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Master Builder Academy Theme discontinued?

eggsheneggshen Middleton, WIMember Posts: 520
edited December 2014 in Collecting
I noticed that the Master Builder Academy theme is "Retiring Soon" and "Sold Out" at Lego.com. Does anyone know what is happening with this theme? I was hoping to pick some of these up for my kids but I may have dragged my feet too long. I know that this happened last year when they were all repackaged, but I have a feeling they may be gone for good.

Comments

  • ColoradoBricksColoradoBricks Denver, CO, USAMember Posts: 1,640
    @eggshen, yes I think it is done, they have not release a new kit in 1.5 year and some of the MBA stuff was 20% off on black Friday.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,941
    I assumed the last one was the last one. Sad, since it was a wonderful program.

    They were on sale over Black Friday weekend.
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,873
    I waited too long and didn't pick up a copy of #20215. Oh well.
  • RonyarRonyar Member Posts: 357
    ^oh no, I didn't either. Picked up #20214 when it was on sale over Black Friday, but I didn't see #20215 go on sale. I was hoping that meant it wasn't going to retire right away. I really liked these when they were the mail subscription model, but they seemed very pricey when they redid the design and raised the prices for the three kits in one box. My kids aren't quite old enough to appreciate these yet, so I have kind of been holding them for now. Time to look for random ebay offerings I'm afraid. I do hope Lego comes out with something to replace them that is a bit less costly. I know those printed manuals must have been expensive, but the price per part of the sets still seemed too high to me. Then again, I have the same feelings about most of the architecture sets, which probably were the most comparable sets when you look at printing and design.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,941
    The subscription program was wonderful. My son loved receiving them.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,566
    I remember seeing the original one #20200 for $25 + tax when I was in the US in 2012. A combination of thinking it's only $5 off, plus quite large in my suitcase made me not pick it up then. Silly mistake.

    Although I have since bought the four minifigs, digital copies of some of the instructions and have most of the parts.
  • eggsheneggshen Middleton, WIMember Posts: 520
    I lucked out and found the level 1 sets (#20200 and #20216) at my local Barnes & Noble store yesterday, now I just hope that they restock level 2 at Lego.com. I don't see level 3 going anywhere (it's kind of boring), and looks like level 4 is going to be an ebay purchase (eventually).
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 1,026
    I have all four levels and absolutely love the sets and the books. I have been saying that if anybody wants to get into LEGO these are the best sets to get. You get a serious jump-start on learning advanced building techniques, and the included models and alternate models are just so good! And the parts-selection is excellent! From the four levels you can build pretty much anything. I highly recommend getting all four levels before they completely sell out. Even if your kids are too young or something, get them now and just put them aside.
  • OdinduskOdindusk Member Posts: 763
    They're worth every single penny, IMO. The books are incredible, packed with great pics, tips, history, techniques, etc. Here are a couple of random photos I took some time ago:

    pharmjod
  • ColoradoBricksColoradoBricks Denver, CO, USAMember Posts: 1,640
    Love them too, I wished that they kept the subscription model as it was really giving time to really enjoy each kit. Well at least with the boxed MBA sets, we got a minifig per kit, not one every 3 kits :)
    AndorCam_n_Stu
  • AanchirAanchir United StatesMember Posts: 2,802
    The kits and booklets are excellent, but I am filled with regret that I've never been able to make time to take advantage of all the online content. Apparently you can unlock new material by participating in certain online building challenges, but unfortunately I was already in college by the time this program started and couldn't make time for it. Now that I'm no longer in college... well, I probably have more than enough time to get caught up, but the amount I've fallen behind makes even getting started feel extremely daunting.
  • ColoradoBricksColoradoBricks Denver, CO, USAMember Posts: 1,640
    I participated online for the first 6 kits as they were with the subscription and giving me more time. It was mostly quizzes, postings your MOC and rating other MOCs from the kits. Each activity would earn you badges and certificates to print-out but not much more than that.
  • graphitegraphite USMember Posts: 3,240
    I did the subscription for some of them. I think I have the first 8 or 9 but not sure on the rest. I think I ordered one of the boxed ones at some point but never got around to building it and it is all packed up now so not sure if I have the steam punk one or not. Was #12 the last one?
  • ColoradoBricksColoradoBricks Denver, CO, USAMember Posts: 1,640
    Yes, there is 12 kits, the last 3 never made to subscription only the first 9.
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,873
    For anyone that missed #20215, don't pay jacked up prices on eBay yet. I managed to get one from the Lawrenceburg, GA store today at cost plus shipping. Got the last one there. Give some stores a call.
    margotLegoKip
  • ColoradoBricksColoradoBricks Denver, CO, USAMember Posts: 1,640
    #20215 (and other MBA) is also still in many B&N, you can check your local stores on the product page:
    http://www.barnesandnoble.com/p/toys-games-lego-master-builder-academy-invention-designer-20215/26750037?ean=673419198585
  • malachirobertsonmalachirobertson Indiana, USAMember Posts: 266
    If B&N still have them on-line, you can try to use one of their coupons. A little while back I got the first kit for 15% off. In the summer time, TRU cleared out their stock of the MBA sets. At first they were not marked clearance, but each rang up for 50% off the TRU price. They didn't have kit 1 though. Not even a spot on the shelf for it.
  • eggsheneggshen Middleton, WIMember Posts: 520
    I've found that the B&N coupons can't be used for LEGO anymore. That is too bad because I got some great deals in the last couple of years on Architecture sets. I blew my LEGO budget for the month getting the MBA level 1 sets, so I will start my hunt for the other levels next month.
    Thanks to @Odindusk‌ for the images of the manuals, especially Leonardo's machine. I was going to pass on level 4, but that image got me hooked again. There goes more money. :-(
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,941
    Yes, the changed their coupons back in August. It definitely caused a drop in my Lego buying.
  • sidersddsidersdd USAMember Posts: 2,432
    In my experience the recent B&N coupons have continued to work on Architecture sets, but no other type of LEGO sets.
  • tamamahmtamamahm Member Posts: 1,941
    sidersdd said:

    In my experience the recent B&N coupons have continued to work on Architecture sets, but no other type of LEGO sets.

    Yes I think the wording is something like Lego in the Toy and Game department, but architecture may not technically be in that department.
    sidersdd
  • eggsheneggshen Middleton, WIMember Posts: 520
    I just got a 25% off coupon for B&N, and I now see the wording does specifically say LEGO in the "Toys and Games Department". I was planning on getting a Trevi Fountain for my oldest son for Christmas, I am going to give the coupon a whirl. I will report back the results.
    margotLegoKip
  • sidersddsidersdd USAMember Posts: 2,432
    tamamahm said:

    sidersdd said:

    In my experience the recent B&N coupons have continued to work on Architecture sets, but no other type of LEGO sets.

    Yes I think the wording is something like Lego in the Toy and Game department, but architecture may not technically be in that department.
    Right, it's in the puzzles and hobbies section or something. It's a different category. At least at the B&N stores I've been to.
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Dunes of TatooineMember Posts: 3,639
    It's still working for me as recently as 3 weeks ago on SW, SH and Friends sets. But it's a nervous transaction each time holding my breath whether I'll get blocked or not. I've had to fall back on the "Just give it a scan and see if it works" plea, which has worked every time considering the cashier system doesn't have the exclusions built in.
  • LegoKipLegoKip A cottage by the sea, California, US Member Posts: 259
    Lego [email protected] still has 20214 available (and it qualifies for free shipping), with 20217 listed as call for availability . Both TLG and staff at four different B&M stores confirmed without a doubt that the production run has ended.

    If you call B&M, you may luck out on some loose ends, and they may be willing to ship to you. I found 20215-Invention-Designer at a Lego outlet store in Ontario, CA --that's US, not Canada. :)

    I am relieved because my efforts paid off and I was able to complete the theme for my son, who thoroughly enjoys MBA. I realize I was fortunate.
  • eggsheneggshen Middleton, WIMember Posts: 520
    My thanks to tamamahm and sidersdd, the coupon worked on a #21017 Imperial Hotel for 25% off. The cashier I got was new, from my eavesdropping while her supervisor was teaching her I guess there are two coupon buttons, one the overrides the rules and one that does not. She used the non-overriding button and it worked. But that other button might explain how some people are getting the deals on regular LEGO.
    And thanks to LegoKip, I also called around and was able to pick up all the MBA sets from a B&N store that had them instock. Great advice and many thanks! The only bad news is that my December LEGO budget is blown to smithereens, so fewer January sets for me. Oh well!
    tamamahm
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    Ugh not this again, I hate these unsuspecting retiring of sets. I feel like I just went through this with The Town Hall. I'm missing the Invention Designer. Going to call some stores tomorrow and see if they have them
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    edited December 2014
    I'm so gutted these never made it across the pond, they look so awesome. My older boy in particular would have absolutely loved them.
    Cam_n_Stu
  • jadeirenejadeirene US, CaliforniaMember Posts: 475
    This took me by surprise as well. I am missing the Invention Designer kit. I expected them to retire the earlier ones first and thought that I would have some time to pick up the last one.

    I decided to track one down before all retail avenues dry up. None of the three LEGO stores near me have any left. No Barnes and Noble have it in stock around me (or my relatives). So I started calling all the LEGO stores one by one. I finally hit the jackpot around the 16th store. I got the last one at the Mayfair, WI store and they're shipping it to me. Shipping is $10 for FedEx for anyone interested.

    Anyone who is planning on calling to find one in stock, do it now or they may all be gone soon. For information, I called all the stores in California, Oregon, Washington, and Utah and was told they were all out (Wisconsin is now out as well). Many of them said they haven't had any MBA sets since the summer.

    Good luck to those still looking.
    sidersddLegoKip
  • jadeirenejadeirene US, CaliforniaMember Posts: 475
    I forgot to add this to my earlier post, but thanks to the LEGO stores and those who work there for providing the service of shipping out sets. It's a bit of added work for the staff to ship something out when they can easily sell the set in store.
    sidersddpharmjodLegoKipPlell
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    Darn... All in California are out?? I was hoping to call those stores.
  • legogallegogal USMember Posts: 755
    I have been watching MBA sets for a long time and lucked out when TLG decided to close out MBA sets while I was in Billund last May. The books for 20203 through 20211 weighed a ton in my rolling bag, but are fantastic! Not sure if I will build all the plans; it is fun reading such well illustrated books. They remind me of Architecture set books.
  • LegoKipLegoKip A cottage by the sea, California, US Member Posts: 259
    @yys4u‌ Try the Ontario Mills store in California. It's an outlet so has more stock than regular B&M stores.
  • thedingman5thedingman5 Great Lakes, USAMember Posts: 237
    Was B&N the only b&m to carry MBA?
  • jadeirenejadeirene US, CaliforniaMember Posts: 475
    @thedingman5 - I've seen MBA sets at TRU and independent toy stores. It's been a long time since I've seen them at TRU, and I think it's a long shot to find any there now. Independent toy stores often have some older items, so you may find them there.

    @LegoKip - I called the Ontario Mills store and they said they're out. No harm in calling to ask, but I do hope that they weren't lying to me.
  • LegoKipLegoKip A cottage by the sea, California, US Member Posts: 259
    edited December 2014
    @jadeirene‌ I'm sorry it didn't work out. I picked mine up yesterday (see post above) and they had a small number of 20215 Invention Designer left. I didn't check for any other MBA kits at this store or any other because my son's collection was missing only the one.

    I can't imagine they're weren't honest with you. I'm not naive: I know a staff member there and not only is he trustworthy, but he's gone the extra length for me in the past.
  • jadeirenejadeirene US, CaliforniaMember Posts: 475
    ^ No problem. I called yesterday for the Invention Designer kit. I don't remember if they checked the stock or not, but I was definitely told that they were out of that one. It's very possible that someone bought all the sets after you left.

    Just to be clear, my previous post about the stores being out were about the Invention Designer set. There were some stores that still had the Adventure Designer kit, but seeing as how they're still available online, I didn't think to mention it before. There was also one store that had the robot one, but I don't remember which store that was.
  • AdzbadboyAdzbadboy London, UKMember Posts: 2,621
    The UK don't even get them :/
  • blade_guyblade_guy Member Posts: 191
    @Adzbadboy‌ I picked the lot
    Up when on holiday in Canada. They are HEAVY though due to the great books, but pleased I got the full set. The exchange value was great at the time too :-)
    Adzbadboy
  • legogallegogal USMember Posts: 755
    Smart move while you were in Canada! MBA sets are getting hard to find at this point. Built Kits 11 and 12 main models yesterday, and they are just lovely! The East-West Temple is perfect for the holidays in a household that celebrates the Chinese New Year. Picked up Kits 1-3 used on eBay yesterday, so my MBA collection is complete through Kit 12.

    Thanks to all the LEGO designers who added to the books and builds. Fantastic theme and builds; the books are first class. So if you have them packed away in a closet or the attic, pull them out and get started over the holidays. You won't be sad!
    LegoKip
  • cmrt1014cmrt1014 Member Posts: 396
    I'm at LegoLand CA and there were 4 copies of #21014 on the shelf - perhaps more in the back? I know that they will ship. In case anyone is looking for one.
    LegoKipyys4u
  • LegoKipLegoKip A cottage by the sea, California, US Member Posts: 259
  • cmrt1014cmrt1014 Member Posts: 396
    Sorry, yes, #20214 and no, I did not see any #20215 inventions, they might have some in back, but I kinda doubt it.
  • malachirobertsonmalachirobertson Indiana, USAMember Posts: 266
    I was at my local Barnes & Noble this weekend (Mishawaka, IN) and they had some MBA kits left. Space Designer, Micro and Robot Designer, Action Designer, Adventure Designer. I think there was more than one of everything except Adventure Designer. Sorry, no Invention Designer.
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