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That's another good point really about the extended longevity of a set sometimes working positively toward reselling. Take the FB. There's a good chance that thing could have been $180 or so if it had come out right as it retired. Instead, barring discounts, it rode $150 from cradle to grave.
By comparison, 70411 brings back the lovely brick-built skull faces that I remember from my childhood (enhanced with the benefit of new curved elements), uses a clever function to reveal the treasure's hiding place, includes just as many launchers, figures, and animals as 6241, and boasts a much better price per piece (even after six years of inflation). It features a classic-looking treasure map, not a land-based treasure map inexplicably pilfered from the Indiana Jones theme, and the level of detail on its pier puts the one in 6241 to shame! It's even designed to combine with one of the smaller sets. I have a hard time fathoming how anybody could really prefer 6241 to 70411.
Regarding the other new sets, 70413 The Brick Bounty has 150 more parts than 6243 Brickbeard's Bounty for the same price and corrects many of the big complaints with that earlier ship. And even though the two new Imperial Soldier fortifications are considerably smaller than 6242 Soldiers' Fort in both size and piece count, they are the same price put together that that set was individually, and again boast a higher net piece count and a much more intricate build, without the same reliance on large wall panels. And they are in fact designed so they can be linked together to form one solid fort!
It still confuses me to no end how so many AFOLs demonized the castle sets two years ago for being "too juniorized" thanks to their many large wall panels (when they're really on par with classic LEGO castles in that regard), then turned right back around and complained that the new Pirates sets, with their intricate brick-built detail, have too many small pieces! You really can't have it both ways. Or rather, you could, but you'd have to be prepared to pay a LOT more, and considering how many people already complain that LEGO is too expensive, that's probably not realistic for most people.
Look, people can 'rah-rah' the new pirate line all they want, but I think it is a bit pathetic compared to what they could have done with it, and likely could have done and still kept prices down IMO.
Now, maybe this line is a feeler to gauge how popular Pirates will be so they kept the cost down, in which I can kind of see their line of thinking that they do not want to spend a lot to gauge interest; BUT it can bite you when you have done really nice Pirate lines in the past only to release these with a straight face.
Ultimately what would be nice IMO is to see LEGO make a brickbeard cartoon ala Ninjago and Chima and build a nice story line.
@Chubbles , part of the appeal is also desirability and these types of sets are not that.
Oh, and just when you think you've seen it all dept. -- Amazon shipped me a Tumbler without benefit of a shipping box. That's right, just slapped an adhesive shipping label right onto a $200 collectible. And no, it was NOT a third party seller. It was "sold by, ships by". They also lassoed it with some clear packaging tape to make sure it stayed shut. Stupidity just seems rampant these days.
I rest my case
If instead, you're asking if it could be the FB of the architecture line, I really don't know what that means. I don't think it's a sleeper, if that's what you're asking. Perhaps someone with good experience reselling architecture sets could speak better.
Out of curiosity, where did the QAR come out in the mix?
And while we're on the subject, I would love to see a large scale "Flying Dutchman" be released...although it never will now.
And anyway, I'd like to think most AFOLs aren't delusional enough to expect an entire theme of sets to have the size and detail characteristic of D2C sets like MMV or the Imperial Flagship. Nobody's denying that the Imperial Flagship was exceptional. But that's because it was literally an exception to the norm. It was not even released with LEGO Pirates branding on the box! How could anybody in good conscience expect any affordably-priced set from a kid-oriented play theme to measure up to a $180 set for ages 14 and up? That would be like expecting a LEGO City fire station to measure up to the Fire Brigade, or a LEGO City space shuttle to measure up to the Shuttle Expedition.
I imagine given the apparent weak performance of sets like Mill Village Raid and White Cap Bay, Lego probably decided to just put out smaller, more kid friendly sets that would sell better. And the end of the day it is all about what will sell and what won't. They probably just came to the conclusion that if anyone is going to drop big bucks into a Pirate set they are going to get a ship and not a fort/outpost.
With that said, the comparison between the mid 90s set and the new set isn't very realistic. The mid 90s set had over double the number of pieces. Yes, it was more expensive, but it also looks more substantial. I came back into LEGO after the last pirates wave, so I didn't get any of them, but the new sets look decent for the money. But I just bought the figures on their own and called it good.
There are three sets I didn't know and had to look up when they first came out. Robie House, Farnsworth House, Fallingwater. A few of the others, I don't think I would have recognized from the pictures alone, but had heard of the names before.
If you widen it to the general public, I reckon most people in Europe would be able to easily identify some of them, but not those three above. They'd get Big Ben, Leaning Tower of Pisa, Eiffel Tower, Empire State Building, White House, Sydney Opera House. Some of the others, less so.
And while people may complain about sets from these themes feeling like rehashes of the sets from the previous generations of Castle and Pirates, this kind of "back to basics" approach is almost mandatory when new sets in these themes are so few and far between. By contrast, while some people may feel like LEGO City is repetitive with its tendency to have a new police station every year, I think that actually helps the theme out in terms of variety. This way, you can have slightly unconventional variations on the theme (like the Forest Police and Swamp Police waves) instead of every new police wave having to represent the quintessential metropolitan police force.
Also, being able to repeating the same theme year after year means there is a powerful incentive to make each year's sets thematically different from the last. But thanks to their long hiatuses, each wave of Castle and Pirates has to cater to an audience that, more likely than not, has never owned a previous LEGO castle or pirate ship. Both of the last pirate ships may take cues from the Black Seas Barracuda, but if you had to design a set for kids who had never had a chance to own a LEGO pirate ship before, wouldn't you also take cues from one of the most beloved LEGO pirate ships of all time? Same goes for LEGO Castle sets. Both of the latest King's Castle sets, with their corner towers and large, centrally placed gatehouses, could be said to take structural cues from the classic Black Monarch's Castle — the latest one even shares the ability to join with a separate, smaller gatehouse.
AFOLs might consider this kind of thing unimaginative, but frankly the typical buyer for a LEGO castle or pirate ship doesn't care if it resembles one from three to six years, ago, let alone if it resembles one from 20 years ago! They just want a quintessential castle or pirate ship playset — something that incorporates all the features they think are most important in that type of playset. And while LEGO has refined their knowledge of these must-have features over the years (Black Monarch's Castle didn't have a throne room or treasury, for instance, whereas they are standard in modern LEGO castles), they are not features that tend to change radically from generation to generation. This is also why you DON'T see the same kind of repetition in LEGO Space, because while many generations of kids have perceived the past fairly similarly, the way kids perceive the future changes much more rapidly.
Eugh... sorry for rambling again. Long story short, even though I generally haven't collected evergreen themes in years (I prefer story-driven themes set in invented worlds, like Ninjago, Elves, and BIONICLE), it DOES bother me that Castle and Pirates sets are so few and far between these days.
It's definitely a niche Lego market. But consider that Sungnyemun, a set that I passed over several times, that very few in the United States (or elsewhere) has heard of is selling for almost 5x what it originally retailed for. Granted it had a short release window compared to Fallingwater and Robie House, it shows that there is an after market for this line.
Yeah, but the fact that the US did not have it long I think is why it is so sought after (because many glanced over it, saying they would get it later). If it was out for 5 years I do not think that it would do well as it is doing now
Will these do OK? Probably. There are many architects and many have disposable income as well, but I would not be throwing any large amount into these for resell.
All aboard the bandwagon for Fallingwater, #29 on the list.
I think Fallingwater is a predictable safe bet to hit $175-200 a year or two post retirement. Depends on where you want to invest your funds and what your expectations are.