Friday, June 26, 2015

Wange Creation Villa No. 34052

I wanted my bootlego minifigs to have a bootlego minihouse. Most of the houses on the market are pink. They didn't use to be like that. I remember last year, a toy store was selling red and beige houses. Luckily, there were 3 boxes left, 2 for villa number 34051 and the one I got, number 34052. These were released last year.

There are 6 styles for the houses as can be seen at the back of the box. Two are yellow.

There's an instruction manual but the 1st step was confusing. It's hard to locate where to attach the first pieces. It was also difficult to understand how to attach different pieces (all in gray) in another step. There was no extra floor, wall or roof brick so following the instructions is crucial.

There were no missing pieces but there's a few extra plant pieces since I designed the plant layout. It took me about 4 hours to build.

There was no furniture included which was fine since this won't be an ordinary house once I'm done with it. It's for my X-men but my other minifigs can use it, of course. If you won't fill it up with furniture, you can store the minifigs in the rooms.

This brick set came with two minifigs but I didn't bother taking their pics. All I want is the house. The small basketball court on the side is a nice touch.

I got it for about US$24 with 755 pieces or 3 cents per piece. This was sold for much more in other places. For once, I'm glad I don't have to pay more just because of where I live. 

The 320000 series villas where spotted in another department store. They cost about US$13.

2015-07-04 update
Villa number 34052 was spotted at Divisoria for only US$19, $5 cheaper than the department store price.

We love bootlego

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

No surprise

There are some toys that pretend to be investments and there are some toys that are just meant to be fun. I will not argue whether seeing Lego (or any collectible toy) as an investment is a delusion or not. There have been articles written about it by people who know more than me. I do know that bootlegos are meant to be fun.

For about a year, I have resisted buying these bootlegos for myself. Focusing on just two toylines (Barbie and Marvel's 4-inch dolls) has made me appreciate the toys that I have and allowed me to improve my customizing skills. I felt that having another toy to spend time on will complicate things. 

It's hard to resist toys that are easily accessible. They are sold in the major toy stores, online shops and even at the smallest neighborhood store. People are talking about them in various social media. They are bootleg but people notice the improved quality in some bootleg brands. The way some picky collectors speak about these bootlegos have made me want to collect them. What seals the deal with these bootlegos is, of course, the price. Bootlegos offer relief from two major causes of distress for toy hobbyists, the accessibility and the price.

I started with the buying of minifigures (minifigs, for short). They have doll-like qualities so these are not difficult to like. Minifigs, unlike fashion dolls, can change their emotions by changing their faces but it's not ideal to use them to play dress up. If you re-dress a minifig (except the bootlego friends), chances are, it's a already a different character.

There are a lot of Marvel characters that don't have 4-inch action dolls. Bootlegos fills up this empty space. Fans can complete a superhero team in minifig form. I have decided to focus on Marvel characters, mainly the X-men and the Avengers.  Some DC characters are packed with the Marvel characters so I also end up with characters I am not interested in, but they're so cute, I decided to keep them. There is a wide array of characters from SpongeBob and friends, Kamen Riders to the cute minifig zombies from The Walking Dead. They all can share the bootlego world without disparity in scale and articulation unlike various toylines. It's a small world after all.

Speaking of cute, what can be more cute than a small Sentinel in pink and purple?

Those who enjoy dioramas will enjoy these bootlegos as brick sets are also available. Since they are in a smaller scale, less storage space will be be required.  Aside from the designed play feature, there is also fun in building and more fun rebuilding or redesigning a set.

I am looking forward to more Marvel sets

Since these are bootlegos, there is no pressure to handle the toys with obsessive-compulsive care as you would a precious collectible. If things fall apart, it can be rebuilt. If a part is ruined, it can be replaced. It's just fun, no worries.

When the day job becomes stressful, carefree play has a healing effect. It shouldn't come as a surprise if I suddenly stop blogging about Barbie, should it?