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Modular Dollhouse Line?

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Modular Dollhouse Line?

Postby Peppermint Pig » Mon Jun 09, 2008 4:33 am

In order to establish greater interest in Lego for girls while appreciating the economic restraints set upon families in an increasingly difficult economy, I recommend that Lego consider a Modular Dollhouse line in minifigure scale. I need a better, mass appeal name for such a line/theme. 'Your Lego Home'.

In the sense that Corner Cafe was modular with Green Grocer, this theme would be a modular system for creating a single building.

Building in minifigure scale means more value, compared to the cost and size of bellville sets/parts. Also, being smaller means being affordable. Modularity incentivizes future purchases.

Sets could vary in size, but the smallest could start around 10 USD, and follow a closely ratcheted scale of 5 dollar increments going no higher than 50.

Each set would compromise enough parts to build a room, with enough parts to build at least 3/4 of a roof. Brick built furniture encouraged.

Alternative models and composite model instructions are a must. Hinge bricks and snappers would work fine for attaching multiple sets together.

A 50 USD set could contain 1/2 a house with a hinge in the middle, and smaller sets could easily attach to one side or the other of that big set.

This is also an opportunity for Lego to produce baseplates in new colors (could pretend it were carpet, but can also be tiled):

16x16 Dark Pink Baseplate
16x16 Dark Orange
16x16 Orange Baseplate
16x16 Red Baseplate

16x32 Dark Tan Baseplate
16x32 Dark Green Baseplate
16x32 Sand Blue Baseplate

Successive seasons of product could focus on different architectural styles.

Set Breakdown:

10USD Small Bedroom
15USD Library/Den
20USD Kitchen
25USD Entertainment Room. Pool table?
40USD Garage + Laundry. Bicycles (green ones!) and a nice brick car.
50USD Half a House. Staircase, bedroom, bathroom, dining room, living room.

Feedback welcome. :)
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Postby RichardAM » Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:28 am

Playmobil have something similar, but the thing is that with them you have to buy the entire house and then subsequently each 'room' and all the furniture. As this is Lego, the idea of actually building the house rather than buying it pre-assembled is a fantastic idea, while modularity could mean lead to better customisation.

I think it's a great idea, but even if Lego didn't want to go down the route of a 'doll's' house, a similar system could easily be implemented for town houses or other buildings.

Nice one!
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Postby Munchy » Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:37 pm

This is something I've thought about myself. I know my daughter would LOVE something like this. As it is though, she has to live with Daddy's poor building skills and lack of pink bricks.
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Postby Donut » Mon Jun 09, 2008 4:28 pm

I think this is a great idea, you can also have the different sets connect together to form an entire house. I am just not sure how well it will sell considering how LEGO was always viewed as a toy brand for boys.
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Postby architect » Mon Jun 09, 2008 5:11 pm

I proposed a modular room/house idea as a LEGO Ambassador this previous cycle. It is nice to know that other fans are looking for the same type of sets to give to their children and/or relatives. I do not know if LEGO will choose to make sets like these, but it has been brought to their attention.

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Postby LordZode » Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:24 pm

Donut wrote:I think this is a great idea, you can also have the different sets connect together to form an entire house. I am just not sure how well it will sell considering how LEGO was always viewed as a toy brand for boys.


Perhaps, but consider the success of the Town/City theme which certainly has cross-gender appeal. And of course, the ladies we have on these forums as well :)
P.S. If you need help making MOCs, making posts, or don't know what to do next, please, let me know! I'm here to help! ;)
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Postby Aliencat » Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:32 pm

I remember years ago Duplo had something like this. I can't find it in the English catalog so I linked the Dutch one so just ignore the text, the pictures are clear enough. It was basically a modular "build your own house" thing with furniture sets and stuff.

Modular doll house is a cool idea though, I had this friend back in school who'd come over to play, but she'd always be more interested in my sister's doll house than in my toys/games, so I ended up building a pretty cool (for an 8 year old) doll house out of my Lego to get her to play with me ;)
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Postby Count Blacktron » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:55 am

Esentially this is what the Harry Potter line attempted, but with mixed results. I think it is important to maintain a good number of useful building pieces, colors that seem realistic from a modern/classic design standpoint and generous play features. Gaudy colors may turn off the audience as it will too closely resemble a Barbie home. Maintain a home like quality of neutrality and a feeling of comfort in design. If you really want to do an action crossover into a modular home, you can always license a theme like this with something like Charmed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charmed). They had a nice San Francisco home and plenty of things going on in each room. 8)
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Postby Munchy » Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:34 pm

Count Blacktron wrote:Esentially this is what the Harry Potter line attempted, but with mixed results. I think it is important to maintain a good number of useful building pieces, colors that seem realistic from a modern/classic design standpoint and generous play features. Gaudy colors may turn off the audience as it will too closely resemble a Barbie home. Maintain a home like quality of neutrality and a feeling of comfort in design. If you really want to do an action crossover into a modular home, you can always license a theme like this with something like Charmed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charmed). They had a nice San Francisco home and plenty of things going on in each room. 8)


Hmm.

I agree the that the house should have that neutral and comfortable feel and generic rooms to start. Maybe have multiple instruction sets for different layouts using the same bricks. But I don't think LEGO needs to get a license for the theme. That would be a waste of money to start.

If LEGO does something like this and it takes off then maybe they could get major designers (Martha Stewart types) to stamp rooms/color schemes.

*shrug*

I hope LEGO tries this. It would be something I would buy. If it's minifig scale, I know a lot of City/Townies would buy some of these sets too.
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Postby Peppermint Pig » Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:33 pm

Some more details on what I think they could do for the sets:

10USD - Small Bedroom
1. A female minifig: Short/dwarf legs in red. White torso with light gray vertical stitching dots and small butterflies/baubles across the bottom and around the neck collar line, with a bit of yellow printed at the neck. Yellow arms. Face can be common/generic. bb358 Minifig, Headgear Hair Short, Bob Cut, perhaps in Earth Orange or Tan.
2. Flooring should probably consist of a layer of technic brick between two layers of plate. Upper plates: two 8x8 plates, in either violet or dark red to make up the floor. Bottom plates: Two 8x8 plates in a common/generic/cheap color to make up the bottom support.
3. A sloped bed made out of dark pink, perhaps with dark pink headlights set in a snot fashion, so that a sprue of white flowers may be connected, creating a flowery bedspread. 2 round 2x2 tiles, white and red. Frame of bed made of dark brown pieces, with faux drawers on the sides.
4. Some accessories (stereo? brush) and maybe a pet cat in a new color.
5. A Lime brick built faux dresser done with 1 stud tiles (mid-studs, jumper plates, or whatever you call them) optionally a mirror or jewelry box??
6. Several 1x6 and 1x4 bricks to make up 1 wall facing, and a window frame. 1 or two rows of 45 degree slopes in reddish brown.
7. 30150 Container, Crate with Handholds, perhaps in White or medium blue filled with 'toys'. Perhaps one of those odd teddy bears as well.
8. A very simple stool made with a 2x2 round brick and maybe a 2x2 round tile??

And I hope that doesn't break the budget!

Upon reflection, there probably should be a set that is simply comprised of exterior/veneer elements, probably priced at 30 or 35. A mottled 2 color roof would be nice. Maybe reddish brown and dark brown. Can't think of anything else. :)
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Postby Athos » Tue Jun 10, 2008 6:17 pm

Interesting idea. I'd probably pick up a couple of sets, if it were done right.

Though I don't know how you could do a whole room for $10. But I think you could do a furniture set for that price.

What you could do, is a large set about $100 of a bare-bones furnished 3 room house (I initially thought $50, but roofing it could be pricey). Then sell smaller sets (~$20-$50) for expansion rooms, like a bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, etc. Then some furnishing sets for ~$10-$20.

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