Theme: City (Arctic sub-theme)
Build Time: 30 min
I've really taken a shine to Arctic sub-theme that came out last year. All of its sets are worth owning, and while it's territory Lego has covered in years past, it's been more than a decade since the last Arctic sets, and I think it's now being covered in much better fashion. Today I look at one of the smaller sets in the series, which I received as a Secret Santa late last year (thanks TK!) -- the Arctic Ice Crawler.
The Arctic male minifigs appear to use a generic body, with only the face different from figure to figure. They don't appear to have individual names, so feel free to make up your own. This guy has a green visor, a slight smile and stubble on his face, so I suppose Professor Green should be as good a name as any.
Professor Green comes with two accessories -- an icepick and circular saw. Obviously, he can also use the crane, the ice block and the mysterious crystal too.
The build is quite simple, but it's still very entertaining. The little details, like the rear-view mirrors, the radar and the down-facing lights on top of the cab are all a lot of fun, really enhancing what could have just been a basic block on tank treads.
The set has a great, chunky feel, somewhat akin to a Tonka trunk. This beast looks like it would definitely be able to stand up to the demands of Arctic terrain, crawling across the snowy plains in search of great treasure, lying deep beneath the ground.
As might be expected, the crane is one of the set's best features. It's not quite articulated enough to pick the ice block straight up and dump it on the back of the truck, but it's close enough to fudge it. The hook doesn't hold the ice block particularly tightly, but this the same across the board for all the Arctic sets that feature a hook. Play carefully!
Just a side note -- though the truck cab has doors, the minifigure is actually most easily slotted in by removing the roof. You could probably fit two figures in the cab, but I don't think you'd be able to get them clicked in together. The interior makes it primarily a solo vehicle, though I'm sure ambitious customisers could kit it out to seat more.
The Arctic Ice Crawler is a great addition to the Arctic subtheme. It's available at a good pricepoint, and it's also entirely possible to use it as an "army builder" of sorts -- there's no reason why your Arctic expedition couldn't make use of several of these vehicles. So if you've been hesitating, I'd say you should definitely take the plunge.
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