Iron Mountain Ninja – LEGO Minecraft Magazine, June 2023

The summer time tends to be a bit slow for me for a variety of reasons, so I’m looking forward to my monthly dose of magazines even more. The LEGO Minecraft magazine is of course par for the course, so let’s have a look at the June 2023 issue.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, June 2023, Cover

The comic has four ninjas crossing the Iron Mountains, and while I’m familiar with the name, my lack of knowledge on Minecraft lore prevents me from putting it in context and providing a better explanation. Anyway, the advantage with this location is that we get rather varied panels, sometimes on top of the mountains, sometimes in the caves below them and ghost blocks, i. e. parts that just materialize, play a role, too.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, June 2023, Comic

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, June 2023, Comic

The poster isn’t much of an artistic achievement, but still kind of funny with its raining frogs and slime blobs. The back side has the warden/ demon from the The Deep Dark Battle (21246) set. In any case, the posters are at least different enough and don’t just repeat the same motives for the umpteenth time.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, June 2023, Poster

The extra isn’t anything surprising, but at least we get one of the ninjas to expand the diversity of the minifigures in your collection. Since it’s one of those one-offs that literally has only been available in a single set, this is even more true and collectors chasing the minifig may appreciate getting it easily and cheap this way. The rest is mundane stuff with another exploding block and another of god knows how many zombie Steves. One of the frogs would have been much cooler, obviously.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, June 2023, Extra

Overall not the most exciting edition of this magazine, but that’s not really much of a surprise. The last two issues simply raised the bar with some good minifigures. As always I’ll be the first to admit that of course Minecraft nerds will get more out of it than people like me only valuating the contents on its abstract merits.

Blue January – LEGO Minecraft Magazine, January 2023

Continuing this week’s little LEGO magazine sprint the next on the list is the one for Minecraft.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2023, Cover

The first thing that jumps to your eye is, quite literally, that this issue is very blue. The cover alone is a nearly indiscernible mush of azure and a few other shades and this continues in the comic, because of course it is ice-themed and to boot the character they chose is Steve with his blue shirt. *yikes* At least the perspectives chosen for the panels are interesting, but the some more color here and there wouldn’t hurt.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2023, Comic

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2023, Comic

For the poster I opted to show you the back side. As you know, I prefer clean graphic designs and this one hits the mark quite well with its heraldry-like approach. The one on the front has a swarm of flying phantoms/ bats in Dark Blue, which contributes further to this issue coming across as a bit too monochromatic.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2023, Poster

The extra is interesting, in particular the spider. It is nearly identical to the one included in The Mushroom House (21179), give or take the bracket for fixating the minifig. Not much else to report otherwise.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2023, Extra

This is an okay issue, but I’m beginning to feel that they’re kind of milking it. We never really get something fresh from the current line-up and the ever same Steve and Alex figures are really getting long in the tooth.

This must be Underwater Love – LEGO Minecraft Magazine, September 2022

The LEGO Minecraft magazine really is a bit of a sleeper hit with some positive surprises in store for every issue. Of course that’s easy to say with being only on the market for a year and a meager six issues in, but compared to e.g. Hidden Side it feels so much varied and a lot less repetitive. Let’s have a look what the September 2022 issue has on offer.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, September 2022, Cover

This one is built around some underwater adventures, which is a subject I always like, given my general love for sea creatures. Even the puffer fish from The Guardian Battle (21180) make an appearance as do of course some of the temple ruins. There’s also a nice brick-built dolphin featured throughout, which would have made for a cool extra. Perhaps they’ll make it happen some day?

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, September 2022, Comic

The posters are rather generic with a “Wanted!” poster for a skeleton on the front and a scene with the Iron Giant from two issues ago on the back.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, September 2022, Poster

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, September 2022, ExtraThe extra is made up of two minifigures, another version of Steve and a “Drowned” Zombie and there’s some pieces to build a small boat or float. Zombies are always nice to have should you decide to build your own swamp or temple scene or buy those sets and want to add some more action. The boat is done well enough, but overall I think the dolphin really would have been the better option here.

While it’s not a particularly surprising issue, this one is solid enough to provide some fun. With the dolphin in place of the boat it would of course have been awesome.

New Block on the Block – LEGO Minecraft Magazine, January 2022

Minecraft is an odd thing of a game. Some love it to death while others like me couldn’t be bothered. In  the LEGO universe it has its own weird place, given how many compare the game to the actual building with bricks. I think that’s a bit of an oversimplification, but there can be no denying that there is a certain charm in seeing parts of that virtual world turned into sets. since that seems to be reasonably successful, too, it really isn’t much of a surprise that we’re getting a matching comic magazine, too. So let’s see what the first issue offers.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2022, Cover

There was some “through the grapevine” info leaked on this being in the pipeline last October and I really couldn’t wait to check it out. In particular I was wondering how the comics would turn out, as generally this does not lend itself particularly well to that format in my opinion. It’s one of those cases where the limited design options any block-based world may offer kinda will get in the way. Interestingly, my mind having been conditioned by video games in the 1990s I could see a lot of it working as an isometric perspective thing and so far the comics seem to confirm that. At least to me it looks nice when it’s drawn like those little scenes e.g. in role playing games, where the camera is hovering above and viewing the goings-ons at a certain angle from a bit of distance, but once they get too close things start feeling strange. I guess we’ll have to wait how it evolves stylistically.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2022, Comic

The story very much is in line with what you’ve come to expect from these magazines – pig runs away, everyone panics, hijinx ensue, pig is saved from peril, everyone is happy. Not really many surprises here, but at least there’s hope we might see something more imaginative one day.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2022, Comic

The poster is acceptable, though I still always find myself going *umppphhhh* over plastering everything with fat type. It feels superfluous and ruins the mood. the back side shows a “No Creepers!” sign, but to me that is a lot less attractive than the front one.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2022, Poster

The extra is quite comprehensive with two minifigures and the pig. You get Steve and a zombie version of him, which really is a good start, generic as the figures may be in the Minecraft universe.

LEGO Magazine, Minecraft, January 2022, Extra

It’s of course too early to tell where this is headed, but I’m definitely going to keep an eye on this. Even if you have no specific relation to Minecraft, this series has some interesting pieces, quite a few of which have useful prints and that alone could be a reason to pick up the mag every once in a while.