Model number: 21340
Number of pieces: 688
Dimensions: Each tile measures 5.5 x 3.5 x 1 inch
Recommended age: 18+
There’s a good reason we adore the Lego Ideas range so much: no two sets are ever alike, and each release is something wonderfully unique. If you’re unfamiliar with the range, these are sets conceptualized by amateur Lego designers, uploaded to the Lego Ideas platform and then voted on by fans. Sets that reach 10,000 votes are then judged by a panel of Lego professionals, with a handful each year being selected to be turned into a retail set.
Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age is one such set. Submitted to Lego Ideas in 2021, it’s been available on shelves since May of this year. One of the smaller Lego Ideas releases, it’s no less wonderful: a number of changes to the original concept have made this an absolute must-have. Particularly if you’re a space lover – and if you’re here, you undoubtedly are, then this is one of the best Lego space sets for adults in years.
Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age review: Build
Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age is a very enjoyable, simple build. It may be marketed as an adult set, labelled with age 18+, but that’s not a reflection of the complexity of the building process: it’s likely due to the fact that this is a set designed solely to be displayed rather than having any play functions.
On the contrary, there’s nothing here stopping younger builders joining in – and what we particularly like is that each of the four individual tiles comes with its own instruction book. That means four people can build together – a perfect social activity for the whole family to join in with.
Each of the tiles has two bags of bricks, and likely won’t take you any more than 20 minutes to put together. Each tile’s construction process has some similarities: they all share the same basic structure, with a support frame and hanging mechanism on the back – which allows you to display these on the wall. But thanks to each having its own unique color scheme and design, even if you’re building all four by yourself it never feels repetitive.
After building all four individual tiles, there’s an included fifth instruction booklet which shows you how to join all four together, if you so wish. We love that there are multiple ways to display the set: you can stand or hang each one up individually, or join them together with a series of Technic pins. It’s your call, but we think we prefer them as four separate pieces of art.
Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age review: Design
With a juxtaposition of bright, bold colors against a black night sky, Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age is instantly eye-catching. Whether you choose to hang the set on your wall or stand it on a mantelpiece or desk, it’s going to look fantastic. That’s testament both to the work of original fan designer Jan Woźnica and the Lego designers who have enhanced the set to prepare it for release.
In truth, the changes made to Woźnica’s original submission are subtle. The finished set is very recognizable as his original idea: the main difference is that one extra tile has been added. Originally, three images made up the Lego Ideas submission: a rocket launch, a dark moon over a rocky planet, and a comet. They’re now joined by a fourth: a black hole. Yes, the green circular design is a black hole. It’s probably the weakest of the four tiles, in truth, but we’re glad it’s been added.
What’s particularly neat about the design of Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age is how well the four individual tiles line up together. Their colorful stripes are perfectly coordinated, which means no matter which order you line them up, they’re always going to flow together congruently.
There’s a special place in our heart for Lego sets that can be hung on the wall. When shelf space is precious and limited, being able to display our builds on our walls really is a treat. Along with Lego’s Brick Sketches and Art range, Tales of the Space age is one of a number of mountable sets. Thanks to the specially-made hook brick on the back, you simply need a nail or hook on the wall, and you’re good to go.
The chunky black base really finishes the set off, giving it a high quality appearance and securing it as a sought-after display piece. Whether you’re placing this by itself or alongside other dioramas, it’s going to look fantastic.
Should you buy Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age?
Yes! Costing just $50, Lego Ideas Tales of the Space Age is the cheapest set in the Ideas range, but it’s every bit as inventive and eye-catching as the most expensive sets in the range.
It’s a fantastic concept, and if you’re a space lover, this is going to look wonderful on your wall or a shelf. It’s so refreshing to see something space-related that’s not a NASA vehicle or space station playset: instead, Tales of the Space Age feels like a real work of art, and we love that.
Other Lego sets to consider
If you’re after more Lego sets to hang on your wall, there’s the bulky but rather beautiful Vincent van Gogh – Starry Night, also part of the Ideas range. There’s also a selection of Lego Art sets: our favorites are the Jim Lee Batman portrait and the brand new Spider-Man, who pops out of the frame.
In terms of Lego space sets, the International Space Station model is delicate but exquisite, and the Lunar Research Base is a wonderful set for smaller Lego fans looking for something to play with.