Pros: Flip open container, nice stenciling on astronaut, binoculars, tools.
Cons: $3.49 for this? You gotta be kidding me right ..
When Lego decided to do away with the Life on Mars series it was a sad day of kids that were into the theme. It offered them a lot of replay value, cool pieces and gave them the drive to learn about space exploration. Of course, I said the same thing when they got rid of the Insectoid and Space Port themes. Just when you think that you have a firm grip on what they have to offer they axe a line and six months late introduce something else. Sadly, and in most cases, its nothing more than rehashed ideas with nothing new of collectors. The Mini Robot set is an add-on to the Mars Mission theme; if the figure looks even remotely familiar you might remember it as one of the workers from the 1996 Explorers series. This is a nice add-on but it isn't really worth $3.49 if you already have a lot of stock elements.
The listing of this set might lead you to believe that it is something that is ultra rare or can't be found in stores. You can get it at the Lego World Shop of $3.49 if you really want it. It isn't are, it isn't hard to find and it certainly isn't as megaiffic as the product title "Lego Mars Mission Exclusive Mini Figure Set" might lead you to believe. So why the botched name? You can chalk that up to websites that want to try to cash in on newer sets that haven't caught on yet; if they can make an extra fifty cents saying that it is an "exclusive" item then they will. If you are a smart shopping you might be able to find this of as little as two dollars at smaller toy stores but in most cases you are looking at a $2.50 to $3.50 investment.
The astronaut is done up in pearl white with orange and gray stenciling; this is a pretty common pattern for the space themed workers so it isn't something that is going to knock your socks off. The helmet has as flip up visor with a metallic blade; you will want to be careful with this because if you handle it too much you will ruin the finish on it. Oil from your fingers will leave it looking pitted and eventually there won't be any shine left to it. The accessories in the set can be used by either the robot or the astronaut so there is some replay value there but for the most part this is an add on set only. The robot is, well, a robot. I would make a comparison to R2-D2 but I am sure the Star Wars fans would chastise me and say that it wasn't really a robot. It's basic, has a flip open piece in the middle [large enough for a few studs] and is capable of holding several of the accessories.
So if it is a small add on set and there really isn't anything all that great about it, what's the draw? Fist, if you are a Lego collector you know that anything with the Lego logo on it must be in you collection. Second, you are getting the flip open container on the robot [not an exclusive element but nice to have multiples of] and of course another astronaut figure. You could take that three fifty and go to a site like Baylit and get the pieces that you really want or you could take the ones that you want from this set and add the rest to your cache. It is extremely easy to build so even kids with no experience will be able to have this together in less than a minute.
I won't totally bash this set because even though it is small and slightly overpriced it is still something that you can add to just about any Space themed set or series and not have to do any mods [modifications] on it. The orange and gray stenciling isn't so bold that it is going to mess with other designs from other years and if worse comes to worse you can always whip out your trusty industrial Sharpie marker and change the coloring of it. I'd recommend this to anyone that is looking to make space pods or service robots but that's only to get the flip open containers.
Name: Mini Robot
Set Theme: Mars Mission
Set Number: 5616
Piece Count: 24
Age Recommendation: 5 and older
Difficulty Level: Easy
Build Time: 1 minute
As always, thanks for the visit
~^V^~ Freak ~^V^~
© 2008 Freak369
Life on Mars series
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