Thursday, 25 September 2014

Lego City – Arctic Snowmobile (60032)

Assembly time: 15-20 minutes

Pieces: 44

Year: 2014
Theme: City


City is Lego’s widest spanning theme, covering situations that run the gamut from the mundane to the borderline fantastic, all presented in the unique Lego fashion.  But I’ve never bought much from the theme – in recent years, only a Creator Treehouse that could pass as part of the City series. My interests always tended more towards things like Castle and Pirates, rather than the real world. Nonetheless, City is Lego’s best-selling theme, and the sets are consistently well-designed and of high quality, even if they’re not usually my cup of tea.

But I may soon be changing my tune, thanks to the recent release of the Arctic sub-theme of City. Not only does it combine the extreme cold and science – Lego have accidentally recreated Jon Carpenter’s version of The Thing in block form!  


The minifigures for this range don’t appear to have been given distinct names – most City stuff is just a blank slate for kids (or adults) to project whatever they want onto. So this is just a guy— presumably some kind of scientist – who’s working out in the middle of the Arctic to dig up and study these crystals from the ice. The blue and orange colour scheme is really appealing, in spite of also being shockingly ugly – the bright colours would certainly make sense in the blinding white snow of the Arctic. His hood and pants are blue, and his jacket and sunglasses are bright orange (complete with reflective sheen!). Lots of little details are printed on him, including carabiners on his pants and a smaller version of the Arctic logo on the snowmobile on the back.     

He comes with two accessories for himself – his pickaxe and walkie-talkie – and two accessories that aren’t specifically his, but fairly important to the set – the ice block and the mysterious crystal. All of the items are pieces we’ve seen before across different sets – the crystal has been Kryptonite, CHI Energy, and an evil wizard’s artefact in the past, just to name a couple of things. But the coolest reuse is the way a simple recolour has changed the rocks from the Mining subset of City into big chunks of ice. Hooray for clever parts reuse!  

This build won’t challenge you, but it yields a pretty cool result. The orange of the kit gives it an almost Tonka truck-style look – it’s toy-ish enough to grab the kids, while still looking convincing enough to pass as a "real" vehicle. Front and centre on the bonnet is the Arctic logo, which too me looks like a modified version of the Ice Planet 2002 logo, from all the way back in 1993.

Not being a snowmobile expert, I can’t offer too many points on realism, but it certainly looks about right. And though it’s intended for this Arctic theme, there’s no real reason you couldn’t incorporate into some kind of snow vacation-themed City display. Hopefully we'll see a recolour for such a thing in the future.   
It also features a small, similarly-coloured sled for hauling the ice block, which can also be detached if you prefer. One does have to wonder how this guy manages to move the ice block onto the sled by himself though…

I love Arctic-themed stuff, and was a huge fan of the Ice Planet 2002 stuff as a kid, so this theme grabbed me as soon as I first heard about it, earlier this year. The Snowmobile is a great kit, though the self-contained nature of this Arctic subtheme means that you’re probably going to need to invest in more than one set to create an effective display.  Fortunately, all of the Arctic sets look pretty darn good. It’s the first theme in a long time where I’ve wanted to own every set, though I will probably just restrict myself to the base camp for the aforementioned The Thing re-enactments and possibly the massive helicrane. It depends how good Santa is to me this year, I suspect!  

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1 comment:

  1. I like how fluffy his hood looks