Friday, February 22, 2019

[Guest Post] Purity: Sluban B0633C M38 Car Club Review

Here's another guest post from Francisco Duarte.

I must thank Mantis King for allowing me to another of these. These reviews are really fun to do and I hope they can help people sort out sets available in Europe.

While searching for new parts I stumbled upon a toy sale at a local Minipre├žo store (they are common in Portugal, where I live). I found a couple of boxed sets made in China by Sluban at a discount of 50%, so I got them for around 5€ - 316 parts in total. This would put each part at around 0.02 Euros or less - a true bargain. Were they at full price they would still be at 0.03 or 0.04 Euros per part, which is nothing to sneeze at.


The first of these sets is a white car, with 152 parts inside the
box. These are mostly white, with some red and black.



It comes neatly packaged.






There is a set of instructions.




Stickers.


A minifig.  (Editor comment: That neck post is so weird!)





Plates, bricks and wedge plates.






Mudguards, 1x12 plates, wings, a 4x4
plate and a 10 stud long mod. plate.


Another brick, two odd short 1x1
bricks, 1x1 bricks w/pin, cylinders,
two 1x2 Technic-like bricks, axles,
wheels, tires, a windshield, transparent
slopes and tiles, a seat, steering wheel
parts, and binoculars.



Slopes and tiles of several shapes and sizes. This
set is really diverse regarding the parts it offers.

I’ve built two IO ships. One frigate
with two support weapons systems
and a sensor array in the front, and
one carrier with two underslung
catapults, a radar and a point
defense system.

Questions:
Can you build something -- a frame, station, or starship -- right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Is it below, at, or above the golden ratio?  Below.  (+5)  (The Golden Ratio is $0.10 per part.)
If you can't build a frame right away, or choose not to, does it have parts you should be able to put into use right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Does it have more than a handful of immediately useful parts?  Yes.  (+5)
Score: +20 (A+).  This set is really solid, and you can get two ships or a small Frame company at a very low price. The parts do fit together tightly, but one should be warned that there can be at least one defective part per box.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Review: 31092 Helicopter Adventure

One of the new Creator sets for 2019.

Box.  MSRP is $9.99 for a $0.09 Price per Piece.


Instructions.







Parts 1.  Plates, Slopes, Technic Bricks, Air Scoops, Truncated Cone, Engine Blades, Bar Plates, Mod. Bricks, Brackets, Mod. Plates, Tail, Windscreen.


Parts 2.  Wedge Plates, Clip Plates, Slopes, Technic bits, Plates, Round Plates, Grille Tiles, Exo-Force Arm, Round Tile, Wheels, Bracket, Technic Brick, Tile, Jumpers, Bar Plates.

Builds.  Frigate and Frame.

The Questions:
Can you build something -- a frame, station, or starship -- right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Is it below, at, or above the golden ratio?  Below.  (+5)  (The Golden Ratio is $0.10 per part.)
If you can't build a frame right away, or choose not to, does it have parts you should be able to put into use right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Does it have more than a handful of immediately useful parts?  Yes.  (+5)
Score: +20 (A+).  Good set, but some weird part counts.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Sales Alert

Target is running a 20% off on select Superheroes, Friends, City, and Duplo sets sale this week.  The Friends set shown in the ad will be a real deal if it's one of the ones on sale.  The Aquaman set is just affordable though.

Good hunting.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Review: 30571 Pelican Polybag

I found this in Target this weekend, just randomly sitting on a shelf.

Bag.  I paid $3.99, for a $0.06 Price per Piece.


Instructions.









Parts.  Plates, Wedge Plates, Tiles, Slopes, Ball Joints, Modified Bricks, Bar Plates, Clip Plates, Round Plates, Claw Plates, Printed Tiles, Mod. Plates 2x2x2/3 w/ 2 Studs on Side, a Brick, a Minifig Fish, and a Container.



Build.  A little bit of a throwback here.



The Questions:
Can you build something -- a frame, station, or starship -- right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Is it below, at, or above the golden ratio?  Below.  (+5)  (The Golden Ratio is $0.10 per part.)
If you can't build a frame right away, or choose not to, does it have parts you should be able to put into use right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Does it have more than a handful of immediately useful parts?  Yes.  (+5)
Score: +20 (A+).  Good set, it has some fun parts.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Review: 31072 Extreme Engines

A Creator set first released in 2018 that I bought recently.

Box.  The price is $9.99, which gives us a $0.09  Price per Piece.


Instructions.







Parts 1.  This was loose in the box.  It
could be the keel for an IO Cruiser.

Parts 2.  Dark Azure.  Tires, Rims, Slopes, Technic Bricks, Brackets, Bricks, Bar Tiles, Bar Plates, Axles, a Plate, a Flag, an Air Scoop.  

Parts 3.  Pneuma-Ts!  More Dark Azure.  Wedge Plates, Brackets, Clip Plates, Plates, Round Plates, Slopes, Technic Axle Pins, Robot Arms, a Steering Wheel, a Boat Slider, a Jumper, and a Bar Plate.

Build.  I finally made an IO Cruiser.


The Questions:
Can you build something -- a frame, station, or starship -- right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Is it below, at, or above the golden ratio?  Below.  (+5)  (The Golden Ratio is $0.10 per part.)
If you can't build a frame right away, or choose not to, does it have parts you should be able to put into use right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Does it have more than a handful of immediately useful parts?  Yes.  (+5)
Score: +20 (A+).  It's a good set, I just feel like the quantities on certain parts are less than optimal.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Review: 41086 Year of the Pig

This is a "Bonus with Purchase" promotional set for Chinese New Year.


Box.  The price is $9.99, yielding a $0.07 Price per Piece.


Instructions.








Gift Card.


Parts 1.  Plates, Slopes, Round
Plates, Bricks, Modified
Bricks, a Tile, and a Bracket.






Parts 2.  Plates, Jumpers, Tiles, Slopes, Round Plates, Round
Tiles, Printed Tiles, Turntables, Half Pins, and Leaves.



Parts 3.  Mod. Bricks, Plates, Slopes, Hinge Plates, Ball Joints, Boat Slides, Brackets, Turntable Bases, Plant Pieces, Mod Plates,  an Elephant Trunk, and a Brick.



Build.  Two Frames.



The Questions:
Can you build something -- a frame, station, or starship -- right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Is it below, at, or above the golden ratio?  Below.  (+5)  (The Golden Ratio is $0.10 per part.)
If you can't build a frame right away, or choose not to, does it have parts you should be able to put into use right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Does it have more than a handful of immediately useful parts?  Yes.  (+5)
Score: +20 (A+).  A good set but availability might be limited.

Monday, February 11, 2019

[Guest Post] Purity: Anadel Astronave Spaceship Review

A member of the MFZ community, Francisco Duarte, recently approached me about doing a guest review of a clone brick set he had found in Europe.  I try to be open to new experiences, so I said yes.  I hope you all enjoy it.  All text and pictures below this point are by him.

Found this set while looking for interesting sets to get new parts. This was made by Anadel, apparently a Spanish company that makes Lego-compatible bricks. It cost me 4.90€ for 62 parts, including minifig, which makes 0.08€ per part, placing it under the golden ratio.




Sorry for the chink in the box, I didn’t
notice the tape when I was inspecting it.
The contents come really neatly packaged.



The instructions, with the few words
on it in both English and Spanish.





Stickers.


There’s a minifig.









These two 4x4 plates were in the bag.





Parts 1. Wings, 2x3 and 2x4
plates, plus a 2x1 brick.



Parts 2. Slopes, cones, sloped
bricks and rocket nozzles.





Parts 3. Plates, clip parts, bricks with
pin hole and an additional 2x3 plate.





I gave a go to the build in the box, and it works
wonderfully as an IO frigate (my first one).  I’d
give it a support weapons system for the missiles
and two defense systems for the lateral plates.

The Questions:
Can you build something -- a frame, station, or starship -- right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Is it below, at, or above the golden ratio?  Below.  (+5)  (The Golden Ratio is $0.10 per part.)
If you can't build a frame right away, or choose not to, does it have parts you should be able to put into use right away?  Yes.  (+5)
Does it have more than a handful of immediately useful parts?  Yes.  (+5)
Score: +20 (A+).  It is essentially an IO frigate in a box, so there’s that.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Battle Report: Oasis @ Paper Asylum

We were invited back up to Paper Asylum this year.  I actually think we have a standing invitation at this point.  Only a few of the Usual Suspects managed to make it up.

Narbey (4 Frames & 16 Systems) = (7 Points per Asset) * (6 assets) = 42 points. (Skitterers)
   Yellow Recon by Fire-- 2Ra+d8/2Y/2W.
   Red Soldier -- 2Rd/1B/1G/1Y/2W + SSR.
   Orange Soldier -- 2Rd/1B/1G/1Y/2W + SSR.
   White Soldier -- 2Rd/1B/1G/1Y/2W + SSR.

Pete (5 Frames & 20 Systems) = (5 Points per Asset) * (5 assets) = 35 points.
    Red Soldier -- 2Rd//1B/1G/1Y/2W + SSR.
   
 Brown Soldier -- 2Rd//1B/1G/1Y/2W + SSR.
   Yellow Soldier -- 2Rd//1B/1G/1Y/2W + SSR.
   
 Blue Soldier -- 2Rd//1B/1G/1Y/2W.
    Green Soldier -- 2Rd//1B/1G/1Y/2W.

Me (4 Frames & 15 Systems) = (4 Points per Asset) * (5 assets) = 20 points. (Serpentus)
   Black Charger -- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W + SSR.
   Red Charger -- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W + SSR.
   White Charger -- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W + SSR.
   Blue Charger-- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W.
   Green Charger-- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W.
   Orange Charger-- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W.
   Yellow Charger-- 2Rh/2Rd/1B/1G/2W.
This is what the table looked like at the start of the game.










Events of Turn 1 (DDC @ 11): Pete's Yellow frame hits a Moai for 6, destroying it.  My Orange frame takes 1 Falling damage.  Pete's Red frame hits my Orange frame for 3.  Narbey's Orange frame hits my Red frame for 2.  My Red frame hits Narbey's Orange frame for 1 with a SSR.  Narbey's Yellow frame hits my Red frame for 3.  Pete's Brown frame hits my Blue frame for 3 and destroys the column it was hiding behind with 2.  My Blue frame moves closer to the oasis and hits Narbey's Red frame for 1.  Narbey's Red frame hits back for 1.  Narbey's White frame hits my Orange frame for 1 and the small trees it was hiding behind for 1.  My White frame hits Narbey's Red frame for 4 with a SSR.  My Black frame moves forward and hits Narbey's Red frame for 1 destroying it, and destroys the trees it was hiding behind with 1.

Narbey: 35 points.
Pete: 35 points.
Me: 27 points.






Events of Turn 2 (DDC @ 8): Pete's Red frame moves forward and hits my Blue frame for 2, destroying it.  Pete's Brown frame moves up to the abandoned temple and hits my Red frame for 3, destroying it.  My White frame moves up to the oasis and destroys the cover in front of Narbey's White frame with 1 damage.  My Yellow frame shifts cover and hits Narbey's White frame for 1.  My Green frame moves closer to the oasis and hits Narbey's White frame for 1.

Narbey: 35 points.
Pete: 35 points.
Me: 18 points.






Events of Turn 3 (DDC @ 5): Narbey's White frame hits my Black frame for 5.  My Yellow hits Narbey's White frame for 1 and moves closer to Narbey's second Station.  Pete's Blue frame moves around the abandoned temple and hits my Black for 5, destroying it.  Pete's Red frame moves up to the remains of the Moai and hits my White frame for 2.  Pete's Yellow frame moves closer to the oasis and hits Narbey's Orange frame for 4.

Narbey: 35 points.
Pete: 35 points.
Me: 15 points.






Events of Turn 4 (DDC @ 3): Narbey's White frame hits my White frame for 1.  Narbey's Yellow frame captures one of my Stations, then hits Pete's Orange frame for 1.  Pete's Yellow frame hits Narbey's White frame for 4, destroying it.  My White frame captures Narbey's main Station.  Pete's Yellow frame moves up beside Narbey's main Station.  Pete's Red frame hits my White frame for 3, destroying it.  Pete's Yellow frame captures Narbey's main Station.  My Yellow frame hits Narbey's Orange frame for 2, destroying it, and Pete's Yellow frame -- which was acting as cover -- for 1.  My Yellow frame then moves over and captures Narbey's second Station.  The Doomsday Clock is ticked to zero.

Pete: 40 points.
Narbey: 14 points.
Me: 12 points.













Here's a bunch of during/aftermath pictures.










Thoughts & Observations:
  • After the claustrophobia of six players in the last game, this one felt almost relaxed.
  • I made mistakes in placement during the Set-up phase.
  • I used the backup camera for pictures, so they're a little grainy.