LEGO City Deep Sea Operation Base 60096 Review
As people have discussed in past reviews, Lego City’s Deep Sea collection from 2015 was released to the public, and it has included some highly interesting sets. Once in a while, Lego likes to release a huge line that consists of underwater sea exploration-themed builds. There’s actually a good reason why this happens – Apart from variety with the themes, Lego has discovered that children like to bring their toys to the bath or wash them down in the kitchen sink. Sometimes, Lego’s sets take place inside an underwater setting, with their own storylines to boot. A good example of this is the Lego Aquazone and Lego Atlantis builds, which both possess a fantasy theme apart from underwater. But in the case of the Lego 60096, this basically means that the stories that come with this set are based on real life. You have submarines interacting with sea creatures, which is what oceanographers would usually do in real life.
There are six sets included in the Lego City Deep Sea theme. Two of the smallest ones are very affordable, only costing less than $10 each. If you’re only starting out with your collection, then these two should be enough to get you started. The Lego 60090 Deep See Scuba Scooter has its own diver minifigure, an octopus companion, as well as an underwater scooter. Meanwhile, the other set, the Lego 60091 Deep Sea Starter Set has three divers, a shark toy, and a bigger scooter. This one has more accessories in it, but it’s just as affordable as the other one. It’s actually a good set to try out without having to make a proper investment – Hence why it is known as a ‘starter set’. You will be able to find both of these sets in the official Lego shop.
The Lego 60096 Deep Sea Operation Base is the biggest build in the entire series, with a total of 907 pieces. Unfortunately for some, this particular set remains to be a store exclusive with a short release. If you want to get your hands on one, then it’s always a good idea to take a look at your local toy store, Lego store, or log on to auction Websites such as eBay. The set is comprised of an underwater base with several vehicles in tow, as well as a gigantic sea plane.
Probably the main reason why there’s a decent lack of reviews regarding the Lego 60096 is because of the fact that this is a store exclusive, and cannot be found anywhere else. There are plenty of builds involved here, which includes a tiny raft, an operations base, a sea plane, a small submarine, and a small rock formation with its treasure chest. As of now, nobody really knows the total pricing of this set – But there’s a good guess that it’ll go up to at least $90.
With the Lego 60096, you will now be free to go on adventures with the Lego City deep sea explorers, thanks to the Deep Sea Operation Base. You can help the experts take a closer look at the samples that they have taken from below the seabed, while on the surface, a gorgeous seaplane will land right next to the flatbed submarine and additional oxygen supplies. You can lower down the sub right into the water, then take a dive down to the depths to assist the researchers, as they investigate the mysterious treasure chest that they managed to unearth in the underwater cove. You can use up the submarine’s robotic arms to slice through the thick iron chain, and open up the cove gate. Afterwards, use the divers’ crowbar tool to pry open the chest and see the hidden treasure right before your very eyes. Make sure to keep an eye out for that snappy shark though! Other than that, this is just a regular day on the job for these intrepid deep sea explorers.
The build includes five types of minifigures, alongside their respective accessories: Namely a deep sea diver, a pilot, two deep sea explorers, and a scuba diver. Other features with the build include a seaplane, an operation base, a flatbed submarine with an accompanying oxygen tank, a research submarine with its bubble cockpit, seaweed, the shark, and a cove with its own gate. The operation base has its own sliding crane system with an accompanying working winch, a sealed hatch, two gigantic domed windows, two oxygen tanks that you can both attach and detach to your build, as well as an operating function that gives you access to the base’s gorgeous interiors, with a harpoon, a torch, a crowbar, seats, and a control center.
The operation base build measures at least seven inches (18 centimeters) high, seven inches (19 centimeters) wide, and nine inches (24 centimeters) deep. The seaplane build has a measurement of four inches (11 centimeters) high, twelve inches (32 centimeters) long, and thirteen inches (33 centimeters) wide. The flatbed sub portion has a measurement of one inch (three centimeters) high, three inches (9 centimeters) long, and three inches (8 centimeters) wide. And finally, the research sub measures at least two inches (7 centimeters) high, three inches (10 centimeters) long, and three inches (9 centimeters) wide.
People who own the Lego 60095 have often remarked about this build being the best one that Lego has released in this entire set – Namely, the Deep Sea Explorers line. But after constructing the Lego 60096, they’re pretty positive that they have found a set that’s heaps better than its predecessor. One of the things that people have liked about the 60096 was the general look of the underwater habitat base. The sea plane part of the build looks nice as well, even though it does look awkward being included inside an underwater base. It’s still an enjoyable plane that looks amazing, and contains loads of useful features, including the side hatches that show off a very roomy cargo compartment. The submarine itself, along with the underwater scooter, look amazing too. The scooter serves as an excellent way for the minifigures to transport gas cylinders to and from the underwater base. The aqua raiders dude, with his own heavy helmet, does look slightly out of place as well. Meanwhile, the scenario with the treasure chest was slightly underwhelming, as they’re not a central part to the general build in any way.
Nevertheless, the build itself looks mighty enjoyable, thanks to the dozens of components that come with the set. These all take shape and give off a pleasantly rewarding experience. The selection of parts is just astounding, thanks to the useful beams and specialized bricks that came with the build. There’s also five instruction manuals – And for some reason, they all come in different sizes: A bit unusual for a Lego set. People have actually wondered if this is the beginning of a brand new trend, and have asked what Lego’s purpose was for creating varying sizes of these manuals. Meanwhile, the box art itself looks fabulous on both sides. It does an excellent job of showcasing the finished set.
Perhaps the crown jewel of the entire build has got to be the underwater base part. It’s mostly plausible and highly detailed. The main habitat room comes with its own flashlight, a fire extinguisher, plenty of status displays, and a speargun for fishing. Meanwhile, on the outside, the habitat includes gas cylinders, support elements, and spotlights. Its loading bay segment also has a nice little crane that has the ability to lift up the sub from the water access pool, right into the parking spot. The Lego 60096 operates very smoothly, and is always so fun to play with. This is an excellent base made for the Lego exploration team of minifigures.
When you think about it, the Lego 60096 is a very cool build. However, it’s completely meant to be enjoyed with its predecessor – Since the 60095 does have a nice little shipwreck portion with its own set of treasures. This gives off a much better and exciting form of exploration subject for the minifigure diving team inside the underwater base, as compared to the ones included inside the set. One of the status screens shown in the habitat showcases a picture of the shark character, along with the shipwreck itself. Each one of these sets are already great by themselves. But when you combine the 60095 and the 60096 together, they create one very epic tale.
Lego should have released them as a wonderful and large superset, and leave the seaplane out (it looks really out of place, anyway). But then, people would have a worse time justifying the retail price of $220. And speaking of prices, this set is so much more reasonably priced at $100, despite the fact that it has 200 more parts as compared to the Lego 60095, which is priced at around $120.
In general, the Lego 60096 is a gorgeous diver set that provides an excellent underwater base. This compliments the build nicely, especially if you have the 60095 in tow.