Introducing LEGO Instructions PLUS

Instructions PLUS is a new service from the LEGO Group that provides user-friendly digital building instructions, potentially changing the way fans build their sets

LEGO building instructions are over 50 years old, having first been introduced in 1963. Since then, a lot of changes have happened in the pages of those paper instructions. The next evolution in instructions is Instructions PLUS, a new digital version of the building steps that the LEGO Group has introduced.

“It is building instructions, but with a little bit more – so that it was the plus is all about,” explained Henrik Daae, Director of Cross Audience, Digital Consumer Engagement, during a presentation at LEGO Fan Media Days 2019. Instructions PLUS is part of LEGO Life – the app that aims to provide fans with a plethora of useful services.

To develop the new version of LEGO instructions, Henrik’s team did a large, global study to find out what consumers wanted. An internal pilot then took feedback from LEGO Group employees, before further development was carried out to ensure that the platform and user experience met the required standard. Instructions PLUS launched this year, with 100 new 2019 sets compatible with the app.

As the team worked on the instructions, they went from a very basic app with very rudimentary renderings of some of the elements, to the polished, finished version that users can now make the most of when they do not want to use paper instructions.

“It makes a better building experience for some kids, for some kids the paper one is still the most relevant one, we also see we have a new opportunity to bring LEGO building to a new generation of builders,” Henrik explained.

Within the app, users will build a library of LEGO instructions – each time they scan the QR code on the paper instructions, they will store a digital copy of the instructions in the Instructions Plus app. That will then remain with their account, allowing builders to access their collection in the future.

To ensure that the children feel control over the process, the app allows them to choose where to start building if there are multiple models in the box – if they would like to build a cat in a tree first, they can, if they would prefer to build a fire truck first, they can do that too.

Build ideas are included along with the instructions, showing different models that can be built with the bricks that in the user’s collection. Instructions are not provided for the alternative models, those images are intended to encourage children to rebuild and unlock their creativity. “Right now these come from our designers, going forward we see some opportunities to speak to the wider community,” Henrik said.

For those past sets that are not included in Instructions PLUS, fans will be able to access the PDFs through LEGO Life or on the Customer Services section of the official LEGO website, as they do already.

Instructions PLUS looks to offer a nice option for fans that should be useful, even if not essential.

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Graham was the Editor up until November 2020. He has plenty of experience working on LEGO related projects. He has contributed to various websites and publications on topics including niche hobbies, the toy industry and education. Follw Graham on Twitter @grahamh100.

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