2017’s Lego Ninjago Movie didn’t have the critical success of The Lego Movie or The Lego Batman Movie, but it did create a whole series of excellent tie in sets. Where the Ninjago theme never really appealed to me, with an art design that never really clicked, the Ninjago Movie versions were bold, colourful and a lot more interesting to my old eyes.
Today we’re going to be looking at one of these sets, 70615 – Fire Mech. You can watch the video, or read on for the full review with photos…
This is a 944 piece set that retails for £59.99 in the UK and $69.99 in the US, although now we’re a year on from the release of the movie, it’s often available at Amazon with a good discount. Be sure to check brickdigest.deals for the latest UK pricing.
Standing at 36cm tall, it’s an impressive looking model, with bright bold red colouring, two massive flaming guns and tall flags on the back. Like Big Hero 6, the Ninjago Movie favoured an Asian-infused futuristic technology vibe, and the abundance of stickers on this set all tie in with the idea that the mech parts have come from a factory floor and assembled into final form.
There are a lot of interesting building techniques used to achieve the mechanical look, including rare joint pieces and a number of different SNOT methods. The outside parts are largely standard bricks, without the need to offer custom moulded parts like the buildable figure range. The joints are also all strong, so this should stand up to the rigours of child’s play, and it’s remarkably stable on it’s two large feet. The joints having enough give to almost act like suspension when pushed. Sadly it’s not completely posable, with no joints at the knees, and arms that seem slightly two heavy for the shoulder joints, which does limit a lot of potential play opportunities.
Each of the arms has a flame thrower at the end which can be rotated from the back with a wheel. The rubber tubing on both these and the flame tanks at the rear adds to the mechanical feeling of the model. They also have disc throwers at the top, which work by pushing a button at the back. I guarantee the discs are lost within the first 10 minutes.
The front cockpit opens up with room for Kai to pilot, with joysticks on either side.
The build is pretty quick, with 8 bags, each with a single number. That reduces the amount of piece hunting because you have fewer on the table to look through, and the 9-14 age range seems about right. It can feel a little repetitive, with almost identical arms, legs and feet, so it would have been nice to have more variation on each side just to make that more interesting.
There are 6 minifigures included, Kai – who is the pilot of this particular mech in the film, Zane, Lauren, Henry, Hammer Head and Jelly. It’s certainly one of the stranger collection of minifigures I’ve seen, and Jelly certainly has the craziest headgear.
Whether for play or display, this is a striking, largely successful attempt at the Mech genre, and the price is right for the size and number of pieces included. Despite some of my reservations over the poseability and repetitiveness of the build, I do think that this would put a smile on the face of any child. Which is why Noah now gets this one.