Monday, 31 December 2012

All About Bricks Awards 2012

Another year has passed, with more LEGO sets released than have ever been before. We approach the time of year when BAFTAs, Oscars and Golden Globes dominate the airwaves - but who needs a star studded ceremony and TV coverage? The awards that really matter are here at All About Bricks.

Award for the Best New Theme: Monster Fighters

This range proved extremely popular, especially for a one-wave w3onder with relatively little promotion. With good reason, too. The sets are nicely designed for the adult collector, but also have the conflict play value for the younger fan. The parts selection and colours are nice, and the mini-figures are top notch. This is also the first time in a while that LEGO have gone with a horror related theme.

Award for the Best City set: Garage (4207)
City has been dominated in 2012 with the forest related themes. Forest Police and Fire didn’t have a great deal in them to identify with, or fit in too well with existing sets. The Mining sets were poorly designed. The Garage, however, was a great modern multi-storey car park. Including multiple features and several vehicles to park up, the set is a nice addition to a LEGO City set up and a welcome relief from all of the emergency service sets that still take up a majority of the line.

Award for the Most Overpriced New Line: Star Wars Planets
It amazes me that collectors are supporting this line as much as they are. It seems there are fans out there genuinely enthusing for this line. Why?! These mini sets are no better than those given away for free with newspapers or magazines. For just a slightly higher price we can get a Battle Pack with four mini-figures and some bricks. The Planets are nice and everything, they just seem overpriced. What it is perhaps a depressing indicator of is how much a mini-figure can drive a product.

Award for the Best Star Wars set : R2-D2 (10225) 
The TIE Fighter (9492) was actually a close contender here, as although the price was high, it was a definite upgrade. In this current preference for more mini-figures and less detail, it is hard to pick a mainline Star Wars set which is why R2-D2 seemed like the best choice. The set is well designed, looks exactly like R2-D2, but also like a LEGO sculpture – the perfect balance for a great set. It is also the first LEGO Star Wars sculpture since Yoda (7194), hopefully not the last.

Award for the Best Game set: Battle of Hoth (3866)
The way the LEGO Games team continue to innovate, with new games and designs is always impressive, but a Star Wars game seemed like an ideal opportunity to cheap out. After all, there’s no need to make a great game if it has Star Wars on the box – people will buy it anyway. Thankfully, LEGO did a great job and made a fun strategy game that actually utilises the Star Wars micro-figs.

Award for the Most Frustrating Decision: Modular Western Town on LEGO CUUSOO

Fans of LEGO Universe may have found the cancellation of the MMPORPG the most frustrating decision, but the Modular Western Town wins out as 10,000 LEGO enthusiasts came together behind a brilliantly constructed MOC (My Own Creation). Due to nothing but unfortunate timing, it will not be released. This has caused many fans to become quite disillusioned with CUUSOO.

Special Award for 2012 
This goes to the LEGOLAND Windsor Resort, as the newly opened LEGOLAND Windsor Hotel is an absolutely joy that exceeded expectations. The quality of theming, the hidden treasures and high standard of service make this an excellent treat for LEGO fans with a sense of fun. There has been no LEGO experience to my knowledge that immerses fans in the world of LEGO as successfully.

Thanks to everyone who has read All About Bricks through the past year, be sure to drop an e-mail to and pass along what you like and don’t like to read, or LEGO related questions that can form the basis of a future article. Happy New Year for 2013!

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