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What brought everyone out of their Dark Ages?

Not sure if this thread has already been made, but I wax curious to hear everyone's stories.

My dark ages began during the summer of 2003. I had become a teenager and thought I had to move on and "grow up". Well March of this year put an end to that. I went to my mom's to move more of my belongings out, and I stumbled upon the first of many bins that contained my Lego collection. I opened the first bin and saw some MOCs I had made and then 2 things caught my eye. The first was my old Republic Gunship #7163 and it was still fully assembled. The 2nd set was the AT-TE #4482, also fully assembled. I was ecstatic to see 2 of my favorite childhood toys still intact, and needless to say I was instantly hooked once again.

So what are everyone else's stories??!


  • icey117icey117 Member Posts: 510
    Out of the Dark age: The rare combination of getting a son - calling my dad findout out he threw out all my childhood LEGO and the re-release of PIRATES. I was sold!

    After a 3-4 year LEGO frenzy, I'm now turned into a modorate minifig collector :-)
  • ProtProt Member Posts: 22
    I always kept my lego on my shelves, and still sometimes built my large technic sets, so my dark ages werent that dark, but what got me buying lego again was the arrivan of LOTR lego, and noticing i could get my hands on some nice lego sets via the second hand market (futuron monorail FTW!)
  • TheBrokenPlateTheBrokenPlate Member Posts: 28
    Hi everyone, first post!
    For me... mid-life crisis probably haha. I just found myself browsing some old Technic sets on ebay that I had when I was a kid growing up in the 70s and 80s. My Lego years then would have been from about '77 (when I was five) to '84, a great time to be a Lego fan.
    I then decided to pull out my old Lego from my parents attic to see if I could build one or two of them and sell them, and I got hooked again. I found myself on Bricklink buying the parts for the old Hobby set vintage cars, and soon after the VW Camper then became my first new set in 30 years.
    Since then (for the last 6 months or so) I've been mostly buying vintage sets and mixed lots, and having fun trying to piece together old sets from those. I really like the vintage stuff from the late 60s to the late 70s especially (Pat Pend era mostly).
  • HangedSanchezHangedSanchez Member Posts: 310
    edited August 2014
    #8110 Unimog. My brother works with the real things, and said he could get me one at cost (in an official Mercedes Benz shipping box) about three years ago. I picked up the odd set for the next year until his stepson gave me all his old Star Wars sets, knowing I'm a fan of the films.

    After that, it's been Lego all the way! Now if only I could get all our old Lego back from our cousins..
  • fenderbender336fenderbender336 Member Posts: 88
    It's great hearing these stories. It seems like lego isn't something you "out grow", but rather grow back into. Also being an AFOL has some benefits, like being able to buy sets we missed out on during childhood, or our dark ages.
  • BrickarmorBrickarmor Member Posts: 1,258
    My son's 6th birthday. I wanted to get him some Space sets. That was 3.5 years ago.... And I haven't stopped buying since!
  • BooTheMightyHamsterBooTheMightyHamster Member Posts: 1,533
    A bit like @HangedSanchez‌ , it was the #8110 Unimog. I'd had a few boxes of bricks when I was little, but didn't really collect anything, and wasn't particularly aware of any of the themes when I was young. At about age 13 a friend was building a large town in his bedroom, I wasn't using my Lego, so donated it to his building box, and never really thought about Lego again for more than 30 years.

    But sometime in 2012, I came across this video on the Telegraph website and was completely blown away. Partly by Technic in general, and partly by the sheer bl**dy scale of the thing.

    Mentioned it to Mrs Boo, who must have squirrelled that particular piece of info away, because at Christmas 2012, I suddenly found myself the proud owner of the #8070 Supercar. I had a bit of Christmas money to spend, and so added the Unimog.

    And I haven't looked back since.

    I stick mainly to Technic, but do dabble with a bit of Architecture. And Star Wars.
    And a few other bits and bobs.

    But mainly Technic.
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,169
    edited August 2014
    Seeing Vader's Tie Fighter (system - #8017) in Vegas after just missing the boat on the UCS version, and putting a few sets together for my Nephew, who liked to play with the stuff, but not to build them (old Gunship and other Ep1-3 sets).
  • fenderbender336fenderbender336 Member Posts: 88
    I remember as a kid, I would build a new set much faster than I do now. It's not that I'm a slower builder, but I find myself not wanting to complete a build because I enjoy that process so much, whereas during my childhood I couldn't wait to finish the build and play with it. I find that to be very interesting. One thing that hasn't changed is I still can't wait for an order to arrive and the excitement factor is still there :)
  • NatebwNatebw Member Posts: 339
    3 things:

    1) having kids
    2) living close to LEGOLAND Florida
    3) Have a job where I can build and trade with kids.

  • MathiasMathias Member Posts: 94
    Helped build a set with my niece two Christmas ago. I can't remember which one just had a dinosaur and a helicopter. Enjoyed it so much starting looking up everything lego and started collecting minifgures and then sets. Now I have a room full of minifigure frames and sets all displayed out.
  • AndyPolAndyPol Member Posts: 406
    edited August 2014
    It was 2009 and my wife suggested buying 6194 for our two children. 5 years and hundreds of sets later (between me, son and daughter) she has regretted saying that ever since!
  • joel4motionjoel4motion Member Posts: 959
    The Maersk Train 10219. I saw it in the Lego shop in Westfield I think. Mentioned it to my girlfriend and completely forgot about it when I unwrapped an uncharacteristically large xmas present that year.
  • jackybrickjackybrick Member Posts: 45
    ^^^ @Mathias

    Was it something like this?
  • MathiasMathias Member Posts: 94
    @jackybrick‌ yup I was just too lazy to look it up. Lol.
  • hantothantot Member Posts: 284
    I guess my dark ages kicked in around 1990, and not much later my mum gave away all of my classic space sets. Didn't really come out of it till I saw the UCS Super Star Destroyer a few years ago / now I'm trying to catch up on all the Star Wars sets I've missed, that was one expensive set!
  • jackybrickjackybrick Member Posts: 45
    BTW: Luckily, I do not remember having anything like ’dark ages’ or whatever you call it guys. :-P
    I am still pretty young, though, but I hope that it will never come to that. :-)
  • crazycarlcrazycarl Member Posts: 392
    About 5 years ago my wife and I were watching TV in November and saw a Lego commercial. She said "my brother and I used to play with Legos all the time." I said to her "Want to build some sets right now?" I pulled up two bins out of the basement and we built all my late 80s and early 90s sets. Now we have a 16x4' layout with all the trains and city sets we could get, mixed in with my old sets. She really liked the city monorail that I still had complete less box. I have also got into the Superheroes the last 2 years and some castle stuff from the 90s-2014. Now that our daughter is 3 she loves The Lego Movie so we have been buying some of those sets to play with her. She's still in Duplo, but we let her play with the movie sets with us. Our basement is really beginning to look the "the man upstairs" Bricksburg (with more trains), and Middle Zealand.
  • fenderbender336fenderbender336 Member Posts: 88
    These are some fantastic stories!
  • david_m77david_m77 Member Posts: 2
    My hiatus began in fall of 2008, when during the 6th grade I decided I was too old for LEGO and Hot Wheels toys. (Ironically only months after our trip to Legoland California.) I sort of got out of it on a trip to Chicago in late March-early April 2013, when I bought the Architecture set of the Willis Tower (from the highest floor of the real building!) and sat in our hotel room assembling it while my parents checked out the bar on the top floor. In January 2014, while taking advantage of a snow day to go to the mall, my dad suggested that we go into the LEGO Store to ask when the Movie came out. He ended up purchasing the Delorean Time Machine, and while he was at the checkout, I spotted a small orange and black sports car that reminded me of the Mini Cooper Roadster I would love to have. While he exited the store, I purchased the Sunset Speeder. I wound up assembling both once arriving at home.

    Soon thereafter, I was making secret runs to Target and Toys R Us after school and violin lessons to purchase more sets and making purchases for tires on Bricklink, thus bringing about the end of a dark era.

    A few weeks ago, I went to the Brick Fiesta event in my city and left with two Ziploc bags filled with blue parts and old tires as well as two Futuron and M-Tron minifigs, cementing the end of the dreaded Hiatus.
  • matticus_bricksmatticus_bricks Member Posts: 651
    I am 20 years old and have never really had a complete "dark age," except for maybe my first two or three years of High school. I remember being in 8th grade and still having tons of LEGO sets and MOC layouts strewn across the basement and later on being forced by my mom to put a lot of it away. I spent the next couple of years slowly creeping out of it by piecing together classic sets and working on a few serious MOC projects, but to be honest, it wasn't really until this past fall that I truly burst out of my "dark age" when I happened to stumble upon "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets," which was always my favorite HP movie, on TV, which made me want to restore every Harry Potter set I had growing up (a project that I'm still working on!). And of course, The Lego Movie changed everything.

    The unfortunate thing is that I really didn't buy many sets between 2007 and 2012, so I missed out on a lot of great stuff. It was Lord of the Rings that reestablished my interest in actual sets.
  • fenderbender336fenderbender336 Member Posts: 88
    ^. The worst part of coming back was realizing how many awesome sets I had missed. I've lost track of how many sets I have purchased since this past March. My favorite theme has been Star Wars ever since their debut, and I was blown away by the fact that Lego introduced flesh colored heads!
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,169
    ^and realising how pricey they are when you buy them yourself rather than get them as presents :)
  • b1nkynzb1nkynz Member Posts: 5
    Oh what a good read, believe it or not I have had two dark ages, or is that I have been reborn three times? The first dark-age was as a teenager after discovering alcohol and girls.

    I got back into Lego in my early twenties after buying 2535 formula 1 Racing Car after filling up the car with gas at the local service station. That set began a few years of buying small sets and setting them up all over my office. That all came to an end when my kids came into the office one day and took the lot home, and so began the second dark-age. I also stopped buying sets in about 2000/01 also due to the bland sets being produced.

    The second dark-age ended when I saw 7747 Wind Turbine Transport on special for $40NZD (Retailed for $110). If only my wife had said no, she wouldn't have to endure living in a house with sets, posters, books and boxes in every room, being dragged to every toy and department store in Wellington (we don’t have a Lego store in NZ) and dragged around the country to LUG displays.
  • TheBrokenPlateTheBrokenPlate Member Posts: 28

    ^. The worst part of coming back was realizing how many awesome sets I had missed. I've lost track of how many sets I have purchased since this past March. My favorite theme has been Star Wars ever since their debut, and I was blown away by the fact that Lego introduced flesh colored heads!

    I think the weirdest thing for me was all the new colours that had come in during my 30 years out of the loop. All those grays really confused me at first. Dark gray had even come and gone in that time, but was still new to me. I'm still getting to grips with the pinks, purples, blues and oranges.

  • TheBrokenPlateTheBrokenPlate Member Posts: 28
    Also, Technic... where'd all the studs go?!
  • DougTemplarDougTemplar Member Posts: 638
    Two words...

    Batman LEGO.

    Actually that's maybe one word as it's obvious we are talking about LEGO here.

    So basically


    I'd held off on the Star Wars stuff till then... It was also the story about Richard Hammond was using LEGO to help him with his recovery from the brain injury in the big accident he had. That convinced me it was good for any brain including my own...

    But then again had there not been Batman sets I would probably never re-started....
  • OldfanOldfan Member Posts: 706
    Entered dark ages when I went to college; that's when we're supposed to "grow up", right?

    Then LEGO got the Star Wars license in 1999...and I responded with a vengeance! After buying all the SW and Rock Raiders sets in the stores, I rescued all my old childhood sets from Mom's garage, and went wild on ebay/bricklink to get those classic space sets that eluded me as a child. My collection is really close to "classic space complete".

    LEGO is making it difficult to stick within a budget nowadays with so many cool sets and themes, but somehow I'm maintaining my self-control...most of the time...
  • wagnerml2wagnerml2 Member Posts: 1,376
    My dark ages began in in 1988. I then went to college and law school. Then I saw the new Star Wars sets on the shelves in 1999 and it was like I was 12 years old all over again. The result has been a very expensive addiction :)
  • preusspreuss Member Posts: 101
    Lord of the Rings! I started buying the first sets so that my newborn son could play with them when he grew up, as I figured they would retire soon.
    Shortly after that I became acquainted with the AFOL world, joined the local LUG for support and have now decided the LOTR collection is actually mine. My own. My preciousssss!!!!
    I have now bought multiples of most Middle Earth sets, some current Castle and City ones and all of the modulars I could get my hands on - just finished bricklinking a Cafe Corner last month.
    I've also restored all of my Classic Space collection and bought a couple extra sets from that era through Bricklink. I'm probably addicted to BL... placed over 60 orders in a year, mostly to fuel the MOCing habit.
    My son? He can't really complain, as he now owns a very impressive Duplo collection and still gets to play with some of daddy's LEGO (under strict supervision) from time to time. No Lord Business stuff here!
  • blars82blars82 Member Posts: 19
    Mine was Harry Potter. I had LEGO when I was a kid, but hadn't ever bought a set myself. Then my girlfriend and I saw the two Hogwarts sets 4862 and 4867 and Diagon Alley. We both love Harry Potter, so we thought they'd be fun to buy. We've since gone back and are trying to buy all of the old Harry Potter sets. I also of course got hooked on the LOTR and Hobbit sets and the LEGO Movie came out and got me hooked on those sets. I'm not sure which line of sets I'll be into next, but I'm sure there will be something else. I bought a few Batman and other Super Heroes sets, but I've since sold off a lot of those. I guess I only want to keep what I can display...and save my money for when I visit the "real" Diagon Alley and Hogwarts next month in Orlando!
  • Sethro3Sethro3 Member Posts: 995
    Dark Ages began around 1996 (right after the Western theme). I was about 13 at the time. I think I just got a Sony Playstation and was "growing up." It lasted until 2010 with the Harry Potter sets. Being a huge fan of the books/movies those really sucked me in. After buying all of those that winter, the Kingdoms line kept me interested the following year. They were enough like my childhood castle sets, that I fell in love with them. Been hooked ever since, although I spend significantly less on LEGO now than I did a few years ago.

    I don't plan on buying any of the old HP sets, but maybe some of the figures.
  • chris_buildschris_builds Member Posts: 1
    I was a hardcore Lego maniac as a kid but I put all toys aside as I became a teen. I knew I didn't want to get rid of them though, so had my parents keep them. In my early thirties when I finely bought my own home I took them back, and for a time I'd take my Lego out once or twice a year during holidays for old times sake. Over the years when shopping for toys for my own child I would occasionally pick a set up, build it and put it away with the others. Then finally, a few years ago at almost forty, I found a huge amount of Lego for dirt cheap at a garage sale and knew I couldn't pass up such a good deal! The following year I spent much time sorting and organizing, and researching pieces online to discover what sets the lot contained. This is how I discovered Brickset and the AFOL community, and totally got hooked! I've since build a (small) room for my Lego and have bought many more sets, and passionately share this hobby with my kids!
  • piratemania7piratemania7 Member Posts: 2,146
    ahhhhh yes, the beginning of the end of my extra free time and extra spending money. When Classic Pirates was re-released I had to "look at the pictures" on the [email protected] website so much that I decided heck, I'll just buy one set and see how cool it is.

    Well cool was an understatement as I became red hot with purchasing LEGO for several years after that. I have parred down my collecting model to specific themes/sets that I want, but I crave LEGO just as much now as the first day I laid eyes on the re-release sets...
  • ajm390ajm390 Member Posts: 38
    The modular buildings really did it for me - 10197 was the first one saw it on display at Bluewater Lego shop and just had to buy it.
  • natro220natro220 Member Posts: 545
    In 2008 I was on the night shift opposite my wife, and wanted a hobby to have something to do during the day. I got my old Lego from my parents' house, and built up every set I owned. I then bought the Dreamliner airplane set, and thought it was amazing. At that point, it spiraled into Star Wars, then Harry Potter, then Bricklinking old sets I wish I had as a kid - everything from Space to Classic Town to Pirates and Castle.
  • Ra226Ra226 Member Posts: 20
    My initial Lego years were from about 1981 through about 1993--I was fortunate enough to have lived through the golden age of Space. I started Highschool in '92.

    And I'd say the internet is what brought me out of my dark ages. I was introduced to both and eBay in 1997 and that pretty much sealed it. If I had to pinpoint it exactly, I'd say it was the moment I got 6891 Gamma V Lasercraft from eBay (I had wanted it ever since I was forced to choose between it and 6931 FX Star Patroller at Target a decade earlier).
  • talostalos Member Posts: 49
    I had Lego back in the late 60's, early 70's. I kept them all, near the end I got a few of the sets like the Firehouse and Brickyard. Then I came across the Robie House Architecture set, a year or so ago, and that got me looking at the [email protected] site..and realized all that was currently available...what a different thing Lego is I have gotten tons of sets and build my own MOC's using LDD...its great. I am 51 now...haha!
  • bkprbkpr Member Posts: 295
    edited August 2014
    #10188 — I chanced upon a Lego store in a mall when I was living in Malaysia three years ago an couldn't believe a) the price, and b) how amazing it was! I wrote a blog post about it after doing a bunch of research that night into Star Wars lego. I was astounded :)

    Worthy note, this was also when I visited for the first time :)
  • sonsofscevasonsofsceva Member Posts: 542
    edited August 2014
    Four years ago I bought #7784 on EBay for less than it retailed. My oldest really got into it and it fit his Batman TAS action figure perfectly, much to his delight. Then my wife saw the Harry Potter sets and we began to get those, and then it expanded from there.
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