Thursday, February 19, 2009

so much to do...

Working on BrickJournal 5......ARGH!

Way too much going on. Went overseas, then to NYC for Toy Fair, and saw some new sets (not all of them) and chatted with Sean Kenney, a LEGO Certified Professional. 

Sean is also the person behind MOCPages, a site dedicated to showing off creations by the LEGO community. The site was relaunched this year to allow comments, favorites, and groups, so it has become a viable site for AFOLs. Other things Sean has done include lots of models and commissions, both for LEGO and other companies.

He's also a great guy to talk to. I wanted to talk to him about how he got to build some LEGO props for the TV show "30 Rock," but got a lot more discussion, ideas, and laughs! He's got a great job and a great attitude with it. We talked about MOCPages, his work, and even BrickJournal. I'm excited about some the ideas that came up and hopefully you will be too. Expect some collaborative projects to come from BrickJournal and MOCpages. 

As for "30 Rock," there will be a story coming on that...and maybe more from Sean. 

Other odds and ends:

LEGO Acquires Rights for 3 Disney Movies: Toy Story 3, Prince of Persia, and Cars. WOW! I am VERY happy with this, mainly because I was a Disney person before I came back to LEGO building. I've built a lot of LEGO Disney models, and have been hoping for something to happen since knowing that talks had been going on for a few years. The three movies here are only a jumping point for more, so I'm hoping for something based on the theme parks (micro castles?) or other movies.....

On that subject, here is my want list for LEGO models I want to build that are Disney related - this is NOT what I want LEGO to create (for the most part) because these are mostly Disney-geek kind of stuff:

1. Micro castles - Cinderella Castle is a prime candidate, as well as Disneyland Paris.
2. Ride vignettes - Tokyo Disney has these on sale from a LEGO knockoff, but I would want more detail. Pirates would be a good one to do, as well as Star Tours and the Haunted Mansion
3. TRON - Lightcycle (and they could do the UPDATED bike from the upcoming movie)
4. The villian's helicopters that were on Bolt.
5. The Incredibles - the vehicles would be fun to build.
6. Mickey Mouse
7. Donald Duck
8. The enchanted rose from Beauty and the Beast.
9. A bust of Belle
10. A bust of Briar Rose

There's much more to do too....

and that's a great thing! Sales went up because the percieved value of LEGO sets went up - some of that was because of the brand, some was because of the product that came out the past year, and some was because of the fallout from the Chinese imports that tainted the toy market. The LEGO group made it clear that their toys met or exceeded safety regulations, and the market responded.

On a related note (idle speculation), the prices for sets went up a little to reflect oil prices that shot up last year. With oil now really low, I would expect sets for next year to have higher piece counts. But this is idle speculation.

Saw this at Toy Fair - wow! It's a nice set and one I would think about getting for the price. The functionality is great (and yes, it can pick up the AT-TE) and the detail is really nice!

A new train set - and one that's a steam engine! I REALLY like this one, mainly because it has the piston wheels! (To train fans - I don't like modern diesel trains...they look kinda plain to me. Older trains are much more appealing...or high tech trains. Sorry.) Now does it have a motor? For the price, I hope so.

New sets I want?
Most of the sets coming out this year have something new and neat, but I am saving for Agents 2.0 - that's the theme I will be dumping money on.

So what are you planning to buy?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Interesting local development..

So I live in Raleigh, North Carolina - not the center of the known universe, but not the armpit either. I have the luxury of being about four hours away from the nearest LEGO store in Washington, DC and about six hours (maybe more) away from the store in Atlanta. I say luxury because four hours as a road trip isn't bad for me and could be a bit farther.

That will change in the summer, because Raleigh just got a LEGO store. The news was announced here, and the location is minutes away from where I live. 

And no, I didn't have anything to do with it...well, that I know of.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Community notes (Not directly LEGO related)

So a few of you may know who Jake McKee is - he was the first Community Liaison to LEGO (before Steve Witt) and was responsible for much of what got the LEGO Group involved with the LEGO community. Since leaving the LEGO Group, he has gone on in developing online communities and has been a speaker on this subject at various seminars and conventions. He also has a website.

He also started another site, Connected by Distance, recently. The site's goal is to show what online communities have done on a personal level. This isn't a sales site - it's a story site. And the AFOL community is a great setting for these stories. All of us are connected - is there a story that you can tell? Go to CbD and drop a story there.