In August 2020, the LEGO® Group released a series of underwater exploration sets in partnership with National Geographic. I was particularly excited about the new shark figurines. The Ocean Exploration Ship came with a great white shark capable of swallowing a Minifigure whole. A couple of sets also came with a new hammerhead shark. One was the Ocean Exploration Base. The second is the Ocean Mini Submarine (60263). While I do not generally acquire 4+ sets, this is an easy and inexpensive way to get one of the hammerheads. But how is the actual set?
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 for more information) and provide my honest opinion.
OCEAN MINI SUBMARINE SUMMARY
- NAME: Ocean Mini Submarine
- SET #: 60263
- THEME: City
- COST: $13.99 CAD
- BRICK COUNT: 41
- MINIFIGURES: 1
- OF INTEREST: 1 hammerhead shark
- RELEASE DATE: August 24, 2021
OCEAN MINI SUBMARINE QUICK REVIEW
- VALUE: 25% (Really expensive cost-per-brick with little build time for AFOLs.)
- BUILD: 70% (4+ sets need to be simple, but this is too simply in some ways.)
- MINIFIGURES: 100% (Great minifig and an awesome shark to boot.)
- ENTERTAINMENT: 90% (Great set for little kids.)
- OVERALL SCORE: 71%
OCEAN MINI SUBMARINE (60263) REVIEW
The Ocean Mini Submarine costs $13.99 in Canada. Additionally, it consists of 41 pieces. The resulting cost-per-brick is $0.34, which is the most expensive I have ever seen for a City set. However, it is on par with the only other 4+ set I have reviewed (Spider-Man and Sandman Showdown). All the same, it does not fare well compared to other LEGO® sets in terms of value. I rate it at 19% in this category. As if that were not enough, the build time is low. I assembled the whole kit in seven minutes. Consequently, each minute of build time costs $2.00. That earns a score of 30%. Averaging these scores gives an overall value rating of 25%. Of course, all of this comes from an AFOL perspective, and AFOLs are not the target audience for this kit.
Given that this is a 4+ set, there is little to actually assemble. The brunt of the submarine is one solid brick. You attach a few bricks to assemble a roof and the domed window. Additionally, you build two robotic arms. Since this set targets the 4+ crowd, I will refrain from commenting on the simplicity of the set. However, there are two issues I have with it even for younger kids. Firstly, the arms are too short to grab anything in front of the sub. Secondly, the sub has no controls. A couple of joysticks would not hurt. Otherwise, I like the small sub that came with the Ocean Exploration Ship much more. However, I understand the need for simplicity in this kit. For what it is, it is satisfactory. I rate it at 70%.
This kit contains one Minifigure. He comes with all the standard parts, including front and back torso print and leg printing. The only lacking detail is a double-sided face. The set also comes with an amazing shark, a treasure chest, and four gemstones. I rate the character design at 100%. For the brick-to-fig ratio, I will also include the shark since it has some articulation. Two characters in a 41-piece kit is a phenomenal figurine count for a set of this size. Once again, Ocean Mini Submarine earns 100%.
I do not rate 18+ sets from a 4+ perspective. As such, I will not rate this 4+ set from an 18+ perspective. I think this set is fun for the target age group. In fact, I like it more than the 4+ Spider-Man set I rated previously. I think this kit appeals to more kids than the Spider-Man set did. Who isn’t at least somewhat fascinated by sharks? It could use a second Minifigure though… preferably a female one. I rate the entertainment score at 90%.
OVERALL SCORE: 71%
For the intended audience, the Ocean Mini Submarine is a decent set. It is easy to assemble, comes with a good Minifigure, and a hammerhead shark. As a build, I think it lacks a few key details. Additionally, the cost for what you get is high. Overall, the set is satisfactory. Additionally, it is the cheapest way to get a hammerhead shark. For that reason alone, this set might appeal to AFOLs and KFOLs alike. What do you think of the Ocean Mini Submarine (60263)? Feel free to comment below or reach out on social media.
Until next time,
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