Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base (80022) Review

The Monkie Kid pre-release reviews continue today with a look at Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base (80022). We are getting into the big ones now. This is the bronze medalist from the March 2021 wave of sets. The kit features the Spider Queen’s mobile base of operations, and what a playset it is.

NOTE: The LEGO® Group provided this set for review. However, the provision of products does not guarantee a favorable review. I will use my usual rating system (click here to learn more) and provide my honest opinion.

SPIDER QUEEN’S ARACHNOID BASE SUMMARY

  • NAME: Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base
  • SET #: 80022
  • THEME: Monkie Kid
  • COST: $159.99 CAD
  • BRICK COUNT: 1170
  • MINIFIGURES: 6
  • RELEASE DATE: March 1, 2021
Spider Queen's Arachnoid Base

SPIDER QUEEN’S ARACHNOID BASE QUICK REVIEW

  • VALUE: 89% (Average cost-per-brick, but excellent build time.)
  • BUILD: 80% (Looks great from the outside, but the inside is a little sparse.)
  • MINIFIGURES: 83% (Nicely designed minifigs, but the set needs a few more.)
  • ENTERTAINMENT: 85% (Niche interest for AFOLs, lots of KFOL play potential.)
  • OVERALL SCORE: 84%
Spider Queen's Arachnoid Base

SPIDER QUEEN’S ARACHNOID BASE REVIEW

VALUE: 89%

The Arachnoid Base costs $159.99 in Canada and comes with 1170 pieces. Consequently, the cost-per-brick is $0.137.  By comparison, my average cost-per-brick across all themes is $0.14. Therefore, the cost-per-brick is close to average and earns 81%. For the Monkie Kid theme alone, my average cost-per-brick sits at exactly $0.137. Therefore, Arachnoid Base is also average for theme, earning 80%. Averaging these two scores gives a rounded score of 81% in this category.

The Arachnoid Base took me four hours and 10 minutes to build (250 minutes total). Therefore, at full price the cost-per-minute is $0.64. I have not built enough Monkie Kid sets to make a meaningful comparison of this set to other kits from the theme. However, my average cost-per-minute of build time across all themes is $0.832. Consequently, Arachnoid Base gives you a lot of build time for the price. I rate that at 96%. Averaging this with the cost-per-brick score gives an overall value rating of 89%.

BUILD: 80%

Arachnoid Base comes with two smaller builds. Like all the Spider Queen related sets, you assemble a spider drone. I maintain that these are a lot of fun. Secondly, Monkie Kid gets a little jet. Unlike the spider drone, this build wastes bricks. I do not profess to be an expert in the Monkey King story. However, my understanding is that the Monkey King’s staff can grow or shrink to any size amazingly fast. It does not turn into jet. Why does this enlarged version of the staff have wings and a control panel? Perhaps the show explains it. However, the show is not available in Canada. Therefore, I wonder what the point of this build is. I think the brick count wasted here could add more detail to the Spider Queen’s base. Not every character in every set needs a vehicle.

Ultimately, the small builds are barely a blip in the overall build experience that is Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base. This set is big and relatively detailed. A technic frame and wheels support the entire structure, allowing it to roll along the floor. Of the eight legs, four are completely stationary, and four are moveable. Two of those simply rotate manually into different positions. However, the front two legs feature mechanization. A flagpole on the spider’s back acts as a switch which causes the legs to alternate in an up and down motion. It looks neat. Could it be neater? Yes. I would be more impressed if rolling the base along the floor caused the front legs to move up and down. That would be epic.

A switch (behind the Monkey King) causes the front legs to move.

Otherwise, the exterior of the Spider Queen’s lair looks amazing. The spider’s face is great. There is a platform on the back with the aforementioned switch and an entry point into the base’s interior. Above that is a raised dais for the Spider Queen to stand upon. Underneath her platform is a small space housing a chest full of bones. The dais stands atop the spider’s abdomen, which features a clever opening design and nice brick-built details. However, some of exterior details fall off easily.

Inside the abdomen is the Spider Queen’s base of operations. There is a jail cell for the captive Monkey King. Otherwise, the lair is barebones. A few sticker panels, some jugs of spider venom, and the odd tool. Considering the detail of the exterior, I hoped for more here. Instead of an un-needed jet, this interior requires more attention.

Spider Queen's Arachnoid Base interior

Overall, the Arachnoid Base looks great from the outside. Not all the decorative elements stay on very well though. The inside of the base needs more detail, and Monkie Kid’s jet should not waste any of the brick count that could go towards that. However, the jet is so small compared to the rest of the kit, it does not warrant taking off a full point. Perhaps added to fragile detailing, it makes up one lost mark. The lack of interior details is another. I rate this build at 8/10 (80%).

Underside of Spider Queen's Arachnoid Base
Underside of Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base.

MINIFIGURES: 83%

Arachnoid Base includes six Minifigures. Included are Monkie Kid, Pigsy, the Monkey King, the Spider Queen, Syntax, and a civilian. All come with standard Minifigure parts, except for the Spider Queen. She has a dress brick instead of legs. Additionally, all have double-sided faces except for Pigsy. Four characters have leg printing as well. Finally, Monkie Kid features new face printing. In terms of accessories, the kit includes Monkie Kid’s hood, Monkey King’s tail, Spider Queen’s cape, handcuffs, a pitchfork, a pug, three bones, a skull, a treasure chest, and a wrench. I rate the Minifigure design at 82/90 (91%)

Six Minifigures in a 1170-piece kit is satisfactory, but not great. The brick-to-fig ratio works out to 195:1. Comparatively, my average ratio is 144:1 across all themes. As such, Arachnoid Base earns a ratio of 70%. However, I am finding the brick-to-fig ratios worse for the Monkie Kid theme than other themes. Based on the sets I own, my average ratio for the Monkie Kid theme is 190:1. Therefore, Arachnoid Base fares a little better compared to its own. In that light, it earns 79%. Taken together, the average ratio score is 75%. Combined with the design score, the Arachnoid Base earns a Minifigure grade of 83%.

ENTERTAINMENT: 85%

Arachnoid Base is an interesting set. It is big and it looks neat. While there are a lot of stickers, there is a lot of brick-built detail as well. As such, the stickers do not bother me too much. Additionally, the set features the same new curved corner roof piece seen in the Lion Guardian set. I could see someone wanting to display this. However, that someone is not me. I have limited shelf space now, and many other sets I like more to display. No doubt, this is a niche interest set, but I think it will interest some AFOLs. I rate the AFOL score at 80%.

Like many other Monkie Kid sets, Arachnoid Base is first and foremost a kids’ playset. Rolling it around on the floor reminded me of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Technodrome from my childhood. It had a similar swing-open concept if memory serves. As far as villainous bases go, this is a great one. Far more interesting than the Flaming Foundry from Monkie Kid wave two. However, this one will fall apart during rough play. I had issues photographing it. From a KFOL perspective, I think Arachnoid Base deserves 90%. Averaging this with the AFOL score gives an overall entertainment rating of 85%.

OVERALL SCORE: 84%

Arachnoid Base is a fun build. Additionally, it offers something different from most LEGO® sets on the market right now. It is neither a building nor a run-of-the-mill vehicle. The overall value is good too, and the Minifigures are great. My major complaints are that the set needs more Minifigures, as well as a more detailed interior. In the end, Arachnoid Base is more playset than collector’s item. However, the set offers AFOLs an interesting build and display piece if giant spiders are your thing. What are your thoughts on Arachnoid Base? Feel free to comment below or reach out on social media.

Until next time,

-Tom

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