How to Trap Tyrannosaurs [LEGO T. rex Tracker Review]
I am simply chomping at the bit to review this set. If you have been reading my posts at all, you probably already know how excited I am about having this set. I wrote a post earlier just about Jurassic Park and finding this set on clearance at Walmart (see “Want a Discount T-Rex?”). So, without further ado, let’s have a look at T. rex Tracker.
If you want to know more about how I rate a LEGO set, you can read my guidelines here.
Summary of Set
Name: T. rex Tracker
Set #: 75918
Cost: $89.99 CDN ($75 on clearance)
Brick Count: 520
Minifigure Count: 3
Other Figs: Tyrannosaurus rex
Manuals: 2 (118 pages total)
Release Date: May 2, 2015
Summary Review: 88%
Value: 80% on sale (slightly above average cost of $0.14 per brick)
Build: 100% (surprisingly enjoyable with lots of neat details)
Minifigures: 92% (1 Minifigure for every 173 bricks, plus a T. rex)
Entertainment: 80% on sale (you pay a lot for actual building time, but the set is great fun)
Value: 70% at regular price, 80% on sale
In terms of the average cost per brick, this set is a little on the expensive side. With 520 bricks, and a regular price of $89.99, you are paying around $0.17 per brick. I found this set on clearance for $75 though, so I ended up paying $0.14 per brick. At full price, I give this set 3.5/5 for value, but on clearance, it gets 4/5.
If you compare this set with other licenced sets, the price per brick is not that bad. In the Summer 2016 catalogue review, I noted that licenced themes tended to have an average cost per brick of $0.14. So, on sale, this set is pretty much right on track. It is a little over the average if purchased at full price.
I really enjoyed building this set. Honestly, I bought this set for the T. rex. I was planning to repurpose the rest, but after putting it together, I actually like it a lot. I have visions of building a LEGO Jurassic Park, and they will need a way transport dinosaurs… I like the look of the T. rex cage, and the fact that it is removable. A separate helicopter lift à-la-Lost-World would be nice to lift the cage on and off. I suppose you could build a crane at each paddock as well. The Jurassic World stickers are fun, but printed tiles would have been better.
There is a grappling hook of sorts on one side of the truck. It has a string attached, supposedly to catch the T. rex and help reel it in. It actually works very well as a play feature. The rope is wound around two pegs, and it unravels nicely when the hook is fired. A Minifigure can sit on top of the launcher, and the launcher swivels on a double jointed set-up that allows about 180° of mobility.
There is a little storage case for tranquilizer darts, a computer, and a parabolic dish antenna attached to the back of the truck. The computer screen shows a T. rex picture and a sound wave, which goes well with the parabolic dish antenna. I like how those accessories compliment each other. When I was in Africa, we used a similar device to scan for lion vocalizations, so the science nerd in me is overjoyed to see it as a LEGO build.
While I do not normally comment on the instruction manuals, I did like the little add-ons in these ones. The first one came with a map of Isla Nublar, showing where each set in this theme would be on the island, as well as checklists for the Minifigures and dinosaurs in the series. I like checklists, and always post the Minifigure Series ones on my fridge. The second manual in this set had a funny ad for the LEGO Jurassic World videogame.
There is nothing that I don’t really like about this set, except maybe the stickers instead of printed tiles. I would give the build a solid 9/10, but because I like the instruction manual bonuses so much, I will boost that to a 10/10.
This set comes with 3 Minifigs and, or course, the T. rex. If you value this set based only on the Minifigures, you are getting 1 Minifig for every 173 pieces, which is pretty good and would land it a 4/5 on my rating scale. But, there is also the T. rex to consider. I bought this set for the dinosaur, as I am sure many others did. It is huge compared to a Minifigure, and it is awesome. The T-Rex alone warrants this set a 5/5 for Minifigure value.
In terms of the characters, you get Hoskins, an ACU officer (Animal Control Unit, I am assuming), and a vet. Hoskins comes with front and back print on the torso, a double sided face, and a briefcase accessory. His legs are just plain black. He is probably the most boring of the Minifigs in this set. I give him 6.5/10.
The ACU officer has very detailed printing on both the front and back of the torso, as well as the front of the legs. She has a double sided face, and comes with a helmet, chest protector (printed on both sides), and a tranquilizer gun. She gets 9/10.
The vet also has nice printing (including the Jurassic World logo) on both the front and the back of the torso. He has plain blue legs, and no double sided face. He comes with a hat, and you build a flare and dinosaur-prod for him to use when luring the T-Rex. He gets 8/10.
Then there is the Tyrannosaurus Rex. It has 7 points of articulation: the jaw opens and closes (with a satisfying click, I might add), the neck allows up and down motion as well as rotation, both arms and legs can rotate, and the tail can rotate. Its paint job doesn’t really match the movie, but it is very nice all the same and looks better than the movie colours would have. I can’t rank the T-Rex on the same scale as a Minifigure, but from a purely subjective point of view, it is worth 100%.
Overall, the figurines that come with this set earn an average of 84%. If I factor in the Minifigure value, it goes up to an overall of 92%.
Entertainment: 80% on sale, 70% at full price
I spent about two and a half hours building this set. Two and a half hours translates into 150 minutes. Since I paid $75 for this set, that means this set cost me about $0.50 a minute to build. If I bought the T. Rex Tracker at full price, the cost would have been even higher ($0.59/minute). Compared with another set that I recently reviewed, the Corner Deli, this is a little high. The Deli took roughly the same amount of time, but cost about $0.33 a minute to build. I have just finished building the Ghostbusters Firehouse Headquarters (review to come soon), and it breaks down to about $0.27 a minute. So, for fun value on sale, this set gets 3/5. At full price, I would say it’s more like 2/5.
When considering my enjoyment of this set, it gets full marks. Like I mentioned before, I was pleasantly surprised with this set considering that I bought it for the T-Rex alone. I would keep this set exactly as is if I was currently building my LEGO Jurassic Park. 5/5.
For overall entertainment value, this set earn an average of 80% on sale, and 70% at full price.
I think this is a wonderful set. Now that it is on its way to retirement, you can find it on clearance if you are lucky, as I did. On sale, this set earns 88% from me. Had I bought it at full price, I would have given it 83%, which is still pretty good. You are paying a higher than average cost per brick, and the cost per minute of building time isn’t great. But, the build itself and Minifigures are nice. Most importantly, YOU GET A TYRANNOSAURUS REX!!! This set is well worth the purchase.
Until next time,