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Is Adventures with Luigi the Update LEGO Super Mario Needed? – Random 30 Review

It’s been around a year since we looked at the groundbreaking collaboration between LEGO and Nintendo’s Super Mario. The new playsets were built to build and play within a very unique way to regular Lego sets combining the fun of video gameplay with traditional imaginative Lego building.

So now it’s Mario’s green wearing brother the fan-favourite Luigi™ who gets to join the LEGO® Super Mario™ universe with the new LEGO Super Mario Adventures with Luigi Starter Course. (They really need to work on shorter names).

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(Image: DoccyDarko)

I was pretty critical from the first images that Luigi just looked like Mario with a coat of green paint but now getting hands-on with the figure I can see the real differences between the two. I mean they could have gone the easy option and just said “well Mario and Luigi were exactly the same in his first video game appearance back in 1983 on the Game and Watch Mario Bros apart from colours”, but they didn’t.

The first thing I noticed was that Luigi sits a little taller than Mario, he’s a little thinner in the face and his moustache is a different design, rather than Marios bushy cloud-like mo, Luigi sports more of a straight curve with a smaller “oh” shaped mouth under it.

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(Image: LEGO Group)

I’m really glad they made these changes, but the real test is in the playset itself. Like the Mario course, this set can be your entry point into the world of LEGO Super Mario. After all, you need either Mario or Luigi to be able to activate the interactive fun of the courses you build and collect those digital coins.

Now if I was just starting my collection and was given a choice between getting the Mario Course or the Luigi one it would be a difficult decision, but ultimately I’d have to go with the Luigi course.

The design of the playset is just leaps and bounds over the original Mario one a year ago. The teams have obviously used that time to develop new and exciting ways to interact with the character and by adding the “SeeSaw Challenge” it's actually a lot more fun to build and see in action with it’s moveable parts.

The Seesaw is engineering brilliance in Lego, watching the technical parts move up and down and the large cogwheels spin the device around adds an extra element. As the Brickman on Lego Masters Australia would say “NPU” (Nice Parts Usage) and amazing SNOT (Studs Not On Top).

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(Image: LEGO Group)

This set has 280 pieces so it will take some time to put together adding to the fun. Plus once you are ready you can pull it all apart and try to make your own designs to share on the app.

On the app, there’s a significant update that you will need to download in order to be able to add Luigi to it. Also if you add Mario again you may need to do a firmware update so they can interact. These updates can take a while so if it's a gift for the kids you’ll need to prepare them for the wait.

Remember all the instructions are on the app as well, which for me was not in great condition on the android app. As I was doing the build some pieces that were meant to show as a picture piece (for example the mouth of Boom Boom) instead showed as a completely blacked out image. It was easy enough to work out what the piece was meant to be but I admit I had to swap a few around at the end. These bugs should be worked out in future updates and are completely software so at least it's not an issue with the set itself.

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(Image: DoccyDarko)

The new “Adventures with Luigi” is a welcome start to the new phase of LEGO Super Mario. The more technical design of the bricks and the multiple included characters like “Boom Boom”, Pink Yoshi and “Bone Goomba” make it the stand-out pack to start your crossover adventure.