I love LEGO. My kids love LEGO. In all probability, you love LEGO, too. It’s just one of those toys that are a part of every childhood. It’s such a simple concept, too… just a bunch of coloured plastic bricks of various shapes and sizes which interlock. But, oh! The things we’ve built. Spaceships, houses, castles, zoos, cars, robots and more. LEGO’s strength and allure comes from its ability to inspire and provide a means for kids to create the things from their imagination. In my youth, LEGO just came in bins of various sized bricks, but today there are a plethora of sets available, ranging from simple city scenes or places, to packs featuring your favourite characters from comic books, movies and cartoons. You can’t buy them all, so how do you find sets to put under the tree this year that the kids are sure to love? Well, we have you covered with our look at some of the hottest LEGO sets for 2015.
May The Force Be With You
Unless you’ve been in a coma for the past six months, or live in the woods somewhere without a TV, Internet, electricity or human contact (in which case, how are you even reading this?) then you know there’s a new Star Wars movie opening this month, and there’s a wee bit of hype around it. And by a “wee bit of hype” I mean you can’t throw a cat dressed as a wookie without it hitting a Star Wars branded item (also the SPCA frowns on throwing cats… but they are fine with dressing them like wookies if you can accomplish it without needing medical aid). However, Star Wars and LEGO go together like chocolate and peanut butter, and you can bet the Star Wars sets are going to be the most wanted LEGO gift this season for sure.
Simply because of the Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie connection, I’m willing to say both the LEGO Star Wars Kylo Ren’s Command Shuttle and the LEGO Star Wars First Order Transporter will be hot this year. Kylo Ren is the big baddie in the film, so everyone will want his figure, which comes included with the 10,005-piece set, along with five others, and Kylo’s personal Command Shuttle. The First Order Transporter is also full of bad guys from the upcoming film, as well as some Resistance figures so you can have a proper LEGO battle. And in addition to the seven figures, there’s assorted weapons and accessories, plus the Transporter has dual, spring-loaded shooters. The smaller, LEGO Star Wars Rey’s Speeder is also going to be in demand, as you need a hero to fight all those nasty villains. Her speeder set includes a figure of Rey and Unkar’s Thug, and the landspeeder also has dual stud shooters. Of course, if you want to go old school and return to the original trilogy (you know, the ones numbered four, five and six?)and the showdown between Luke Skywalker and (spoiler alert) his father Darth Vader, then there’s the LEGO Star Wars Death Star Final Duel. The Throne Room set features figures of Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Emperor Palpatine, and two Royal Guards, so you can play out the pivotal final moments of the original trilogy.
The Age of Super Heroes
Another phenomenon that’s exploded in recent years is the popularity of super heroes (can I get an “Amen?”), with new movies and television shows seemingly coming out every week. One anticipated upcoming movie is the Batman v. Superman blockbuster, and you can start playing out that scenario with the LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes: Batman – The Joker Steam Roller and LEGO DC Comics Super Heroes Darkseid Invasion. That way you get both a Batman and Superman figure to fight or team up, as the case may be. The Batman set has a vehicle for Bats and villain Joker, as well as Batgirl and Robin figures, while the Darkseid set features Superman, Hawkman, Green Arrow, Cyborg and Darkseid, plus the Justice League’s Javelin spacecraft.
For those kids that prefer Spiderman and the Avengers crowd, LEGO has lots of Marvel sets from which to choose, as well. The LEGO Marvel Super Heroes The Avengers: Age of Ultron Quinjet City Chase is right of the recent movie with the Quinjet and figures of Vision, Captain America, Black Widow, Iron Man MK43, and Ultimate Ultron. A smaller and less expensive version of the pack is the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes Avengers: Age of Ultron Iron Man vs. Ultron, with figures of Ultron Sentry Officer, 2 Ultron Sentries, and Iron Man MK45, plus an Ultron vehicle.
More TV and Film
If your kids aren’t into Star Wars or super heroes (and I’d seriously have that looked at if I were you), then there are also sets for Jurassic World, The Hobbit, Lone Ranger, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the Disney Princesses. There’s sure to be one there that your child will enjoy building. My son started his own LEGO collection with the Legends of Chima sets, based on the popular cartoon series (or was the cartoon series based on the LEGO toy sets? It’s confusing.) So, if your kids are glued to the screen when that show comes on, then you’d probably better pop one of those under the tree, too.
The Junior Set
LEGO is even there for your kids who haven’t gotten to the age where they are watching big budget movies or reading comic books, but still have big imaginations to express. LEGO Juniors offers a range of sets for younger kids, which feature simple life themes like going to the supermarket, fishing or a garbage truck. The LEGO Juniors Supermarket Suitcase is sure to be a hot ticket item, with an easy-to-build supermarket scene offering a shop assistant and customer, plus market with scooter, cash register, money, flowers, bread, bottles, vegetables, and ice cream. What kid doesn’t like playing store? Another Juniors set that can’t miss is the LEGO Juniors Pirate Treasure Hunt. The 57-piece set features pirate minifigure, plus a skeleton and shark, plus a rowboat and an easy-to-build desert island fortress with opening window. Arrr, what scurvy dog doesn’t want to be a pirate?
My First LEGO
Even the wee, wee ones get to enjoy LEGO these days, thanks to the Duplo sets for ages two to five. These fun sets are super easy to build, and come with lots of accessories to inspire play. A surefire gift would be the LEGO Duplo My First Police Set, with bakery, bank, police station, plus motorcycle, police car, and thief and policeman figure. The LEGO Duplo Big Farm can’t miss either, with a full farm featuring farmer and child, plus tractor, horse, calf, cow, chicken and cat. My own kids always had farm sets when they were younger, and they were always some of their favourite toys. The Duplo series also offers sets with Disney Princesses and other well-known characters, so there are definitely plenty of options for your kid’s first LEGO set.
Build It, And They Will Have Fun
Although we’ve given you some really good suggestions for what are sure to be some of the hottest LEGO sets of 2015, you’ve got to be aware that there are an unfathomable number of sets out there. And coming from a childhood where there were very limited sets, and we pretty much always had to use our imaginations, I didn’t like that kids were being forced to construct pre-made things when I first became a dad and got back into LEGO. But, watching my child spend a day or two constructing some Star Wars vehicle meticulously from an instruction booklet, and then soon after ripping it apart or using other sets to augment the design — showed me the original spirit of LEGO imagination is still alive and well. So, really, you can’t go wrong when buying LEGO, as kids are just going to use the sets as a springboard for their imaginations anyway, creating whatever they want in the end. And that’s why everyone loves LEGO.