Wednesday, December 4th, 2013 at 8:12am by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
Will we ever run out of 2014 Hero Factory sets to review? (The answer is yes, there's only eight of them so far.) BZPower Forum Assistant Sisen is back again with a review of 44020 Flyer Beast vs Breez. Will this monstrous beast invade its way into your LEGO collection? Read on to find out!
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
Only yesterday we were reporting about an invasion from below. There have been confirmed reports about another monstrous beast attacking the city. Natalie Breez was witnessed by seven to fourteen onlookers rocketing around the attacking beast. The beast is flying around the city wreaking havoc, and has even ripped off an antenna tower to swat around. A few of the witnesses were present at the previous incursion with the Jaw Beast, and are stammering on about how this Flyer Beast is larger and more frightening. It is unclear whether Natalie will be able to restrain this beast on her own, but we can only hope the city is spared.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
There are two bags of pieces contained within the resealable packaging. Building Natalie only takes a few moments, whereas constructing the Flyer beast does take more time. Assembling the skeletal construction of the hero is fairly straightforward. Torso, head, arms, legs, and some armor to boot.
Constructing Flyer Beast starts out similarly to Jaw Beast and other general hero construction. However, building the beast has a change of pace due to the extra appendages it has. At first glance it appears as if the beast has large tentacle arms like some creature rising from the depths of the sea.
The tentacles are actually Flyer Beast's wings?! Beyond the abnormal wings sprouting from the creatures back the remainder of the build is straightforward. Put simply the build is Jaw Beast only bigger with more armor. There is slight asymmetry to the build itself with a large antenna in one hand and a huge claw for another. Overall the build for Flyer Beast is no harder than assembling your average set.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
The design of Flyer Beast is very interesting. Color wise the combination of black, yellow, and the light azure blue merge well. The use of black and blue throughout the design seems to be a common element amongst the sets. Personally the wings are somewhat lackluster in terms of monstrosities. It would have been nice to see a set of wings that appear as wings and not foreign back tentacles at first glance. The wings work in theory, but the execution could have been better. The claw hand is cool and a neat design, but it is vastly larger than the other arm... so there is not a lot of leeway with the function.
There are some new and interesting pieces contained within the set itself. The blue appendages have been seen before, but the head pieces are new. Additionally, there are the new black claw hand pieces, large black feet, and the printed armor piece. Personally the larger black feet in this set feel like a better design overall. The small feet on Jaw Beast were nice, but they felt more like hands even though they would not function as such. The yellow armor pieces are not new to Flyer Beast, and have been seen in previous Evo iterations and that one villainous XT4 set. (Plus that transparent orange chain!)
Here comes the ranting and raving again about the instruction book. Just like in the Jaw Beast set instruction manual, there is more comic stylized art. Kudos to whoever decided on doing this because this personally hits a sweet spot. The artwork and action in the comic panels drudges up old feels for Bionicle. Sure the art is not a full fledge comic but it is a nice taste and touch to the typical instruction booklet. Who doesn't love comics, heroes, epic battles, and ginormous kaiju attacking cities?
If you look closely at the second comic panel featuring Flyer Beast, you get a better idea of the wing concept in featured in the set. It looks like the wings are meant to be somewhat insectoid in nature, the outer black part being the covering and then the actual wing beneath it. The idea is left up to imagination in the set, but the comic does help portray it a little better. The comics also help give you a scale idea to the size of beast to the hero.
The other half of the fun is in playing with the set. How well does the set function and is it enjoyable to play with?
There is a lot of fun with the set. When you add in Natalie, there are a lot of fun scenarios to play out. Who knew Breez was capable of wrangling a kaiju? Er.. Well that is if she doesn't get eaten or caught by the monster. The brick on Flyer Beast's back gives Natalie a nice foothold to strangle the beast and halt its destructive tendencies.
Things get even more interesting when you add in Jaw Beast and Stormer to the fight. Breez and Stormer look like they are outsized and outmatched in terms of strength.
What exactly happens when two Kaiju get brought together by the heroes? Maybe they team up and attack together. Perhaps they start fighting each other to the death? Then again they might just attempt to form some sort of new combination beast... and fail miserably.
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
What's to like?
- Color Scheme
- Integration of some system parts
- Sturdy design
What's not to like?
- Not a lot of new parts
- More printed armor?
- Clunky claw arm
- Funky wing design
Even after playing with the cool Flyer flying fly beast the digger dude Jaw Beast is still by far my favorite. Watch for some more upcoming reviews featuring the others this week. For everyone in North America the sets will be available March 1st, but should begin to appear in stores everywhere else January 1st.
Watch out for these strange beasts that are appearing, and be sure to snag your combiner instructions!
Be sure to thank Sisen in the Talkback as well as ask any questions you might have. Hopefully you found this review fun and informative - but whether you did or didn't, you should keep checking back on BZPower for more 2014 set reviews and LEGO news!
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