Set Review: 70815 Super Secret Police Dropship
Sunday, July 20th, 2014 at 1:21pm by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
[Source: Nuju Metru]
It's time for another set review today, today we present 70815 Super Secret Police Dropship from the LEGO Movie line. BZPower Forum Assistant Nuju Metru has taken a look at this set from every angle, and has been kind enough to share his thoughts on it with you. To see if this is a set worthy of adding to your collection, read and watch on! (Oh and if that wasn't enough of an incentive, we're giving away some polybags in the video too!)
Hey guys, and welcome to the BZPower review of set 70815 Super Secret Police Dropship from the LEGO Movie line! Once more, 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 the traditional text/image format - on this model. Will this set bring you some justice, or does it belong behind bars? Let's find out!
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
I like the look of this box; it's clean. Like all the LEGO Movie products we've gotten, the logo-bearing border is a dynamic, diagonal filmstrip, which is mirrored in the opposite corner to display the set's minifigs. A big picture of the set itself, captured in action against an orange sky, occupies the central part of this face of the box. The flat tarmac-looking surface of Cloud Cuckoo Land is full of figures and laser bolts.
The back is also a familiar layout to anyone who's seen LEGO Movie Merchandise on the shelves of their local toy store. The filmstrip decoration is repeated along the bottom of the package, and each "frame" showcases a different function (the rightmost one contains an advertisement for The LEGO Movie the Video Game). The top two-thirds or so have another contextualized image of the main vehicle, seen from a different angle than on the front, with several hatches open and several characters rearranged.
Along the top of the box, there's a lineup of the eight (eight!) figures included with the set. I just thought this really reinforced how many characters we get in this set; spoiler, it's a lot... and bigger spoiler, that's a good thing.
But enough of the box. Let's gut it and play with its innards.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
As has been the recent trend with larger LEGO sets, the building of minifigures is spread out across the instruction manual, rather than occurring up front like in the olden days. Batman and Emmet come first, then the Green Ninja and Johnny Thunder (who, by the way, makes his first LEGO appearance since 2003), and then the four Robocops. The dropship is built - unsurprisingly - from the bottom up, with its four thrusters and satellite array attached last. The instructions instruct that stickers (and there are a few) are applied to their respective parts after those parts are already part of a component part of the ship. Whew.
There's a little bit of knot work when it comes to the winch, but other than that, a healthy amount of SNOT, and a heck of a lot of black and white pieces, there's not much to say about the building experience. Let's get on to examining the finished product.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
70815 doesn't include any actually new pieces, as far as I could tell, and few if any recolors. Here are a few parts that jumped out to me while sifting through the pile, which I considered valuable or uncommon:
- Two 3x3 plates in dark bley
- A 6x6 light bley tile
- A trans-red large window pane - this is a part I suspect is new in this color
- A 4x4 dark bley plate with clips on the end
- Four trans-red studded bars
- Two 4-length tan Technic axles with smooth round section in the middle (I've never seen these, but I'd be surprised if they were a new mold)
- Two complete assemblies of the Star Wars spring shooter with trans-red shots
- Several 2x2 inverted plates
- A large, trans-clear Slave I windshield part
Of the eight figures in 70815, four of them are good guys. These characters are Johhny Thunder, Lloyd Garmadon (the Green Ninja), Batman, and Emmet; aside from Emmet, this is the first time these characters have appeared in a LEGO Movie set, and 70815 is the first LEGO Movie set to include cross-brand characters. Batman, Emmet, and Lloyd all come in versions we've gotten before in some set or another of their respective themes; Johnny Thunder, raised from the dead, is an updated version of the character. Our lad Johnny has gotten a printing upgrade to bring him into the 2010s, including cleaner chest printing, new back printing, and white pupils in his eyes. The new design stays true to the original at the same time as it fits in with newer minifig design standards, so I'm happy with it.
The 70815 bad guys are a little more monotonous than their opposition: we get four Super Secret Police robots, which aren't any different than the versions of these adorable little instruments of totalitarianism that came with the first wave of the LEGO Movie sets. Two have fun, printed flak vests, and two have night-vision goggles; one comes with a beanie. The two Robocops that aren't in vests come with back stud attachment parts, to make them compatible with the dropship's winch.
The finished vehicle has no problem housing the four Super Secret Police bots. It's a hefty, sturdy vehicle that, without the police coloration and red and blue lights, could easily be mistaken for a Star Wars expanded universe vehicle.
The body of the dropship is in places angular, and in other places rounded, but the overall shape - a slightly bowed fuselage, with four stubby "feet" - is definitive and as slick as it can manage to be. Two forward laser cannons, searchlights on the sides, a rotating gunner's turret, and a satellite array on top are the notable protrusions from the ship. There's a good balance of white and black on the vehicle - a direct contrast that's tempered here and there with grays and accenting red or blue - and for the most part, the color blocking works for me.
I'm not terribly fond of the top rear section of the ship; the angles here feel confused to me, and multi-piece solutions to one-piece slots don't feel like they achieve a significant enough level of detail to me to be necessary. I find the repeated motif of light bley bars with dark bley clips, as well as the stripes made by light bley snotted tile strips on either side of the dropship's doors, enforce some unity on the vehicle's atypical design.
The dropship's cockpit is pretty nifty. It can seat two pilots, one on top of the other, and they're both equipped with nice stickered-on control panels (I'm also pleased by how snugly the windscreen part has been accommodated).
The top turret is a nice gesture, but its seat is rather small for a vested Robocop, and the sniper gun and light clipped to the back of the seat clutter the sitting area and are prone to falling off when placing or removing a gunner. There are four minifig equipment clips up top, too, two of which hold laser guns, and the other two binoculars. See also in the above image a printed 1x4 brick with a code on it - this code, I've found out, is meant for the LEGO Movie videogame.
The mail holding/cargo area of the dropship is a little hard to finagle in. Though the main doors open smoothly (and, when closed, fit perfectly against the sides of the vehicle), the space they open up to is small, made smaller by their continued presence overhead. There's a central support column with its own gun clips, a set of printed control panels beneath the winch, and a gap on the back end of the main bay through which the laser prison, if stored, can be seen.
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?
Aside from the role-play value inherent in any set, 70815 includes a few play features, which I'll describe in depth below.
Speaking of the laser prison; there's a laser prison! The dropship has a hatch at the back that, when opened, reveals a cavity for the included trans-red laser prison, ideal for storing captured Master Builders. The prison itself is about a boring as a trans-red-sided box can be, with its flat roof and raising gate. But then again, I might be harboring a few passive aggressive feelings towards the design of the laser prison because it, unfortunately, prevents the back hatch of the dropship from closing entirely when it's inside. If 1x1 spaces had been cut into the back corners of the cell's roof, it'd be able to slide far enough back into its designated cranny for the door not to have been a problem, so that's just too bad.
Another of the play features of the dropship is moving thrusters. By turning a knob at the back, all four thrusters will rotate together anywhere in a 45 degree range. I thought this function was very clever - especially in its solution for ensuring that all four thrusters would be in the same alignment - and effective. The dropship will turn its thrusters back towards the ground when it's landed, though, just because of the weight of the vehicle and the minimal friction keeping the thrusters at any desired angle.
Two Star Wars spring launchers are included too, one on each side. The positioning of these is about as good as could be asked for; they're easy to trigger (but not near crucial swoosh handholds), fairly well-hidden, and the shots fired hug close to the vehicle without hitting it, which I personally find to be cool.
Last of the set's functions is its hoist. Inside the front of the dropship, behind the cockpit, there's a spool of LEGO string, one end of which is fed through a hole into the main loading zone, and onto which is tied a closed clip. On one side of the dropship, the winch's axle is attached to a turning knob; on the other side, it's hooked up to a gear, which in turn has a winch on it. You can either draw up Robocops attached to the closed clip when the winch is leaned into the gear, or let the spool out when it's pointed away. It's an effective and fitting feature.
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
Well, that sums up the in-depth review. Let's look at how the set fares under our rigorous grading system...
What's to like?
- First LEGO Movie set that's centered on a bad guy vehicle
- Eight figures, including the evidently immortal Johnny Thunder
- EVERYTHING IS BATMAN (who slipped that one in there?)
- Dropship is pretty slick, fittingly police-y, with some nice details and a good shape
- Play features are generally effective and suitable for the product
- Price-to-parts ratio ($80 USD for 854 parts) is good
What's not to like?
- Sticker application can be hard, if you follow the instructions
- Basically no interesting pieces included, no new molds
- Emmet, again?
- Back-top section of dropship is meh
- Loading zone is inconvenient to access
- Laser cage doesn't fit inside vehicle
70815 is a solid addition to the LEGO Movie collection. It's a substantial vehicle product, equipped with interesting play features, some great figures (but, some average ones too), and of course the cool factor of adorably corrupted, futuristic justice. While the set offers little in the way of new or exciting elements, and a few of its areas could have been better designed, the overall outcome is more positive than negative; and, as this isn't put together with Kragle, it can always pad your parts bin.
I hope you all have enjoyed the review - please join me in thanking Nuju Metru for putting this together in the Talkback topic. Of course you can ask any questions or leave any feedback you might have there as well. That wraps things up for this review, but we've got plenty of others in the pipeline, so keep checking back on BZPower for LEGO news, reviews, and more!
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