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Should TLG release smaller, connecting sets instead of so many larger, expensive playsets?

2

Comments

  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Member Posts: 4,401
    Wow, lots of activity. I must have lost time reading Part 11 of "How SDCC was Rigged." ;o)

    I personally love the smaller, modular idea if we're talking....let's say, Zoo enclosures. They're perfectly enjoyable by themselves but then even better as an aggregate.

    But if we're thinking of sets like the late 2000's Jabba sets, then I'll pass. Personally, I love having sets at various price points, even those that break the bank. And when I was a kid, longing for a large, unattainable toy was both exciting and exasperating and most likely led to my out of control LEGO mania. ;o). To this day, I sometimes catch myself still daydreaming about that GI Joe Aircraft Carrier...

    As to the title change @chuxtoybox, I have to say your original title was just plain awful, with all due respect. I'm still not entirely satisfied with the new title but it's workable for now.

    I'll be honest in that I initially considered calling your thread, "Should TLG make smaller, virtual, adult themed MOCs instead of these disappointing Medusas with baseplates that teach us nothing about the AFOL Community?"

    I went in a different direction when I realized how much merging I would need to do. ;o)
    BumblepantschuxtoyboxFurrysaurus
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Member Posts: 4,401
    graphite said:

    Just ends up making it harder to find something you knew was talked about because it isn't where it was.

    We manage the Forum like the Fortress in Krull.

    Pitfall69sidersdd
  • SirKevbagsSirKevbags Fairy Land Member Posts: 4,030
    ^^ Everyone just stay away from those SDCC rigged draws. Stick to Brickset Raffles ;-)
    caperberryLostInTranslationGothamConstructionCoindigobox
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    ^ might not be rigged but it's a fact that those photos of children in hospital with brilliant lego sets and massive smiles were photoshopped. I know it's a fact because I went to see my GP the other day and they didnt have LEGO, if they font have LEGO then no hospital has LEGO. Now I just need to get a blogger to believe me...

    ;)
    LostInTranslation
  • SirKevbagsSirKevbags Fairy Land Member Posts: 4,030
    ^ We don't cater to the fancy Dan elitist establishments you visit with your expensive diseases ;-)

    (Back on topic before we are put on report)
    LostInTranslation
  • kyrotekkyrotek Southampton, UKMember Posts: 212
    If you think every Lego fan has enough disposable income to buy big sets every month then you are mad! Come over to the UK and see how poor we have become despite working a good job because we have high tax rates to cover all the fabulous "free" services on offer ;0)

    But seriously, I don't have enough money to buy Lego every month and I think the majority of Lego I have purchased has been in sales or from people here on Brickset. If TLG did come up with a series of modular sets that interlinked at an average price point within a theme I thought was cool, I'd fall for it in a flash. I still believe that the MF theme was clever in that they put 2 sets at each price point and topped it off with the Haunted House. I have one of every set except that final topper which I have to save for.

    At therein lies the rub, where you choose to buy smaller sets over 3 or 4 months or let the money burn in your pocket until you can finally splash out for the big one. The choice and opinion is yours
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    I don't think anyone has said that every lego fan has enough disposable income to buy a large set every month.

    I don't think comparing splitting up something like ewok village to the modulars is a fair comparison either. Each modular is a complete set in its own right. Within minimal modification (a couple of technic pins) they can by joined together without modifying the structure at all. This would not be the case with ewok village, it is more than just three trees. So if ewok village was compared to modulars, then a more fair comparison would be getting a floor at a time (which could just about make an open top play set) or a roof or the fire engine in FB. These individual subsets don't really make any sense until put together. They also need to be put together in a specific way to make any sense. You cannot put the middle floor, then the roof then an upper floor. It has to be ground floor, middle floor, roof.

    Whereas the idea for a modular zoo (which is a great one) is more like the modular building sets - each is an individual playset, but could be combined in any order to make a larger zoo without any significant modifications, just a few technic pins to join them.
    Brinstar85
  • mr_bennmr_benn United KingdomMember Posts: 874
    One of the issues about having lots of smaller sets that are either complimentary or connect together somehow is that they tend to go sideways and outwards, rather than upwards. For exactly the reasons @CCC has highlighted above having a bottom floor of a building with an open top isn't much fun - and also, you'll never have people buying the first floor without buying the ground floor so suddenly you're limiting your customer base.

    The large sets make excellent flagship sets to put on display in the stores, and I'm sure that enough of them are being bought as otherwise they wouldn't keep bringing them out!
  • RomanticWarriorRomanticWarrior United StatesMember Posts: 248
    No. I would rather just buy the big set in one go. It would ultimately cost more money to split up sets due to overhead costs associated with packaging, shipping, marketing, etc.
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    edited August 2013
    A concept the "might" work would be the "build a set" component in other sets, much like it's done in Marvel/DC action figures.

    1)Buy N amount of sets, and offering of existing bricks will make a syndicated (and official) alternate build.

    2) Include N amount of related theme bricks, and over 4-5 sets (even at different pricepoints), the construction of an original theme set, not released any other way.

    Those two options would appease a person wanting many different sets, MOC'rs with option of more bricks, and a collectible idea to spur multiple set buys. In fact, it might change the way we think about MISB, reselling sets w/o minifigs, and affect multiple purchasing further.
    klatu003
  • Dare_WreckDare_Wreck Member Posts: 23
    This veers away from the direction in which this topic is heading, but I wanted to point out two other toys I remember from the early '80s that also featured interconnecting sets. Both featured sets at different price points (unlike the micro machine sets mentioned earlier which were generally all the same price), so these may have a bit more relevance to the idea of LEGO creating interconnecting sets at their current tiered pricing:

    Kenner's Star Wars Micro Collection
    Hot Wheels USA sets (such as this one or this one) - no idea if these were ever released outside the United States.

    Frankly, the Kenner example is very similar to what people have already mentioned LEGO has done with some of their related Star Wars sets in the past.
    chuxtoyboxsidersdd
  • beabea Member Posts: 227
    edited August 2013
    My preference would be towards more detailed sets, which typically implies bigger/more expensive.

    I suppose they could release a floor of a modular at a time as someone mentioned, but I'd just prefer to save up and buy the whole thing at once than pay more in separate sections.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,967
    kyrotek said:

    If you think every Lego fan has enough disposable income to buy big sets every month then you are mad! Come over to the UK and see how poor we have become despite working a good job because we have high tax rates to cover all the fabulous "free" services on offer ;0)

    But seriously, I don't have enough money to buy Lego every month and I think the majority of Lego I have purchased has been in sales or from people here on Brickset. If TLG did come up with a series of modular sets that interlinked at an average price point within a theme I thought was cool, I'd fall for it in a flash. I still believe that the MF theme was clever in that they put 2 sets at each price point and topped it off with the Haunted House. I have one of every set except that final topper which I have to save for.

    At therein lies the rub, where you choose to buy smaller sets over 3 or 4 months or let the money burn in your pocket until you can finally splash out for the big one. The choice and opinion is yours


    I think, though, we are missing the point of the original question. None of this matters what an individual may or may not buy, but rather the overall bottom line from the collective group of buyers.

    As stated, it is absolutely no random element that American girl has been bundling and creating larger sets for several years now.
    They would not be doing that if there was not a benefit to their bottom line.

    My belief is that while small individual sets may have a greater market share, people would not necessarily choose to buy all small sets to a combined set. They would pick and choose. In a large set, they may have fewer buyers, but they are essentially selling all the small sets in one large set.

    With at least one high end company seeing this positively hit their bottom line, I would not be surprised if Lego sees the same thing, thus to answer the OPs question....yes, I feel that bundling and creating a large sets has a better return compared to trying to sell the exact same product, but broken out over 3-4 separate sets.

    Having said that, It is apparent that Lego gives a highly diverse portfolio with a range of sets for every purchase point. These large sets like Ewok village may also simply be a function of giving variety to the end consumer.

    (I also think that Lego could really create a line that functioned specifically together and was advertised as highly modular small sets, and if marketed correctly would do really well... but that would take solid marketing of such a concept.)
  • binaryeyebinaryeye USMember Posts: 1,734

    Aside from statistics and census numbers, where would one get better info?

    http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nat.htm

    Based on that, the annual income of someone working a 40-hour week at the median hourly wage would be just under $35,000. Using the average hourly wage, that rises to just under $46,000. Either way, it's well below the $60,000 suggested, which is the point I was trying to make.

    Anyway, to bring this back on topic, I believe there is a place for expensive sets because each individual set has to stand alone. If a concept calls for a large set to be done right, then so be it. It would be unfortunate if LEGO didn't make large sets because of some arbitrary price limit. As long as they can make a business case for a given set, and price it so it will sell to the expected market, more power to them.
  • binaryeyebinaryeye USMember Posts: 1,734
    jasor said:

    A concept the "might" work would be the "build a set" component in other sets, much like it's done in Marvel/DC action figures.

    They have done this, but with mini sets. For example #4484 through #4487 contain extra parts that combine to build a TIE Bomber, and #4488 through #4491 contain extra parts that combine to build a Y-Wing.

    While I really like the concept, I don't know that it would work for larger sets because of the amount of extra pieces required.
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    ^ 40 extra pieces spread over 5 sets varying price range would definitely be feasible to create a smaller 200 piece set.

    Also, a big fan of alternate builds of the past combining two seperate sets to make a larger set. They've done that in the past, even with IPs like POTC. It promotes more set buys for people who can afford the four sets, building opportunities for people who cannot afford it, and a chance to save up for two sets, for those that have to save...and basically get three sets to build.

    ....Not that anyone can't do that already, with imagination.
  • chuxtoyboxchuxtoybox Member Posts: 711

    How did this become a discussion around ewok village and it's price point?

    That was the OP's complaint, the Ewok Village and it's price point.
    I want it to be understood that I WAS NOT COMPLAINING about the price of the Ewok Village! I stated a fact: it costs $249.99 to buy it from Lego. I stated another fact: That amount is currently what I take home after working for a week. I wasn't "bitching" or "complaining" about either of these things.

    I was just trying to use the Ewok Village as an EXAMPLE of what TO ME personally is an expensive Lego set that TO ME could have had the POTENTIAL to be released in smaller sets. The first person who seems to have understood what I was trying to say is JTR, followed by legomatt and then piratemania7. LEGOMATT more than anyone.

    The intended premise of this thread:

    What do you those of you in the AFOL Brickset communtiy who are reading this think of the concept of smaller Lego sets that can connect to, ultimately, but not imperatively, form a larger set?

    You agree it's a good idea? You think its a bad idea? Don't care? Don't think its a good topic in the first place? You think I should collect Mega Bloks instead because they're less expensive?

    (I need to lie down now)
  • chuxtoyboxchuxtoybox Member Posts: 711
    edited August 2013





    As to the title change @chuxtoybox, I have to say your original title was just plain awful, with all due respect. I'm still not entirely satisfied with the new title but it's workable for now.

    chuxtoybox: (Speaking in the voice and mannerisms of Hermione Granger) Well I thought my title was CLEVER! (Flips hair and walks away clutching his school books)

    I'll be honest in that I initially considered calling your thread, "Should TLG make smaller, virtual, adult themed MOCs instead of these disappointing Medusas with baseplates that teach us nothing about the AFOL Community?"

    chuxtoybox: At least I know your paying attention! :}

    Sorry if this looks confusing. I suck at using quotes.
  • binaryeyebinaryeye USMember Posts: 1,734

    What do you those of you in the AFOL Brickset communtiy who are reading this think of the concept of smaller Lego sets that can connect to, ultimately, but not imperatively, form a larger set?

    I think it's a good idea if it makes sense in the context of the theme and if the sets are designed in such a way that they are still attractive and playable as individual sets.
    chuxtoybox
  • oldtodd33oldtodd33 Denver 4800 miles to BillundMember Posts: 2,537
    edited August 2013
    I'll throw in my opinion. I think it's an idea but don't know if it's good or bad yet. On one hand as stated above, if you had say, 4 sets to hook together one set could get hoarded while the other 3 languish on the shelves which leads to a production nightmare for Lego. On the other hand we already have this being offered now as the Winter Village sets which seem to sell real well. I don't know your particular price point, but it seems to be pretty low.

    I have been in your price bracket before and what I would do if I wanted to collect or build with Lego. I would find a way of doing it. My way, if it were important to me, would be to get a second job and save my money. You could also go to garage sales and get Lego for much cheaper than new and usually it's just as good as new from a lack of play. Maybe even new as I see a lot of parents recycling their kids toys way too fast these days.

    Just my opinion though.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    Winter Village is no real different to any other theme. They do not connect together to form a larger set, so no real different to putting a city firestation next to a city policestation.
  • oldtodd33oldtodd33 Denver 4800 miles to BillundMember Posts: 2,537
    ^ Actually, they are pretty small buildings for a "theme" and for the most part can be easily BL'd a little at a time pretty cheaply. They also fit in a smallish space compared to a police or fire station.
  • jtrjtr Member Posts: 37
    CCC said:

    jtr said:


    i guess if lego put a bunch of smaller sets out and a larger one or two, all of a similar theme, you have a good balance and would keep everyone happy.

    I'm not so sure. There are many locations in Star Wars (Hobbit, LOTR, etc). If they did Endor Village, another larger Endor set (~$80), and a bunch of smaller Endor sets then that is probably half the SW range tied up on one location in one film. That is a very narrow focus. I'd prefer a range of sets across the series.
    maybe not all in the same wave but stretched over the year

  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Member Posts: 4,401
    With little ones at home, we now "collect" Playmobil and Take N Play Thomas the Tank toys. We end up spending a lot more money on the little packs / trains than we would if we concentrated on the larger ones. It just creeps up on you.

    So I think it can be just as (if not more) profitable for TLG to go this route. It just has to make sense thematically. And you still have to have those flagship sets to pace a theme and frustrate the kids. :o)

    I do LOVE the "add-on" plan where you get enough pieces via 4 sets to build a fifth. The mini Y-Wing was awesome!
  • sweetness34sweetness34 San Diego, CA.Member Posts: 336
    I think breaking bigger sets into smaller connectable sets would ultimately cost more when you consider increased packaging and production costs.
  • legomasonlegomason Member Posts: 190
    Heroica did all of these things I think.
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,423

    With little ones at home, we now "collect" Playmobil and Take N Play Thomas the Tank toys. We end up spending a lot more money on the little packs / trains than we would if we concentrated on the larger ones. It just creeps up on you.

    So I think it can be just as (if not more) profitable for TLG to go this route. It just has to make sense thematically. And you still have to have those flagship sets to pace a theme and frustrate the kids. :o)

    I do LOVE the "add-on" plan where you get enough pieces via 4 sets to build a fifth. The mini Y-Wing was awesome!

    I got my daughter the new Playmobil Dollhouse and got another floor for it. It is getting quite expensive. Bought the lights too.

    She loves her Lego though :)

  • chuxtoyboxchuxtoybox Member Posts: 711

    I think breaking bigger sets into smaller connectable sets would ultimately cost more when you consider increased packaging and production costs.

    Yes, I agree. When you add up the total cost of, let's say, theoretically, a Cloud City released in 3 smaller sets, they would probably add up to more than one Cloud City designed as one playset. But you should potentially add up with more Lego components in the end. And here's my reasoning:

    I'm going to use Jabba's Palace as an example. What seems to be the principle behind one of the arguments against this concept is that if Lego had released Jabba's Palace and the Rancor Pit as one structure, all they would have done is combine the two current designs together, add both of the current price points together and release "The Ultimate, Exclusive, Hard to Find Jabba's Palace" for ,if my math and facts are correct, $179.98. Cheap for some, expensive for others.

    It is my opinion that instead, Lego would eliminate components not entirely necessary for the two initial designs, use larger elements where two or more smaller elements had been used, whatever it took to produce a Jabba's Palace with a Rancor Pit designed into it for as little expense for them and us as possible, ending up with a set less than, but probably not that much less than, $179.98 but with less elements.

  • CapnRex101CapnRex101 United KingdomAdministrator Posts: 2,298
    Obviously, sets have to work as standalone pieces as well as combined with other sets. For instance, #10193 Medieval Market Village could have been released in two sections had LEGO wished and still worked if you had just one half or the other. Equally, #9516 Jabba's Palace and #75005 Rancor Pit work separately as the two have plenty of playability independent of one another.

    Personally, while I did not mind being able to combine sets such as Jabba's Palace and the Rancor Pit, I think this is a slippery slope. TLC could keep producing these kinds of models, then after a number of successful sets produced in this manner they might go a little too far and you could end up with something which simply does not function without the other sets attached to it. Therefore, I think it better to avoid it completely.
  • weaselkingweaselking Member Posts: 61
    edited August 2013
    I made a comment in another thread about DS. As a whole set, I don't like it. However, I'd love to have separates of the detention cell or the trash compactor scene. I could see certain big sets being available in a modular design, but most don't really lend themselves well to it.

    For those that want the whole shebang, fine--include some exclusive mini-figs in the complete set.

    Imagine the add-ins that are possible--I think the current City Museum (#60008) has some good attributes, but overall is pretty bad. Create add-on rooms.

    Or all of the ESB Hoth sets. Have a good plan spread out over a few years, like the Winter Market sets. Scale would be consistent, no duplication in mini-figs or vehicles.

    Other ideas? Everyone loves #10196. What if TLG released swappable cars/animals?
  • weaselkingweaselking Member Posts: 61
    I apparently can't edit my comment twice? In any event, the other I was going to add was the current Castle theme. Add some extra castle walls or towers to expand the size.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325

    As a whole set, I don't like it. However, I'd love to have separates of the detention cell or the trash compactor scene.

    You can freely download the instructions and build just the parts you want.


    Or all of the ESB Hoth sets. Have a good plan spread out over a few years, like the Winter Market sets. Scale would be consistent, no duplication in mini-figs or vehicles.

    That is fine if you buy them over the years. But many people don't collect from the beginning. If Han Solo was in the first year, it would suck if someone that wasn't into the sets in year 1 could not get a Han figure. In fact, it would hit sales. If you are not on board from year 1, then you will not be able to get all the important characters at retail.

    That is not the case with winter village, etc. Those work fine as one-offs but can be combined into something larger. But if you are missing one, it does not matter so much.
  • weaselkingweaselking Member Posts: 61
    And that's what the secondary market (and many people on here) are for. :)

    I'm just saying with a little planning and design work, it *could* succeed.
    Furrysaurus
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    ^ Most people that buy lego do not know of brickset or bricklink. Most will know of ebay, yet if they cannot buy a set that is needed to complete a range in store, they are likely to not buy at all.
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    ^ I agree with a "little planning and design work" it could work. Also, TLG wouldnt release sets w/o flagship minifigs. put a snow cap over all your Hans and Lukes for more Rebel troopers.

    Hoth would be the perfect add-on design sets, spread out over time. I'm honestly surprised it hasnt happened already.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    It has happened, in the sense that all Hoth sets can be put side by side.
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    ^meh. I'm talking in a designed, and add-on way. Yes, you can make your own Hoth....there are plenty of sets out there. There is not a TLG Hoth though, which could really really work; especially in a special "hey kids connect this one to another set" way.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    But as already said, what parent is going to buy their kid a set that is shown connected to another set in the lego promotional material that has not been available at retail for four years? They would be inundated with complaints about it.

    Then duplication of minifigs. Sorry, you cannot buy an R2-D2 minifig, he was in a set three years ago.

    In an era when lego are trying to kill off or at least restrict resellers, why would they push sales of one of their key ranges into the hands of resellers?
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    The sets would have to stand alone, as stated above, as well as an expectation that you would have repeats of main characters (just like any other SW set).

    It's all about planned marketing, accessibility, and delving into a different additional strategy. It works in other toy outlets besides TLG, at low to mid-level pricepoints.

    What exactly is the failing part of that idea? Kids who are with Lego for a while get rewarded for their patronage, and newer Kids start with a stand alone set.

    This really isnt much different than the Modular line...just a smaller scale. I'm not proposing you have to "have them all" to make a complete set. The idea is to ADD ON in a designed way vs. having 8 ad hoc Hoth sets that you can set "side by side" now.
    Furrysaurus
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    jasor said:


    What exactly is the failing part of that idea? Kids who are with Lego for a while get rewarded for their patronage, and newer Kids start with a stand alone set.

    It's not a stand alone set though if they show how to connect it to other long gone sets in the instruction manual. It will also not be the best the set could be if they have to adapt a design so that it fits in with a set sold years beforehand.

    It would be a good idea if they were sold concurrently (like Helm's Deep plus Uruk army / wall or Jabba's Palace and Rancor Pit), but spread over many years, not so good.

    Imagine if JP was EOL before RP came out. RP is stand alone, but showing it in a picture with JP would lead to complaints that JP is not available and would hurt sales of RP.
  • BumblepantsBumblepants DFWMember Posts: 6,656
    I think there are some good examples of things that work well together like Helm's Deep + Uruk-Hai Army. Both are sufficient sets on their own and increase the fun by connecting into a bigger castle with more bad guys. Same with Jabbas Palace and the Rancor Pit. And I am all for combinations like this.

    However, I think it is silly to suggest that everything in a product line needs to connect together with Technic pins or be modular or whatever to be better. Using the Hoth example, does anyone really need Lego to tell them how to arrange their Hoth sets? Just put them next to each other depending on what you have and can afford. If you really want to go nuts, buy some white bricks and build some snow chunks to connect them. Additionally, in many themes, the main products are vehicles of some kind. Kids want AT-ATs and Snowspeeders, not a $40 bley power generator to connect to their bley Radar dish to connect to the Rebel Base.

    As far as sets go, at the end of the day it comes down to 'Is there a viable market for X'. Is there a viable market for a stand-alone Death Star Trash Compactor? Perhaps. Is there a market for half of a Tower of Orthanc like suggested on the mainpage? Absolutely not. Might as well try selling a race car set with the tires and wheels sold separately.
    dougts
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    LIke showing a Modular city street including Green Grocer has hurt sales of subsequent releases? It doesnt. You make a good point, but for one exception: TLG has great Designers, Marketing, and although conservative at times, a Strategy team who will put new things out there.

    A good modular line can be done in any theme, if it's done right. Do train hobbyists stop buying track and trains, or scenery in the same vein, just because there are older models that got missed out?

    the Winter Village is a good example. Does the fact that there are sets no longer available hurt the theme? No.

    A $49.99 set with random Hoth battle, like the current release ( #75014 ), stands alone. How much better would it be, if it were designed to add on to a past set? How much better would #7879 Hoth Echo Base be as a set, if it was designed to join with existing #7666 Hoth Rebel Base?

    Both are already "stand alone," but could be better than the sum of their parts.
    #7879 doesnt have a gate now. It would only be enhanced by #7666. I'm not saying these two are perfect for each other in their current forms...they aren't.
    Designed with both in mind, how much better could they have been?

    There is potential in longterm designing, and TLG already plans quite a bit ahead. IMO, it just makes sense to visit previous models, and incorporate them into a cohesive whole. All that would do is strengthen the line, vs rehashing the same vehicles over and over. Just because things are designed to fit together, doesnt mean they HAVE to....it's Lego, afterall. With all the Hoth sets floating out there, as example, if you can have ad hoc disjointed sets...it's not a huge leap to make them a bit more cohesive.
  • pillpodpillpod Member Posts: 273
    ^ I think you've brought up a good point. The sets to be quality stand alone sets that happen to be even better when joined with other sets.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    Modulars are different. They are adult products. They are not licensed. They are not intended to create a single movie scene. They can be put together in any combination. It doesn't matter if you miss one or five, they still create a coherent scene. Lego doesn't show pictures of the whole street in a particular order showing you how to put them together.

    Whereas small SW vignettes designed to fit together to make a single scene, you need all the characters, you need to fit them together in a specific order to create the scene.

  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    ^They dont have to be fit together in a specific order, necessarily. My right brain says otherwise.

    Maybe, we're on conceptually different pages (and that's A-ok). Your concept, for clarification's sake, is One final scene = vignette 1, 2, 3, and 4....I think.

    From my perspective (and I'll keep using Hoth for example), my concept is...
    Hoth = any number of the sets, or just one. Let's say, a Hanger set, Echo Base interior set, and Shield generator set. All could stand on their own. TLG is adept at offering a wide variety of minifigs (even with obvious repeated characters) per set, and spread out "fairly." All, or some of those sets could be joined to make a larger scene cohesively. That's what longterm designed to do...

    Modulars are different, but they dont have to be, and they ARE intended to create a singular scene...otherwise, people wouldn't clamour for retired sets for completion.

    Switching gears, you dont think that a developed Batman scene including a Gothic courtyard would work well as an expansion to Arkham? Or that the Joker's Funhouse couldn't have included a helipad for the Joker's helicopter? That is design and marketing at it's core. Get the kids excited about getting more than one set, enhance their play experience, yet still have two very different sets that are cohesive in that design while maintaining the theme.

    This is what I do, so I have a pretty strong opinion about longterm design...
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,325
    Modulars are not designed to create a single scene. Lego does not specify which order to put them in, therefore there are many possible scenes by swapping them around.

    Sets that work well together to create a truly larger set such as JP and RP can only really be connected in one way. Now imagine there are four sets needed. If you only get 1 and 3 then they don't create the scene that Lego would show in there advertising.

    Now if they are just small sets that have the same connections and can be clicked together in any order, then that is not really a well designed larger set. It is just a collection of individual sets that can not only be placed next to each other, but can be clicked together. You can do that with most current sets by just adding technic bricks and pins or sticking them on a base board.


    They could have split DS into many small vignettes that create a line if you connect them in any order. I don't think that could really be called a great set. It would just be a collection of small srts that connect together without any real meaning. They could have split them into many small vignettes that create a sphere, making them all into something special as a whole. Now that would be a great set, but you have to do that in a specific order. And if you have pieces missing, it would just look crap. Even worse if you had to wait five years to finish it.

    Your example of the courtyard, how many people would buy it if Lego had stopped production of AA, yet advertised this as a set capable of clicking into AA. You'd feel as if you are getting only half a set if you don't already own AA. Even worse when people ask Lego how to get the building and they tell them they cannot buy it. Resellers would love it, but it would be bad for Lego if the courtyard only fitted with AA.

    For pairs of sets that go together it is much better to have them overlap, so even though JP came out first it overlaps for a good time with RP. Same with Helms and Uruk army.

    I doubt Lego would want to show a new product next to an EOL one in their advertising. I know they make an occasional mistake in City / trains when it comes to track sets, and that causes complaints.
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    CCC said:

    Modulars are not designed to create a single scene. Lego does not specify which order to put them in, therefore there are many possible scenes by swapping them around.

    Sets that work well together to create a truly larger set such as JP and RP can only really be connected in one way. Now imagine there are four sets needed. If you only get 1 and 3 then they don't create the scene that Lego would show in there advertising.

    ....But they do create one thematic scene.......
    CCC said:

    Now if they are just small sets that have the same connections and can be clicked together in any order, then that is not really a well designed larger set. It is just a collection of individual sets that can not only be placed next to each other, but can be clicked together. You can do that with most current sets by just adding technic bricks and pins or sticking them on a base board.

    A Hoth Base gate, Sheild generator, and Echo Base interior have all been made, with varying minifigs....and stood alone. I'm not a Lego designer, but even I can think of ways these could all fit together interchangeably. Again, all it does is add to the sets...but you dont have to own all of them to make your scene. I dont know really how discussion got pigeon-holed into EOL models mixed with new models only, but progressionally, it still makes sense to add to a design vs ad hoc.
    CCC said:

    They could have split DS into many small vignettes that create a line if you connect them in any order. I don't think that could really be called a great set. It would just be a collection of small srts that connect together without any real meaning. They could have split them into many small vignettes that create a sphere, making them all into something special as a whole. Now that would be a great set, but you have to do that in a specific order. And if you have pieces missing, it would just look crap. Even worse if you had to wait five years to finish it.

    I agree wholeheartedly. I've not been a fan of taking flagship sets, and breaking them down. I'm talking about having a unified plan for low to mid pricepoint sets to make SENSE when they come out, and be cohesive.

    CCC said:

    Your example of the courtyard, how many people would buy it if Lego had stopped production of AA, yet advertised this as a set capable of clicking into AA. You'd feel as if you are getting only half a set if you don't already own AA. Even worse when people ask Lego how to get the building and they tell them they cannot buy it. Resellers would love it, but it would be bad for Lego if the courtyard only fitted with AA.

    What happens when JP EOL's and RP is still available? That's the same question. Again, it's about adding to the scene...yet still have a stand alone model. Also, it would be cross marketed with a set like AA. In fact, it would probably bolster sales of both sets, as well as might offer another related set with the life of AA. A DC Superheroes Gothic Courtyard (with the proper minifigs/play factor) would sell w/o AA all day long. It would still enhance the AA scene, however.
    CCC said:

    I doubt Lego would want to show a new product next to an EOL one in their advertising. I know they make an occasional mistake in City / trains when it comes to track sets, and that causes complaints.

    They've done just this with the Modular line. GG is sitting right on the back of GE's box art and instructions.
    TheLoneTensor
  • chuxtoyboxchuxtoybox Member Posts: 711
    The best example of my idea is the one given by Dare_ Wreck, the Star Wars micro collection. They had a Bespin that was three different sets, each one complete by themselves, that connected to make one large Bespin City. They also had one for Hoth and for the Death Star. Bespin is my favorite though because it seems the most cohesive. What I think is kind of ironic is the fact that you could buy the sets separately or all together in one box. Now if the micro Bespin was done in Lego scale with Lego bricks the end result could be a massive playset!

    Thinking about the concept of Lego sets that connected together made me then think about the fact that, other than Jabba's Palace, Lego never really makes sets that "connect" together.

    Obviously they can all connect together because they're Lego. You can surround your Tower of Orthanc with trees from your Ewok Village and have them connect to the tower with rope bridges, an epic battle between Mr. Gold and Azog raging on top of the tower whilst all the Comicon exclusives look on in awe from below!

    It would just cost a helluva lot if you had to buy all of that in one box. :}
  • chuxtoyboxchuxtoybox Member Posts: 711
    I'm not sharing this to "complain" about Lego's prices or to say " WHY THE HECK ISN'T LEGO DOING THIS!!!?" It's a "what if" idea like "What if Spider-Man's uncle Ben had never been killed?" I don't expect anything to come from it. But then again maybe Lego is reading everything being said in this forum and The Ultimate Collector's Bespin City playsets will become a reality in 2015! :}
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