Set Review - Arctic Scout 30310

This little polybag (like so many others) evaded me for months.  Finally one of my LUG buddies found them and bought one for me on speculation.  His speculation was pretty good as I was more than willing to trade some other City polybag I had laying around.  I was pretty thrilled to get this one.

Something seemed odd about the set.  After a while it struck me.  While the rest of the Arctic explorers all come with fur lined hoods, this guy lacks one.  Despite the fact that he flies through the air creating his own wind chill in an open cockpit aircraft.  This is a bad case of hypothermia waiting to happen.  Then the crash and the polar bear feast.  Sounds like a major fail.  There is at leat a little bit of fur printed on the front of the torso.  Whether it's his uniform or from a polar bear escape, we are not told.

Overall I would give the craft maybe a 3.5 out of 5.  It's cute and fun but not highly sturdy and could have been designed a little better.  My 3 year old son helped me build this craft but it kept falling apart with his play.  He knows how to be careful and could be, but generally it will only tolerate gentle swooshing.  There is one printed piece, an orange 2x2x2/3 double half bow.  I rarely if ever see stickers in polybags so the printing should be expected.  It has the Arctic logo on it which is four pointed star over the northern bit of the globe.  It's a generic enough graphic that it could fit with several themes.

New with several other items are the landing gear.  These are like the minifig footgear but way bigger.  They are 1x6 in size with a Technic pin connector and two studs on the back.  Because the front half is flared a bit, a minifig cannot wear them.  These same skis are used throughout the subtheme on several of the models.

One last thing of note is an interesting connection that is rarely used.  A 1x2 brick is stuck to the underside of a 2x plate.  But instead of a normal connection, the brick studs connect to the bottom tubes of the plate.  Not revolutionary or breakthrough, but certainly rare in official LEGO models.

More Arctic Items from LEGO Shop@Home:

LEGO Finds - Calendar Week 47

Due to a change in schedules, LEGO Finds will now occupy Friday for a while.  At least until I start making some online orders again.  This week I found nothing in the usual haunts but during her walk Mrs. DagsBricks found this by the side of the road.  Seems about right.

Set Review - Batwing 30301

Again with the Toys'R'Ours.  This one came out of the blue.  I found a 3 day only 15% off coupon, plus they were offering the Batwing polybag free on in-store purchases of $30 or more.  I've got a target set right now that I'm trying to amass so this seemed like a good opportunity.  I walked up to the register with $100 worth of LEGO in my hand.  She rung it up and told me that I qualified for the free Batman polybag.  "Well, alright, I'll take it!"  Next I presented my 15% off coupon.  Price came down to $85.  Finally I presented a $5 Rewards'R'less-than-the-other-guys and ended up knocking my purchase down to $80.  For $105 worth of MSRP stuff.  Not bad.

I had been lusting after the mini Batwing for a while.  Of course, the same was true of the Batmobile and Tumbler, but those are other stories.  I could never figure out where the Batwing was going to land.  There'd be web rumors here and there.  Target was a bust.  Finally I saw it as a TRU promo and had to act (despite my feelings on the retail chain).

And I must say, I'm impressed.  The cockpit reminds me exactly of the Jedi Interceptor.  The shape of the bat-symbol is well done, despite the angles.  I'm going to give it a pass since curves are not an easy task for TLG's designers.  The attempt was fairly well made.  What's really missing though is not as forgivable.  Much like a fighter jet, the Batwing should have a vertical tail (double in fact) rising behind the cockpit.  Two more stabilizers should be underneath.  A fender piece is used to start to simulate some of this idea, but it's really not adequate.

The major test though is whether or not this looks right in the spotlight.  As we all know, Batman ends his movies by flying off into the sunset (or the moonlight).  Just before the screen goes black, he pulls hard on the stick and heads straight up, silhouetting his craft against the heavenly body.  The bat-symbol is then burned into our retinae as the theater lights come back on.  Everywhere we look for the next several days, the bat-symbol appears.

Now that's marketing!