LEGOs in the '90s


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Posted

It may be nostalgia or a complete new look of LEGO to you, but I speak for most when I say LEGO literally had its heyday in the (early and mid) 1990s. The Pirates theme saw its breakthrough in the LEGO world, LEGO Space became more diverse (Ice Planet 2002, Spyrius, Exploriens, Space Police II and more) and prices for those sets back in the '90s were cheaper compared to nowadays (but we had a different economic market back then).

 

Thanks to my dad we still preserved many LEGO catalogs from the '70s and '90s (he wasn't active with LEGO in the '80s :P), and I've scanned one of those catalogs to show you the awesomeness of what is known as '90s LEGO. If you are a '90s kid and loved LEGO back then, you will certainly remember some of the sets that are shown in this catalog. But '90s LEGO is also loved by non '90s kids, don't worry. The LEGO sets back then certainly have this nice look and design.

 

Without any further ado, here are all the scanned pages from a European LEGO System 1993 catalog (too bad I can't put two pages next to each other). Do you have any of the sets shown in this catalog?

Front page

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Pages 2 and 3

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Pages 4 and 5

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Pages 6 and 7

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Pages 8 and 9

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Pages 10 and 11

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Pages 12 and 13

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Pages 14 and 15

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Pages 16 and 17

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Pages 18 and 19

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Pages 20 and 21

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Pages 22 and 23

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Back page

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Posted

>LEGOs

no-rage-face-48b80c3ce8de0e95f0d0674dd78

Anyway, I think you might want to clarify just what part of the 90s you're talking about, as the general consensus from the LEGO community is that things were going great until the late 90s when the sets became very juniorized. I do love the style they had going in the late 80s/early 90s though, it was clean, refined, and stylistic.

Related: http://legosteveblog.blogspot.com/2012/09/top-five-things-i-miss-about-old-school.html

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Posted

Anyway, I think you might want to clarify just what part of the 90s you're talking about, as the general consensus from the LEGO community is that things were going great until the late 90s when the sets became very juniorized.

 

Yes you're right about that. The early and mid '90s were still going great, but when I thought of the late '90s I doubted; LEGO Trains, Space (UFO, Insectoids), and ofcourse Rock Raiders were good, but Town became juniorized.

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Posted

I loved the older LEGO set's :D, now not so much :/

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Posted

There really is a pleasant something with the 90's Lego sets that I can't quite place.

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Posted

Yep. Glad I'm not the only one who thinks that LEGO's heyday was in the late 80's to late 90's (1998 being the last year. Then Star Wars happened).

 

Other than Rock Raiders, it seems that LEGO was really dumbed down after 1998, Imaginatively speaking.

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Posted

My favorite era begins in the 90's, starting in '97, but continues to around 2008. That was when themes like Adventurers, Alpha Team, Island Xtreme Stunts, Western,  and more recently, Agents, Exo Force,  and Bionicle (of those my favorite being Alpha Team). While I like the older themes, the sets seem a bit flat and there wasn't as large a color choice when it came to pieces. Most of the space themes had a transparent green or blue color scheme to them and there wasn't as much story to the sets. I think they got it right starting with Johnny Thunder when there was plenty of story but you could have plenty of your own adventures with him and the same can be said for Alpha Team, Island, Agents, Exo Force, and Bionicle (and most of the themes from that era).

 

 

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Posted

(1998 being the last year. Then Star Wars happened).

Here we go again. Not this same silly thing.

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Posted

Other than Rock Raiders, it seems that LEGO was really dumbed down after 1998, Imaginatively speaking.

Dino Attack.

Exo-Force.

Alpha Team.

Vikings.

Orient Expedition.

Island Xtreme Stunts.

Atlantis.

Drome Racers.

LEGO Universe.

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Posted

I miss all of those old themes...you know when Lego was actually good. I absolutely loved Rockraiders, Alpha Team, Bionicle, That one Timetravel theme, the old technic, Arctic etc. then Chimaera and lego universe came a long and ruined it...

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Posted

I miss all of those old themes...you know when Lego was actually good.

What isn't good any more? It's not always fantastic, but that doesn't mean it's always terrible.

then Chimaera and lego universe came a long and ruined it...

I'm sorry... LEGO Universe ruined it? A game that was trying harder than anything LEGO had done in years to cover as much of LEGO's past and present material as it could... ruined LEGO?

What?

On top of that, the furry theme is called Chima. This is a Chimera. I fail to see how it ruined everything either. It's basically just another big story theme after the success of Ninjago, which was pretty ridiculous too. I don't see how it killed LEGO with all the other themes out there not affected by it.

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Posted

Most of the space themes had a transparent green or blue color scheme to them and there wasn't as much story to the sets.

I thought part of LEGO was to be imaginative. You can make up your own stories, as well as letting your imagination run the bricks. 

 

I also thought the whole discussion on this ''90s better' and now 'bad stuff' had already settled (or atleast had come to some sort of agreement), and I see some posts require some arguments for (declining quality and design of) the theme(s) they don't like (EDIT: Not that I don't like to discuss this subject, heck, I'm open for all discussions). Anyway, it's nice to hear how everyone thinks about the sets. I don't know if a '70s folder is necessary to post. I'm actually curious if some will favor '70s LEGO over '90s LEGO, when considering the favoring of '90s LEGO over nowadays' products.

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Posted

I think I may be one of the few who loved the entire of the 90s in regards to LEGO, even the later stuff. There was a wonderful simplicity to the sets back then that just doesn't seem to be around much anymore. Even the junior-ised stuff never ticked me off, though I did grow up with the sets in the late 90s.

 

I was looking back recently at LEGO's past and deduced that their best year was 1996, for the following reasons:

  • Exploriens!
  • Some wonderful racing and boating sets released in LEGO City
  • Time Cruisers and Wild West, two of the most memorable one-time themes made
  • Pirates goes out with a bang, with Red Beard Runner and Armada Flagship
  • New Aquazone and Forestmen sets
  • Royal Knights, Aquazone and Launch Command sets carried across from 1995
  • LEGOLAND Windsor is opened, sparking the modern era of LEGOLAND parks
  • LEGO Island, the first LEGO video game, begins development

Nevertheless, there are plenty of brilliant years before and after, but this one seemed to be one of the strongest.

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Posted

Most of the space themes had a transparent green or blue color scheme to them and there wasn't as much story to the sets.

I thought part of LEGO was to be imaginative. You can make up your own stories, as well as letting your imagination run the bricks. 

 

I also thought the whole discussion on this ''90s better' and now 'bad stuff' had already settled (or atleast had come to some sort of agreement), and I see some posts require some arguments for (declining quality and design of) the theme(s) they don't like (EDIT: Not that I don't like to discuss this subject, heck, I'm open for all discussions). Anyway, it's nice to hear how everyone thinks about the sets. I don't know if a '70s folder is necessary to post. I'm actually curious if some will favor '70s LEGO over '90s LEGO, when considering the favoring of '90s LEGO over nowadays' products.

'Tis true but when writing,  having an outline to start with is much more stimulating that a blank piece of paper and the same can be said of a LEGO theme. I'm not saying go all out like Ninjago with a totally set storyline, something along the lines of Agents where there was a very very simply storyline on the verge of having none at all but enough to excite you and small enough to let you have your own secret agent adventures. 

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Posted (edited)

I don't have any sets in the catalogs, but I do have to say that '90s LEGO stuff was way better than it is now.

I have a couple '90s Racers sets, although most of my other ones were demolished.

Edited by Cirevam
Please don't use pure blue on a dark background. It's extremely hard to read.

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Posted

I'm sorry AFK, but could you PLEASE use a different hue for your text posts?

 

I tried to read it, I really did, but that blue makes your text all blurry. I'm sorry. I recommend using a lighter blue. That shade is difficult to read almost anywhere.

 

Just some neighbourly advice.

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Posted

It does really hurt your eyes when trying to focus on it.

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Posted

I'm sorry AFK, but could you PLEASE use a different hue for your text posts?

 

I tried to read it, I really did, but that blue makes your text all blurry. I'm sorry. I recommend using a lighter blue. That shade is difficult to read almost anywhere.

 

Just some neighborly advice.

I'm not bothered by it as is, because all of his posts are so short. I will be irked if AFK/MSD starts writing full paragraphs, so it's like a 500% increase modifier for tl;dr effects.

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Posted

I really like Lego from the mid to late 90's: When minifigures and sets were still simple, there weren't licensed themes (Aside from Star Wars), and sets didn't have really weird pieces. To me, Sets from 2000-2002 weren't as good because of how over-juniorized they were. And since 2003, I think the classic feel started to go away. There are some decent sets/themes today, but they will never beat the 90's.

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Posted

I'm sorry AFK, but could you PLEASE use a different hue for your text posts?

 

I tried to read it, I really did, but that blue makes your text all blurry. I'm sorry. I recommend using a lighter blue. That shade is difficult to read almost anywhere.

 

Just some neighbourly advice.

I'm Canadian. We were a British colony, so we spell most things like them. :P

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Posted

1996 was the first year when I really started getting into LEGO. I have so many '96 product catalogs laying around along with the instructions for many of my first sets.That was probably the smartest thing my six-year-old brain ever did, since I've been able to reconstruct sets that I haven't had for years.

 

I've been able to build older 90's sets thanks to my older brother giving me lots of old bricks and sites like Peeron with tons of scanned instruction booklets. After some digging I found enough bricks to make a few Ice Planet sets, which is probably my favorite pre-1996 theme. My favorites in 1996-1997 were the various Race sets. I have 6517 (jet ski), 6546 (#4 Formula 1 car), and I was able to reconstruct most of 6335 (Formula 1 car carrier truck). I also had 2129 (red Bungee Blaster), 6331 (blue stunt plane), 6553 (TV crew), 6581 and 6565 (various construction vehicles), 6625 (police car and motorcycle), 6407 (tiny fire truck), 6550 (outback race truck), 6556 and 6442 (some Divers sets), 2160 (small Aquaraiders sub), 6145 and 6125 (some Aquanauts vehicles), 2151 (small orange Roboforce walker), along with a bunch of U.F.O. and Exploriens sets. I never had any Time Twisters, Castle, Fright Knights or Pirate sets, but my older brother did.

 

That's quite a lot. I never realized how much I had in that year alone. The last set I remember buying was some ambulance in... 2010, I think. I still have it but I converted it to a sort of A-Team van. I have Power Miners sets too but those were gifts. I don't have much of an interest in current LEGO sets and maybe it's because of what some of you are saying. There is something about the 90's sets that makes them cooler, more attractive, more valuable. Maybe some of it is nostalgia but it seems to apply to old sets that I haven't seen until recently.

 

There are some boxes for 80's LEGO sets in my attic, or at least I think they're from the 80's. There's some space shuttle and the legendary monorail. The monorail is cool but the space shuttle looks rather lame. Sets earlier than that are even more bleh and I don't know why.

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