alone. Oh, and that rabbit must
  • prof1515prof1515 Member Posts: 1,550
    I actually like the animals because, like the mini-figures, they're meant to represent living creatures so having specific molds for them helps to distinguish them from structures. They're not completely useless outside of representing their respective animals either as a number of them have been used to depict ornamentation (the parrot and frog most prominently though others like the bat, swordfish, etc. have been used as well).

    That said, I'm not that fond of the newer ones because they've lost a bit of that Lego feel. The horse is a bit blocky and I like that just as I liked the old dog. They matched the blocky feel of the mini-figures. The new dog though is too smooth as is the goat.

    I just wish they'd do a bigger chimpanzee, a gorilla, deer/antelope, lion/tiger and several others. Oh well, there's time....
  • vwong19vwong19 Member Posts: 1,191
    I agree with prof that animal molds are consistent with minifigs as being living creatures.

    It seems to me, the smaller the animal, the more detailed and smoothier the mold. For example, the frog and cat are shaped without any blockiness. As we get to bigger in size, the blockiness comes out.

    Old dog vs new dog: new dog has paint app, old dog has dimple eyes, new dog is slightly smoother. To me, I think the main difference isn't so much the mold, but the paint app.

    Chicken observation... why does it have a prominent stud at its feet? The other bird or single stud animals do not have that feature. Couldn't they have transitioned the stud better like the bat? Maybe it's their attempt at making it appear more Lego?
  • prof1515prof1515 Member Posts: 1,550
    The reason the cat and frog are they way they are is because they were from the Belville/Scala line. The old dog, by contrast, was first created for the Lego system sets (Harry Potter and City).
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    edited December 2011
    Just bumping this thread for new people and perhaps @bor2112 who is fond of the lego pigs ;) But mainly because we have a bunch of new animals coming with the friends sets. Most look overly cutesy, (why change the horse?) But the hedgehog - oh how I crave it!
  • bor2112bor2112 Member Posts: 321
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    edited December 2011
    Also, check out my bricklist of Lego animal sets
    (focusses on built rather than moulded animals)
  • bor2112bor2112 Member Posts: 321
    ^Argh. Can't get those in the states :(. Love that reindeer and elephant. Great list, tho. Thanks
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    @sav, which set has the hedgehog in?
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    I think the vet set. @lostintranslation got a hedgehog already!
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    Nice list Si - what about some of the Xpods - The aqua one might fit your list nicely. (ps the grasshopper is v odd!)
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    ^oooo - not thought to look on YouTube - that's good to see. Hope they do a TV series to support the line. I'm sure it will be dire, but I desperately want this to succeed.
  • vwong19vwong19 Member Posts: 1,191
    Now that they have a bear, they should add additional forest animals like a deer or fox to their new city sets. The new dinos are great too.
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    I like the molded animals. As they represent living creatures and all that, seems to make sense. The minifig is composed of like 3 or 4 pieces. A horse or cow is three pieces too. There is just a little bit of building involved.
  • LostInTranslationLostInTranslation Member Posts: 5,572
    Just been browsing S@H and found this cute little set I hadn't seen before:
    Would make a good start for anyone looking to build a Lego zoo :)
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    My 8 year old is asking to build a Lego zoo. But personally I don't like the molded animals, and creating animals with bricks will be tough. Any ideas people?
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    check out my bricklist of Lego animal sets
    (focusses on built rather than moulded animals)

    Just download the instruction PDFs for each, it's quite a lot of fun
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    My friend @Si_Dorking_Surrer, you ROCK ok :)
  • vwong19vwong19 Member Posts: 1,191
    What does everyone think of the new horse mold that appears in LOTR?
  • andheandhe Member Posts: 4,001
    I'll be interested to see if existing accessories (barding, head armour etc) fit or if the old horse has been made obsolete.
  • adventure_aladventure_al Member Posts: 243
    There must be a market for more animals so why is it that their appearances in sets are so random!? It takes a Mount Everest adventure to see the addition of an elephant when a Safari or Circus couldve used one years ago.

    I'd understand if sets were produced with animals built with multiple bricks but they aren't. (Not really minifig compatible ones anyway)

    In Lego sets why do you think so many animals have been avoided? What animals would you like to see? Do you build your own animals?

    I'd like to see a tiger and there is plently call for a big cat mould (Jungle panther, City Zoo tiger, etc)
  • SchwallexSchwallex Member Posts: 121
    I have a collection of brick-built, City-scale LEGO animals in the making, with free instructions and all, and a CUUSOO project to go with it. Click the link for more animals.


    I have a long todo list, so stay tuned. Oh, and the free building instructions (images, LDD and LDraw files) are over on my BrickShelf and Rebrickable pages. I'm on Flickr, too.

    Support my project if you wish, spread the word if you can. Peace out.
  • TheBigLegoskiTheBigLegoski Member Posts: 1,437
    I like them both, and when I was a kid I never minded having both brick build horses as well as 'Lego mini-animal-fig' horses. I used to play with both together. (see #6083 and #6021 i.e.) The Lego animals/creatures all look really charming, I just sometimes think it is too bad that they have so few or no articulation points at all, in comparison to the minifigs. Which is of course no issue with the tiny animals such as cats, rats, frogs etcetera. In that respect the new Lego horse is an improvement. The newly molded head I also like better, but I understand why especially this may look less 'Legoish' to others.

    Of course the Hulk and the Cave troll aren't animals but fantasy creatures, although I do like them very much, I am somewhat puzzled why these bigminifigs have such limited articulation, and posing possibilities, I don't have any elephants, but if I am not mistaken that animal is also pretty much one big chunck of plastic.

    I agree with what @prof1515 said before on this thread:
    " I actually like the animals because, like the mini-figures, they're meant to represent living creatures so having specific molds for them helps to distinguish them from structures. They're not completely useless outside of representing their respective animals either as a number of them have been used to depict ornamentation (the parrot and frog most prominently though others like the bat, swordfish, etc. have been used as well). "
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