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Master Builder Academy (MBA)

OdinduskOdindusk Member Posts: 763
edited June 2013 in Collecting
Hey all, I didn't see this mentioned anywhere yet so I thought I'd take a stab at it. I apologize if I missed a prior post on the topic.

In the mail today I received MBA kit 7, "The Lost Village". In the shipping box they included a really nice, large poster with details on the next MBA level of kits, even though Level 3 just released.

"Level 4 Launches November 2012"

Kit 10: Time Machine
Kit 11: World Architecture
Kit 12: Inventor's Lab

The level 4 minifig has a top hat, lol. I love it. Very, very impressed with this entire line so far.

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Comments

  • mathewmathew Member Posts: 2,098
    Neat. I'm interested in the MBA kits, specifically The Lost Village. Do you pay per kit? or do you have to join the MBA club... also are these purchasable at Lego brickandmortar stores?
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    @mathew, the only one available at my store is Kit 1. After that you have to get them at lego.com
  • OdinduskOdindusk Member Posts: 763
    edited May 2012
    LEGO didn't make it terribly convenient to understand the formatting of this series, that's for sure.

    LEVEL 1:

    Kit #1 (available in LEGO stores) - $30
    Kit #2
    Kit #3

    LEVEL 2:

    Kit #4
    Kit #5
    Kit #6

    (NOTE: kits #2-6 are not sold in stores; they are only available as part of a subscription service where you are mailed a new kit every other month - subscription is $70)

    LEVEL 3:

    Kit #7
    Kit #8
    Kit #9

    (NOTE: kits #7-9 is also subscription-based. I'm not sure if they sell Kit #7 in LEGO stores, but I'm guessing no. This subscription is $60.)

    So, I THINK that only the very first kit of the first level is found in stores. The rest come in the mail. Someone back me up on that.
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    edited May 2012
    Yep @Odindusk

    I know my kit #3 & 7 have shipped, just haven't gotten them yet :) Eagle eyeing my mail lady every day lol
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,934
    Are the instructions available anywhere for the rest of us? I'd like to learn from them, even if I have to supply my own plastic.
  • sidersddsidersdd USAMember Posts: 2,432
    Yeah, I saw that dude on a poster when we were at Legoland back in March:

    image

    Level 4 is steampunk design. There's another teaser with the Level 3 on-line info mentioning this.
  • RobbRobb Member Posts: 144
    ^Some of the instructional materials may be available through the MBA website (http://mba.lego.com), but a good portion of that site is restricted to MBA subscribers (aka set owners) who get a password via email.

    The books that come with these sets are fantastic and includes god techniques, fun tips, and interesting facts about LEGO staff. My family really enjoys the MBA (especially Level 1 which focuses on space). We're still waiting for the arrival of our first Level 3 package (kit #7), but I think Level 4 looks the best of the lots (aside from Level 1).

    ^^^^^Thanks for sharing the pic!
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,934
    ^ Thanks - I guess I cannot get access. I'd love to work through that course with my son. I really hope they bring it to the UK too.
  • graphitegraphite USMember Posts: 3,270
    My kit 3 should be arriving today or tomorrow. I've only built the first ship in kit 1 so far. Didn't want to break it down immediately and I haven't gotten back to it yet. Going to order the 7-9 subscription as part of getting the hulk mini fig this month. Was really impressed with the quality of the book and tips etc.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    Let me toss my hat into the ring... The kits that come in the mail are in polybags, for the parts at least, but they are huge polybags, 4x the size of "normal" polybags, larger even than the Brickmaster polys.

    The instructions are top notch and are not in the bags, they are bound and look like they are done on the same paper as the Architecture line, very high quality.

    Overall, I think it is a shame that Lego doesn't promote the quality more, if parents could actually see what was inside these and what they received for their subscriptions, I think more people would sign up.
  • 12651265 The Great State of TexasMember Posts: 1,031
    Let me toss my hat into the ring... The kits that come in the mail are in polybags, for the parts at least, but they are huge polybags, 4x the size of "normal" polybags, larger even than the Brickmaster polys.
    Kit #7 The Lost Village comes in a box similar make and size as Kit #1.
  • OdinduskOdindusk Member Posts: 763
    Here are a couple pics of my kit #7 box, for those interested.

    As mentioned, this is the first kit since #1 to be presented in a nice box. #2-6 come as a huuuuge poly and its accompanying manual. The books are of very high quality.



  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,188
    I have Kit 1-5, 6 to come in a couple of months. I haven't used the kits yet since I'm saving those for the kids to play with when they get older.

    I was wondering where to store the bricks from each bag. It seems like Kit 1-3 should go into the Kit 1 box. Looks like Kit 7 is similar to Kit 1 so there would be room for Kits 7-9. Am I right to assume that 4-6 also should fit into Kit 1 and 10-12 into Kit 4?
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    So if I order the subscription for kits 2-6, then get the subscription for 7-9 two weeks later, could I be getting the a set every 2 weeks?? Or will they wait for the first subscription to end before renewing the next one
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    So if I order the subscription for kits 2-6, then get the subscription for 7-9 two weeks later, could I be getting the a set every 2 weeks?? Or will they wait for the first subscription to end before renewing the next one
    I did just that, I received kit 7 just after getting kit 2, so it seem like they will come together.

    My son may not do these for another year or two, but I wanted to get them while the getting was good.
  • murphquakemurphquake Member Posts: 651
    @jadedanc looks like we're in the same boat, my kit 7 came yesterday and kit 3 this morning.
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    @murphquake I haven't gotten either one yet :( I "only" have the Fire Transporter, IF & Ice dragon sets still to build, then out of Legos for the moment lol
  • graphitegraphite USMember Posts: 3,270
    ^ start designing MOCs and you'll chew up a big chunk of time =)
  • MarkVMarkV Member Posts: 42
    How are the kits shipped? Well packaged or is the book/instructions typically mauled in the mail?
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    @graphite Yeah found that one out. This is my first MOC I am in the middle of designing lol I think I am crazy to do THIS as a first time MOC but what can I say :)
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jadedanc/sets/72157629660282434/
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    How are the kits shipped? Well packaged or is the book/instructions typically mauled in the mail?
    Mine have come in formfitting cardboard boxes, mint condition...
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,934
    For those of us that can't get them yet ... are there new building techniques in the books, or are they techniques that can be learnt by building normal sets?

    Looking at those nice pics from Odindusk, I can work out most of the build of the facade just by looking. Is there much more that goes into these builds?

    It would obviously be nicer to have the books, but I can probably work around it by looking at the pictures (especially nice high res ones!), since the models are small enough to do that.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,979
    The books are large and very nice. Ours have never been mangled.
    For a kid, they are wonderful. Each kit has at least 2 new techniques.

    It has covered things like sideways building, color, details, stability, Alternate uses, etc. The book clearly points out when you are using the techniques, and points out tips along the way. There are also interesting facts and info. The books are truly wonderful.

    I assume for someone that has been building a while the tips/techniques would probably not be new. At the same time, because there is so much info, I have to wonder if it would give somebody something to consider. The facts and info are also great. I thought the micro build kit, was very cool. Not everyone micro builds, so I could see how there could be some interesting info in that book even for an experienced builder. I think that is one particular learning for adults. Some are not necessarily experts in all areas. While my son typically makes vehicles, he normally does not make creatures or micro builds. He learned more out of these particular sets for this reason, and his building became stronger because of the tips/techniques in the other book.

    Each kit comes with at least three separate builds, and there is often a fourth set of directions online. This really allows them to explore the genre and teach the points, along with giving some interesting info.

    Yes, kits 4-6 are supposed to go in the same box with kits 1-3. What I do, though, is only store the latest kit in the box. The rest of the sets are stored individually in ziploc bags (4-6 are actually merged together at the moment, because kit six had an online build that combined elements of these 3). This allows my son to use the tray exclusively for sorting the pieces of the current kit, when the new kit comes in.

    What my son has learned from MBA are items that he was not going to pick up via normal sets.he is 5. Now when he build on his own, he talks about sideways building, and the use of color. He knows when he has not locked something well or if something is not stable.

    I have nothing except praise for this program for any kid. For an adult I believe there is still info in these books. When it comes down to it, the books are not simply about how to do the build.

    Our kit 7 arrived yesterday. My son has the box open and is ready to build, but he will have to wait until this afternoon. :-)
    Tammy
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,934
    edited May 2012
    Now when he build on his own, he talks about sideways building, and the use of color. He knows when he has not locked something well or if something is not stable.

    I have nothing except praise for this program for any kid. For an adult I believe there is still info in these books. When it comes down to it, the books are not simply about how to do the build.

    Thanks, that is really useful feedback. The first para - that is exactly what I want to teach my son. He can follow instructions but tends to just build exactly as in instructions, and never gives a moment's thought as to why he is putting this brick there, and so on. I can tell him over and over and I seem to get ignored, but if it is in a book, he will probably follow it and learn.

    I'm going to get a friend to order this for me, and collect it next time I am visiting the States.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,979
    Glad that helped. :-)

    I have to add...
    Looking at level 7, it is different in that it isn't 3 separate unique builds like past sets, but more three different areas it is teaching you about. The inn, springboards and drawbridge.

    Tammy
  • murphquakemurphquake Member Posts: 651
    @tamamahm & @CCC that's exactly why I bought them for myself as an AFOL. I really wish there was a box for Level 2, Kit's 4/5/6 will NOT fit in the Level 1 box and Level 3 has a box now and I presume Level 4 will. All 4 in boxes would look great on a shelf next to each other.

    None of my kits have been poorly packed. I know early on they tried using envelopes and the books and polybags from Kit 2 and on came in really bad condition for some people. I'm actually seriously thinking about ordering another set and putting one up to save sealed to sell later on, of course it will be fun waiting a year to get them all

    @jadedanc I built the first robot of level 3 and put together both sets of minifig accessories... I wish they each came with a new guy, but I'm sure there's plenty on BL. I actually went on the website and got a Kit 7 badge already when I got the email last week =-) I can NOT wait for Level 4!
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    @murphquake MINE came in today lol, both #3 & #7. Guess I know what I am doing tonight and tomorrow after work. I love the look of level 3 & 4!
  • timinchicagotiminchicago USAMember Posts: 239
    OK I am still a bit confused regarding previously released kits in the program, i.e. 2-6. If I were to order/subscribe to Kits 2-6 today would I still be forced to wait 2 months for each kit or would I receive them all at once?
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    @timinchicago Still get them every 2 months. Don't get them all at once unfortunately
  • murphquakemurphquake Member Posts: 651
    @jadedanc I built the Lost Village Inn... not sure where the 7th 1x2 reddish brown tile i'm supposed to have went... the invention backpack will have to do without for a bit =-)
    @timinchicago they send them every 2 months no matter when you subscribe. Must make it very hard to resell but it's a nice treat when they come, especially as I've got 2 coming at a time for a while.

    I really wish there was an impetus to push TLG to make a box for Level 2, even if it cost 5 bucks I'd probably pony up for it. #YellowMBALevel2Box!!
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    edited May 2012
    @murphquake Yeah I finally got around to making mine too. I like the style definitely! The 7th reddish brown 1x2 tile is under your chair that you were sitting in during the build lol. At least, that is where my orange 1x2 brick was :)
  • kufkuf Member Posts: 66
    Level 4 is set to come out in November, six months after Level 3 started shipping. So it looks like you could probably keep them coming in two month intervals. I personally like getting surprise LEGO treats on my doorstep.
  • LovaqueroLovaquero Member Posts: 23
    I've been very impressed with the MBA thus far. Even ordered a second subscription for my kids so that I can keep one all to myself =)

    Lego really should roll this out to the rest of the world.
    Cam_n_Stu
  • murphquakemurphquake Member Posts: 651
    @jadedanc would you believe pillowcase? found it last night... i had the box open on the bed musta hopped out. Now just need to find the spare trans green 1x1 round tile from the friends inventor set, especially since those and the green/clear flask for the CMF crazy scientist were the only reason I bought it.
  • jadedancjadedanc USAMember Posts: 1,303
    @murphquake LOL That is awesome!! It just wanted to stay with ya. Yeah I agree..I think you need to find those 1x1s ASAP :)
  • murphquakemurphquake Member Posts: 651
    So what happened to "Coming in November" I'm anxious here now that I finally have 1-9! yep got kit 6 today and I really can't wait one minute more for kit 10... I feel like CIV over here! Biscuit Power to anyone who knows the NYHC reference
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,979
    They seemed to make some big change with the program back in September. They changed the pricing. They changed the first 6 sets, so that they were no longer shipped every other month, but were now available to buy immediately. I think set 2 and 3 are boxed together, and then 4/5/6 are in another box.
    In addition, people who had been participating in the program received an email stating that May 2013 would be when they would see more MBA. It was not clear if the next 3 would be boxed to buy at once, or if they would still be shipped.

    We were disappointed. My son had been looking forward to the next sets. I was happy, though, that more would still be available next year, and that they were not simply discontinued. We truly love this program, and sets 7/8/9 have been our favorites in the series so far.
  • RobbRobb Member Posts: 144
    I still haven't received the 3rd set in Level 3 (Dark Lair). Has anyone else?
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,979
    When did you sign up for series 7-9?
    I signed up as soon as it was available, and the Dark Lair came in September.

    If you start time was different, though, the end time will be different. Basically, you should expect a new set every 2 months. When did you receive Level 2?
  • RobbRobb Member Posts: 144
    I received set 8 sometime in the summer (I pre-ordered for Level 3). I guess a call to Customer Service is in order.

    I've had a rough time with LEGO customer service the past several months. They messed up my LEGO MBA online account, then messed up a September shipment, and now it appears that they never sent MBA set 9.

    Generally, I would say that their Customer Service is responsive, but every one of my interactions over the past 6 months has been awful.
  • JenniJenni JapanMember Posts: 1,390
    @Robb I think they sent it to me :) I got an extra 9 instead of 6 I had no problem when I called but then again 6 hasn't arrived yet. I got the feeling that something had gone wrong with their system. Good luck.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    @Robb: definitely give them a call. I had multiple MBAs on order because I was helping out some bricksetters in Europe, and they missed sending three of kit 8 and two of kit 9. If you ordered this online, you can try accessing the order for shipment information. On my missing orders, there was no tracking number, which would indicate they were never sent.

    One call to customer service resolved this and the MBAs are now where they belong in Europe by way of California :)
  • AanchirAanchir United StatesMember Posts: 2,927
    I love Master Builder Academy as a concept, but lately have had difficulty finding the time to put my most recent kits together... I still have yet to build both kits 6 and 7. Part of it is just that I want to delay building new LEGO sets until I've gotten both schoolwork and the reviews I have in the pipeline for The Ninjago Wiki taken care of. Still, I plan to continue my subscription. The MBA kits have some very useful parts at a reasonable price, and the manuals do a good job of stretching one's imagination.
  • murphquakemurphquake Member Posts: 651
    I got an extra kit 7, but never got another 8 or 9... i do need to call though... my card expired a few weeks after the pre-order and they did charge me for some stuff then again for the whole order when I called and gave them the new expiration date... i think? When I got doubles of Kit 7 I assumed I was getting them all as doubles, bought another kit 1 and was planning on a 2nd round of 2-6 but didn't get to order it as it was 86'd unceremoniously. Now I just want to start Level 4 =-)

    I now have kits 1-9 with extra kit 1 & 7 boxes sealed for the time being.

    AND... I still want a matching box for Level 2, not the XL one they came out with for the store... just to make it all pretty. I've pretty much decided I'm going to mix in all the parts with the rest of my collection though, as I finish each level on the website.
  • CapnRex101CapnRex101 United KingdomAdministrator Posts: 2,340
    I am interested to know if there is any information on whether this might be coming to countries outside of the US. It looks like a good group of sets, I suppose Lego were just testing the water by releasing them in the US first.
    Cam_n_Stu
  • Canuck26Canuck26 Member Posts: 55
    I had problems with kits 7, 8 and 9. I received two of kit 7. Then I received one of kit 8. After about a week I called and they sent out another one. When kit 9 arrived I called about the second one. It took a little while to get it resolved but the guy was really nice. He told me that their computer would only accept one subscription per household so anyone with two or more was having issues. He sent out another kit 9. When I looked at my billing I realized that I only actually paid for one set. I asked him to bill me but he insisted on not charging me because it was their error. Excellent customer service.
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    Does anyone know whats going on with MBA? I noticed the other day at the LEGO store that they didn't have any sets 7-9, figured they were sold out, but upon checking the website I can't seem to find them either. Also, the original poster here mentioned Level 4 would be released in November 2012, as I haven't really kept up with this theme, does anyone know if Level 4 was ever released? I can't recall ever seeing it.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,979
    1) I'm not sure what happened to sets 7-9, but my speculation is that they are converting them over from mail order to a single box. They did that to the other sets.

    2) Lego changed the entire program in September when they went from an auto-ship every other month program to buying a set/line. When they did this, they also announced that Level4 would be released this May.

    Honestly, we think this is one of the best Lego lines. Sets 7-9 were amazing for learning and play value. My 5 year old got a ton out of it last year. I don't know how well it does, though.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,934
    Did anyone download the instructions when they were available?
    eg. as noted here http://www.brickset.com/detail/?Set=20200-1
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    I have 20200, and my 9yo touts the knowledge. It's cute when kids talk about sideways building aka SNOT or locking techniques for building just about anything. I didnt realize the other MBA sets were nixed ala carte...
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