LEGO Ideas 21305 Maze Building Kit Review
The Lego 21305, also known as The Lego Ideas maze, is a brand new set taken from – Where else – The Lego Ideas theme. The Ideas line is known to be one of the most popular Lego themes ever, since a lot of people enjoy its creativity, unexpectedness, as well as its host of unique concepts that make the entire theme special.
The Lego Ideas maze is the thirteenth release of the Lego Ideas series. It was first unveiled in March 2016, to excitement from fans. The general look of the build was taken after the Labyrinth, a marble game designed by Jason Alleman. Despite being based after another game, the design of the 21305 just oozes both originality and creativity. Plenty of fans were highly impressed and astounded that Lego even took time to approve this project. Releasing a set like this was actually a huge gamble for the toy company.
The maze is a completely bold concept in general. You can purchase this build on the official Lego Website, at your nearest Lego store, or toys and hobbies store. It costs over $69.99, so you might want to save up some cash if you plan on purchasing this build. It contains over 769 pieces.
As you might guess from its pricing, the 21305 does not come in a tiny box. The entire set is a biggie and is probably one of the largest sets coming from the Lego Ideas series. And not only that, the pieces found in the set are huge as well. There aren’t any tiny elements found here, so you won’t encounter those plates or bricks that measure 1 x 1 or rounded studs. The pieces found here are large and are pretty much one of the reasons why this set is incredibly hefty. But don’t let that piece count fool you – You’ll also be receiving loads of ABS plastics inside this set.
The bags found inside the 21305 don’t have numbers in them. For a set that contains more than 500 pieces, this means that you’re in for a very frustrating and painful building process, since you’ll find yourself staring at a sea of giant bricks, trying to find that one piece you need the most for the build. This process can be very taxing and will test your patience.
And another note when it comes to the box quality – The cardboard that houses the pieces is so much thinner and not really as durable as the ones found in past Lego Ideas builds. This is probably credited to the size of the bricks, so the cardboard is so much flimsier as a result. The cardboard isn’t as flimsy as the ones found in smaller Lego boxes, but it’s still not as thick as the ones found inside past Lego Ideas boxes.
There are a couple of interesting things found after opening up the box – One of them is a giant gray baseplate measuring 32 x 32. This isn’t really a common piece, since the only other time it has made its appearance was in the Lego 10243 Parisian Restaurant build. There are also four black plates measuring 8 x 16. Like the huge gray baseplate, these are also hard to find – And were only previously included in the 75095 UCS Tie Fighter build from the Lego Star Wars series.
Much like the other builds from the Lego Ideas series, the 21305 comes with a thick instruction manual, which is actually one of the better things about the set itself. This is a gigantic instruction manual, and carries a rather odd look to it. The gray border that surrounds the brown maze background looks a tad bit strange – They should’ve covered the whole booklet with a picture of the finished build.
There are loads of excellent readings found inside the manual itself, including a small biography of Labyrinth’s creator, Jason Alleman. There’s also information regarding the original Lego Ideas project.
At the back of the manual, you will find a portion that includes some extra concepts, as well as pictures of alternative maze designs which you can also try and build.
Constructing the maze itself was a truly unique experience – Very much unlike any other Lego build out there. Naturally, you begin with the giant gray baseplate, placing together the foundations as well as the Lego Technic pieces that are meant to handle the build’s own tilting mechanism. There are actually plenty of Lego Technic pieces included here, namely axles and lift-arms. These are all utilized for the build’s own mechanical system, which is connected and operated by two wheels that give you the power to control how the maze works.
After the base is finished, you are now supposed to include two tanned frames – This is both an outer and inner wall that can be tilted in various angles.
We now focus on the Lego Technic bits. Attaching these to the build was a completely interesting experience in general. Even though the frames were very repetitive, a lot of owners did enjoy placing the axles and the Technic parts together, especially since most of them were inexperienced regarding Lego Technic builds. They were curious to see how the entire mechanism worked.
One of the great things about the 21305 was the fact that the bricks came in a whole host of colors, like yellow, red, and blue. These were very useful indicators and worked nicely as the build’s bearings. The build in general is very challenge since you might have to turn it around several times during the entire building process. So if you’re a parent who wants to purchase the 21305 for your child, then you might want to give them a bit of assistance if the construction process begins.
The build contains a pretty nifty brick-built container that holds the balls used inside the maze. These balls are the typical Lego balls. They’re not exactly shaped like the perfect sphere – Instead, these maze balls have tiny indentations in them. This could be a disadvantage since they have the tendency to get stuck inside the maze, which could be quite annoying for certain users.
Aside from being utilized as a type of storage solution, the container also works as a stopper. This locks the maze into place, and stops it from tilting whenever you travel around or move with it. The ball container can be locked into place with the aid of an L-brick.
Meanwhile, found on the other corner is one more black brick that tightly secures the maze into its proper place for transportation purposes.
You can tilt the maze in various positions – But there’s a minor design flaw when it comes to this aspect. One of the frames does not tilt evenly in a singular direction, and once again, this left a couple of owners annoyed. However, one of the axis tilts very nicely, and it’s completely balanced in regards to the amount of tilting the maze does in both directions. The other axis isn’t capable of tilting well (the one that uses the yellow lift-arm from Lego Technic), since the whole thing gets obstructed halfway through.
Once again, this error really frustrated some of the build’s fans, who preferred the tilting to be evenly distributed on each side of the maze – Especially since the game’s mechanics all require you to tilt it on a couple of different directions, so gravity controls the ball. After these fans discovered the unintuitive tilting, plenty of them reportedly panicked since they felt like they have made some sort of mistake during the entire build – But that was not the case. Apparently, the whole thing was designed in that way.
After a short while, so many of them became used to the limited amount of tilting and just incorporated the entire thing into their playstyle. They still had fun trying to get the ball out of the maze, so the whole thing wasn’t a critical flaw – Just something that feels strange and rather jarring.
After the plates are finished and put into its right place, the maze has now begun to take shape. The aforementioned frames serve as some sort of nest for the maze plate to be placed in.
There’s also the classic maze plating, which is comprised of four 8 x 16 plates put together. So many owners like the concept of huge Lego tiles, and were absolutely thrilled to have received so many in this set. These plates are essentially the trump card of the entire Lego 21305 build since you can customize them to your liking, them being Lego plates and all.
The Lego 21305 isn’t meant for everyone. Even though there are aspects here that are typically found in a Lego Ideas set, such as the customizable plates, the maze is still a wonderful example of a very unique concept taken out of the entire Lego Ideas platform. This isn’t what you would normally expect inside the average Lego set.
The build definitely gets plenty of things right – It’s a nicely-constructed set comprised of good parts.