LEGO designer reveals why the Super Mario 64 set has a ‘?’ And no ‘!’


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Image: Nintendo / The LEGO Group

The Lego Super Mario 64? Block got Nintendo fans hot under the collar when it was announced on social media. Above all, its clever folding design ensures a real wow moment as the harmless block unfolds and reveals intricate, microscale replicas of the iconic levels of Super Mario 64. It’s a fitting way to celebrate the game’s 25th anniversary, and a sign that Lego is committed to creating more Nintendo sets for adults in addition to its kid-friendly Lego Super Mario range.

We loved 71365 Super Mario 64? Block on our review, praise the countless Easter eggs and surprises and call it “one of the best sets released in a long time”. But we still had a few questions about design: Why did Lego choose one? block instead of Super Mario 64! Block, and how exactly they came up with the stunning folding design.

So we emailed set designer Daire McCabe a few questions: Here’s what he said.

Nintendo Life: Why did you choose Super Mario 64 for this set and did you consider other designs based on this game?

McCabe County: We started with the design of the cube and the mechanics, and together with Nintendo we wanted to regain the magic of Super Mario 64 because we think it’s one of the most popular games of all time. Many of us grew up with the game, so we thought this set would be the perfect opportunity to celebrate all of its nostalgic moments and iconic levels.

Where did the original concept come from? Was it from Nintendo or the Lego Group?

The original concept is the result of a unique partnership between the LEGO Group and Nintendo that allows us to bring Mario and his world to life in a whole new way. Together we created a completely new gaming experience that reinterprets how fans interact with LEGO sets, and the? Blocking is no exception.

Super Mario 64 Block Bob Omb BattlefieldImage: Nintendo / The LEGO Group

How much influence did Nintendo have in creating this set?

Creative teams from both companies worked together to bring this product to life.

How did you come up with the idea of ​​a folding design and how difficult was it to achieve?

We tried dozens of iterations with all sorts of nifty hinges and unfolding mechanisms before settling on the version you’ll experience in the final set.

One of the biggest challenges we faced in the design process was figuring out how the LEGO Super Mario 64? Block would open up and transform to reveal discernible micro-levels. We tried dozens of iterations with all sorts of nifty hinges and unfolding mechanisms before settling on the version you’ll experience in the final set. This design allowed us to incorporate most of the details and we found it to be the funniest and most surprising gaming experience to unfold.

The unfolding design is a sequence of movements that trigger each other; It was an exciting challenge to make all of these parts of the sequence run smoothly, using hidden guides within the block and rounded edges on the main display. We wanted that too? Block that looks seamless when closed, which resulted in some interesting construction techniques used for the hinges and doors.

Super Mario 64 is one of the few Super Mario games that doesn’t include question mark blocks. So what led to the decision to use a question mark block for this set? Have you considered using an exclamation point block instead?

You are right about that? Block wasn’t included in Super Mario 64. Including the ? Block was a conscious decision that we mention in the package itself. With ? Blocks, you never know what you’ll find in them, so this? Block contains fun secrets and surprises for the fans.

How can the set be integrated into the Lego Mario and Lego Luigi figures?

For interactive play, fans can add a LEGO Mario or LEGO Luigi figure to hear unique music and sounds from the video game, and look for the hidden power stars that reveal secret reactions from the characters.

Super Mario 64 Lego blockImage: Nintendo / The LEGO Group

What unique pieces did you have to create for this set?

We created two brand new items for this set. Element # 79389: Plate 1×1 with 2-module bracket downwards, and Element # 79491: 2×2 rounded corner plate to round the corners of the? Block as smoothly as possible.

Which microfigures are included and how did you choose which ones?

The set includes Mario, Princess Peach and King Bob-omb as well as a Chain Chomp, Big Bully, Mr. I, Lakitu, Penguin, Baby Penguin and a few more hidden in the model that you have to discover for yourself! We picked the characters that were the most iconic of the levels represented in the set.

What influenced the choice of the four levels shown, and did you consider using other levels from the game?

The choice of levels was very much determined by what we all thought were fan favorites

We have some big Super Mario 64 fans on the LEGO Super Mario design team, and the choice of levels has been largely determined by fan favorites. Of course we had other levels in advance, but we couldn’t all pass.

Peach’s Castle should always be the centerpiece as it is the centerpiece of the video game.

Was there anything that you couldn’t consider due to time or budget constraints?

A lot of ideas are always incorporated into the development of all sets, but of course not all of them make it into the end product.

This is the second display-focused Nintendo set after the 71374 NES console – are there any plans for more Nintendo sets in the 18+ range?

We do not comment on future product releases, but we look forward to working with you and look forward to continuous collaboration.

Are there any plans for a series of Lego Super Mario-style minifigures to accompany the interactive and display-focused Nintendo sets?

We do not comment on future product versions.

Have you already bought and built the set? Looking forward to picking it up for the holidays, or not interested in that particular block? Let us know with a comment below.

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