3 October 2013

REVIEW: LEGO Star Wars Brickmaster Book

Master the brick.

As you may have noticed, we're big LEGO fans here at t'Pit. That's why we were especially excited to get our hands on the latest in the Brickmaster book series: Battle for the Stolen Crystals, courtesy of yellowmoon.org.uk.

An adventure romp set in the Star Wars universe, the book includes a bag of 189 LEGO bricks and two minifigures which allow the plucky reader to build the things that occur in the story. Although aimed at the younger end of the LEGO Star Wars audience, it didn't stop us from getting all giddy and tearing through those pages like crazy people.

The story, which is told in graphic novel format, tells the tale of one particularly cheeky droid that pinches a bunch of lightsaber crystals. Clearly this gets the Jedi in a bit of a tizzy as they send their best clone trooper, Commander Gree, in hot pursuit. During the course of the story Gree needs vehicles and weapons to do battle with the droid, all of which can be created using the supplied bricks.

Here we need to be clear; although the book states that there are four pairs of vehicles to build (each with something for Gree and something for the droid) it is only possible to build one pair at any given time. The duelling duo must first be broken down before moving onto the next. We weren't exactly sure that was the case when we started building the first set, but the bricks quickly get used up. So now you now. You're welcome.

Speaking of that first set, a Republic V-19 Torrent and a pretty cool Separatist Cannon, was by far our favourite and the one pair we rebuilt after completing all the others. The V-19 was of particular interest as we're all space ship junkies here and that fighter features heavily in The Clone Wars TV show. Its a lovely build with all the correct folding wings. It is to a scale which means the minifigure can't fit inside, unlike all the other sets which feature a place for old Gree's bum. This we preferred.

Along with the Separatist Cannon the first set works a little too well and seems suspiciously accurate. We're guessing that the designers built the whole story around the bricks required to make these two vehicles as the other sets seems to be completely new and have not appeared in Star Wars before.

Still, all sets are a lot of fun to build and follow the story pretty well. We also quite like the minifigures, although Commander Gree has appeared before in another LEGO Star Wars set.

Although it won't be everybody's cup of tea, the Brickmaster book is actually pretty good value for money. Compare it to the LEGO Star Wars Planets Series, which each retail for around £9.99, contain less bricks and create a smaller model than V-19, and that £15 (already cheaper at some shops) sounds pretty reasonable, especially if bought as a gift for someone.

We'd definitely recommend getting this if you're a die-hard LEGO Star Wars fan, but also if you were looking for a fairly gentle and cost-effective introduction to the hobby.

At the end of the day it's LEGO so it's brilliant.


Available from www.yellowmoon.org.uk

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