Friday, June 21, 2013

Next Cuusoo set announced, and more sets in the running

The latest Cuusoo review results have been announced, of the three sets that made it to the review stage in Autumn last year (after getting ten-thousands supporters on the Cuusoo website), one will be going into production, with second still being considered. The set that is definitely going ahead is the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover, based on the current NASA robotic rover mission on Mars, and designed by one of the engineers from the actual rover. This set builds on something of a science/exploration sub-theme within the successful Cuusoo projects to date, following on from the Shinkai 6500 Submarine, and the Hayabusa spacecraft. The set is likely to be quite similar to the design submitted, as it has been deemed well built and at about the right scale for the size set Lego expect to produce. Here are their comments on the project:
After analyzing the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover project, we learned that this product has niche appeal and strong demand from the space and education communities. The product aligns well with the LEGO Group’s mission to “inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow,” including those who will build our future in outer space.

Like the Back to the Future Time Machine, which was approved in the Summer Review, the model presented in this project is built very closely to the LEGO Group’s design standards and so the final product will be very close to Perijove’s original design. It has a high play value, it fits well with voters’ price expectations, and we’ve secured the rights from NASA to release this project as the next LEGO CUUSOO set.

For these reasons, the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover project has passed the LEGO Review, and has been selected for production as the next LEGO CUUSOO set. Pricing and availability are still being determined.
There is already a chance to win this set! Lego's reBrick website and NASA are inviting Lego builders to to make models based on future NASA missions to win the Curiosity set, once it's out, and some other NASA goodies.

Two other sets were up for review alongside the Curiosity:
  • Thinking with Portals, a series of Lego game proposals based on the video game Portal 2. Despite announcing the review results, they've not quite finished looked at the possibilities of doing something with this yet, so a set might still be forthcoming.
  • USC Sandcrawler from Star Wars. Lego have ruled out the Sandcrawler, citing issues with their Star Wars license. It also seems to me that this would have been a ludicrously large set. There has previously been a Sandcrawler set, which while not accurate minifigure scale was still pretty significant.

Cuusoo also released a video explaining these latest review results, check it out:

In other Cuusoo related news, a Brickset reader noted that the Minecraft set (the third Cuusoo set to be produced) has been renamed in Lego's database, from "Micro World", to "Micro World - The Forest". This appears to be setting the stage for additional Minecraft sets; a Hungarian website, Kockamania, has reported a rumour of two new sets being planned.

Meanwhile, several other projects have gotten through to the review stage recently. Continue after the jump to check them out:

Three sets got enough supporters in time to make the summer review. The mini-shops project, which I've mentioned in an earlier post, is joined by:
  • Minifigure scale Batman Tumbler. As seen in the latest Batman movies, this design would undoubtedly be a popular set if it gets made. Lego have previously produced a tumbler, in their first Batman series, and more recently did a camouflage design one in another set. With the Super Heroes theme ongoing, I find it hard to believe this isn't already a set in consideration for a remake, and thus I feel its chances of getting through as a Cuusoo set are diminished.
  • League of Legends: The Raid on Baron Nashor. Another video game fanbase get through to the review stage. I'm not familiar with this particular game, but by all accounts it has a reasonably substantial player base, which would seem to be in its favour. Does it otherwise fit with how Lego wants to present itself? The review will reveal I suppose.
Projects are already starting to pile up for the next review as well, with two projects passing the ten-thousand supporter milestone ready for the autumn review in September. They are:
  • Female Minifigure Set. The project set out to balance out the ever present inequality issue in the Lego world, by proposing a series of vignettes featuring female minifigures in a variety of roles. As project neared the ten-thousand mark the creator focused on the post popular of the vignettes in the series, and so the final proposal is a trio of female Lego scientists. The vignettes are cool little sets, and it's always good to have more female Lego minifigures, so I really hope this one gets through the review. Lego will undoubtedly face some strong criticism if they do reject it, as whatever reasons they might have, it would seem to reinforce the male domination of the Lego world.
  • ATLAS detector. Based on one of the experiments from the Large Hadron Collider at CERN that has provided evidence for the Higgs Bosson, this isn't exactly the most exciting looking set. However it once again has rallied the scientific community to gathering supporters. With that in mind, given the track record of other scientific sets (as discussed above), I imagine this has a good chance. Hopefully Lego will design a slightly more interesting looking set, at the very least they should throw in a Professor Higgs minifigure!

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