Jurassic Park Is Frightening in the Dark

IMG_0520This week, LEGO released a new series of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom sets. As part of that release, they also included their first ever Jurassic Park set, Jurassic Park Velociraptor Chase, though it does bear the Jurassic World logo on the box instead of the logo from the original film. It’s a fool’s errand to make guesses regarding whether LEGO will return to the original movie/trilogy for future releases. However, I’ll happily brag about a simple build I did before launching this site.

In part, its simplicity made the final result satisfying. Mostly, the build required placing the components in the right configuration rather than a lengthy process of building numerous elements necessary to making the scene work. Revisiting it in the future with a more detailed background — using, say, the broken electrified fences in the background with a jeep in front of them — is a possibility, but time restraints and the need to work out other ideas (such as a return to Trumplestiltskin’s tale) make that unlikely.

Although I’m absolutely certain they don’t need it, LEGO has my blessings to release a more detailed set commemorating this scene. However, I have no expectations that they will actually consider doing so. It’ll be their loss; I imagine this could be a relatively inexpensive huge-seller.

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Midnight Star: a story of smugglers and space pirates with nothing left to lose…

“Fifty-three. They’ve been trackin’ us for fifty-three jumps. Not sure how, but truth be told, don’t particularly care right ’bout now. They finally managed to board us this time.”

“Most of my crew’s been spaced. Look long enough out the observation deck, you’ll see ’em floatin’ by. Ain’t no way for a man or woman to die. I reckon there ain’t much dignity to be found in the black.

The ones that didn’t get vented or vaped are gonna wish they’d been, cause if you survive the interrogation, then it’s hard labor for you. If the interrogation don’t kill ya, the hard labor will. I’ve seen the fields. The harvesters. The mines. Nowadays, it’s the living that envy the dead.”

“They’ve got us backed into a corner. We’re this close to goin’ out completely. Don’t have the numbers or ammo to make a stand worth anything. I’m down to my last couple of rails. Dak’s energy blade won’t hold much longer. Tighe’ll crush a few with the brute…it ain’t gonna be enough.”

“But that don’t mean we’re just gonna roll over. They wanted a war. They’ve got one now, and we’re just gettin’ started…”

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Golden Girls meets DnD

I just now came across this, and it’s amazing. What’s more amazing, however, is what just occurred to me…

…years ago, I bought a set of Lego Golden Girls for my wife.

I’m thinking that Dorothy, Blanche, Sophia, and Rose might have to make guest appearances in The Black Brick and/or have their own mini-campaign as a side-quest (The Golden Brick, anyone??).

Still figuring out their class builds, but I’m leaning towards:

Dorothy: Sage

Blanche: Bard

Sophia: Dwarven Barbarian

Rose: Cleric

I feel like that’d be fairly close to their personalities on the show. Dorothy is level-headed and wise. Blanche has nothing but charisma. Sophia is short, but furious. Rose is more heart than brain and probably would excel with a mace.

Plus, I pretty much just want to see Sophia wield a battle axe that’s bigger than her. Hahaha

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NEXO Knights are ending

https://brickset.com/article/33959/the-end-of-nexo-knights

“NEXO Knights was launched in 2016 and there has been considerable speculation surrounding its future in recent months, particularly given the relative lack of promotion for the latest wave.

Zusammengebaut has now confirmed that the theme will not be continuing beyond its current wave and that no summer sets will be released.”

I guess that’ll be it for this particular line. It’s certainly a bummer, but while I’ve certainly had a blast with the NEXO sets I’ve picked up over the past year, I can totally see how and why the entire line will be retired.

When NEXO first caught my eye, the villains stole the show. I loved the gargoyles and lightning enemies. The volcanic Orcs or whatever have been on my To-Buy list for a while now. And the Tech Infection series has an incredible tech/vampire aesthetic going on–probably my absolute favorite theme so far.

But the thing is…the sets started to get very “same-y.” Lots of vehicles. Not a whole lot of small- to mid-sized structures. I have a similar issue with nearly all of the recent Batman and Marvel lines: waaaaay too many vehicles, not nearly enough actual locations. In NEXO, we either had super large castles (to be fair, some of them were interesting) or nothing at all. Would it have been a problem to maybe, I don’t know, roll out a watchtower or small outpost? Or am I thinking too much like WarCraft?

Honestly, now that I mention it, I’d love to see Lego do a proper WarCraft line. I know that Mega Bloks have something WoW-related, but I feel like 1990’s WarCraft would be absolutely perfect for Lego: bold colors, varied units, wide range of buildings, dragons, ballistas, gold mines, warships and dreadnoughts…the possibilities are almost endless.

But as for NEXO Knights, well, looks like I’m going to have to start looking into grabbing the last couple of sets I’ve been eyeballing. I need additional spider-mechs! Hehe

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The Airship’s nearly complete, m’lord

Oi, yeh highness, I’m thinkin you’ll be pleased with me men’s progress. They’ve been workin day and night, yea, and she’ll be a fine vessel to match your glory!

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Lego vs Enlighten

My first jump into the Enlighten line!

I went with the airship largely due to its distinct “early 1990’s Blizzard WarCraft II: Tides of Darkness” vibe. One of my favorite games of all-time. Hah

I hope this lives up to my tempered expectations; I have many plans for this ship in The Black Brick. 😉

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Stormtrooper Transport – Build progress

The shuttle is coming together nicely. I feel like I’m making good progress at a decent clip, even considering all of the changes I’ve made or had to make. The following pictures aren’t totally current, but I think they still offer a few neat insights and snapshots of the build process.

First, I found my little Imperial emblem piece (I knew I had one somewhere!), so that totally had to replace the old wall component. I’m way happier about this than I should be. Haha

Second, you’ll notice hinges have been installed on the roof hatch and attached to the four side panels over the wings.

The hinges are going to be critical for this project. Without them, the shuttle can’t be opened, which limits my options for light control, camera angles, and character positioning. It’ll still be a tight squeeze, but I’m hoping the ceiling panel and four side hatches will provide enough room to do everything I want here.

You’ll also notice that the supports are now spaced out a bit more. Previously, they were staggered down the length of the ship, because the craft wasn’t wide enough to fully fit them. The width and stagger issues caused quite a few problems with walls, the ceiling, the side panels, and even the Stormtroopers’ seats/helmets. The ‘troopers had to lean forward, rather than sitting up straight; otherwise, the side panels wouldn’t fit.

So, I widened the entire crew area by a single peg on each side. Shifted the panels, shifted the supports, shifted the wings, and then everything fit more or less perfectly. With the added width, the supports could meet flush with each other, which allowed me to connect them with a smooth 4-peg piece, which then provided a perfect support base for the ceiling panel: no concerns about the ceiling clicking and connecting to anything it wasn’t supposed to.

Third, you can see some Nexo Knight vehicle components starting to work their way into the build. Those white elements around the cockpit hinge have meshed with the build way better than I would have ever expected. They’re very simple and straightforward, yet incredibly versatile. I’m very pleased.

More pics to come next time! We’re approaching the final finishing touches–including a bit of a retro Space Police inclusion–so I’ve got a good feeling about the next update.

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Stormtrooper Transport

It’s still very much a WiP, but I thought why not share the hilarity so far:

After building and modifying that Nexo Knights Tech Infection spider-mech-thing, I was sure that I wanted this monster to attack a squad of Stormtroopers, but I wasn’t totally certain how I was going to make that happen.

After mulling it over, I realized that a shuttle crash on a hostile alien world would be a TON of fun. Most of the scene is storyboarded, already. I also started piecing together a vision for the shuttle, itself. In order to get some of the shots I want, the shuttle would have to be modular in some capacity; I’d need to be able to open specific sides of the ship to get specific angles.

I’m fairly confident that the shuttle design will work well in that regard.

A few more images:

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Boss Battle! Roll to save!

The Grievous Tree lumbers (heh) up to your party, catching you totally unaware and unguarded! Its opening attack sweeps the party with a strong knockdown, forcing you prone until the end of the round. You gaze up in terror as this evil wooded horror moves in for the killing blow. Stomp, stomp, stomp. You knew that you would enter The Void sometime in your adventure, but it’s a cruel twist that you might be done in by a murderous plant. As you gird yourself for this untimely, grisly, leafy end, the Grievous Tree stops! It has spent all three of its movement points!

Your party regains its footing and regroups into battle formation. The Wookiee smashes the tree. Plink. No damage. The Trooper’s bomb bounces off the monster’s bark. No damage. The Treasure Hunter in the back tries to bind the tree’s limbs with his whip. The creature snaps the whip in two. The Princess throws her lightsaber. It isn’t very effective.

The Grievous Tree spins up its lightsabers and lashes at the whole party with a deadly bladestorm attack! Quick, roll to save!

Oh. You…rolled a 1.

Your party is dead. Do you wish to try again?

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Star Wars Snow Day!

“Actually, Artoo has been known to make mistakes… from time to time.”

This is, without a doubt, one of my favorite scenes and shots in The Empire Strikes Back. It’s heavy, poignant, and melancholic. It effortlessly conveys how emotionally connected these characters are; they’re mourning together, but in their own unique ways. Putting physical distance between them was a bold choice, but it works wonderfully to establish how each character is lost in themselves.

The original shot for reference:

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