What’s In A Name? UCS vs MBS

I think it’s fair to say that 75098 Assault on Hoth was not well received by the AFOL community. For many it was a set that did not deserve the Ultimate Collectors Series badge – something that LEGO themselves now seem to be conceding.

When 75222 Betrayal at Cloud City was announced I mistakenly called it “the next UCS” set. It turns out that it’s not. 75222 is actually a Master Builder Series set.


So what is the actual distinction between an Ultimate Collector Series set and a Master Builder Series set? It’s actually fairly obvious. Here’s the official statement from LEGO…

The Master Builder Series models are large playsets and beside being complex builds they are characterized by having many play features and functions, interior details as well as a range of minifigures. Ultimate Collectors series will remain highly detailed display models providing complex builds with a focus on authenticity and both Ultimate Collectors Series and Master Builder Series will continue as a way to highlight the unique characteristic of each style of model.

This likely means that in the future large LEGO Star Wars releases will fall in to one of two categories – UCS or MBS. As an AFOL I appreciate the UCS sets more than the Master Builder sets but I like that they are offering something for those fans who are more experienced builders but still like to recreate scenes from their favourite films.

What about Assault on Hoth? It’s clearly marked as a UCS set.


This certainly raises a bit of a dilemma for UCS completionists – The set clearly fits better in the Master Builder Series range, but as the catalyst for that range’s creation it was released before that distinction was made. Do you still consider Assault on Hoth a UCS set?

3 Responses to What’s In A Name? UCS vs MBS

  1. Craig says:

    Nope, Assault on Hoth, Sandcrawler, and Ewok Village are all now MBS sets to me.
    Actually, on reflection, Assault on Hoth is just a BS set…

  2. Mark says:

    This hasn’t created a dilemma for UCS completionists. It’s always existed by virtue of the fact that no one can agree on what constitutes a UCS set. Even LEGO themselves can’t decide apparently… box label, plaque, 10x number designation? Master Builder Series sounds a little patronising to me but at least they’ve been clever enough to avoid the fanboy vitriol that would have ensued had it been labelled ‘UCS’.

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