The second of two 2015 winter exclusives is a neatly packaged and intricately detailed model gingerbread house. If you didn’t empty your bank account to get the train exclusive and still haven’t got enough LEGO in the run up to Christmas, you had to spend another £60 to get it! (* Apologies for delay in this review, I forgot about it in the drafts – Richard:P )
As this set had no official description, we will instead explain you how you could have gotten this exclusive.
LEGO® Gingerbread House (40139) is valid for orders online at LEGO.com/shop, in LEGO Stores and LEGO Catalogue telephone order while stocks last. Qualifying purchase must be equal to or greater than £50 in merchandise only. One Gingerbread House (40139) per household. Cannot be applied to previous purchases or combined with any other discount, offer or free gift. It cannot be exchanged or substituted for any other item or cash value. It is not available for purchase. Offer is not valid at LEGOLAND®Parks or LEGOLAND® Discovery Centers. The LEGO Group reserves the right to cancel or modify this promotion at any time without prior advance notice.
While the build isn’t inherently complicated, it is detailed; there’s a lot of that ‘1×1 flower studs and 1×1 studs’ building you get in modular though so it you don’t like that sort of thing, it may annoy you a bit. Relegated to ‘brick finder’, my capable assistant managed it all with just a little help, so it’s a good family build too.
This set is obviously a static model though, not a playset, but anything that looks this yummy is getting the attention of wide little eyes come what may so don’t be surprised if your attempts to disinterest them fail… And it does look yummy; the designers have certainly got the tone right and it feels substantial too, as if there’s more here than you got in last year’s Winter Skating Scene and even this year’s train. At nearly 200 bricks, that’s a lot of set for a ‘free add-on’, but then the £50 you had to spend has also gone up this year to £60.
As a display piece it’s all about the looks, so the fact that the door opens is kind of neither here nor there. To accommodate it, the design on the left of the house front loses the brick-effect pieces for nougat 1x1s and a brick yellow ‘1x1x3 with two clips’ brick. Bizarrely, that brick has been out in medium nougat recently but a minor modification placing it on the inside corner lets you add brick-effect pieces that match the right side with very little effort, and the door will still open. The other issue would be more difficult to address – an overhang of the roof at the gable edge would have been nice but it would need to be half a stud and while the ‘flat finish’ is a bit plain, I don’t think it can be solved without drastically adding to the brick count.
It’s still a great little set really and the 1×1 dark green studs, 1×4 nougat brick-effect pieces and a solitary 2×2 round flat tile in aqua (you can’t see that one on the box but oh yes, it’s there) make the brick haul decent too. What I would have to say I like the most about it though is the concept. It’s such a wonderful little idea and after the seasonal sets that all sold out before I even got to see one, this is perhaps the icing on the cake for what has been the best year I’ve witnessed for small exclusive sets.