Monday, April 7th, 2014 at 9:41pm by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
[Source: Nuju Metru]
It's time for another Chima Month review! Today BZPower Forum Assistant Nuju Metru takes a look at 70127 Wolf Legend Beast. Will you give this dog a bone and take it home with you, or will some other Legends of Chima sets become man's best friend? And will you win a copy of this set for free? You'll have to read on to find out!
Hey guys, and welcome to the BZPower review of set 70127, "Wolf Legend Beast," from the Legends of Chima line! As always, I'd like to thank both TLG for giving us at BZP free stuff and Andrew for passing some of it on to me. Read on to see my thoughts - captured for you in both a video and BZPower's traditional text/image format - on this model. Does 70127 belong in a doggie bag, or will it leave you howling for more? Find out below!
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
The box of 70127 Wolf Legend Beast (for brevity's sake, henceforth referred to as WLB) is about the size one could expect from a set of its price point, and things like the LEGO and theme logos, product name, and age range (I choose to ignore that part, it's a recommendation) are all in the normal places; so far, an unassuming package. The box's blue-with-lime background, and a mildly altered - now thorny and venomous - Legends of Chima logo classify WLB as belonging to newest line of the theme. The product itself is portrayed lunging past the meager confines of the box; a standard-issue technique on LEGO packaging.
The remarkable things about the box on WLB are that it has a border (the green and spiny pattern that edges this box is seen on the larger LoC products of the line as an intermediary between blue logo-space and main set image) and that there's a bright reiteration in the lower corner declaring that yes, this is a LEGEND BEAST!
On the back, there's still a border, but what's inside it has changed. There's a stylized image of Worriz and his larger friend off on the side; the majority of the back space is used to advertise the rest of the LEGEND BEASTS (the front of the box just demanded that the term be capitalized; who am I to rebel against such clear marketing orders?). The normal thumb-punch-open marker can be found on the bottom. Something not captured in my photos is that the piece shown for 1:1 size ratio on the top of the box is one of the new balljoint parts.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
The WLB comes together very fast; it's a small model, there are inverse repetitions on the limbs, and the new small-ball system leads to easy attachment of its separately built component pieces. Customarily, our minifigure, Worriz, is constructed before the model proper. There are eight stickers to apply, but they're all easily placed on rectangular, rounded surfaces. As I was building WLB, I experienced some deja vu: the construction was extremely reminiscent of the build on 70123 Lion Legend Beast (LLB). We'll deconstruct the similarities and differences between those two LEGEND BEASTS later.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
In terms of interesting parts, WLB's most notable new molds are those belonging to the new small balljoint system. WLB includes three varieties of balljoint parts: dark bley 1x2 plates with balls (9x), light bley 1x2 plates with sockets on the long side (5x), and light bley 1x2 plates with sockets on the short side (4x). Barring buying elements separately online, WLB (and LLB, which actually includes the same assortment of the aforementioned balljoint parts) is the most economical way to rack up small balljoint pieces; none of the Mixels, which also include some of this system, give you as many balls or sockets for your buck. I'm extremely happy with this new balljoint system - it's got all the clutch of the bigger ball system - and to have gotten so many of the parts with WLB.
Also of note in WLB's cool-parts-assortment are some trans-blue parts, one of which - the crystal blade - has been seen before in LoC (but maybe not in trans-blue?), and one of which is an ovular shield (which I think is new in this color, too). We get five 2x2 curved slopes, one of which comes with wolf eyes printed on. A new element this year - and, I think, exclusive in tan to this set - is the 1x2 plate with three claws. Lastly, there's a useful clip with bar hole, which I may be mistaken in believing to be new in white.
WLB includes one figure: tricked-out Worriz. Unlike any Wolf Tribe figures we've encountered before, Worriz in WLB includes gold-and-trans-blue gear, practically bristling with Chi energy. He's armed with both the new shield part, and that cool blade attached to a gold Ninjago handle. Below the accessories (and neglecting his sometime cape), Worriz is the same as he's been in past sets.
The completed WLB is a pretty cohesive model. The head and the posture of the finished product especially lend it a canine quality. There are some good details in this model; the sculpting on the back legs is nicely predatory and the tail, though too small, is the right shape. I also like how the foreleg shoulder sticker mimics the motif created by the 1x1 circular silver tile on the stud above the rounded slope. The WLB's dominant white is accented with light grey, silver, and with dark red on the stickers (forgive my upside-down application of the foot stickers, by the way). Aside from its black nose and tan claws, the whole WLB conforms to this color scheme. Worriz works together nicely with his steed in a visual way, complementing the red and grey while bringing blue and gold accents to the composition.
Without Worriz, though, the WLB feels pretty barren, being as monochromatic as it is. Its stark whiteness is made all the more evident when seen from the side, and is especially unfortunate in the awkwardly shaped forelegs. Though the detailing on the top of the forelegs is good, and when seen from the front their flaws are hidden, the forelegs are the weakest part of the model for me. The head, meanwhile, is the WLB's best part. SNOT is employed to good effect in creating the lupine snout and tufted sides of the head; the use of a grille brick to mimic wrinkles in the snout is perfect; the ears are just the right shape.
Seen next to the LLB, the WLB's similarity to its feline companion becomes strongly apparent. Both LEGEND BEASTS employ similar body, leg, tail and head constructions, while the feet are built identically. Both Worriz and Laval (who comes with the LLB) are armed with variant Chi-swords and the same trans-blue shields (the latter, it seems, are given to every LEGEND BEAST rider). The two models feel like echoes of one another, like the same template employed for two different four-legged animals.
It may be my exposure to the LLB before the WLB talking, but it seems to me that the aforementioned similar construction techniques feel more at-home on the LLB than on the WLB. The tail on the LLB isn't too small, and the set's shape is more natural and active, especially in the bend of the legs. While the WLB's head is distinctively that of a wolf, the LLB's entire body looks leonine. I personally prefer the LLB's color scheme, too; aside from the misplaced grey stud on its face, pointed out in Black Six's review, the LLB's colors are just as deliberate, and more varied and appealing, than those of the WLB.
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?
The amount of fun you can have with the WLB is essentially limited by your imagination alone, but it's also wholly dependent on your imagination, seeing as this set has no play features or gimmicks other than its poseability. This, though, being enabled by the new balljoint system, is better and sturdier than we've ever seen at this scale on a LEGO product. With twelve points of articulation, the WLB has a nice range of motion; I do wish, though, that some elbows had been included, to afford the model even better posing possibility (the chunky front legs especially could benefit from this). The WLB is a lot of fun when paired up with other Chima models I own (to be reviewed soon!), especially enemy vehicles.
For me, though, the WLB's greatest play value is in the wealth of versatile and exciting balljoint parts it includes. I can't wait to reunite this set with my entire LEGO collection, and put its pieces to good use.
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
Well, that's about the sum of my in-depth thoughts. Let's weigh what we've discussed...
What's to like?
- New balljoints are glorious
- High density of the new balljoint parts relative to other sets
- Suitably canine, especially in the head
- Clean color scheme
- Sturdy and poseable
What's not to like?
- Aside from new balljoints, few parts of interest
- Chunky, blank forelegs
- Tail is comically small
- Without Worriz astride the beast, the set's color scheme is boring
- Worriz offers little new as a figure
70127 Wolf Legend Beast isn't a particularly bad set, but it isn't a particularly good one, either. While some parts of the set are designed as well as could be hoped, other sections are unfortunately uninspired. As a parts pack, WLB's value lies mostly in its per capita abundance of small balljoint parts; however, as the same number and type of balljoint parts can also be found in the sleeker, prettier 70123 Lion Legend Beast, I'd recommend buying that cat over this dog.
"I can hold my own!" the Wolf Legend Beast growled in the face of the more purchase-eligible Lion Legend Beast. "Honest!"
To find out how you could win a FREE COPY of this set, watch the video review! Thanks for reading.
Big thanks to Nuju Metru for putting together this review for Chima Month, I hope you all enjoyed it. Be sure to check out that page I just linked you to for all our Legends of Chima coverage in April - there's plenty more coming! So stay tuned to BZPower for all the latest Chima and LEGO news, reviews, and more!
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