On Sale: Buy One, Get One Half Price On Selected Themes At Toys R Us

Toys R US B1G1HP January 2017

I hope your new years resolution wasn’t to buy less LEGO, because it looks like the temptation of sales isn’t going to ease up at all this year.

Toys R Us have a new catalogue starting tomorrow (January 12th) and running until January 31st 2017. On offer is “Buy one, get one half price” on selected themes. Included themes are City, Duplo, Star Wars and Friends.

If you are buying two identically priced items that discount works out to 25%. If you are buying two differently priced items then the cheaper one will be half price obviously. There have been a few people caught out with this type of sale when buying 4 or more sets. You will need to do multiple transactions to maximise your discount.

You can view the catalogue for yourself here.

The ORTCo Awards – Vote For The Best of 2016

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Every year Australian LEGO retailer Outer Rim Trading Co runs the ORTCo Awards to discover the best set and theme of the year. It may be 2017 now but there is still time to vote for the 2016 awards.

I’ve heard from Outer Rim’s owner Michael that the race for theme of the year is still close.

Click here to vote for theme of the year, or click here to vote for set of the year.

Voting closes on January 15th 2017.

Brickvention 2017 This Weekend

Brickvention 2017 Logo

Melbourne LEGO fans are in for a treat this weekend with the return of one of Australia’s biggest LEGO shows – Brickvention 2017.

The show will be held on the weekend of January 14 and 15, 2017, at the Royal Exhibition Building, Nicholson Street, Carlton, Victoria. Morning sessions are selling out quickly, but there are still plenty of sessions free. If you want to head along to the event you’ll need to buy your ticket online from trybooking.com

Tickets are $18 for adults and $9 for children 4 – 14. Children 3 or under are free. Hardcore LEGO fans may be interested in the 2-day pass, which offers unrestricted access on both days. The 2-day pass is $42 for adults or $21 for children.

A special needs session will be taking place on Sunday 15th January. Places are limited for this session.

You can learn more about the event via the website, or the event page below.

 

On Sale: $15 Off For Every $75 Spent At Myer

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Myer’s stocktake sale continues with a new offer on LEGO. For every $75 you spend you’ll get $15 off.

If you run the numbers on this offer it may seem like a 20% off sale, but it’s a bit more lame than that. If you spend less than $75 and you don’t get a discount. If you spend anything other than multiples of $75 the discount percent goes down. For example if you spend $129.99 you will still only get $15 off (11.5% discount).

According to the website the offer excludes clearance and Minifigures.

This offer runs until 11.59pm AEDT Sunday January 29th.

You can view their online range here, or I have heard that this offer is in-store too.

Thanks to Michael for sharing this

Release Schedule For The First Half of 2017

1HY 2017 Catalogue Front Small

It’s a new year, which means a whole heap of new LEGO sets. Any LEGO fan will already know that while new sets show up online January 1st, they are released to stores in batches. The LEGO Retail catalogue is always how we know what sets are hitting stores when. You can’t view the catalogue online yet but it is available via the LEGO Catalogue app on iOS or Android.

Most of the sets we already knew about but there is a teaser promising Guardians of the Galaxy 2 sets in March.

I’ve gone through the catalogue in detail and added the release month to my database of set information. Below you’ll find a list of just under 150 sets and when you can expect to see them on store shelves. There are a few sets with no images or pricing on the LEGO site so there are a few gaps in the data. I regularly update my set database so as soon as I know those prices I will update accordingly.

For those who can’t see the table below here is a quick guide;

  • Disney Moana – January
  • Friends – January
  • City – January
  • Nexo Knights – January
  • Batman Collectable Minifigures – January
  • Star Wars – January
  • Classic – February
  • Duplo – February
  • Creator – February
  • DC Super Hero Girls – February
  • Ninjago – February
  • The LEGO Batman Movie – February
  • Disney Other – March
  • Elves – March
  • Technic – March
  • DC Comics Super Heroes – March
  • Marvel Super Heroes – March

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne Is Looking For A Master Model Builder

LDC Brickfactor Logo

Are you a Melbourne LEGO fan looking for a career change? Do you dream of getting paid to build with LEGO all day? The dream job for so many AFOLs is now up for grabs.

As you may know, a new LEGOLAND Discovery Centre is opening later this year in Melbourne. The thing is you can’t have a LEGOLAND Discovery Centre without LEGO Models – and that means Master Model Builders.

In order to find the best candidate for the position a unique LEGO building talent quest called Brickfactor will be taking place on February 11-12, 2017 at Chadstone shopping centre. Brickfactor is a free event where LEGO experts compete in action packed building challenges to earn the role of Master Model Builder at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne.

If you think you can rock the position then head here to submit your application.

To get an idea of what you are in for I’ve included a video of an American Brickfactor competition.

LEGO Announces Boost – Robotics Fun For Younger Builders

LEGO has used CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas to announce a whole new theme that will bring robotics to younger LEGO Builders. The new theme is essentially LEGO Mindstorms Junior – it uses regular LEGO parts rather than the more complicated Technic elements and programming is done via a tablet app.

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The introduction to the theme is called Creative Toolbox. The set allows you to create 5 different powered models; a moving robot, a multi-function rover, a Guitar shaped musical instrument, a robot cat or an automated LEGO building production line.

All of the models look great and show off the different robotic features the set allows for. Those robotic functions are achieved thanks to the LEGO Move Hub as well as an interactive motor and a color & distance sensor.

The Move Hub features Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) connectivity, two encoded motors, activation button, internal tilt sensor and a light. The Color & Distance Sensor can detect distance, motion and color.

You can  view a gallery of images from the set and read the full press release below. No Australian details at this stage, but as soon as I know more I’ll be sure to share this. Official release date is August 2017.

Five Years of Friendship

December 2011 saw the LEGO Friends theme announced to the world, with the first sets officially released in January 2012. Today I take a look back at 5 years of LEGO Friends.

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When LEGO Friends was first announced the immediate reaction from a large number of concerned citizens was that these girl LEGO sets were an abomination that enforced outdated gender stereotypes.

The sets were labelled offensive and damaging among other terms. The minidolls were criticised for their slim figures while the sets were judged for their pastel palettes and for being simpler than the boy sets.

On Sale: Selected Sets Reduced At Big W

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Big W’s latest catalogue may proclaim to be all about Back To School, but tucked away in the pages are a few LEGO sets on sale.

It’s certainly not the most amazing sale they’ve ever had but if you have some Christmas gift cards burning a hole in your pockets then there might be something tempting here; a Rogue One set perhaps?

The sale started yesterday (January 2nd) and runs all the way through until February 1st 2017. You can view the catalogue for yourself here, or see the list of sets below.

 
Set #
Set Name
Theme
Price
Full RRP
Full RRP Discount
Discount %
10592Fire TruckDuplo$20$29.99$9.9933%
10590AirportDuplo$20.00$29.99$9.9933%
60117Van & CaravanCity$20.00$29.99$9.9933%
60121Volcano Exploration TruckCity$20.00$29.99$9.9933%
60107Fire Ladder TruckCity$20.00$29.99$9.9933%
60101Airport Cargo PlaneCity$20.00$29.99$9.9933%
31042Super SoarerCreator$10.00$15.99$5.9937%
10720Police Helicopter ChaseJuniors$10.00$15.99$5.9937%
75152Imperial Assault HovertankStar Wars$39.00$59.99$20.9935%
75155Rebel U-wing FighterStar Wars$89.00$119.99$30.9926%
75156Krennic's Imperial ShuttleStar Wars$95.00$139.99$44.9932%
41124Heartlake Puppy DaycareFriends$28.00$44.99$16.9938%
41128Amusement Park Space RideFriends$19.00$29.99$10.9937%
41118Heartlake SupermarketFriends$28.00$44.99$16.9938%
41129Amusement Park Hot Dog VanFriends$28.00$44.99$16.9938%
41123Foal's Washing StationFriends$12.00$15.99$3.9925%

2016 Year In Review

2016 was a huge year for Bricking Around. In terms of raw numbers there were over 700,000 views from more 200,000 visitors. That is a significant increase over 2015.

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I published over 280 articles during 2016. Across those articles there were 691 comments. That figure doesn’t include any Facebook comments or tweets.

Top Stories

The top individual article was the 2016 Toy Sale deals from Big W. Big W has always been a popular retailer and with a disappointing offering from Target this year it makes sense there was a lot of interest in what Big W were offering.

Second place was actually a 2015 article about LEGO Dimensions PDF instructions; clearly the popularity of the game saw lots of people looking for how to build the expansion packs.

There also seems to be a lot of interest in the Dreamworld LEGO store, with that announcement being the third most read article of the year. There should be plenty of interest when it opens.

Links

The outbound traffic on the site always gives an interesting insight into what people are interested in checking out further.

Unsurprisingly the Australian online LEGO store was the top link; it’s still your only source for a lot of exclusives and their bonus offers can be tempting.

Second place this year was taken by eBay. The combination of retailer offers stacking with eBay offers for impressive discounts explains this one. There was more than one opportunity to get 28% off via eBay in 2016.

Third place was Myer, beating out all of the other retailers.

A year of sales

I’ve done up what I hope is an interesting visual to show just how many sales there were during 2016. This sales heatmap comes from the sales data that was posted here during the year, so it doesn’t include every sale from every retailer as there were possibly some that I missed. You can click on the picture for a larger version.

2016 Sales Heatmap v2

Looking at the diagram shows that despite the big toy sales taking place in July it was April that had the first bulk lot of sales for the year. This year there was also a heap of sales right before Christmas. The sales marked on the image are a mix of selected set and standard percentage off deals.

According to my data there were 18 days in 2016 were there was no LEGO on sale. That number may actually be less as a few of them are in August; not long after my first child was born. It’s certainly possible I was distracted and missed a sale or two. Even still, just 18 days without some sort of LEGO sale. It goes to show that buying LEGO in Australia isn’t all bad.

On to 2017…

I’ve got big plans for 2017. I have been a bit slack in my event coverage, and I’d love to be better at covering these and making sure people get out to see their local shows.

I am also aiming to launch a new “Buy LEGO” page. I don’t want to give away too much just yet but I hope the new page will be a valuable tool for all LEGO buyers.

I also have a few secret projects that may or may not eventuate, so I don’t want to give anything away.

Of course all the regular LEGO coverage you come for will be here.