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    [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

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    [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby DrBeaker » Mon Jun 20, 2011 3:37 pm

    Indexed

    [REVIEW] 10218 – Pet Shop

    The newest modular city building, the Pet Shop, was released in mid-May here in the States. My kids decided it would look perfect on our city block and I’ve been looking for an interesting build, so we placed our order. This was our first foray into the large modular sets, which are primarily designed for advanced builders and adult collectors. What do I think of this set after putting it together? Read on. . .

    Set Details

    10218 – Pet Shop
    Pieces = 2032
    Minifigures = Four (plus associated pets!)
    MSRP = $149.99
    Price per piece = 7.4 cents/piece

    Box

    When the package arrived from Shop@Home, I was surprised by how heavy it was. I guess it has been too many years of buying primarily licensed sets, with the inevitable price per piece markup. The pet shop comes in at over 2000 pieces for the MSRP of $149. This works out to just 7.4 cents/piece. The front of the box has a few inset pictures, including one that reveals the dimensions of the final build.

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    The rear of the box lets us see the various play elements of the set. As you’ll see in my review, this set is packed with interesting elements and features. The back of the box also shows how the Pet Shop links up with other modular city block sets from the same line.

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    Here’s a close-up of just a few of the pictures from the rear of the box.

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    Opening the Box & Minifigures

    On opening the box, a veritable avalanche of bags fell out (translation = there were so many bags, I didn’t count them all). The bags are broken into four sets: two for the pet shop and two for the adjacent apartment building.

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    There are also two large instruction books packaged nicely in their own bag with cardboard backing. This set contained no sticker sheet.

    The set includes four minifigures. They are all fairly standard City folks. We get two men, one woman and one small girl. It also includes a newer style, green bicycle.

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    All of the minifigures have modest printing on the rear of their torsos.

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    Being a pet shop, this set includes a number of LEGO animals. The cat and dog have printed faces, while the mouse (rat?) and frog do not. The cat is so cute! There is a second frog in the set but it is used as a structural element.

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    The Build

    The first part of the build takes us through the foundation and first story of the apartment building.

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    The build begins with the foundation and the sidewalk outside the front steps. You’ll notice a cellar door on the right side of the picture.

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    After the foundation, the remainder of the first floor builds up very quickly. This building uses brown as the primary wall color, with other shades of brown/tan for accent. The first floor of this building is the most detailed and is filled with fun features, including a couch, coat rack and vase of flowers.

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    There is a doorway tucked under the ascending staircase. Inside? A toilet! For some reason, this pleases my six year old son to no end :)

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    With the first floor complete, the build moves onto the remainder of the apartment building.

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    The second floor is the most uninteresting in the set. The bucket in the middle of the room and white patch on the wall are meant to show that it is about to be painted. I will likely accessorize this space later on.

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    As you can see from the previous image, the top of each floor is mostly smooth plate with just a few studs to hold things in place. This is to facilitate the easy addition and removal of individual floors. The final floor has limited interior space but does open to a nicely decorated balcony. There is a splash of green color for the front of the building on the awning of one of the windows on this third floor.

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    After building the roof, the three floors come together to complete the building.

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    Now we are ready for the pet shop! The primary color used on the walls is a pale, cloud blue. The printing on the instructions actually makes it look more like a grey-blue color, which caused confusion at a few points in the build.

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    The main floor is beautifully detailed. The floor is entirely smooth, creating a tile effect. There is also a cash register and separate enclosures for both the dog and cat. The poor mouse (rat?) is consigned to live near the garbage can out back.

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    The staircase for this building goes straight up over the dog’s enclosure on the first floor. The stairway is hinged, so that if playing with just the first floor, it can fold back to allow access to the doggie. Here is a look down onto the completed first floor.

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    The second floor opens into a nice apartment space. It contains a fireplace, oven and kitchen sink.

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    From the completed second floor, a final stairwell moves up to a loft that contains a bed for the apartment below.

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    The front façade of the third floor is charming, with differing color tones on the windows and an irregular “up/down” pattern to the black roof sloped pieces.

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    And the final product, with both units attached to each other.

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    Pro’s

    Extremely interesting build
    Tons of small details that make the buildings come to life
    Attractive final buildings with cohesive color schemes
    Each floor is set up well for use/play
    Superb value for money

    Con’s

    Could have used a few more minifigures and pets
    Access to cellar on apartment building is limited

    Final Thoughts

    Overall, this is one of the most interesting builds I’ve had in a while. There are a slew of different techniques used and it is a great pleasure to watch individual design features come together into something bigger & more impressive.

    From a price standpoint, this set represents a refreshing change from the ever-creeping price/piece ratio we’ve witnessed in the licensed sets over recent years. The playability is superb and while I enjoyed building it, my kids (ages 2-9) have enjoyed creating all sorts of interesting adventures with the pet store and attached living spaces.

    I have very few minor criticisms of the set. It could have used a handful more minifigures and/or pets to really make it come to life. I recently built 10217 Diagon Alley (review forthcoming) and noted that despite nearly identical piece counts and price, Diagon Alley had 11 minifigures to Pet Shop’s measly four. Also the cellar/basement of the apartment building is difficult to access and several minifigures have been trapped in there!

    These minor quibbles aside, I highly recommend this set. I know that I will be taking a closer look at the other modular city builds when my budget allows based on my positive experience with this set.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby atmail35 » Mon Jun 20, 2011 4:10 pm

    Nice review! I like the hat rack and the toilet is amusing. The little girl is cute, but she has the same hoodie as the boy in the City House :( Oh well.

    And the mouse/rat...the green grocer has it and it is disproportionately huge...I guess it is a NYC rat!

    I was doubtful that this set was as good as the other modulars but I may have changed my mind now that I've seen some of the details.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby lukeskywalker » Tue Jun 21, 2011 6:12 am

    Good review, I like the tile on the pet shop floor.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby Iccy » Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:00 pm

    Thanks for the review! The set looks very detailed and nice. But the mouse/rat is way too big. How can it be the same size as the cat? :? I really like the toilet too but I have to agree with you on the second floor of the apartment. It does look a bit plain, but I guess the first floor makes up for it.

    The pet shop building seems to be the best as each floor is very detailed. Where does the frog (not the structure one) goes?

    I think it would probably been better if LEGO just made the Pet Shop as 1 building (not split it into 2) as it does look a bit cramp (especially on the ground floor). That way, they can focus on giving more miniature furnitures/details instead of worrying about space. As much as I love this modular building, I'm somewhat disappointed the "pet shop" is only on the first floor and is only at one of the buildings.

    Clearly, LEGO puts more effort and details when theres lesser floors/buildings. Fire Brigade has 2 floors but is packed with details (not just a chair or table on a floor). Grand Emporium and Green Grocer both have 3 floors so LEGO slacked off a bit on the second and third floor. Only the ground floor is super detailed. Don't get me wrong though, both of these sets are still very nice and I would definately recommend it. :)
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby jessica52877 » Tue Jun 21, 2011 4:56 pm

    Great review. I wasn't too sure about this one because of the size. I am concerned how it will look up against the other city buildings we have (grocery, hotel, fire and emporium). I just love the little apartment though and don't mind accessorizing the top floor.

    I am tired of seeing the same hoodie shirt on the people but I guess I can get over that. We have tons of other people I can add to the mix.

    I do wish the backs would be open for easier play. I buy them for my son and he actually plays with them.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby isaacho » Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:32 pm

    Congratz on a great review!

    Possible to modify the cellar so that it can be easily accessible like the other modular floors? Using flats & plates with less studs to clutch 1st floor?

    Best
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby DrBeaker » Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:18 pm

    Ice wrote:The pet shop building seems to be the best as each floor is very detailed. Where does the frog (not the structure one) goes?


    He sits on a shelf above the cash register on the pet shop. He must be a very well-behaved frog ;)

    Ice wrote:Clearly, LEGO puts more effort and details when theres lesser floors/buildings. Fire Brigade has 2 floors but is packed with details (not just a chair or table on a floor). Grand Emporium and Green Grocer both have 3 floors so LEGO slacked off a bit on the second and third floor. Only the ground floor is super detailed. Don't get me wrong though, both of these sets are still very nice and I would definately recommend it. :)


    After my positive experience with the Pet Shop, I am definitely interested in the other two modulars that are currently available. Actually, I'm interested in all of them but the prices of Green Grocer and Corner Cafe on brinklink or ebay are . . . :shock:
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby DrBeaker » Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:19 pm

    isaacho wrote:Congratz on a great review!

    Possible to modify the cellar so that it can be easily accessible like the other modular floors? Using flats & plates with less studs to clutch 1st floor?

    Best
    Isaac


    That's the current plan. I think the flaw with the cellar is that the outside cellar doors are on the rear of the building and the trapdoor inside is also on the rear. It makes it hard to extract minifigures that wriggle up to the front part of the basement.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby Iccy » Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:28 pm

    DrBeaker wrote:After my positive experience with the Pet Shop, I am definitely interested in the other two modulars that are currently available. Actually, I'm interested in all of them but the prices of Green Grocer and Corner Cafe on brinklink or ebay are . . . :shock:

    Ya these modular buildings gets pricey when it gets discontinued. Green Grocer is already doubled the MSRP. I'm glad I got mine a little earlier.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby Sinfanti » Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:38 am

    Thanks for the detailed review. I think this will be the set to pull me into the modular building theme, since I can see my kids really enjoying it. I guess that means I better scramble to get the fire station and Emporium before they go the way of the Cafe Corner and Green Grocer.
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    Re: [REVIEW] 10218 -- Pet Shop (Pic Heavy)

    Postby ENeuman600 » Fri Jun 24, 2011 6:39 am

    I purchased the Pet shop set and It really small than other Modular building so I give rate of this set is five out of 10. I felt should have bigger at around 50 percent larger than current set. I do own others 5 modular building including market street.
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