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Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

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Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Shuppiluliumas on Fri Dec 16, 2011 12:58 am

I've made no secret that the thing I'm most excited about for 2012 is Lego Friends, the replacement for Belville and, perhaps, the last hope to revive a girl-centric Lego line. Putting aside my annoyance at the pervasive idea of Lego as a boy's toy, the new theme looks really good. As an aside, the theme is apparently based on the Lego Friends video game from 1999 that, as far as I can tell from the internet, nobody ever played. Pictures have been circulating for a while, but the sets are starting to appear in Europe, so fans are having their first up-close look at them. Via Eurobricks:

http://www.eurobricks.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=63434

The pictures show Friends figures are only slightly taller than minifigs. Their hair is interchangeable with minifig hair, and the figures do come apart at the waist, at the spot where the clothing top and bottom meet, as with minifigures. The seam wasn't obvious in early pictures so there was some speculation that they didn't come apart, and were more like the Belville dolls.

Other than that, the sets recall Paradisa more than anything else, with great colors and nifty transparent curved pieces, as well as a bunch of new figure accessories and animals.

I did a little url hunting on lego.com and found the pilot page for Friends on the US site, here:

http://friends.lego.com/en-US/default.aspx?icmp=COFranchiseUSFriends

"Coming December 26" It's possible we'll see them on TRU shelves even sooner if the pattern with other new set runs holds. If anyone finds them anywhere, let me know!

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Cale on Fri Dec 16, 2011 11:01 am

I think a lot of AFOLs are excited about this theme. I'm expecting to buy a fair bit of them myself. Finaly LEGO has made a girls theme that appeals to boys. scratch lol!

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Shuppiluliumas on Fri Dec 16, 2011 12:43 pm

Here's an interesting article about Lego's struggle with the girl market and its hopeful success with Friends from Bloomberg:

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/lego-is-for-girls-12142011.html

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Brianb on Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:09 pm

Nate thanks for posting that article, and I love the ending with Joe Meno's comments...

Brian

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  ctbyrne on Fri Dec 16, 2011 6:27 pm

Wow, I completely forgot that there was that computer game LEGO Friends. Huh. I am the youngest member of our LUG, so my buying was a bit displaced from all your buying, but I had (still have) just about all of the LEGO PC games from 1997-2002. I remember ads for LEGO Friends alongside Stunt Rally, Alpha Team, Racers 2, and Island 2. Of course I had no intention of getting that one, but I wish I had thought of that connection the first time I had heard of the new line. Oh well. I probably won't need any of the parts from the Friends sets as none of them are black. lol!

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Cale on Sat Dec 17, 2011 12:11 am

I read that article Nate and it's certainly interesting. I certainly hope LEGO finds success in the girl market. It could only mean good things for our hobby to have more kids getting into LEGO. I'm sure us AFOL will help with the success of the line. Both through buying sets and through using those parts in MOCs in public displays.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  cjedwards on Sat Dec 17, 2011 12:44 am

I have the paper version of that article too.
The part I found the most interesting was the indication that LEGO has prepared 23 sets in the line. As far as I know we've seen 14 so far. I wonder if more will come soon, or if the next 9 will be summer sets?

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Cale on Sat Dec 17, 2011 1:01 am

cjedwards wrote:I have the paper version of that article too.
The part I found the most interesting was the indication that LEGO has prepared 23 sets in the line. As far as I know we've seen 14 so far. I wonder if more will come soon, or if the next 9 will be summer sets?

Well I think the article said 23 products, not necessarily 23 sets. This could include things like keychains and other non set stuff. But given the sets we've seen so far I certainly hope it 23 actual building sets. That would be awesome although my wallet would not like that too much.

Rereading the article it says that there will be 29 figs (including the 5 main characters introduced to the friends line in 2012. From the 14 sets we've seen have there been 29 figs? This might be an indication of weather there are more sets to come.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  cjedwards on Sat Dec 17, 2011 1:16 am

Cale wrote:
Rereading the article it says that there will be 29 figs (including the 5 main characters introduced to the friends line in 2012. From the 14 sets we've seen have there been 29 figs? This might be an indication of weather there are more sets to come.
Cale White Cat

The 14 sets appear to have about 5 characters other than the 5 friends themselves (as far as I can tell, each set has exactly one friend, and any other figures are other characters, mostly adults). The friends themselves have slightly different outfits in each set, but that's still only 19 figures total.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Cale on Sat Dec 17, 2011 10:15 am

cjedwards wrote:
Cale wrote:
Rereading the article it says that there will be 29 figs (including the 5 main characters introduced to the friends line in 2012. From the 14 sets we've seen have there been 29 figs? This might be an indication of weather there are more sets to come.
Cale White Cat

The 14 sets appear to have about 5 characters other than the 5 friends themselves (as far as I can tell, each set has exactly one friend, and any other figures are other characters, mostly adults). The friends themselves have slightly different outfits in each set, but that's still only 19 figures total.

Then I think it's a good bet we'll se more Friends sets latter in the year. cheers Which makes sense. If this theme is as important to LEGO as they say it is then they'll want to keep the momentum up and release sets at regular intervals.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Cale on Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:26 pm

Cale wrote:
cjedwards wrote:
Cale wrote:
Rereading the article it says that there will be 29 figs (including the 5 main characters introduced to the friends line in 2012. From the 14 sets we've seen have there been 29 figs? This might be an indication of weather there are more sets to come.
Cale White Cat

The 14 sets appear to have about 5 characters other than the 5 friends themselves (as far as I can tell, each set has exactly one friend, and any other figures are other characters, mostly adults). The friends themselves have slightly different outfits in each set, but that's still only 19 figures total.

Then I think it's a good bet we'll se more Friends sets latter in the year. cheers Which makes sense. If this theme is as important to LEGO as they say it is then they'll want to keep the momentum up and release sets at regular intervals.

Cale Leiphart White Cat

So after looking at those preliminary summer pics from youtube it looks like we are getting a second wave of Friends sets for summer. And a pretty good wave too. LEGO was not joking when they said they're really putting a lot into this theme. The summer wave is easily as impressive as the initial launch with some pretty heavy hitting sets coming. There will even be a Friends Advent Calendar.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Shuppiluliumas on Thu Dec 22, 2011 1:06 am

Wow. What looks like a dark azure horse trailer a la the 2009 horse trailer with those old Paradisa parts and a Friends advent calendar. I'm going to go broke this year.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Cale on Fri Dec 30, 2011 5:43 pm

We absolutely must do a parts draft of #3065 Olivia's Tree House.

http://www.bricklink.com/catalogItemInv.asp?S=3065-1

This set is a gold mine.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Shuppiluliumas on Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:35 pm

I would be up for Stephanie's convertible as well, even though it's small. Might be a good way to start stocking up on the new colors.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  vyronwynter on Wed Jan 04, 2012 4:00 am

After seeing this video, I think TLG should have staggered the launches of the Friends and Super Heroes themes. One may cannibalize sales of the other.

http://www.collegehumor.com/video/6681642/little-girl-upset-about-gender-marketing-of-toys

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  D_Runyon on Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:45 pm

Wish I could make the meeting- I'd draft one of those.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  joshua sanders on Tue Jan 17, 2012 5:14 pm

Another LEGO Friends Article... Sad

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/15/lego-friends-girls-gender-toy-marketing_n_1206293.html?ref=parents

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Shuppiluliumas on Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:00 pm

You know, I'm not going to go claiming that gender bias in Toys (and in Lego) isn't an issue, but why has the least pink and least different of all the efforts at girl marketing I've ever seen raised such a stink? Also the entire universe seems to have forgotten what Lego is for. "I don't want my kid forced to build a hot tub," or whatever. So build something else with them with the same parts.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Kreativ Snail on Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:16 pm

One of my male friends, who usually checks out the real stats of things before he posts, wanted me to sign something claiming that they were sexist, and "pre-assembled" I told him to go to Bricklink, and see the inventory of each set, and that, yes, there was a beauty salon, but also a tree house, car, veterinarian, etc... Other than the figs themselves, these are just awesome. I can not figure out why so many people hate them. I do wish they had just released them under "Lego City", with mini-fig sized figures. They could have re-designed the torso to be more curvy, but still fit on regular legs. Exclamation snail

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Kreativ Snail on Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:24 pm

... and isn't regular Lego just as biased against boys who want to build a hair salon in the regular town sets? Not every boy out there wants to be a fireman or policeman, and many of them really like purple.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  cjedwards on Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:30 pm

Shuppiluliumas wrote:You know, I'm not going to go claiming that gender bias in Toys (and in Lego) isn't an issue, but why has the least pink and least different of all the efforts at girl marketing I've ever seen raised such a stink? Also the entire universe seems to have forgotten what Lego is for. "I don't want my kid forced to build a hot tub," or whatever. So build something else with them with the same parts.


Somehow the misconception has spread that LEGO Friends sets are "pre-fabricated" and don't involve much building. I guess non-AFOLs can't see individual LEGO parts in photographs as well as AFOLs can. If the hot tub is one big piece, how could you building something else out of it?

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  cjedwards on Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:32 pm

Kreativ Snail wrote:One of my male friends, who usually checks out the real stats of things before he posts, wanted me to sign something claiming that they were sexist, and "pre-assembled" I told him to go to Bricklink, and see the inventory of each set, and that, yes, there was a beauty salon, but also a tree house, car, veterinarian, etc... Other than the figs themselves, these are just awesome. I can not figure out why so many people hate them. I do wish they had just released them under "Lego City", with mini-fig sized figures. They could have re-designed the torso to be more curvy, but still fit on regular legs. Exclamation snail

How did your friend respond? I'm very curious.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Kreativ Snail on Wed Jan 18, 2012 6:07 pm

He wanted to post what I wrote to him, and I told him to just make his own comments posted, after he had checked out the product and could decide what it was really like.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  rgb on Thu Jan 19, 2012 9:04 am

I'm guessing Friends is getting more backlash than previous girls' lines because of the bigger marketing push Lego is making.

I an understand some of the anger about Friends. In an ideal world, you wouldn't have separate boys and girls toys and Lego has traditionally been more gender neutral than other toys, but people who keep saying "Lego already has a girls' line - It's called Lego!" really haven't been paying much attention to Lego sets in the past decade. There's times I'm even tired of all the vehicle, spaceship and action sets.

Besides, I think of Friends as a gateway drug. If girls get into it, they'll want to build more Lego and hopefully start buying other City and Creator sets or at least the buckets of bricks.

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Re: Lego Friends coming (very) soon!

Post  Guest on Sun Jan 29, 2012 12:56 am

One of the biggest arguments I've heard is that by marketing Friends as a "Girls' Line," LEGO is saying that all of their other products are only for boys. While it could be argued that the majority of themes (vehicle, spaceship, action, etc.) can be seen as targeting boys, the marketing for the toys have remained relatively gender neutral. Had LEGO not made a big to-do about how they have this new line specifically for girls, and just released them as a subtheme to the City line, or something similar to what Paradisa was, I think they would not have faced as much criticism.

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