Wednesday, January 25th, 2017 at 6:06am by Jason, BZPower Reporter
It's time for another BZPower Set Review, and today BZPower Reporter Xccj studies 70362 Battle Suit Clay. Will this new knightly mech be worth its weight in gold, or shall this be armor that's left out to rust? Read on or watch the video review to find out for yourself.
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
We get an angular box shape this time; it's the same basic design as the previous Ultimate Nexo Knights sets, although this one is a bit wider. It's dark blue and features Clay in his Battle Suit posing dramatically as he fires a blast of energy from his shield. There's also an image of the full Clay minifigure, as well as a preview of the 5 Nexo Power shields that come in the set.
The back of the box shows some alternative images, including a shot showing how Clay fits into the opened mech. There are some images showing how you can play with the Nexo Power shields, and a 1:1 image of Clay's helmet. Along with some of the other text is an advertisement for the Merlok 2.0 App, where you can make use of your newly acquired Nexo Powers.
Inside, you get two bags, the loose sword pieces, and an instruction booklet. This set comes with 79 parts, plus a few extras, and sells for $9.99 USD.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
The build is straightforward, especially for anybody who's built a CCBS or Mixel set recently. For me, I was less interested in the designs of the build and more into the various new elements and how they were used.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
lthough the price per piece ratio might be a little high in this set, it contains a staggering amount of new pieces and rare colors. To start off, we've got a new mech body piece. It appears with the other Nexo Knight Battle Suits, as well as the recent Mr. Freeze set, and I expect we'll be seeing more of it in the future. The main gray piece had a rod connection in the bottom, studs on the back, clips on the front, and two Mixel joints at the shoulders, as well as studs on the inside. But it also has a nicely proportioned angular design along the side, and is the perfect size for mini-mechs. Although these is some concern that this is a specialized piece, I think it has enough connection points to remain useful. (Plus, the specialized use is bound to be a popular one.) The dark blue cover piece attaches to the clips and fits nicely over the front and top, leaving just enough room for the fig inside to pop his head out. Overall, the design of these two pieces is quite impressive.
Two new weapon elements also appear in this set. First we have the new trans orange blade piece. It's about 12 studs long, and has 2 studs at the base to connect to. The blade is a bit flat, but still looks pretty awesome. I happened to get two copies of the piece in my set, but I don't know if they all come with extras. The blade also appears in Clay's Falcon Fighter set. The other "weapon" piece we get is the shield. It's an interesting element with the studs offset by 120 degrees in order to accommodate three of the Nexo Power shields. There are also clips on the side, a rod connection in the center, and antistuds on the bottom, so plenty of useful connection points. While this does a good job as a shield, I can see this piece being very useful in other models, especially if you're trying to work in some interesting angles.
There are a few other new and interesting elements. A new one is the dark blue slope element; it's like a 1x2 45 degree slope piece, but it's missing two plates' worth in the back, and will allow for some interesting designs. People who like to make MOCs with small intricate details will probably enjoy this element. We also have some 2x2 wedge plates in dark gray, which are fairly new and nice to get more off. Additionally, you get a bunch of slope elements in dark azure; previously these have only appeared in a few sets, like the Volkswagen Beetle, but this is the cheapest they've appeared in. There's also the 3 ball joint piece, which was introduced in 2014 but hasn't really been used with the Mixel joints a lot. (It's being used as the hips for all the Nexo Knight Battle Suits, so that's cool.)
We also have a few nice printed parts. (No stickers in this set.) First, you get a dark blue 2x2 tile with Clay's Falcon emblem printed on it. Some of them are repeats, like Chicken Power and Flame Wreck, but I believe the other three are new designs. I don't know what kind of powers they provide in the game, but it looks like you'll get a decent variety with each Battle Suit.
You get one minifigure in Clay Moorington. He does come with new torso and legs printing, which are more colorful than his standard knightly garb. In fact, the detailing doesn't really include any armor on him, which makes sense because his armor is the mech suit. The head and helmet pieces are standard for the character, but it's still nice to have a unique character in the smaller models. (Well, nice unless you're a completionist collector with a budget.)
You end up with a pretty solid mech in the end, with some decent proportions too. The torso element is as tall as a standard minifigure body, and so it looks quite natural for Clay's head to be on top of the body, and the size of the arms and legs help make him look bulky and strong. The fig is able to sit snugly inside the armor, and the front piece easily folds down to access the character too. There are no controls inside the torso, such as printing on the back of the front piece, but this doesn't really bug me too much. And the top only leaves just enough space for the head and shoulders, providing ample coverage. I am very impressed with this design.
The limbs of the figure are fairly standard, especially if you've build Mixels before. The arms do an interesting transfer from Mixel joints to standard ball joints, allowing for the use of the Bionicle hand pieces. But the connection is solid and mostly covered up by shoulder armor, so it works. (No knee or elbow joints for these Battle Suits. But, to be fair, we rarely got those joints in the Mixels either.) The legs are even more basic and reminiscent of the Mixels, but if a design works, why change it? One thing I do appreciate is that the ball joint connections were used on the body instead of the sockets. (Most of the Mixels used sockets on the body, which generally restricted movement.) In particular, the three balljoint piece used for the hips works nicely. (Although the design was actually first used in the mini Samurai Mech in the Nya Dimensions set.) My one issue is that the hips include one unused ball joint element pointed backwards, which I wish could've been utilized somehow.
Color wise, the suit works nicely. The basic grays and dark blue are contrasted nicely by the dark azure and trans orange elements. Although the shields can throw in a few extra splashes of color, depending on which ones you choose to add to the piece. (There's room for three Nexo Power shields, but the set comes with five, so you're guaranteed to have at least two leftover.) I also like the colorful design of the sword's hilt, which is built nicely around the blade piece.
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 figure is fully posable. It's a nice cross between the Mixels and larger CCBS characters. Clay's Battle Suit has nine points of articulation; two for each limb, and also rotating hips. Plus, the connection points for the weapons are also mobile; the sword connects to the hand via a rod, so the blade can be angled depending on the pose. The shield also has a technic connection that offers it two points of rotation, allowing for easy use while posing. Some characters in the past have had restrictive shield placements, so this flexibility is a nice touch.
Although very posable, the model can get a little boring on its own. Luckily, Lego has designed some of the new enemy characters to be of a similar size, so once you buy the larger sets, you'll have an adequate foe for Clay to face. (How financially convenient for them to do that!) If you are on a bit of a budget, you can also have Clay train against one of his fellow Nexo Knights, who all have their own Battle Suits appearing in this wave. Although it's fun to collect them, I did start to see similarities between the five suits, and realized that most of them are the same basic design. For now, I think the novelty of the new mech torsos, rare parts, and nice colors will keep this wave looking interesting. But if they milk this design for two long, the issue of boring clones will come to light. Besides colors, the only thing Clay's Battle Mech really has going for it is the sword design.
Additionally, there's a combination feature that LEGO is known for incorporating into its sets. The back of the Battle Suit has an orange hinge piece, and this can apparently connect to sections from the larger vehicle sets, amplifying the power of the character. It's a simple addition to the set that could certainly increase play value, so long as you can afford all the larger sets.
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
What's to like?
The new torso pieces will revolutionize mech building
Lots of other great new or rare parts
Great color scheme
What's not to like?
Unused third ball joint on the hips
Nowhere to store the two spare Nexo Shields
Many of the Nexo Knight Battle Suits share similar designs
Need to buy more sets to give him an advisory
Clay's Battle Suit is overall a great mech with a good color scheme, lots of posability, comes with a good selection of new and rare parts. The exclusive minifigure and five Nexo Power shields are icing on the cake. The Battle Suits fulfills the niche that has previously been occupied by the Nexo Knight Ultimate Character, Ninjago spinners, and Legends of Chima Speedorz sets. However, most of those sets were merely ways to get exclusive minifigures with a few superficial elements thrown in to justify the cost, and the builds have been mild to forgettable. But these Battle Mechs are solid designs in and of themselves, and I think these will be very popular. If this design persists for too long, it might get boring, but for now it's quite awesome. I would totally recommend picking at least one up, depending on your favorite color or character. At the very least, Clay's Battle Suit delivers.
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