Month: October 2017

Day of the Departed

Day of the Departed - Lanterns

As most of you know Day of the Departed is a holiday celebrated by the people of Ninjago every October 29th. On this day they light lanterns to commemorate those who are no longer with them, but also make certain that they spend time with the people they cherish, like friends and family. Also, on this day, once every 3721 years the rare and mysterious Yin-Yang Eclipse occurs. During the eclipse the reality-warping Yin Blade can be used to open the Rift of Return. Subsequently, this rift can be used by the denizens of the Departed Realm to once more join the world of the living.

The Departed Realm, one of the sixteen realms (now fourteen), is where most of the souls of the people who have died go. Until recently, cursed souls would go to the Cursed Realm, however that all changed when Nya destroyed the Preeminent, the embodiment of the Cursed Realm. When the realm was destroyed all its denizens were transported to the Departed Realm, and, henceforth, all cursed souls go to it. Also, since all realms have a sister realm that shares the same destiny, the destruction of the Cursed Realm also meant the destruction of Djinjago, the realm of the Djinn.

The Rift of Return is not the only method of returning to Ninjago from the Departed Realm. There are many others, like Resurrectea, Magic, a Djinn’s Wish and so on. Strangely enough the First Spinjitzu Master was never able to connect the Realm Crystal to the Departed Realm, so it cannot be used to go there, or from there. However, unlike the Rift of Return, these methods would not revive a person, but rather let them roam Ninjago as ghosts or skeletons. The only known ghost to have ever returned, via the rift, to the land of the living is, of course, Cole.

Of course, the Ninja also celebrate the Day of the Departed, which is evident in the special episode with the same title. They visit they family, reminiscence about the people they’ve lost (or think that they have) and strengthen the bonds between themselves. Day of the Departed takes inspiration from many actual holidays, like Halloween, All Saints’ Day, All Souls’ Day, Dia de los Muertos, Lantern Festivals, Memorial Day and others. Truly, it is a holiday for all Ninjago fans, regardless of nation or faith, to come together.

Posted by Robert in Ninjago, 0 comments

Tommy Andreasen’s Twitter Ninjago AMA

Earlier today Tommy Andreasen, the co-creator of Ninjago, did a Ninjago AMA (short for Ask Me Anything) on Twitter. As you probably all know, Tommy is very communicative with fans of his work and kind enough to do these from time to time. As always, he didn’t give out any spoilers or comment on any leaked stuff, but he did reveal some very interesting information. We bring you some of the questions and answers below.

Concept Art by Tommy Andreasen

Concept Art used by Tommy Andreasen for his AMA

The questions will be in bold, Tommy’s answers in normal text, and my thoughts in italic.

Did the fold perform a new version of the weekend whip for the Intro in Season 8?
Season 8 intro will be very different from other intros. The song will be in the show and in the intro … to a limited extent.
Good. Is always good to mix things up.

Will Jay learn more about his biological mother Libber in S8? (idk if it’s a spoiler question or not)
Not in season 8 … I can say that much.
Potential Ninjago special?

Will Cole’s dad reappear in season 8
Can’t tell, but there will be a lot of call backs for hard core fans.
Not so much about the question, but rather about the answer. I love callbacks to fans.

When you develop lore, do you have things already pre-written to use for later, or do you come up with it as the show goes on?
Mostly as we go along. We leave some ends open to explore later but there is rarely a solid plan. We trust the ideas we haven’t had yet!
So far they’ve been doing a splendid job. However, there are a few continuity… surprises here and there.

Just curious, what usually comes first, the design of the toys and then the story, or the story and then the design?
That varies. We usually know the general direction of the toys, but each can influence the other.
It’s good to know that each influences the other.

Do you think the Ninjago Movie gave a positive push to the overall franchise? (as in helping attract more fans/sales)
I think the movie and the series could have been better aligned.
I wholeheartedly agree. It’s good to know the creator feels the same and that it means that some changes are coming to both.

Will we find out about Cole’s Mom?
A bit of new Cole’s mom information will surface.
Good. Character building is always good.

Did you have anything to do with TLNM?
I was not involved in the Movie.
And it shows :/

Why were the four elements Fire Lightning Earth Ice? It’s usually Fire Air Earth Water, especially if they’re tied with Gold- Alchemy!
This is not Earth. And lightning is pretty cool!
It’s not? Interesting… Will be get some new info on Cole’s power in S8?

What is the vibe like for season 8? Is it similar to that of ToE and Possession?
More like Possession, but kind of unique.
Nice! My favorite season is Possession.

Will there be a HUGE plot twist like game changer like whit sock in a millon black socks in season 8?
The will be several big plot twists and reveals. Season 8 is our most ambitious yet.
Well, every new season should be the most ambitious one, no? 😀

Will they ever cover the whole of ninjago city? I would love to create it but know only a few locations?
That city is ever expanding. You will see several new and ancient features of the city in season 8.
Now this is what I’m talking about! I am a huge sucker for world-building.

Are you (and LEGO) doing anything special for Day of the Departed this year?
I maybe do a small thing for DoD.
Hope he does, fans really like Day of the Departed (me included).

Does anyone completely remember the events of Skybound?
Jay, Nya and Nadakhan remembers.
Would’ve thought Wu as well!

Do Ray and Maya still have elemental powers?
Nope … elemental powers are passes on to any offspring.
This part I really dislike in Ninjago. They change the core too often. Also, I liked the version with accessing these powers (aka true potential) through personal effort. Shame it gets taken away when somebody else gets it.

And the best for last:

Do packing peanuts taste like peanuts?
Absolutely not!!!!
Why are they called peanuts then?

Posted by Robert in News, Ninjago, 0 comments

Where Master Wu goes to drink Serenitea

I bet you wondered where Wu goes whenever he “dies” in the Movie. To his secret hideout of course, which Lysander Chau has faithfully reproduced in glorious brick form.

The Ninjago Movie - Master Wu's secret hideout

To me this build looks like an old, mountain, temple was transported and put on a high tech, futuristic (or even magical) oil rig. In essence, a dualism presented as a beautiful blend of old and new. And the dragon is just a cherry on top.

Posted by Robert in MOCs, Ninjago, 0 comments

Do Ninja Dream of Mech Dragons?

You might’ve noticed that the set version of Lloyd’s Mech Dragon looks a bit different than the Movie version. It most likely does not bother you, since the set is awesome anyway. Well, not Jared! He set out to make the most Movie-accurate version possible with the parts LEGO has actually produced.

LEGO Ninjago Movie Green Mech Dragon

Wow. I’m lost for words. It’s so hard to pick a single point to start with. Let’s start with the color then. Where did he get that many sand green parts!? Must’ve cost a small fortune. Great parts usage all around, many different angles for elements, antistuds next to studs, it makes you wonder just how the frame looks like. I especially love all the spikes, since they make me reminiscence about the Ultra Dragon. Hopefully we also get instructions for the Movie version, but until then we have this amazing MOC to gawk at.

Posted by Robert in MOCs, Ninjago, 2 comments

Nya’s Mecha is Primed and Ready to go!

Asian builders truly have a different sense of esthetics when compared to us ‘westerners’. They prefer to build smaller, but just as detailed, builds as opposed to large, hulking buildings and landscapes. They prefer robots and anime characters to historical battles and LEGO City dioramas. But beyond that, even the style is different, and it’s immediately noticeable:

『劉氏重工』- Nya's Mecha

This mecha was build by the talented Hoyin Lau, a Chinese builder. He truly shines when he is making mechs, especially transformable ones. Nya’s mech is depicted as a lean mean samurain’ machine, capable of attaining any pose. The build looks sturdy but flexible and somehow the builder made the black parts look metallic. Truly a marvelous build.

Posted by Robert in MOCs, Ninjago, 0 comments

70656 – Garmadon, Garmadon, GARMADON! – Official Images

Apparently, Japan is getting the second wave of Ninjago Movie sets earlier than the rest of the world. While your initial emotion might be hellish fury, this time it simple means we get official images before, well, LEGO official releases them.

70656 – Garmadon, Garmadon, GARMADON! – €79.99

This set was actually revealed at San Diego Comic Con, way back in July, but these are the first official images. It features Garmadon’s Shark Mech, as well as a hotdog stand. The set has 6 minifigures, Lloyd, Garmadon, two Fish Army villains as well as two civilians, which are a nice addition. One of the civilians is wearing a Hot Dog suit, an old fan favorite, and the other is a girl wearing braces, which I believe is the first for LEGO.

70656 - Garmadon, Garmadon, GARMADON! - box art

70656 - Garmadon, Garmadon, GARMADON!

In Europe, this set will be available starting from December 1st. It is, however, expected to be a Toys’R’Us exclusive, so do not expect to see it in the 2018 catalog. If you wish to see other Ninjago sets coming out at the same time you can do so here.

Posted by Robert in News, Ninjago, 0 comments

LEGO Ninjago Movie fidget spinners revealed

As reported by BrickFan and discovered by mc_survival_man Ninjago Movie fidget spinners are being given out as promotional items at LEGO Discovery Centers.

LEGO Ninjago Movie Fidget Spinner

If you’ve never been to a LEGO Discovery Center you need to know that all adults must be accompanied by a child (you read that right) and you will be denied entry if you do not bring one. There are however nights where adults are allowed in. Also, in most of them, you’re allowed to enter the shop on your own.

As to this promotional reward, you need to spend 50$ to be eligible for one, while supplies last. However, there are already people reporting that the spinner is out of stock in various centers. I have to admit that I am not a huge fan of spinners, they’re just not the source of endless fun for me as they’re for others. This one does however come with exclusive 2×2 tiles of Garmadon, Master Wu, Lloyd, Kai, and Nya. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get my hands on one.

Posted by Robert in News, Ninjago, 0 comments

Exclusive Ninjago Movie props revealed by Simon Lucas

Simon Lucas, senior creative director at LEGO and executive producer of the LEGO Ninjago Movie, shared on Twitter images and information about movie props he managed to take home.

LEGO Ninjago Movie minifigure props

Apparently, during production four wooden Wu minifigures were made and he managed to snag one and take it home, together with its decorated box! Another minifigure he managed to get is the scratched up Lloyd – but this one is not so impressive, just leave your casual Lloyd minifigure with a dog for a few minutes and you’ll have it! Wooden Wu, on the other hand, will be a bit harder to replicate!

Posted by Robert in News, Ninjago, 4 comments

Dressed up like a Shogun

There are many, many mech in Ninjago sets. In fact, they’re one of the defining elements of Ninjago. Most of these are, just like all vehicles in Ninjago, oversized when compared to minifigs. There are, of course, some exceptions but they almost always come as a afterthought in sets that focus on something else entirely. That’s why it’s nice to see there are Ninjago fans out there who keep the size of their mech humble, but do not skip on details.

Fire Emperor Samukai

Built by Exetrius, a builder who does wonders with minifigs and minifig scale, this mech proves that in fact you do not need to go big to do great. Dubbed ‘Fire Emperor Samukai’, it uses fire and (mostly) red pieces to produce a regal feel. The best part? It made a skeleton look like an shogun ready for an epic showdown. Not everybody can do that.

Posted by Robert in MOCs, Ninjago, 0 comments

A great diorama is worth more than a thousand episodes

Made as a collaboration between brothers Kai NRG/Geneva and Robert4168/Garmadon this diorama has something for every Ninjago fan. Monastery of Spinjitzu? Check. Mountain of Impossible Heights? Just a few studs shorter than the actual one. Temple of Airjitzu, Ed & Edna’s scrapyard. You name it. Almost all seasons and main characters are represented.

LEGO Ninjago Diorama

I really love seeing complex LEGO dioramas. It goes double if it’s executed nicely, like this one. It goes triple if it is Ninjago themed. The different building, structures and even terrains are joined in such a way that the scene does not feel cluttered at all. Sure, the locations are not that close to each other in the show, but who cares! It’s wonderful seeing these made out of real bricks, since LEGO, most likely, won’t be making them anytime soon.

Posted by Robert in MOCs, Ninjago, 0 comments