June 2012 – present
LEGO Ideas (subtheme until 2013)
Minecraft is a licensed theme based on the popular indie sandbox game Minecraft.
The theme began with the set 21102 Micro World (a successful CUUSOO project) in June 2012. The set sold extremely well, better than expected, and was thus followed up with further microscale sets in September 2013 and June 2014. Minifigure-scale sets were announced in November 2013 and released in November 2014, with subsequent waves being released in 2015, 2016, and 2017.
Minecraft is a sandbox indie game originally created by Swedish programmer Markus "Notch" Persson and later developed and published by Mojang. Mojang was later bought by Microsoft. The creative and building aspects of Minecraft allow players to build constructions out of textured cubes in a procedurally generated 3D world. Other activities in the game include exploration, gathering resources, crafting, and combat. Gameplay in its commercial release has two principal modes: survival, which requires players to acquire resources and maintain their health and hunger; and creative, where players have an unlimited supply of resources, the ability to fly, and no health or hunger.
Set Release History
In late December 2011, the concept of a Minecraft-themed set was submitted to LEGO's website CUUSOO. Due to the game's large fanbase and the large LEGO fanbase, the concept received the 10,000 supporters it needed very quickly. The concept went through a long review period, and after going through all of the necessary product tests, a set was produced, 21102 Micro World (unveiled at LEGO World Copenhagen in February 2012). The set went on sale June 1, 2012. Although the set was originally envisioned as a limited-run product, many, many units of the set were sold, leading to extensive further releases.
Due to the popularity of the single set, two more sets, 21105 The Village and 21106 The Nether, were unveiled at San Diego Comic-Con 2013 and released in September 2013. On November 2, 2013, at MineCon 2013, LEGO announced brand new minifigure-scale Minecraft sets. Fans left their imput and ideas for the new sets on the LEGO Minecraft Facebook page.
In 2014, a fourth set, 21107 The End, was released in June. But in November, a line of six minifigure-scale sets were released, introducing many new molds for the characters and mobs. Following the initial launch, two other waves have been released, one in August 2015 and another released in March 2016, with a third to be released in 2017.
Official Press Releases
21102 Micro World
This is a description taken from http://aboutus.lego.com/en-us/news-room/2012/February/LEGO-Minecraft-Micro-World. Do not modify it.
LEGO® Minecraft™ Micro World details unveiled, available for pre-order
BILLUND, Denmark – The LEGO Group and Mojang have released purchase details and pictures of the LEGO® Minecraft™ Micro World today.
The new set, which was the first to receive 10,000 votes of support from users on the global LEGO CUUSOO idea collection platform, will be available for purchase in summer 2012, but can be pre-ordered from today, exclusively through Mojang retail partner Jinx.com for $34.99 €34.99 at http://www.jinx.com/LEGOMinecraft. The sets will also be sold in select LEGO brand retail stores and the LEGO online shop from summer 2012.
“LEGO Minecraft Micro World is designed to celebrate the essence of the LEGO concept and the Minecraft gaming experience,” said Paal Smith-Meyer, Head of the LEGO New Business Group. Each set features four cubic modular vignettes that can be connected to recreate the Minecraft experience in LEGO bricks. One Minecraft block is represented as one 1x1 LEGO plate with a tile on top - not a perfect cube, but the best approximation at the chosen scale.
LEGO Minecraft Micro World includes two of Minecraft's most iconic characters, Steve and a Creeper, represented as "Micro Mobs." The model presents a standard for building a Minecraft world that can be configured any way the builder likes.
The surface of the modules comes off to reveal mines and hidden resources beneath. Fans can build their own landscapes, stack cubes on top of each other, to build the world of Minecraft as they wish.
The product was developed in collaboration with four LEGO fans: Chris Malloy, Michael Thomas, Kyle Tingey, and Bjarne Panduro Tveskov. These fans developed concepts alongside LEGO designers and helped shape the product into its final version.
Upon seeing the physical model the first time, Mojang founder Markus “Notch” Persson exclaimed: “Woohoo!”
LEGO CUUSOO is a website where LEGO fans can submit their ideas for new LEGO products and collect votes to make their ideas become a reality. They can also vote for other users’ ideas. It can be found at http://lego.cuusoo.com.
Ideas that are supported by 10,000 votes have a chance of being selected to become part of the LEGO Group’s product portfolio. Consumers who have their ideas chosen will earn 1% of the total net sales of the product.
Mojang will donate the 1% proceeds from LEGO CUUSOO to charity.
For more on the co-creation process for LEGO Minecraft Micro World, see the LEGO CUUSOO blog at http://legocuusoo.posterous.com.
21105 The Village and 21106 The Nether
This is a description taken from a San Diego Comic-Con International 2013 press release. Do not modify it.
THE LEGO GROUP EXPANDS MINECRAFT COLLECTION
- Two additional models based on the popular virtual 3D world make their debut at Comic-Con International and will be on shelves this September-
COMIC-CON INTERNATIONAL: SAN DIEGO (July 17, 2013) – Delighting LEGO® and Minecraft fans across the globe, The LEGO Group today announced it is extending its relationship with Swedish game developer Mojang to build on the blockbuster success of its first LEGO Minecraft building set to add two new models that will be released September 1, 2013.
LEGO Minecraft provides the opportunity to build, reconfigure and create new Minecraft micro-worlds in a physical LEGO way. The two new 3”x3”x3” models, The Village and The Nether, are on display for the first time at Comic-Con International in San Diego. Fans can also enjoy and take pictures with a large interactive 3D mosaic complete with Micromob character props at the LEGO booth (#2829).
“LEGO Minecraft is a perfect example of how people’s passions can be amplified when digital and physical interests are combined, and there couldn’t be more synergy between the engine that drives the Minecraft gaming experience and the creative fuel of a LEGO building experience,” said Michelle Wilson, senior brand manager for LEGO Systems, Inc. “We are thrilled to continue our collaboration with Mojang to create new Minecraft characters and environments in LEGO form so that fans can get as creative as they’d like in their physical world as in their digital one.”
“There’s no doubt about the connection between LEGO building and Minecraft – not only the design similarities, but the immense creativity that our fan bases share,” said Lydia Winters, Mojang’s director of fun. “Given how well received the first model was last year, we can’t wait to see what fans think of these new designs.”
LEGO Minecraft New Product Highlights
With this model, fans can create and customize their own Minecraft village with LEGO bricks. Just like the game, fans can build houses, grow crops and beware the mines in their own micro-world as well as play out their own storylines with Pig, Villager and Zombie constructible Micromob figures.
Builders can create the Minecraft Obsidian Portal and The Nether to explore the newest biome with this micro-scale LEGO model, complete with Netherrack, gravel, flowing lava and bedrock. This model includes two Ghasts and one Zombie Pigman constructible Micromob figures.
The new LEGO Minecraft micro-scale models can be split into four sections and reconfigured for different play experiences. They will be available beginning September 1, 2013 with a suggested retail price of $34.99.
Teaser image of the minifig-scale line.
Some Minecraft blocks in brick form.
Some possible set concepts.
An example of what can be made using the sets.
Another teaser image of the minifig-scale line at the New York Toy Fair 2014.