LEGO Super Mario – Master Your Adventure Maker Set Review
If you’ve been following our LEGO Super Mario coverage on the site, or have been following me on Twitter over the past few years, you know that when the LEGO Super Mario collection was announced initially, I was incredibly skeptical and a bit vocal on social media about how I thought this LEGO line missed the mark completely with both LEGO and Nintendo fans. You might also remember me eating my words when I received my initial LEGO Group review drop with a few sets from Wave 1, including the starter kit. Now that we are onto Wave 2, I’m completely sold on the products and the play-first mentality that LEGO is going for here. Today we review the biggest play-leap for LEGO with this franchise, the Master Your Adventure Maker Set.
Thanks to The LEGO Group for sending this product over to review.
Like all LEGO Super Mario sets, there are no instructions in the box to help guide you through the building process. Instead, instructions can be found by downloading the LEGO Super Mario application on your smart phone or tablet, and loading the set instructions from the home screen. I’m still of the mindset that instructions packed into the box would be a smart move, but I understand what LEGO is trying to do here. First, LEGO can cut down on adding more paper into their sets. It saves them money, for sure, but it is also environmentally conscious. Second, LEGO Super Mario isn’t so much about building specific sets, but rather letting your creativity do the work. By not providing instructions in the box, I think LEGO is really pushing that ‘create your own adventure’ philosophy.
Like all LEGO Super Mario sets, putting this together is relatively simple. It does have a bit more complexity due to the gears system used to turn the “maker machine” but still my six year old son had no issues piecing it together. He was able to get all the set pieces put together in less than an hour, and that included the time it took to update our LEGO Super Mario via Bluetooth.
For my son, the most challenging parts of the build was getting hte gear system to work properly, and constructing Larry. Apart from that, everything was pretty straightforward, and the fantastically detailed digital instructions really do make building sets easier than ever before, even if a paper booklet might be more accessible.
There is a lot to digest in the Master Your Adventure Maker set. Looking at the box, you can quickly tell this is meant to be a follow-up to the starter kit you need to purchase to obtain Mario. There isn’t a cohesiveness to the stuff included, but rather it’s more of a mish-mash of things that will enhance the overall complexity of courses you might build in the future. When adding in the start pipe and flag from the starter set, you can definitely build a standalone course with just these pieces. But I’m not sure that is what LEGO intended when they brainstormed, developed, and launched this product.
Four new baddies are added to the LEGO Super Mario collection, the most important being Larry, one of the Koopling kids. He, along with Bowser and Bowser Jr. are begging to flesh out the Koopling family, and we cannot wait to get more. It’s inevitable that they will be launching in the future. You also get another Goomba in this set, as well as a Bob-omb and Koopa Paratroopa. While basic, both of these characters look outstanding when displayed on a shelf.
A variety of new platforms are also available in this set, giving your Super Mario course some much needed verticality. None of these platforms and obstacles are new to the LEGO Super Mario lineup of toys, but having more options to expand your course is never a bad option.
There are a bunch of new play options, however, that really take the entire LEGO Super Mario course creation concept to a whole new level. From LEGO,
Features a Customization Machine, Customization Time Block and 2 Customization Item Blocks so players can choose their own rewards, plus a Special Pipe: Dash 30 for extra fun interactive play options.
The Customization Machine is better than I could have imagined. Simply put one of the two new customization bricks into the machine, place Super Mario on top, and turn the machine to set that block to one of 4 possible outcomes – either earn some coins, obtain a mushroom, get a poison mushroom, or a super star. The poison mushroom is new to the LEGO Super Mario lineup, and makes Mario unable to obtain coins for 10 seconds, unless he washes off the poison in water (stand on a blue tile). It’s a unique feature that can really enhance a course, and it’s even better when you spring it on an unexpected family member or friend who is trying out your course.
The Customization Machine can also be used with an included time-block, which allows players to change the amount of additional time added to the course.
The other awesome new addition to LEGO Super Mario is the bonus warp pipe, highlighted in yellow, and providing you with 30 extra seconds of gameplay fun. Watching my kids work this pipe into their course creations was a treat, and their imaginations ran wild with how they could use the pipe. It’s a great little addition to the entire toy lineup, and one that everyone should pickup at their earliest convenience.
Grabbing the Master Your Adventure Maker set is a no-brainer if you are invested in the LEGO Super Mario franchise. There are too many outstanding additions here to pass on this set. While it could be tempting to pass as it doesn’t really have a specific theme like other sets released in Wave 1 and Wave 2, the Customization Machine, Larry Koopa, and a wackload of extra course construction pieces are the perfect way to dump new ideas into your already amazing courses. If you already have the Starter Kit (required to play), this is an easy second purchase.