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Part count inflation?

DKqwertyDKqwerty Milky Way GalaxyMember Posts: 10
Is there any legitimate reason why LEGO would create set 40174 using two 2x2 plates for each black pawn but four 1x2 plates on each white pawn? The only reason I can conceive of is to artificially inflate the part count.


Comments

  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,944
    1. To keep the number of unique parts as low as possible. Perhaps the white 1x2s are used elsewhere

    2. 2x 1x2s may be cheaper to produce than a 1x4

    3. The 1x2s were already manufactured and surplus to requirements (unlikely)
    BumblepantsKungFuKennyFizyxMynatt
  • DKqwertyDKqwerty Milky Way GalaxyMember Posts: 10
    edited November 14

    The above example is to what I'm referring, but happens for most of the pieces where 2x2s are used for black and twice as many 1x2s are used for white.

    To your points:
    1. Everything else in this set—including color—is symmetrical between black side and white side, so unique parts count mathematically isn't a consideration here.
    2. Seems like it would take more plastic to make two 1x2s than one 2x2 because of the extra edge plastic between the 1x2s, and actually more expensive in the long run? (And unless the two 1x2s are molded together, it also takes twice as many injections processes as one 2x2?)
    3. Agreed, seems unlikely LEGO would make a set assembly decision based upon surplus parts available.

  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,923
    Are there other black 1x2 plates (and no 2x2 black) used elsewhere in the set? If so, as Huw points out, it reduces the number of part types in the set.

    If they wanted to inflate the part count, they would have used 1x2 in the black ones too, and probably added extra 1x1 round plates or a tile on top to make them slightly taller.
  • DKqwertyDKqwerty Milky Way GalaxyMember Posts: 10
    edited November 14
    Sorry for the small images, but the 1x2s on the white pawns are not black, but Earth Blue. So basically, they replaced the New Dark Red 2x2s on all the black pieces with Earth Blue 1x2s for white, a piece used 3 times on the board (and with three NDR on the black side). And to my point: being a symmetrical build, using NDR 2x2s on chess pieces also increases the unique part count.
    So it's ultimately a matter of raising the unique parts by ±0 (only 1x2s), +1 (add NDR 2x2s) or +2 (add both 2x2s), and they went with +1 which seemed the least-conceivable decision here, and—after building the set—truly feels like it only raises the part count for no particular reason.
    (The parts list and instructions are in the set number link of my orig. post, feel free to check my math.)



  • DKqwertyDKqwerty Milky Way GalaxyMember Posts: 10
    Also, as a matter of pure opinion: I think the set looks awful with the board's black and white tiles parallel to one another, and looks better with the tiles for the two colors arranged perpendicularly. Would look even better if they had used corner pieces to surround the modified tiles.
    Or best solution: just finally make a freakin' 4x4 title. 😅
  • 560Heliport560Heliport Twin Cities, MN, USAMember Posts: 2,673
    If the goal was simply to increase the part count, they missed a lot of opportunities in this set! The 1x4 tiles of the squares could all be replaced by twice as many 1x2s. Or even 1x1s! Or to reduce the number of unique parts, the 1x2 and 1x4 tiles could all be replaced by 1x3s!
    I think the reason for the 1x2 Earth Blue plates is a combination of several factors such as, were they already being made for other sets, so the factory didn't need to do a run of them for only this set (at that particular time)? 
    Fizyx
  • Casper_vd_KorfCasper_vd_Korf Twente, The NetherlandsMember Posts: 210
    Dark blue 2x2 plates weren’t in sets between 2008 and 2017, and I think these sets don’t have recolours. While the set comes from 2017, I can see the design being finalised before they had access to the plate via other themes.
    KungFuKennyDKqwerty
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,923
    DKqwerty said:
    Also, as a matter of pure opinion: I think the set looks awful with the board's black and white tiles parallel to one another, and looks better with the tiles for the two colors arranged perpendicularly. Would look even better if they had used corner pieces to surround the modified tiles.
    Or best solution: just finally make a freakin' 4x4 title. 😅
    You'll soon be aligning parts (or at least trying to, as it is not always possible) so that the LEGO logos all face the same way ... (a trait a number of us have). It's even worse doing it when they are not even on show.


    560HeliportCymbelineKungFuKennySwitchfoot55Cyberdragon
  • daewoodaewoo DFWMember Posts: 640
    DKqwerty said:
    Or best solution: just finally make a freakin' 4x4 title. 😅
    Stop making sense!!!
  • DKqwertyDKqwerty Milky Way GalaxyMember Posts: 10
    edited November 22
    Dark blue 2x2 plates weren’t in sets between 2008 and 2017, and I think these sets don’t have recolours. While the set comes from 2017, I can see the design being finalised before they had access to the plate via other themes.
    Thank you for the cogent response (and the tardiness of mine). I hadn't considered that a 2017 set would be designed in 2016 (which now seems obvious) before the part was known by Mel Caddick to be "available" again (I use quotes because LEGO controls such availability, so the logic seems circular). And I can see how the only three that used it might have been designed throughout Summer or Autumn of 2017—Snow Resort Chalet in particular (which is a cute little build)—after the part was known "available" again.


    Sorry to be a noob, but is it understood why LEGO does this fairly OCD part control (be it by color, unique parts in sets, et al.), especially for a piece as common (and I assume among the easiest to inject whatever color "on the fly") as a 2x2 plate? I get retiring certain esoteric pieces in all colors if they aren't used for a while (or ever again in the case of Bionicle parts and the like) and not bringing those back unless there's a very specific need, but this seems ridiculous.
  • DKqwertyDKqwerty Milky Way GalaxyMember Posts: 10
    CCC said:
    You'll soon be aligning parts (or at least trying to, as it is not always possible) so that the LEGO logos all face the same way ... (a trait a number of us have). It's even worse doing it when they are not even on show.

    You're suggesting I don't already? 😅
    Admittedly, I usually don't align hidden logos under tiles unless literally EVERY one can align (none of those parts that have to go a particular way and ruin it); All or nothing is generally my policy for alignment.
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