Spring Lantern Festival (80107) Review

The Spring Lantern Festival (80107) is a beautiful set chock full of detail and colour. This lovely build recreates a traditional Asian garden featuring plenty of accurate details. The brick-built fun includes moon gates, pavilion, pond, bridge, and a light-up ox lantern. Adding to the accuracy and fun are plenty of buildable lanterns, Chun Lian banners, rabbit lantern and 8 great minifigures. I love the modular compatibility of the construction! Being able to seamlessly connect to other sets is a great bit of design. There’s a little bit of fun for everyone.

Spring Lantern Festival (80107) is one of 2 sets released in January 2021 for Chinese New Year. Tom has done a review the Story of Nian (80106) set which you can read here. Grab yourself some tangyuan (sweet rice balls) for snacking and let’s get reviewing. 🍙🏮

NOTE: This set was provided by The LEGO® Group to True North Bricks for review. This does not guarantee a favourable review and all opinions are my own. For a breakdown of the rating system, please click here.

SET SUMMARY

  • NAME: Spring Lantern Festival
  • SET #: 80107
  • THEME: Seasonal
  • COST: $159.99 CAD
  • BRICK COUNT: 1793
  • MINIFIGURES: 8
  • OF INTEREST: Ox lantern with light brick
  • RELEASE DATE: January 10, 2021

QUICK REVIEW

  • VALUE: 91% (great cost-per-brick and good build time values)
  • BUILD: 93% (fun build with a nice footprint, great techniques and designs)
  • MINIFIGURES: 81% (great selection of figs and accessories, but low brick-to-fig ratio)
  • ENTERTAINMENT: 90% (great setting for play and perfect addition to a modular city)
  • OVERALL SCORE: 89% (lovely set with nice details, minifigs and value)
Back Box Art

VALUE: 91%

Spring Lantern Festival (80107) is a substantial set with a healthy piece count of 1,793. At an MSRP of $159.99 this gives us a really great cost-per-brick value of $0.09. That’s just below the desired ‘sweet spot’ price of $0.10 per brick AND well below the overall average of $0.14 for all sets reviewed to date. There’s a great mix of parts too which is great for sorting out and reuse (take note MOC makers). At this price, the set gets a superb score of 96%.

My expert LEGO® building hands managed to assemble the set in 3 hours and 36 minutes. At a total of 216 minutes, this gives me a cost-per-minute value of $0.76 and a score of 86%. I did make a build mistake or two along the way forcing me to dismantle a small section and restart. This did delay me a scooch. Hmm. Maybe I should rethink the term ‘expert’ then? Nah. My article, my rules 😆 Combined together, we get an awesome value score of 91% overall.

BUILD: 95%

Spring Lantern Festival (80107) comes packaged in a lovely box with appropriate red and gold colouring. There’s some lovely artwork on the front and back that goes nicely with the product images. It’s very pretty stuff. Inside you will find 11 numbered bags, a 32×32 baseplate and a 16×32 baseplate. The build is split into two parts across two instruction manuals. The first book is 171 pages and builds the gate, ox, pond, bridge and bamboo trees on the bigger plate. Book 2 sees the creation of the second moon gate and the pavilion. Each section has a lot of creative build techniques and fun elements to enjoy. There’s also a beautiful set of illustrations on first few pages of Book 1. The artistry is great and it’s a nice way to start the build.

The larger baseplate begins with traditional modular design elements – flat tiles creating a sidewalk border. It’s thinner than the actual modular line, but still fits in really nicely – a smart bit of detail. The park itself has several layers of construction. Big ol’ bricks help elevate the landscape higher so you can create quite a striking pond. And striking is the word! I love how much detail is in this water feature. Placing transparent tiles over different colours creates a real sense of depth to the water. And let’s not forget about these amazing printed coy fish tiles. They are pretty fab and so far exclusive to this set. They’re placed swimming around floating flowers (made from crowns) and it’s honestly rather magical.

Traditional Details

The Spring Lantern Festival wouldn’t be complete without lanterns. There’s a lot of lanterns in this set. Three different elements are used: simple red cones, recoloured pumpkins and translucent minifig heads with gold printing. Each has a gold element (tile, tassel) to decorate or to hang with. All 3 work beautifully when strung on a line. One of the main elements of this set is of course the brick-built ox lantern, celebrating the 2021 Chinese Zodiac. The build itself is really simple but effective. But the best part is of course the light brick inside. It’s the best and smartest addition for essentially a lit up object. It works so well and as I’ve stated before, I am a sucker for a light brick!

The circular openings with tiled roofs are known as moon gates. The build looks great from the front but isn’t quite as round from the other side. But that’s a tiny nitpick and easily ignored. Traditional tiled roofs are well presented thanks to the black semi-circle tile elements. It’s the perfect shape complimented by dragon heads on either side. A foot bridge spans the pond but the sizing is a bit chunky given the smaller footprint. And the only thing I can say about the bamboo is *chef’s kiss*. Really well designed and looks fantastic.

Modular Design

Book 2 creates a very detailed pavilion on the smaller plate. For this section another moon gate leads you to the lantern-lit path, ending in the exceptionally designed structure. The design features some really smart and advanced build techniques to create the hexagonal shape. It sits on a bit of a rocky pedestal which I think looks really sharp. It fits in very well with the natural park setting. The roof is my favourite aspect of this set – it’s kind of awesome! The interior frame is really technical and comes together seamlessly. Adding to the fun are roof ribs that are made from recoloured candles and bananas! Too darn clever. A couple more slick bamboo trees helps tie it in with the larger plate.

The modular aspect also allows you to reconfigure the smaller plate on either side of the larger one. Doing so makes for a slightly different look, but it’s certainly not magically different or better. In fact, the standard configuration is preferable as it lines up the walkways better. But if you’re looking to add this set to your existing modulars (*raises hand*) then you can split it up to play around with the final layout. It’s a fun way to have options with your own LEGO® city. There’s plenty of opportunity to add your own flare and extra details to the park, which is definitely something I plan to do. With all that said, I give the build a very solid 93%!

MINIFIGURES: 80%

Spring Lantern Festival (80107) comes with 8 minifigures. Well, technically there are 7 civilian characters and 1 minifig-shaped lantern. The lantern is a lovely monochromatic red with gold torso printing and a translucent head. It hangs out at the pavilion moon gate entrance. It’s an exclusive fig and the 2021 printed on the torso makes for a nice memento of the release date. The other figures include 2 children and 5 adults. Every minifigure comes with an appropriate accessory for some sweet extra points.

Starting with the kiddos, we get figures with typical short legs, minimal front and back printing on the torsos and dual-sided expressions. The boy has a sharp scarf on and his torso print is really nice and exclusive to this set. The girl’s torso has an adorable unicorn design which appears in only this and the Fairground Accessory Set (40373). Her accessory is a white bunny with red printing (a traditional child’s lantern) while the boy gets a hanging lantern. The adults get slightly less variety as only 2 of the 5 come with dual expressions. But the majority of the torsos are exclusive new prints and look great. My favourite designs is the 2021 sweater with ox horn print on the hood – I would buy one. And of the adults, only the older male has a new printed face – those glasses are obviously designer.

Accessory wise everyone has a great little somethin’ to engage with. The bubble tea cup is great, as is the selfie stick and film camera. The newest elements include a new orange colour for a mobile phone and a 1×1 round tile printed with the sweet rice balls. Overall the minifigures get a solid score of 91%. The brick-to-fig ratio is sadly on the lower end at 224 bricks/fig, giving it a score of 70%. This is well below the average of 170 bricks/fig for all reviewed sets to date. 8 minifigures is still a really good amount though and you get a nice variety of characters. Therefore the final minifigures score is a healthy 81%.

ENTERTAINMENT: 90%

Spring Lantern Festival (80107) will definitely provide quite a lot of entertainment. The set as it is will appeal to AFOLs and KFOLs alike. The modular aspects allow you to introduce the set into your existing modular sets or LEGO® city with ease. It is a very smart call to build the base with the same connection points as the Brick Bank, Assembly Square, etc. The variety of modifications are also really endless. I was initially a little bummed that the set didn’t include more greenery or landscaping. But that’s something I can add/improve over time. There’s plenty of potential for small builds, more trees and fancy-schmancy cobblestones! It also just looks lovely as a display piece on it’s own.

The minifigures are also great for setting the scene. There’s lots of story potential in the 8 figures included and countless more with any number of extra characters. I admit I don’t know the many lovely details of the actual festival or annual Asian holidays. But a set like this makes me appreciate a celebration that’s rooted in lots of history and tradition. Researching a few details taught me a little bit and I dig that in a set. And even if you treat the set as just a new piece of parkland, that’s great too. A great set should allow you to set the scene and use your imagination. I can happily say Spring Lantern Festival does just that 🙂

OVERALL: 89%

My initial draw to Spring Lantern Festival (80107) was the modular design. I was eager to add this sucker into my modular collection. Happily the set is also a great value for the price and a really fun build. There’s plenty of simple and complicated techniques to keep all skill levels entertained. The pavilion is a real highlight of technical and aesthetic design too. All the printed elements (no stickers!) are appreciated and clearly show some keen attention to final design and value. I also like the traditional architecture and having the chance to build something a little different. I whole-heartedly recommend the set. 👍👍

And that is that! Just in the nick of time before next year’s CNY sets release. But of course we want to hear from you. What’s your thoughts on the Spring Lantern Festival? Do you celebrate it yourself or with family? Are you excited for continued Chinese New Year sets? As always, comment below and let us know. Until then, keep on brickin’.

-Frank

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