Driving through the City – Reviewing Some City Sets

Theme: LEGO City
No: 60290; 60291; 60292
Release Year: 2021
Cost: AU $49.99; AU $79.99; AU $159.99
Pieces: 195 (4 minifigures); 388 (4 minifigures); 790 (10 minifigures)

A while ago it was revealed that there was a new standard in City road systems. Gone are the old 32×32 road baseplates, and in are the new large road plates. I thought I’d grab a few sets and see how they stack up. Let’s go for a quick drive.

60290 Skate Park

First up, a visit to the skate park. It’s pretty busy, with a skater, mountain biker and extreme wheelchair! I really like the inclusion of the Vita Rush truck visiting the skate park. It’s the perfect detail that adds a bit of fun, and a nod to the many energy drink trucks that may frequent events like these.

For a small set, there’s four great looking minifigures – the Vita Rush rep, the mountain biking boy, skater girl and the wheelchair athlete. All with vivid torso prints, the particular highlights for me are the Vita Rush rep’s torso, and the helmets, especially the dual moulded hair and helmet on skater girl. The green helmet is a new colour too.

The truck looks great. It’s suitably rugged and has that slight air of obnoxiousness, perfect for the subject matter. The park itself is a little sparse, but looks to be suited perfectly to the type of equipment that would be moved into place on a road temporarily. The seesaw is a nice touch, and the smaller ramps do the job, but I would have preferred to have seen a proper halfpipe for a bit more intuitive fun. The lonely palm tree adds a pop of colour, but it’s a little out by itself. It’s a fun set if you’re happy with just setting it up and popping it down, but it doesn’t lend itself to much rearrangement. The wheelchair dude also can’t go on the seesaw. Speaking of which – the wheelchair is beautiful in red and lime green, with the bike in dark blue and red rims. The colours here are excellent. Shame the rest of the set isn’t as exciting. It would have been nice to see a grind rail added in too. For a $50 set, there’s not a lot in it. If you want it, wait for a sale. It’s also not really the greatest set to get a feel for the new road pieces – let’s try the next one.

60291 Family House

Something a little bigger, with twice as many road plates. This set has four minifigures and a doggo. The minifigures – Dad, Mum, girl and boy are relatively uninspiring, but I do like the torsos on the kids. Looks like the lad is a Ninjago fan! Mum and the girl have alternate faces too. I really like the dog – I don’t think I’ve seen this variant before.

The minivan (apparently it’s electric) is a little uninspiring, but it’s passable. There’s no doors and no back window, but I do like the “plug” for the back. The house is pretty nice, if not cramped. There’s a seating area out on the lawn, a little garden patch, and a dog bath, with a little present from the dog left there for good measure. Downstairs there’s a living room with gaming console and kitchen, with an electric charge point outside (by Octan! Good on them for moving to renewables). The middle floor has a bathroom and games room, with guitar and washing machine sound system and a barbeque outside on the roof. I love the sticker for the bathroom too – wash your hands! The top floor has a bedroom – presumably the boy’s, with the roof including some solar panels. Clever, LEGO. The road plates include the hockey goals. I don’t mind these.

The house appears to be just a cross section of a chunk of a house. There’s way too much missing for it to be a complete house. It’s cramped and doesn’t really work for a family of four. It’s missing a lot, which is a let down. I’m also not really a fan of the messy look to the roads – the 2×4 tiles everywhere just doesn’t do it for me. As an AU $80 set, this feels very over priced. There are some clever details, but not for that amount of money. I would have hoped for more house. A couple of copies of this set and I reckon you’d be ok.

60292 Town Centre

On to the final set for the trio – the Town Centre. It’s a bit more sparse – must be a small town. There’s nine minifigures in this one – a police officer on a bike, a standard issue criminal (must be a hungry one as he’s stolen a pizza), Shirley Keeper from LEGO City Adventures, the City’s sanitation worker, a mum and her baby, a blind guy with a brand new doggo harness (love this), the dog – looks to be the brown version from 60291, and older guy that looks to be the sensei of the kendo dojo, a young girl – Madison Yea, the deputy mayor’s daughter, in her kendo outfit, a female firefighter, and the pizza restauraunt owner. There’s nothing overly exciting about the minifigures, but the kendo outfits are nice.

This set is ideal to figure out how the roadplates go, and I’m definitely not a fan. Once these are built, it’s not easy to move them all together. It’s possible, but extremely precarious. The build is split up into different sections – the little vehicle and charge station courtesy of OctanE again, the classic Octan car wash, the flatbed rubbish truck, the park, the bin section, and the bigger building, home to the pizza joint, kendo dojo and roof garden.

The car wash is great, with the classic Octan colours of red green and white. I also love that the rubber axle connectors allow the brushes to be pushed apart to let a car through, before bouncing back again. It’s very effective. The flatbed looks good, and it’s great that the bins can be picked up. The bins, having a neat little slot for each item is fantastic. My daughter loved playing with this. The little ride at the park is super simple and works well. The pizza joint has a nice path leading to it, and includes a new cash register design, with tap and pay on it now too. Brilliant! It’s a shame there’s no actual seating out the front. In order to give the fireys something to do, some pizza boxes are on fire. Who knows how that happened.

The dojo looks great in tan and sand green, with a nice bright red sign on the wall. The kendo gear inside looks good too. I love the wooden swords. At the top there’s a roof top garden with some nice clean roof detailing. I love the garden at the top, especially the grape vine. The set has plenty going for it, but there could be a lot more included. I feel the bulk of the price has gone towards the road plates. The inclusion of the blind guy is great – I love the harness and dog, and the car wash, but I don’t see this set being worth AU $160. It’s a lot of money for two small buildings, a vehicle or two and a whole stack of road.

I’d love to know your thoughts on the new road plates – let me know in the comments!

A special thank you to LEGO for sending me copies to review. All thoughts on these sets are my own and are not influenced in any way, shape or form. The provision of sets for review does not guarantee a favourable review.