The LEGO® Group recently announced the upcoming release of the Orient Express. It is the latest offering from the Ideas theme. Ideas tends to be a popular theme among AFOLs. So, every time a set exits the production phase and heads to retail, I like to do a rundown of all the sets remaining in production alongside the official details of the newest set. Consequently, today we’re taking a look at the Orient Express as well as a November 2023 LEGO® Ideas update of sets still in production.
- SET #: 21344
- THEME: Ideas
- COST: $389.99 CAD
- BRICK COUNT: 2540
- MINIFIGURES: 8
- RELEASE DATE: December 1, 2023
- COST/BRICK: $0.153 (Satisfactory value)
- BRICKS/FIG: 318 (Great minifig count for Ideas)
I am not really into trains, so this set does not make my wish list right from the get-go. However, the colouring is nice, and the minifigs feature some interesting pieces. Additionally, the kit offers a decent number of characters for the LEGO® Ideas theme. However, Ideas tends to skimp on minifigs. When compared to LEGO® sets in general, the Minifigure count is quite low, and the cost/brick is nothing to celebrate either. At $0.15/brick, the value is not terrible, but also breaks the recent trend of excellent value Ideas sets seen with sets like Insect Collection and the Viking Village.
November 2023 LEGO® Ideas Production List
The Polaroid Onestep XS-70 was designed by fan Minibrick Productions. The concept launched on the LEGO® Ideas platform in January 2022 and hit 10,000 supporters by the end of February. Following the review process, the Onestep was approved and entered production in October 2022. This was part of the first round of 2022 reviews, alongside Tales of the Space Age, the Insect Collection and Orient Express. Consequently, I expect this to be the next set announced from LEGO® Ideas.
The Family Tree is a contest winner. Similar to the Viking Village, this one is a collaboration with Target in the United States. The design won the “What Does Family Mean to You?” contest launched in August 2022. It was created by veteran LEGO® Ideas fan Bulldoozer, who also brought us the Cosmic Cardboard Adventures GWP. Bulldoozer came out on top during a fan vote running from October 12 – 26, 2022 and was announced the winner during the following December. Like Viking Village, this set is destined to be a Target exclusive in the United States. However, it will also retail through the official LEGO® Store so Canadian (and international) fans can enjoy it as well.
Contest winners galore…
Dragon’s Keep: Journey’s End was the first Ideas submission by BoltBuilds. Unlike most other Ideas concepts, this set did not go through the usual 10,000 supporters and review. Instead, it was entered in the Dungeons and Dragons 50th Anniversary contest launched in October 2022. Dragon’s Keep won the fan vote which ran from November 28 – December 12, 2022. BoltBuilds was officially named the winner in January 2023. With Dungeons and Dragons celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2024, you can be sure the official set will be revealed in the coming months.
The Red London Telephone Box is the brainchild of Bricked1980. The concept was revealed on the LEGO® Ideas platform in February 2022, and hit 10,000 supporters by early July. LEGO® Ideas included the Telephone box in the second round of 2022 reviews, and it was approved for production in February 2023.
And completely missing the 30th Anniversary…
The Nightmare Before Christmas was also approved during the second round of 2022 reviews. LEGO® fan Tvrulesmylife originally placed the concept on LEGO® Ideas in July 2022. By early September, the build reached 10,000 supporters. Given the popularity of the Nightmare Before Christmas film, it comes as no surprise the set was green lit. However, the 30th Anniversary of the film passed on October 29, 2023, marking a missed opportunity in my opinion. Granted, the production scheduled from approval in February 2023 to launch in October of the same year would have been gruelling. Still…
Jaws came from fan designer By Diving Faces in March 2022, though this was the second entry of a Jaws themed set from the creator. It achieved 10,000 supporters by November of the same year, qualifying it for the third round of 2022 reviews. The LEGO® Ideas team approved the set for production in May 2023. The original movie came out in June 1975. Unlike with the Nightmare Before Christmas, the LEGO® Group would have ample time to meet the 50th Anniversary deadline. I think it would be another missed opportunity to release this set earlier than 2025.
Slow but steady wins the race…
The Cat was also part of the third round of 2022 reviews, alongside Jaws. This design comes from By the Yellow Brick. This set did not have the meteoric rise experience by some of the other sets on this list. The Cat entered the LEGO® Ideas platform in December 2020 and achieved 10,000 supporters nearly two years later in November 2022. All the same, it passed the review phase and entered production in May 2023.
Reading, Reading, and Reading is the third contest winner on the November 2023 LEGO® Ideas update list. The Me, Myself, and I challenge launched in late May of 2023 in celebration of Singles Day (which I didn’t know existed prior). The goal was to represent something you would do for yourself alone. The winner, Fr_An was announced in July. This set will be a GWP in the near-ish future.
Oh boy, MORE Disney 100…
As I write this, the most recent addition to the LEGO® Ideas lineup is Disney Magic. It is the fourth contest winner on this list, having come out on top in the 100 Years of Fairytales challenge. The contest launched on May 1, 2023, and represents the third collaboration between LEGO® Ideas and Target. Consequently, you can expect this set to be a Target exclusive in the United States, but available everywhere else through the LEGO® Store as well. The winning design comes from 2A2A. While the design is masterfully executed, I am starting to feel a little bit of Disney 100 ennui when it comes to LEGO® sets. I hope when the set comes out that it features some new Minifigures and not just rehashes.
And that concludes the November 2023 LEGO® Ideas update. I am intrigued by the Dragon’s Keep. Additionally, my wife is a huge Nightmare Before Christmas fan, so you know that set will make it into our house. However, I find myself not overly excited about any of these entries. Now that the Viking Village is out and in my collection, I don’t have anything I’m really looking forward to from LEGO® Ideas. I hope something from the next round of reviews will strike my fancy. Time will tell, I suppose. What do you think of the Orient Express and the current line up of Ideas sets in production? Which make your preliminary wish list? Let me know in the comments or reach out on social media.
Until next time,
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